Question about NCE Powercab

Rex Thomson Dec 26, 2020

  1. Rex Thomson

    Rex Thomson New Member

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    Hi All:
    I've been seeing strange behavior with my NCE Powercab. I've had it for a couple of weeks and been able to program and run my trains with it. However, I have seen a couple of issues with it. The clock keeps resetting every time I turn power off to the layout. Is that expected ? Seems like a pain to have to reset it each time I power the tracks. I kept setting it but have since given up on it.

    The second and more recent issue is that the recall memory is getting messed up when I power off the unit. It adds random train numbers to the memory location the next time it's powered on and I have to keep reprogramming the train numbers. I've also experienced some odd glitches that I'm yet to nail down as they could be decoder-related so don't want to assume they are the Powercab's fault. I searched Google and looked at the NCE helpdesk articles but none of those addressed these things.

    Thanks for any help/advice.
    Rex
     
  2. N-Jineer

    N-Jineer TrainBoard Member

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    I started off with a PowerCab and upgraded to a Powerhouse Pro Command Station, but I always use the PowerCab when using JMRI DecoderPro.
    When using it as a PowerCab, yes the clock does reset to 00:00 when the power is turned off; when plugged into the PH-Pro base, it retains the time at when the power is switched off. I image it will act in a similar fashion if you added a SB5 smartbooster to your setup
    As for the recall memory, I've just checked mine in PowerCab mode and it's retained the addresses of 4 N Scale locos I checked before selling in 2019.
     
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  3. NtheBasement

    NtheBasement TrainBoard Member

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    I have had the recall fail on occasion but attributed it to powering off during the Power Cab's startup cycle when there was a short. Not sure if that assumption is accurate but it seemed that way at the time. It works fine 99% of the time. Never knew what the clock's purpose was.
     
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  4. Maletrain

    Maletrain TrainBoard Member

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    The clock is mainly to act as a "fast clock" for compressed ops, but "fast" can be 1:1 time. Because the regular PowerCab has no internal power source, the clock can't continue to keep time when the external power is turned off. I don't know what it does in the PowerCabs that have been fitted with radios and internal batteries, so that they can be used as ProCabs when another DCC command station is available.

    It makes sense that DCC command stations would just store the time at shutdown and restart when repowered, because that is how an interrupted ops session would use them to resume in-place/time.

    There is an option to set that part of the display to show current (amps) through the PowerCab, which is what I set it for.
     
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  5. NDave

    NDave TrainBoard Member

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    My Powercab also occasionally "loses" a loco in the 5 loco recall list... it more commonly happens after a power shutdown due to a short... but also occasionally just at random. It's a minor annoyance...

    And yes, the fast clock always restarts at 00:00 after a power shut down. Wish there was a way to change to default start time, but I couldn't find one documented in the manual....
     
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  6. Rex Thomson

    Rex Thomson New Member

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    Thanks all for your responses. So, it looks like the clock reset is expected. I've never had a short and for the first few weeks, the recall was working fine. So, I'm not sure why it's showing up now. Just wanted to make sure there was no defect in the unit and it didn't go belly up when the warranty period was up.
     
  7. Maletrain

    Maletrain TrainBoard Member

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    Rex, I suggest that you join the NCC-DCC@groups.io list for questions like this.

    I already posted a question about PowerCab clock options on there (no responses, yet).

    But, for your concerns about losing locos from the recall list, that is a much better place to get both experiences of other PowerCab users and truly expert assistance in diagnosing and solving problems, not to mention finding features.
     
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  8. BigJake

    BigJake TrainBoard Member

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  9. Maletrain

    Maletrain TrainBoard Member

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    You are correct. And now it is too late to change my typo. Thanks for posting the correct link address.
     

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