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Author Topic: feeders to buss wire  (Read 5150 times)
0n30nutz


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« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2007, 11:54:30 AM »

  I normally solder my connections, for all of the above reasons. In situations where things my need to be moved or redesigned in the future, I use Screw terminal connectors available at Radio Shack in different groupings. I always use spade connctors on the wire to these.

Howard
If it ain't steam, it ain't
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Atlantic Central

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« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2007, 03:19:55 PM »

I originally did not comment on this since I don't use DCC or any wiring scheme that involves a feeder bus. My new layout plans include the use of computerized block control which has a seperate power supply to a throttle card for each group of eight blocks. Wires go right from the card to the track.

On to the topic of wiring for movable layouts. I am currently rebuilding my partially completed layout into sections that will be movable later. The original construction was built right into the builting and was in no way movable.

Just like much of my other wiring, I will use terminal strips at each joint between benchwork sections. I solder most connects but generally avoid the tee or tap connection this threat started about.

I prewire switch motors with leads that go to a terminal strip as well. I make drawings and asign wire numbers so that it can all be traced and worked on latter.

My limited knowledge of DCC has me puzzled some what. Is it not now common practice to devide the layout into zones with boosters and protection circuits? After doing that how much "bus" wiring is there? how many connections to the track are  necessary in each booster zone?

In my DC wiring I don't use common rail and I don't rely on switch points to act as electrical connections or electrical switches and I prefer insulated rail joiners to just cuting gaps. I use Atlas turnouts mostly and power all the frogs. I keep wiring decentralized into seperate sub systems, with or without the computerized block control.

I solder most of my rail joints so multiple feeders per block are seldom needed.

Sheldon
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SteamGene

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« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2007, 04:16:26 PM »

Sheldon,
In answer to your DCC question, it is possible to wire the whole layout as one big block.  However current thought is to divide the layout, not into "blocks" but into "districts."   My plans currently are to have South River Yard as one district, westbound to Sugar Grove one district, east bound to Gordonsville one district, and staging one district.  I don't think I will need a booster, but if I do, that should be fairly easy to wire.
Having weighed the pros and cons, I think I'm going to go with the suitcase fasteners.  I know more have spoken out for soldering, but I also know that people tend to retain the way they first learned it.  Quite a few of the soldering guys began doing this before the suitcase clip, I think.
Thanks for the input, everybody.
Gene
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Atlantic Central

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« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2007, 04:35:55 PM »

Gene,

I think the connectors will be just fine. In the electrical business where I first saw them 20 years ago, we called them by their brand name, Scotch-locs. I have never used them in layout wiring, but have used thousands to rewire fluorescent light fictures for use with energy saving lamps (not bulbs). They always worked great.

sheldon
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chucknlead


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« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2007, 07:17:13 PM »

I believe these were called "scotchlocks" by 3M. It's a shortcut to wiring the right way. That's fine if you don't need or not concerned about a bullet proof connection.

The effectiveness of a scotchlock is subject to the intallation technique, the insulation, vibration, stress, exposure to the enviorment and time. On the other hand; you can  crimp, solder and heat shrink once and forget about it.  Smiley

As long as you understand and accept murphy's law, some might be content with twisting the wires together and taping them off.  Wink
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MBB


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« Reply #20 on: March 17, 2007, 09:21:29 PM »

Sheldon,
Without getting into the various ways to wire for DCC, this PDF link http://www.tonystrains.com/download/MRR-PowerDist.pdf should help as it shows a technique of wiring that makes use of power districts.  This is not the only way to make use of power districts when wiring for DCC.
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Atlantic Central

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« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2007, 10:42:02 PM »

Hunt,

Thank you, that's what I thought. I am sure that is exactly what all the guys in DCC that I know are doing. They are all Digitrax/Tony's followers.

I believe they are all using the circuit breakers to feed  thier power districts as show on that dwg.

It would seem to me that the more of that you do, the less "feeder buss" situation you actually have/need, much the same as my decentralized approach to DC. My wiring style comes from years of desgining power distribution for buildings and control systems for process machinery.

