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Discussion Boards => General Discussion => Topic started by: DAVISinGP on December 13, 2017, 05:39:30 PM



Title: Unplug Controller?
Post by: DAVISinGP on December 13, 2017, 05:39:30 PM
Hi all,

Iím new to the hobby and am greatly enjoying my Bachmann Digital Commander.

Iíve already found very useful information on this forum as a lurker for the past couple of months. Now as a member, Iíll no doubt have many questions. So hereís the first.

Iím curious what the general feeling is about unplugging the controller (DCC) when not in use. Iíve been leaving it plugged in overnight (turned Ďoffí of course) unless Iím going to be away for a few days. I'd prefer to leave it plugged in if there is no danger of damage.

Thereís probably no agreed-upon answer, but I am curious as to what Bachmann recommends and what others do.

Thanks.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: Flare on December 13, 2017, 05:55:17 PM
I always unplug my layout when not in use.

If something creates a short circuit I want to be present to correct the problem.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: DAVISinGP on December 14, 2017, 10:27:41 PM
Thanks for your feedback. (It's a bit quiet in here, eh?  ;))


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: jward on December 16, 2017, 11:43:12 AM
you could, and should, plug it into a surge protector. That way, you can flip the on off switch on the surge protector to kill power to the layout. I've done this for years with no problems.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: DAVISinGP on December 16, 2017, 11:35:15 PM
That's a good idea.

My concern about unplugging the controller was that it might lose its memory (i.e. DCC addresses) if unplugged for a while.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: Flare on December 16, 2017, 11:59:54 PM
That's a possibility if left alone long enough, that's why it's a very good idea to write down addresses, CVs, and other non-factory changes you make in case they need to be reprogrammed.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: jward on December 17, 2017, 07:25:51 AM
FLare, don't give inaccurate info. Addresses, CVs and the like are stored in the decoder, not the controller. There is no danger of losing them if the controller is unplugged. If this info was stored in the controller, you'd have to reprogram the decoder every time you took your locomotives to a train club, a friend's layout, etc. The fact that you don't is proof this info is in the decoder.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: 2foot6 on December 17, 2017, 08:32:39 AM
Even though I use a different DCC system ,I always turn off the power when not in use.I have done this for the last fifteen years with no problems.........Peter.


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: Flare on December 17, 2017, 02:20:49 PM
FLare, don't give inaccurate info. Addresses, CVs and the like are stored in the decoder, not the controller. There is no danger of losing them if the controller is unplugged. If this info was stored in the controller, you'd have to reprogram the decoder every time you took your locomotives to a train club, a friend's layout, etc. The fact that you don't is proof this info is in the decoder.


Yes, but what is the lifespan of the data in the decoders?  I've read that solid state memory can be lost if left unpowered long enough.

http://www.extremetech.com/computing/205382-ssds-can-lose-data-in-as-little-as-7-days-without-power


Title: Re: Unplug Controller?
Post by: jward on December 17, 2017, 04:34:11 PM
Loss of data hasn't been a problem with usb drives, and if it were a major problem with decoders, don't you think people would give up on DCC? Nobody wants to reprogram decoders every time they want to run trains.