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1  Discussion Boards / N / Re: Newbie with some unidentified trains and track. on: October 09, 2020, 09:24:34 PM
You might try looking here:

Mark has pictures of most locomotives and a lot of rolling stock.  So, if you know roughly what type of car or loco you have, you may be able to find a match there.

As for your controller, it probably has markings on it that would tell us the manufacturer and model number, so posting that would help us help you.

It will also be important for you to understand if your trains have old-style "Rapido" couplers or newer style knuckle couplers, because the two types won't interconnect.  Look here for info on couplers:

Couplers can be changed on most cars from one type to another.  Also, a transition car can be made with one type on one end and the other type on the other end, so that cars with both types of couplers can be run in the same train, if you end up with a mix of equipment.
2  Discussion Boards / N / Re: Newbie with some unidentified trains and track. on: October 08, 2020, 09:10:20 PM
You are going to have to post some photos somewhere in order for people to be able to help you.

Yes, there are other forums, lots of them.

But, many of them require a new member to make a certain number of posts to get the "rights" to do things like post pictures.

If you think you have Bachmann products, then this is a good place to ask for identification.

But, if you think you have products from other manufacturers, then a more general forum is probably better.  Some forums are specific to particular model scales, others are more general.  Make sure you pick one that deals with the scale of the equipment that you want identified.
3  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: MRC power packs and how to open one on: October 02, 2020, 07:06:00 PM
I just looked at the bottom of my Tech 7, and its version of tamper-proof screws are just old-fashioned slotted heads with a filled-in section in the middle of the slot.  Easy to make with the necessary tool with a regular screw driver and a Dremel cut-off to put a gap in its bit.  Why are they bothering?
4  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Can one connect two train sets with two different EZ commands and operate ? on: September 14, 2020, 09:48:05 PM
There can only be one command station connected to any particular piece of track.  You need to read-up on how the command station sends commands to the individual locomotives to understand why there can't be 2 of them sending signals to the same track.  It is not just a matter of the square waves being in-phase from 2 systems.  That is only the power, not the signal.  The signal is created by slightly varying the pulse width of the individual square waves, sending binary code.  Having two systems trying to vary the same pulses by different amounts to send different signals to the same track simply would not succeed in getting any coherent signals to locomotives. 

That said, there is no reason that two command stations could not be connected to 2 different tracks, so long as those tracks do not connect to each other, even with insulated rail joints.  If a train tried to power over an insulated joint between two command stations, it would bridge the command stations together, and besides messing up any control signals being sent to locomotives, there would be a fight between the edges of the pulses that would be out-of-phase and cause short circuits that may or may not kill the command stations and possibly the locomotive decoders.

So, the only way to have 2 kids run 2 trains independently with 2 EZ Command controllers is to have 2 tracks that do not connect.  They might run around on the same layout, like an inside oval and an outside oval with no crossover between them.  But, it could get fancier than that, with the ovals becoming figure-8s and going over and under each other.  There could even be switches and sidings on each track, so long as they never connect with each other.

If that satisfies the kids, then maybe it is the cheapest and simplest way to go at this point.  But, if somebody ever decides to make those 2 separate tracks connect and that kills your investment, then I urge you to replace it with a system that is designed to have multiple throttles feed one command station so that they can control multiple trains on the same track.  As they get older, the kids will surely find that they can do more interesting stuff when they both have access to all the tracks.  But, if they are at the stage right now where they would stage collisions if they could run 2 trains on the same track, then you might be better off with two separate tracks, anyway, for the time being.
5  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: If you don't see me posting for a long period I have probably passed on. on: September 06, 2020, 03:08:11 PM
Praying for you.  Hang in there.
6  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Can a bachmann locomotive shell be swapped with another shell on: August 20, 2020, 11:58:05 AM
It should be noted there is no such thing as a DC or DCC shell. What you have are two GP3802s, one with DCC, one without. That would mean the presence or absence of a decoder, thus the circuit boards are different. Everything else should be the same.

