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Author Topic: Current Keeper for Shay  (Read 5378 times)
RRPETE

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« on: June 02, 2017, 03:59:21 PM »

I have one of the earliest On30 Shays, with the original B2TSLC Soundtraxx  wired decoder. Current pickup has gotten sporadic, so I want to install a Current Keeper ("Keep-Alive") board, but Soundtraxx tech support can't provide information on the attachment points on this old decoder.

Can you?

Alternatively, is there any fix for the poor pickup?

Thanks.
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regbarron@icloud.com

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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2017, 10:01:51 PM »

Yes, I have a thread on the Railroad Line Forums in the On30 area with info on adding Keep Alives to some 0n30 locos!  It includes the old DSD-B2TSLC board.  Beware, it does require soldering directly to the circuit board.  I hid the KA inside the wood load in the fuel bunker.  I used a TCS KA-2 and had to hollow out the load a bit.  A KA-3 will be an easier fit.  It makes a big improvement in the locos ability to run at slow speeds without stalls or hick-ups.  The Soundtraxx Current Keeper would also work, but since it is larger, it would be harder to hide.  Regarding help from Soundtraxx on this topic, my experience has been that it depends on who you talk to.  The first person I talked to was  reluctant to help because a person could ruin the board with a hot soldering iron!  Their newer boards are designed to be compatible with Current Keepers, the old ones were not.  Finally,  you may have to search thru several pages to find the thread on the RRLF.

Reg Barron

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jkemp

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« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2017, 04:50:21 PM »

Hello Regbarron,

Thank you for the post.  I currently have (2) Bachmann/Spectrum Shay's and a Climax I want to apply both a Soundtraxx 1100 decoder + keep alive to.

Are you stating that the current best strategy is to hunt down a old DSD-B2TSLC board?

Or is there something else out there newer/better?

Thank you,
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regbarron@icloud.com

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« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2017, 07:56:23 PM »

The TSU 1100 should be a perfect modern solution.  A current keeper can be easily added to it.  However, due to limited space, I would consider a TCS KA-3 instead of the Current Keeper.  RRPETE wants to add a keep alive capability to the old DSD board.  That board in ancient, but can still give OK service, especially with a KA addeed.

Also, I would treat all wheels and electrical pick ups with a contact cleaner such as CRC, to see if that helps, before adding a KA.
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jkemp

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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2017, 08:21:05 PM »

thanks for the reply.

On one hand, electrically, I realize that a keep alive/current keeper is just a capacitor.  OTOH, I'm new to DCC, and as my plans were to to go with Soundtraxx deciders, I didn't know if I should try to stay with the Soundtraxx brand keep alive for support questions, or if just anything is OK.
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RRPETE

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« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2017, 07:44:30 PM »

Thanks for the reply, Red Barron. I cheecked out the forum you suggested, but it's open only to registyered members, and not accepting registrations. Any ideas?

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RRPETE

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« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2017, 07:45:45 PM »

Sorry, meant Reg Barron!
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regbarron@icloud.com

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« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2017, 11:13:10 PM »

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=42624

You might try the above link.  I believe non members can read but not post.

Reg Barron
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regbarron@icloud.com

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« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2017, 11:19:28 PM »

Sorry I was wrong.  Non members can not enter at this time. Apparently they have had problems with Bots and malware.  Perhaps I can figure a way to post a photo of the wiring diagram here .  . .  One could also join that forum.

Reg Barron
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regbarron@icloud.com

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« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2017, 11:33:05 PM »

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/data/Reg%20Barron/201442019145_DSDB2TSshayboard.jpg

Above is a link to the photo of the Shay board from the forum, but I fear it won't work for non members.  I need to search for the photo in my computer . . .

Reg Barron
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regbarron@icloud.com

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« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2017, 10:25:02 AM »

Someday I may be able to reduce the size of the photo of the Shay board so that I can attach it here and show where the two wires are soldered.  Meanwhile, here is a written description:

- look ar the side of the DSD Shay sound circuit board so that the word "SoundTraxx" is in the upper left.
- look below  the characters "B2TS", and you will see two small black rectangular components soldered to the board.  They have small bands on their left side.
- solder the blue, positive wire from the KA to the left (band side) of the left component.
- solder the black and white striped, negative wire from the KA to the right side of the right component (non band side). 
- it is best to pre tin the wire!
- I put a micro dot of Rosin flux on the component pad, and use an iron with a tinned tip and steady hand!
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jkemp

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« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2017, 02:44:06 PM »

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=42624

You might try the above link.  I believe non members can read but not post.

Reg Barron

Thank you for the post.

Strangely enough, the image link worked but the forum link did not. 

I'm a big fan of the railroad-line.com forum.

I have attempted to subscribe/become a member at both railroad-line.com and freerails.com for over a year with no success.  An administrator named "Herb" at freerails shared with me that "Sorry, we do not accept new registrations"  verbatim.

Sorry to vent.  Just find it weird that the RR forums I want to join, do not seem to want to grow.

And reading between the lines, if anyone here is on the inside of either of these forums and can assist (off line of course), it is sure appreciated.


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2foot6

Rail bus on Martins Creek Tramway


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« Reply #12 on: June 06, 2017, 07:34:52 PM »

Does any one know the value of the keep alive capacitor?..............Peter
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I ASPIRE TO INSPIRE BEFORE I EXPIRE.
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?
MBB


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« Reply #13 on: June 06, 2017, 09:46:02 PM »

http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/data/Reg%20Barron/201442019145_DSDB2TSshayboard.jpg

Above is a link to the photo of the Shay board from the forum, but I fear it won't work for non members.  I need to search for the photo in my computer . . .

Reg Barron
Photo size is not the problem. Also, you cannot post photo directly from your computer to Bachmann website.

Using BBC Img tags and the railroad-line forum link displays image here





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Hunt
?
MBB


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« Reply #14 on: June 06, 2017, 09:57:08 PM »

Does any one know the value of the keep alive capacitor?..............Peter

Pete ask TCS but per my tech notes their KA1 at one time (may still do)  used 6 X 220,000 uf super capacitors at 2.5 volts each, wired in series.
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