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Thread: DIY DCC Power Booster

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    Default DIY DCC Power Booster

    Have there been any discussions and/or designs published on a do-it-yourself DCC power booster?

    Thanks,

    Jim

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    Yes.

    Paging @pbender ... he just posted some great links in another thread quite recently.

    Also, it's not exactly DIY, but you can make one with an Arduino and a motor shield, by hacking the DCC++ Arduino code.

    ETA: I'm really only suggesting the hacked DCC++ version as a way of cobbling something together to play with or test. The links supplied by @pbender and @Tim R would be much better suited for a more permanent design.
    Last edited by TwinDad; 8th Jan 2019 at 10:48 PM.
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    Tim Rumph
    Modeling the Southern Railway in N-Scale

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    Just curious if you need to ensure that two adjacent booster sections have the AC wave synced on the correct corresponding rails? Suppose in section 1 rail A is going positive while in section 2 it is rail B.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TwinDad View Post
    Paging @pbender ... he just posted some great links in another thread quite recently.

    Also, it's not exactly DIY, but you can make one with an Arduino and a motor shield, by hacking the DCC++ Arduino code.
    Rather than reposting those, I am just going to link to that message.

    https://www.nscale.net/forums/showth...047#post553047

    On the Arduino Motor shield used by DCC++, the motor shields contain an H bridge circuit. This is really all that DCC boosters are.

    An H bridge is an arrangement of four transistors connected so you can trol the direction in which current will flow through a motor ( it looks like an H when you draw it, with the motor in the middle ). Typically the circuits have away to control both the direction and the duration of current pulses.

    Most, if not all, of the circuits mentioned above use an H-bridge on a single chip, with the motor output going to the track.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NtheBasement View Post
    Just curious if you need to ensure that two adjacent booster sections have the AC wave synced on the correct corresponding rails? Suppose in section 1 rail A is going positive while in section 2 it is rail B.
    Just like with DC, that will cause a short because the polarity is backwards. When dealing with AC circuits, we say they need to be “in phase”. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but it needs to be close.
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