Kato Double crossover Stutters ONLY on one Route or Path

Mark Ricci Apr 24, 2021

  1. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

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    The Unitrack #4's arent really Unitrack. They where brought to earth by aliens from the planet "Kaatoo"..;):whistle:
     
  2. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    Thank you for the input. Both loco's came factory equipped with decoders. #4 RT was temporarily swapped out with straight track and same issue persisted. Checked wheel gauge seemed ok on both loco's. Yesterday, looked at all remaining attached curve track on left side and thought about removing ballast. Then slightly shifting the entire outer semi-circle and possibly the inner semi-circle to test if the angle in which the curved track rail ends meet the respective d xover leg rails.
     
  3. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    Last edited: Apr 26, 2021
  4. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    Tried shims separately and together with no major difference from initial 2 shim locations but think this is the sort of issue occurring. Going to try slightly shifting left side outer and then inner semi circle segments impacting the rails intersect the d crossover legs.
     
  5. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    Went ahead for grins and giggles to measure base station voltage at output terminals and d crossover legs both with and without load.
    No Load Vout 24.4 V Voltage across each leg's rails 24.4
    20% Thr+SND Vout 23.7 Voltage across each leg's rails ----19.87 -- 19.83----
    ----19.9 -- 19.9----
     
  6. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky N scale Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    24 Volts!!!! How are you measuring? That will kill N scale DCC units
     
  7. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    That was a second part of one of posts in response to a voltage power issue suggestion. In that post I referred to the meter and.... The measurement is using the DMM's AC function which as far as I know, is designed only for RMS measurement of a sine wave at relatively low frequencies (<1 kHz) but thought could use relative numbers as a possible reference. My thinking that the higher voltage being reported is how the A-D converter inside the DMM is reacting to PWM which is bipolar DC so I expected "un-true" readings.
    The DC input voltage to the base station is 12V DC. DC voltmeters cannot measure PWM (at least the 2 I own) and as a result show 0 VDC across rails anywhere on the layout.
     
    Doug Gosha likes this.
  8. brokemoto

    brokemoto TrainBoard Member

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    Initially, it is. After some use, the turnouts start to become problems. The #4s will cause equipment to pick the points and will show continuity probloems. The points on the #6s will cease to align properly either for main or diverging and will have to be prodded into place. The #6s also will show continuity problems when set on main.
     
    Doug Gosha likes this.
  9. ggnlars

    ggnlars TrainBoard Member

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    So what is the solution. Are you saying that turnout problems like the last post and the OP are inherent with Unitrack turnouts?
     
    Doug Gosha likes this.
  10. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

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    9 years with 20+ Unitrack #6's and have never had any of those problems. Hmmmmmm...I must be one of the lucky ones I guess.
     
  11. MRLdave

    MRLdave TrainBoard Member

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    Probably not what you want to hear.......but if you ever pull the bottom off one of those cross-overs, there are a whole lot of places for problems. Our club recently had to remove one when it suddenly developed a short going straight thru. The minute you applied power (DC) to the line, it would blow the fuse. After multiple attempts to find a solution, we finally pulled it and put in flex track so we could get the line running for a show. Due to the power routing feature, there are multiple electrical contacts inside that could be causing issues
     
    Mark Ricci likes this.
  12. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I didn't know that Mark - thanks. That'll help me keep my sanity as I begin to lay track sometime in the future. Kato's newest (last 2 or 3 years) power pack is PWM I think.
     
  13. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

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    Hmm, I am using some 50-year-old Atlas switches that still work perfectly.

    :D

    Doug
     
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  14. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    Thank you Dave for the input. It's kinda frustrating as another d crossover was temporarily installed and has the same issue.
     
  15. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky N scale Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Never had a #6 problem that wasn't caused by something I did. Mechanically, the double x-over is four #6s. (#4 issues are well documented)
     
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  16. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    PWM Pulse Width Modulation is what and how DCC base stations send digital codes (packets) to decoders which interprets packets and executes instruction. Was unaware that Kato makes a DCC base. I have the Kato 24-018 DC Throttle.

    If you haven't decided on a DCC system and imho...
    Built a DCC EX Base Station with Arduino Mega, Arduino-DIY Motor Shield and WiFi. If you have a small layout and don't need more than a couple of Amps of track power, though there are options to increase, its kinda cool, and at less than $50, a great way to explore DCC and microcontrollers. It has WiThrottle Server built in too so a Raspberry pi or Windows and JMRI is not needed unless you want to program CVs. Was going to go with Digitrax DCS52 but the LNWI WiFi won't physically fit underneath layout. NCE PowerCab has a mini panel and its handheld controller is something that excludes it from consideration.

    This problem is causing hair loss. lol Expected setting up DS64 or Switch-Kat to d crossover was going to be the biggest issue..

    btw. Love the Jersey Central pic. Both of my DCC Loco's and all rolling stock (except unlettered Atlas Pullman Combine but bought CNJ decals for it) is CNJ
     
  17. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

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    Years and years ago, I bought the Atlas A1G CNJ gondola mainly because of that emblem (logo, these days).

    CNJ Gondola.jpg

    Doug
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2021
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  18. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I'll be using Kato's 22-018-1 power pack (seen below) which is old skool DC, but with PWM. I've been in N Scale for 50+years, so have a lot of old DC stuff I still enjoy running. However, my new railroad (which I'll hopefully begin soon) will also have a throttle input for DCC. A friend gave me his MRC Prodigy package and I'll use it to learn more about DCC basics. Mine will be a modestly-sized one-man railroad.

    Very cool that you're a CNJ fan! Looking forward to seeing some photos of your railroad sometime. (y)

    upload_2021-4-28_18-52-23.png
     
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  19. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

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    The only problem with PWM, controlling your engines, is that your locos can look pixelated as they move along the track if you go faster than a crawl.

    :D

    Doug
     
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  20. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I have that car too Doug and it remains one of my most favorites 45+ years after buying it at a small hobby shop in Flemington, NJ within sight of former CNJ rails. :)
     
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