Well, jward, that is certainly not always true.  If the model was issued first with DC and then much later issued with DCC, there may or may not be some differences between the old and new model frames as well as other features.  Some frames were completely redesigned to make them DCC compatible.  So, if buying used equipment, or wanting to buy new equipment to interchange parts with equipment bought many years ago, it is smart to ask this question.

But, it requires either the Bach Man or somebody with the same 2 locos to accurately answer that question. That doesn't always happen.

So, at this point, you will just get to try it for yourself.  When you find the answer, it might help somebody else if you post that here.

Ralph S, you probably cannot put a GP38 shell on an F3A frame, because the internal volumes are different.  At least in smaller scales like N and HO, the available internal space is usually filled with metal to add weight to incresae pulling power.  So, the narrow GP shell would not fit over the wide F3 frame and weights, at least in small scales.
7  Discussion Boards / N / Re: Newbie looking for help with EZ-Track and DCC wiring on: August 19, 2020, 09:05:33 AM
Glad I could help.

And, congratulations on picking a wife that wants to help, too.  I managed to get one of those (on the second try), and it makes this hobby really nice!
8  Discussion Boards / N / Re: Newbie looking for help with EZ-Track and DCC wiring on: August 18, 2020, 07:49:38 PM
Yes, you will have to find a way to split the track feed output from your controller. 

I don't use Bachmann track, so I don't know how the track feeder wires connect to it.  I did use a Bachmann controller for a while with Kato track, which does not use compatible connectors.  So, what I did was cut the end off the Bachmann track wire output so that I had bare wires to connect to a terminal block, and then I cut the Kato power feeder wires so that I had bare ends to connect to the terminal block to feed the various track sections.

I don't know if Bachmann has Y connectors for its track feed wires, but if it does, then you could just use one (or more) of those to get multiple feed points from the Bachmann controller output to both of your ovals.  (I could not do that with the Kato Y track feeder cords only because its connectors are not compatible with the Bachmann connectors.)
9  Discussion Boards / N / Re: Newbie looking for help with EZ-Track and DCC wiring on: August 18, 2020, 10:25:51 AM
I don't have a diagram for your layout, but it sounds like it is basically two ovals, one inside the other, with turnouts providing a connection between them.  If that is the case, then you should be able to wire it so that trains can run on both ovals at the same time and trains can cross from one oval to the other.

It is not clear to me what you mean by

"there is a short in the layout that requires one of the turnouts on the main oval to always be set to allow current into the inner oval. This prevents actually running two locomotives, one on each oval."

First, you should be wiring both ovals, so that trains can run on both at the same time, whether or not there are turnouts connecting the ovals.  So, I am wondering if your really mean "short" or if you should have said "no power" when the turnouts are not set up for a train to cross from the outer oval to the inner oval.  If you mean "no power", then I ask if you  wired the inner oval, directly from the controller,  just like you wired the outer loop.

But, if you really did wire both loops, and you do get a short (power cuts off everywhere when the turnouts are aligned to cross over), that suggests that you may have wired the inner and outer loops with opposite phase.  The same side of the track wiring should go to the inner rails on both ovals, and the other wire should go to the outer rail on both ovals.  If it  is not done that way, then you will get a short whenever the turnouts are aligned to cross over.

The only other possibilities are that I don't understand your layout and there is some sort of reversing loop in it, or there is some sort of problem with the power routing in one of your turnouts.

Please be more specific if you still need help.
10  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Modular Club meet Ups - What's Appropriate? on: August 06, 2020, 09:41:59 AM
You could run a short Civil War era train on a modern layout - just call it a fan steam special.  Grin  (I've run a 1900 train on a 1980s layout, and it was popular.)

