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Author Topic: Multiple DCC throttles  (Read 10007 times)
jward


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« Reply #15 on: May 09, 2011, 04:56:51 AM »

it's simple. ez command most likely isn't going to do what he wants to do, and dynamis is probably too pricey for use with kids. since there isn't a realistic option using bachmann products, other brands were suggested. model railroading isn't about brand loyalty as much as getting what fits your needs.
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
Bucksco

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« Reply #16 on: May 09, 2011, 02:56:26 PM »

Sounds to me like E-Z Command is exactly what he needs. A simple, easy to use system.
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mf5117

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« Reply #17 on: May 09, 2011, 07:58:06 PM »

I have 2 newly acquired grandsons, due to I recently got married. Anyway one is 6 and one is 3 .I taught the 3 year old almost 4 to use my EZ command in about 2 sessions . Although I had to watch him as he wanted to touch the train as it went by . He did a good job of engineering . The other grandson the 6 year old doesn't have the interest that the 3 year old has . When they both wanted to run their own train I put a small string on the outter 22" rad loop and another string on the 18" rad inner loop .Closed off the crossovers so we wouldn't have a crash . And set them up to run .The boys loved it as they had their own train and would take turns starting and stopping their Loco . The cool part was I had enough different equipment , I let them choose what they wanted for an engine and rolling stock . And with 2 trains going while the one boy was engineering the other ones was still running and he was able to watch his string and keep him occupied . Then I get the older one asking me after about 15 minutes , can we go ride the 4 wheeler or take me for a ride on the harley or play video games . The 3 yr old loves trains , the 6 yr old likes them but has other interest . If they don't have the same interest .Then I would go with the EZ commander .

the point is EZ command is simple and works for the guy just making the jump and is not so high priced that your average economic slave can't afford it . Again I have all Bachmann DCC diesel Locomotives a total of 34  last count Bachmann rolling stock and some other manufacturer's rolling stock

best regards :mark f  MF5117
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Bucksco

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« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2011, 08:52:09 PM »

My point exactly Mark! E-Z Command is a great way to learn about Digital Command Control at a very affordable price. It's also very child friendly.
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Doneldon

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« Reply #19 on: May 09, 2011, 09:05:48 PM »

Burto-

I'm not sure I get your point. First you seem to be critical of folks who like equipment other than Bachmann but then you seem to endorse Lenz. What do you mean?

Others-

Absent more information from the OP, it's hard to make a suggestion. With the meagre information we have so far it would seem the EZ DCC would do satisfactorially. It does have some expansion capability (walk around companions and a booster) which is good. It's only real liabilities are the very high cost of the booster to run more trains and the fact that it cannot be made to program or read CVs. (As I've said before, I don't think the ability to assign one of ten numbers to a loco and the ability to set forward and reverse fulfill the definition of "programable," even if they fit the term in a limited, technical sense.)

I still hope for more information from the OP
                                                                                          -- D
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Jerrys HO
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« Reply #20 on: May 09, 2011, 09:59:37 PM »

I have a plan that I believe will work and in the process of doing, that is everyone talks ez command only allows up to 10 locos. Well I cannot see myself running ten much less 4 at one time so I figured I can program as many as I like if I make toggled tracks off of my turntable that way I can park  #1 toggle that track off and power up my other #1 by switching that toggle. It seems I can assign as many as I like just by turning track power on and off to that section. As for programming cv's  that'll be another bridge later. This is a low cost alternative any thoughts out there?
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Joe323

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« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2011, 02:38:41 PM »

 have a plan that I believe will work and in the process of doing, that is everyone talks ez command only allows up to 10 locos. Well I cannot see myself running ten much less 4 at one time so I figured I can program as many as I like if I make toggled tracks off of my turntable that way I can park  #1 toggle that track off and power up my other #1 by switching that toggle. It seems I can assign as many as I like just by turning track power on and off to that section. As for programming cv's  that'll be another bridge later. This is a low cost alternative any thoughts out there?

Actually that should work provided that you:

1)Have Enough space for all the sidings you would need and
2) Can keep track of which loco you are running

Joe
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mf5117

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« Reply #22 on: May 10, 2011, 07:20:14 PM »

I have ran 7 trains at one time with my EZ command . But usually 1 on the outter loop and 1 on the inner loop going opposite directions . Got an 18"rad upper level short oval with 3 switches ,I run a FT-AB unit with passengers ,4 car set .  And do some switching in the inner part of the layout with a 70 tonner and a Gp 38 . Have never had power issues on a 5x9 layout ,With 12 switches and 2 #6 crossovers which I use another controller to control and power my turnouts . I don't have any feeders , I always here about needing feeder wires ran . Something else I don't understand is I have plugged my EZ command in every you are not sapposed to and I haven't fried it or smoked any Locomotives . Now I have had some derails and shorted the rails and got the blinker .But all in all For what it is great product . Started with it and expanded with it . For my HO layout its works for me ,as the Bachmann Locomotives are par for the course ,I love them .  as for my G scale ,until I learn alittle more about it and when I decide to go in a different direction on DCC or battery power R/C . I'll stick with my DC power and run one string and my little speeder .

