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Thread: Boy, does this have me stumped!

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    Question Boy, does this have me stumped!

    All track & switches are Kato. When I run the outside loop everything is OK. I flip the switch to go into the inner loop everythig is OK until the train gets about 3/4 through the loop - then it stops. If I rethrow the first switch I threw & it starts running again. Both switches and the switch controlers are new. The power pack is a used Kato # 22-014. I have tried running different locos & they all do the same thing. Just for kicks and grins I replaced the lefthand #6 switch with a new one - same problem. There is no sophisticated wiring involved - pretty much plug and play. I've tried different inner loop track configurations with no sucess. I have a similar test track set up on my train board in South Carolina. We are in Pa. for the Summer now. I've never had this problem with my SC. layout. This is driving me nuts! What's wrong? Can anyone help? Thanks, Smitty
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    Quote Originally Posted by smittykid View Post
    I flip the switch to go into the inner loop
    What if you flip both switches to the inner loop?

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    I forgot to mention in my original post that the trains run counter-clockwise on thie set up. When I throw both switches to the inner loop the train stops dead if it on the right side of the swithches. If I wait till the train is on the left side of the switches & throw both inner loop switches it keeps moving. That's what has me baffled. I'm no electrician, but there must me something I'm missing.

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    me dunno. but i do know those are power routing. if its all dc then you have to separate the tracks for 2 locos i think. you need constant power to all tracks . those turn outs are power routing . they kill power to one side while feeding power to other side and on dc there is pos an neg tracks have to be wired same IE north rail pos south rail neg both inner an outer tracks. maybe somebody with better explanation can splain it better hahahahahahaha

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    Are the switches power routing? You may need a gap somewhere in the siding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nicki6 View Post
    Are the switches power routing? You may need a gap somewhere in the siding.
    Those katos are power routing . needs to feed power to both inner and outer loop. i believe,

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    As I mentioned before, I have had the same set-up with Kato track & switches on my SC. layout and never had this problem.

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    Sounds like mismatched polarity someplace.

    -Mark

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    If that's the case - how do I find the mismatched polarity?

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    Quote Originally Posted by smittykid View Post
    If that's the case - how do I find the mismatched polarity?
    Got a digital volt-ohm meter? Easy-peasy. A cheap one will do.

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    I've never used those Kato turnout controllers before. Do they supply track power? If they do, I'd try disconnecting them and see what happens.

    -Mark

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    Where is your track feeder located?
    If it's on one of the tracks between the switches then that's a problem right away.It looks to me like your feeding into the outer track, left of the turnout in front of your controller. Moving the feeder to the right of the switch should solve the problem...
    Cheers,

    Russ

    CEO of Devil's Gate Mining Co.



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    THANK YOU, THANK YOU and THANK YOU!! Moving the power feeder to the right of the switch worked like a charm! Now everything works as it should! Thanks to everyone else as well for their input. Now I can sleep at night. Smitty

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    If you think that posting one little bitty photo with no trains will let you sleep at night, then you don't know our @Moose2013 ! Beware!
    Cheers!
    Gordon
    Rheinland Bayern Bahn
    http://www.nscale.net/forums/showthr...4-x-9-5-layout

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    Unintentionally blank!

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    Yes, my mind is also.
    Cheers!
    Gordon
    Rheinland Bayern Bahn
    http://www.nscale.net/forums/showthr...4-x-9-5-layout

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    I am surprised that you didn't blow out the controller. To sum up, the turnouts are power-routing, meaning that the two inner rails that cross at the frog are electrically continuous with each other. Throwing the turnout effectively changes which polarity of the outer rails gets connected to the frog. By placing the power feed to the left of the frog, you were feeding one of these interior rails and the frog directly. When the turnout was aligned to the diverging route, then, you had a continuous electrical path from the interior rail, through the turnout's frog, to the outer rail, and back to the other feeder... in other words, a short.

    Other have advocated adding feeders to the tracks past the turnout, which is essentially the same as what you had, but with the very important caveat that you insert a gap between the frog of the turnout and the location of the additional feeder. The chief advantage of doing so is redundancy, so that you are not relying on a single flow path from feeders, through multiple rail joints, and through the inner workings of the turnout, to finally get power to the sidings and loop on the left side. Some folks, like me, have feeders at every physical piece of track (or in my case, at every rail joiner), but that might be overkill; still, I can't see this layout getting by with any less than three pairs of feeders. One pair for the single track on the right, then one pair for each of the two tracks on the left. The rails that cross at the frog will need a gap or insulated joiner to the left of the frog somewhere. I wouldn't bother gapping the continuous outer rails unless you intend to actually create blocks, which would be controlled by toggles and allow you to have one train parked while another moves past. Technically, the turnouts themselves act like toggles - that it the "power routing" feature - but to make use of that feature means you can't augment with feeders on the tracks past the turnout (i.e. to the left).

    Get yourself a Rail Pass for free travel on the WP&P: wpandp.com
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    Going off memory here from when I opened up a turnout to figure out how they work, but I'm quite sure that the Kato #6 turnouts are not fully power routing. The two diverging frog rails are gapped from actual frog and points. There is a sliding contact wiper mechanism inside the turnout that transfers power from one outside rail or the other to the frog through a screw depending on how the turnout is thrown. However, it doesn't stop there. It also transfers power to the appropriate frog rail, leaving the other frog rail dead, with no connection to anything unless it comes from outside the turnout. You can prove this with a continuity checker.

    Photo from the web:
    http://s3.amazonaws.com/jnsforum/mon...9926647347.jpg

    The other wires in the photo are from a turnout decoder installation.

    This is why the turnout doesn't short out the power supply if powered from the tail end of the turnout.

    Andrew

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    Quote Originally Posted by mosslake View Post
    Where is your track feeder located?
    If it's on one of the tracks between the switches then that's a problem right away.It looks to me like your feeding into the outer track, left of the turnout in front of your controller. Moving the feeder to the right of the switch should solve the problem...
    Right. Don't feed power to the two middle rails in your double track; one of these is disconnected depending on which way a switch is thrown.

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