Again thanks, that confirms what I thought was the case.

Sheldon
« Last Edit: March 17, 2007, 10:45:01 PM by atlanticcentral » Logged
r.cprmier

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« Reply #22 on: March 18, 2007, 03:53:58 PM »

Soldering is fine-if it is done correctly.  Notice I said correctly, not "right".  You can solder correctly and it still might not be right; it all depends upon you and the time and effort you put into prep and forethought (planning).
My first choice of weapons is a crimp connection, and I will tell you why:

Solder joints can become fractured in a number of ways, and then the interior of that fracture can oxidize, possibly creating a high-resistance junction; which, under the right circumstances can drive you nuts!

Suitcase connectors, although I use thes also, can become loose.  Nothing is going to be consistently perfect; but for my satisfaction, I will use a crimp or a screw terminal.  THe others are still good options in my mind; it all depends on what you like and are willing to go with.

RIch
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
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NelsOn-30

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« Reply #23 on: March 18, 2007, 08:08:36 PM »

Clarification and additional information

Mechanical connectors can work well only when they are designed for
the specific wire sizes and types used. (Stranded, solid and insulation)
Tapping a #22ga feeder into a #12ga buss would not work reliably with
a connector designed for #12ga wire only.

Another major factor in the successful soldering procedure is the
soldering iron. First of all the tip must be clean and tinned. A plated tip
can be cleaned on a wet sponge and coated sparingly with solder and
the excess cleaned off on the sponge leaving a shiny surface. This will
ensure good heat transfer during the soldering process.

An added benefit for those of us with Scottish heritage is the lower cost
of soldering.


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Nelson

Notka Lake Logging & Navigation RR
Atlantic Central

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« Reply #24 on: March 18, 2007, 09:19:23 PM »

Chucknlead,

We both had it spelled wrong, it's "Scotchloks". And uses correctly they are as much the "right way" as anything.

Nelson is correct, they come in a wide selection of sizes for different size wire and selecting the correct one for your job is important.

Sheldon
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NevinW

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« Reply #25 on: March 20, 2007, 01:20:49 PM »

I used suitcase connectors on my last layout and in 7 years they worked perfectly.  I just ran the bus wiring around the layout and then dropped the feeders down and used the connectors to hook everything up.  Very fast and worked perfectly.  I'll never solder feeders again.  -  Nevin
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Seasaltchap

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« Reply #26 on: March 20, 2007, 01:45:14 PM »



r.cprmier : How correct you are, between correct & right.

I while ago I helped a friend take the dash out of a Neon to reheat the dry solder joints on the instrument panel connectors. I subsequently find that this is a fault in manufacture with that car, and becomes apparent at about 80,000 miles - gradually killing all the readings on the panel.

As you say, "You can solder correctly and it still might not be right" - even for the big boys in industry!
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Craig

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« Reply #27 on: March 20, 2007, 08:26:37 PM »

I use terminal blocks. Guess that's the electrician in me.
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Seasaltchap

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« Reply #28 on: March 21, 2007, 12:39:18 AM »



Craig : There is a really nice strip terminal block type available in the UK: two versions 220v at 5 amps, and 220v at 15 amps.

I have not seen them in the US. I am sure they would be a hit if they were available.
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Phoenix AZ: OO enthusiast modelling GWR 1895-1939, Box Station Wiltshire; S&DJR Writhington Colliery, Nr. Radstock.

Interested in making friends on the site with similar interests.
r.cprmier

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« Reply #29 on: March 21, 2007, 04:07:38 PM »

Craig;
There is a "European" type connection strip available via "Demar Electronics" .  This is the type of terminal strip into which you insert the conductor under the pressure connector portion and screw it down, as opposed to a "wraparound" type termination.  Both are good if done correctly; I asm partial to the European type.  Much neater to work with.
OK, time to paint a wall-and I don't mean a backdrop either.

RIch
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
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