What doesn't work so well is trying to run a modern diesel on a Civil War layout - unless you bring along that tricked-up DeLorean model with the white haired professor standing beside it.  Roll Eyes
11  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Switching from Digitrax to NCE on: July 31, 2020, 11:43:46 AM
 One difference not mentioned is that a PowerCab needs to be plugged-in at all times to be the DCC command station.  Your post seems to say that you currently have a walk-around wireless throttle (IR) that you are using with your current Digitrax Zephyr system.  So, be aware that you would be tethered to a single place if you use only an NCE Power Cab.

To get to walk around capability with a PowerCab as the DCC command station, you would need to either:

1. add a radio receiver (RB02) and a radio cab, now a Cab06r (or Cab06pr if you want a pot instead of an encoder).  Making the PowerCab itself radio equipped would not allow you to untether it to walk around unless you bought another (more expensive) DCC command station (such as an SB5), plus an RB02 and used the radio Power Cab as a radio Pro Cab (which is the same as the Power Cab but without the DCC command station built in), or

2. add a WFD-30 WiFi interface device ( ) to the NCE cab bus and use a smart phone running a (free or cheap) WiFi throttle app.

I use a Power Cab with an RB02 and a Cab06pr on a small home layout in N scale, and find that more than adequate to run 2 trains and have a few locos idling.  If the idling locos get to be a power issue, I can always arrange to kill power to where they are sitting, using insulating track joiners and electrical switches on their power feeders, or maybe just the power routing feature on my Kato turnouts without insulators or separate track feeders to those spurs.  

Be aware that various versions of the Power Cab have come with different versions of wall warts with different current ratings, and that those wall warts are really the limiting factor for how much can be supported on the tracks.  The Power Cab itself is rated at 2 amps, but some of the early wall warts were only rated at 1.3 amps, and the later ones at 1.8 amps.  The whole system is shut off by the wall wart when the current draw exceeds its capacity.
12  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: 120 year old, eastern US railroading. on: June 24, 2020, 05:55:16 PM
Well, once the comments are critiqued and corrected here, then it would be nice if somebody supplied it to the You-Tube guy. Cut and past would be all that is needed, then. 
13  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Does anyone know where I can get a B&O passenger set? on: June 06, 2020, 08:42:56 PM
The only problem with the spookshow site is that it's N scale only.

True.  I forgot I was not in the N scale part of this forum.  Still, a lot of what is in N scale is copies of what was done in HO scale.

It would help if the OP would tell us what scale he is using, and what period he is modeling.
14  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Does anyone know where I can get a B&O passenger set? on: June 05, 2020, 08:22:48 AM
Check here: for an independent look at what has been made, so far.  While it won't tell you much about which of those things are made with B&O paint, it will give you an idea of what body types can be found on eBay, etc.  Sometimes you need to wait for something to show up - not everything ever made is available for sale/bid all the time.  And, while you are at Mark's site, take a look at Mark's locomotive section - it is a lot more informative than the section about passenger cars.
15  Discussion Boards / N / Re: DCC Consisting on: May 22, 2020, 09:16:05 PM
When you say "consisting" in the context of the EZ Command Controller, I assume you mean just assigning both locos the same number.  If they run close to the same speed, there probably won't be any damage, because one will slow the other down and the other will speed the first one up, so that they match speed without dragging wheels.  But, if they are so different that one is dragging wheels, that can pull off traction tires and put grooves in the dragged wheels if it is done for long.  And, if the speeds are a lot different, then running the two together might not pull any more cars than just one by itself, or even fewer cars.

But, with more advanced DCC command stations, it is possible to adjust the speed of each locomotive so that they run at the same speed at each throttle setting.  This is called "speed matching" and requires a DCC command station that is able to change computer memory values in decoders.  Those values are called "configuration variables" and abbreviated "CV".  There are two ways of speed matching.  One involves just 3 CVs: start, mi-speed, and top speed.  The other is more elaborate, and involves a table of many CVs for many speed steps.

If you have a friend with a more advanced DCC command station than can program decoder CVs, then you might get him to speed match your two locomotives for you.  Once the CVs are set to match the speeds, they will run at the same speed on any controller.
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