Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Some good news, .. and some not so good news.

It has been more than two years since we had the last operating session on the GC&SF. When Beth and I demolished our old house we expected to be in the new one within nine months. Well, that nine months turned out to be eighteen months, but we finally moved into the new house last December.

Today I moved out the last of the house-hold stuff we were storing in my train room, and then gave the carpet tiles a bit of a clean with the vacuum cleaner.  They really need some industrial strength cleaning, especially around the door-way which collected a lot of mud over the last 18 months as we came and went. With the carpet cleaned (more or less), the room actually looked quite presentable, and I couldn't resist the temptation to see whether the DCC system would operate.

I was greatly encouraged when I turned on the DCS100 and the track power indicator LEDs lit up right around the room!! However, my glee turned to disappointment when I plugged in a UT4 and its status light didn't come on. My second UT4 did no better, and neither did my DT402D when I plugged it in.

Next I powered on the UR92 to check whether I had wireless control. I placed a battery in my DT402D and then plugged it into the UR92. It correctly reported "GC&SF"!

Then I dialled up the nearest loco I could see on the layout - an FT A/B numbered 126.  The headlight came on, and the loco crept forward as I turned the speed knob.  As the track is quite dusty, I only travelled a few inches - just enough to confirm operation.

Well, at least I had wireless operation, even if the LocoNet isn't working.

After dinner I called Mister Wizard for advice. He thought that perhaps the LocoNet throttle jacks were not receiving any power.

"A possibility", I said as I had added a separate power supply to feed the jacks as shown here.

As Brendan suspected, I found that the plug pack was not supplying current to the bus wires. I initially thought it had failed, but after removing it and doing some bench testing, it seems fine. Then I remembered that I'd had a similar problem before with the previous plug-pack, and that it later tested okay as well. It's late now, so when I get home from work tomorrow I will take a look at the power board I am using there to share power with the DCS100.



  1. Congrats on getting back to your layout, I am sure you will resolve all issue and be operating again.

    1. Thanks Dwyane. With Brendan's help I did sort this out.

  2. Hmmm sounds like a ops session on the way?

    1. A 'formal' session is probably some time off yet, Rod, as I want to revamp the system a bit beforehand. Most of that will be swapping out older equipment with new items that I've acquired over the past two years.

      I'm also hoping to have an informal session on a week-day late this month, after I've cleaned away all the dust, just to make sure all is as it should be.