For the money Bachmann DCC Locomotives are the way to go . And the EZ command !
If you tend to by DC Locomotives and are a decoder installer or plug and play, yes you may need to buy a more advanced system . But for being simple and not having to spend a bunch of money and still get good quality for the money and have a nice size layout 4x8 5x9 or what ever .you can't go wrong .

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jward


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« Reply #23 on: May 10, 2011, 07:41:41 PM »

i have a turntable area on my layout as well. i am doing just as jerry is planning to do. you can buy ganaged banks of toggle slide switches in different configurations made by atlas, which are surface mounted and extremely easy to wire. the ones i am using come in banks of 3 spst (on/off) switches called the connector.

i assume you are using the bachmann turntable. i am not sure whether this one automatically  switches polarity like the atlas one i am using (bachmann's wasn't available when i bought mine) but if it doesn't, atlas also makes a bank of two spdt slide switches wires for use with reversing loops and turntables. they are called the twin.

using these switches will dramatically lower the power demand on your dcc command station, whatever brand you use. and they cost much less than a booster.
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
Jerrys HO
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« Reply #24 on: May 10, 2011, 08:04:49 PM »

nope I have the atlas turntable also. I also planned on powering the switches with another source, possibly the one I have running my turnouts/switches. I have not started the process yet so if you can keep me posted on how it all works for you that would be great.
Jerry
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Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


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« Reply #25 on: May 10, 2011, 09:05:07 PM »

I need two throttles... I just need basic throttle functions nothing too complicated...
 thanks Bruce

lanceraider has told us what he wants.  Based on that, let us do some comparisons.  I have not looked for the best prices on the net - I have simply used manufacturers' list price.

E-Z Command c/w two throttles
BASIC SET                      $145
COMPANION THROTTLE   $132
TOTAL                            $277
UPGRADE                       none possible
PROGRAMMING               address only

Dynamis c/w two throttles
BASIC SET                      $350
PRO BOX                        $500
HAND SET                      $170
TOTAL                            $1020
UPGRADE                       up to 3 additional throttles at $170 each
PROGRAMMING               can program all CV's

Digitrax Zephyr X
BASIC SET                      $225
BASIC THROTTLE             $59*
TOTAL                             $284
UPGRADE                        up to 1 additional basic throttle at $59* and up to 10 additional UT4 throttles at $80
PROGRAMMING               can program all CV's
*based on using Bachmann 44212 power packs as jump throttles

I agree with Yardmaster that the E-Z Command is a simple, easy to learn, child friendly and cheap.  But I am not convinced that it is the best bang for the buck.  The Zephyr Xtra with 2 throttles is only $8 more than the E-Z Command with two throttles.  However, if lanceraider has a dc power pack already on hand, the Zephyr with 2 throttles would be $51 cheaper than the E-Z Command with 2throttles.  Even if the E-Z Command can be found with a deeper discount that the Zephyr, I feel the Zephyr is still a better bang for the buck because of two additional features: Additional throttles can be added so that Dad or a friend of the boys can play along too and as Dad and the boys become more familiar with the capabilities of DCC, they will reach a point where they want to fine tune their decoders beyond just changing addresses and defining which end of the locomotive is front.

The Dynamis recommended by Burto is by far the most expensive of the three systems priced above.  It does have some nice features including the infrared wireless controls.  If that were a requirement, then a Digitrax infrared receiver, two UT4 throttles and the Zephyr would give 3 throttles (2 of them wireless) at a cost of $431, or less than half the cost of a Dynamis with 2 throttles.

Burto seems to be at a loss as to why various posters would talk about other systems on this board.  Perhaps I can explain.  None of us is telling lance what he must or even should buy.  We are simply making suggestions while trying to help him find the best fit for him.  If he and his boys are happy with their choice, he and they are likely to use it for many years to come, buying more Bachmann trains along the way.  If they are unhappy with their choice, they will either have to invest additional money into this part of their railroad which will limit their buying in other areas, or, perish the thought, they might drop out of model railroading altogether which would be both our loss and their loss.  If it seems at times that different people are promoting different system, I can only say that I for one try to confine myself to systems I know.  I do not talk about, for example, NCE even though I understand they make fine products.  I do not discuss them because I do not have any experience with them.  Some other brands I do not discuss because I either dislike their products or have lost respect for the company producing them.

Jim
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Growing older is mandatory but growing up is optional.
jward


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« Reply #26 on: May 10, 2011, 09:09:37 PM »

my turntable still has the hand crank. i haven't gotten around to motorizing it yet. reportedly you gan install a decoder on the motor, and use your dcc to run the table.

to wire the connectors, you'd first run one wire to one of the rails of each of your radial tracks around the turntable. this is a common rail, and all these rwires are connected together and connected to one of the rails on your main track.. which rail is determined by which position around the turntable the track is. if you look carefully, each of the track slots has either an "a" or a "b" molded into it. a and b tracks are wired opposite "polarities" from each other. the important thing is to make sure that the polarity of each radial matches that of the turntable itself.

you then run one wire from the other rail of the main track, to the left side of the connector. the three terminals at the top of the connector are wired to the radial tracks, one to each track opposite the common wire you installed earlier. additional connectors to control additional tracks can be connected to the right side otf the first connector.


wiring his way you won't need an additional power supply.

note: be absolutely certain you have the polarity of all the radial tracks correct before you try to run a locomotive into the tracks. if the polarity is wrong you will have a dead short through the locomotive.


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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
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