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Offline youngagain  
#1 Posted : 22 May 2012 11:00:51(UTC)
youngagain


Joined: 03/06/2008(UTC)
Posts: 704
Location: Sydney, NSW
Hi Everyone,

I'm in the process of setting up my computer program so as to automate the layout. I'm using "Train Controller" from Railroad & Co. and being very ably assisted by a forum member. The main problem that I have at the moment, is that my layout consists of C track. For the s88 connections to work correctly, the tracks have to be isolated. This means that every piece of track has to be "cut" to isolate the 2 tracks - a big job when my layout consists of over 1,000 pieces of track. Confused Confused Confused Confused

My question is, do you think that Marklin have made a design error with C track - i.e. should they have produced the track like K track in that the rails are isolated? I realise that many users will never computerise their layouts, however, if Marklin is promoting C track as being the best standard, then they should produce the C track with isolated rails. Please let me know your opinions.

Regards
Greg
Take it easy . . . . or any other way you can get it !!!!

Website - www.simplesite.com/gregstrain
Offline RayF  
#2 Posted : 22 May 2012 11:30:16(UTC)
RayF

Gibraltar   
You have been a member since:: 14/03/2005(UTC)
Posts: 10,965
Location: Gibraltar, Europe
Hi Greg,

Can you explain why the rails need to be isolated from each other? Doesn't an s88 just need contact tracks? I know of many who have automated M Track layouts, as well as C Track.

If the method you are using for feedback requires the 2 rails to be isolated, perhaps you can use a different method?

Ray

Mostly Marklin.Selection of different eras and European railways
Small C track layout, control by MS2, 100+ trains but run 4-5 at a time.
Offline river6109  
#3 Posted : 22 May 2012 11:39:12(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 10,432
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
Greg,

Whether or not Maerklin made a mistake is in the hands of the user.

I agree with you producing a C-track system wasn't so crash hot, with the early batch of tracks breaking into bits.
Official instructions for the C-track to isolate the track is cutting off the link between left and right connection strip.

regards.,

John
http://www.youtube.com/river6109
http://www.youtube.com/6109river
5 years in Destruction mode
50 years in Repairing mode
Offline Maxi  
#4 Posted : 22 May 2012 11:44:08(UTC)
Maxi


Joined: 28/04/2003(UTC)
Posts: 757
Location: Wawa, Ontario
I don't think that the C-Track should be isolated like the K-Track.

Sure it is a rather lengthy process of clipping the required tabs to create an isolated piece of track, but I think of it as another task in the building process.
I am not really a fan of just take everything out of the box, slap it together and then the building process is complete.

Contact tracks would be a method of allowing feedback abilities, but I am a firm believer that all sections of track need to be monitored so that if one or more rail cars decouple and are left behind that the system will not allow a locomotive to proceed until the intended path is clear. This assumes that what ever program you are using has been structured to monitor all connected feedback locations and make the proper decision if the complete path is clear before releasing a locomotive into the desired path from point A to point B.

Offline H0  
#5 Posted : 22 May 2012 12:34:48(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 8,399
Hi!
Originally Posted by: youngagain Go to Quoted Post
My question is, do you think that Marklin have made a design error with C track - i.e. should they have produced the track like K track in that the rails are isolated?
For those who do not need circuit tracks all over the layout, insulated rails could lead to contract problems. Feeder tracks would require three wires.

You don't need insulated rails if you measure the track current or use contact tracks.
Any many people do not use automation or feedback at all.

IMHO it's good as it is: keep it simple for beginners, let the experts cut the connections when they need it.

I have insulated more than two dozens of track pieces and I must admit it's a boring job.
Regards
Tom
---
Happy customer of Roco, Piko, Fleischmann, ESU, Brawa, Liliput, Rivarossi, Lima, ... - and will happily continue to buy locos that run well out of the box. I'm also happy with 95% of my Märklin items, but will avoid a few cost-optimized items made 2011 or later.
Offline witzlerh  
#6 Posted : 22 May 2012 15:23:38(UTC)
witzlerh

Canada   
Joined: 25/09/2010(UTC)
Posts: 236
Location: Sherwood Park, AB, Canada
At least you do not have to buy contact tracks. I do not mind as I am routinely changing my track layout. I like snaping the tab to isolate the rail. It is so simple to solder it back if you no longer want the contact track.

I do agree with Tom. Keep it simple for newcomers. With the right Xurcon cutter, it is a "snap" to cut it.
Harald
CS1 DB & Canadian Era 3-6
Offline clapcott  
#7 Posted : 22 May 2012 23:10:43(UTC)
clapcott

New Zealand   
Joined: 12/12/2005(UTC)
Posts: 1,230
Location: Wellington, New_Zealand
Originally Posted by: youngagain Go to Quoted Post

My question is, do you think that Marklin have made a design error with C track - i.e. should they have produced the track like K track in that the rails are isolated?


Greg, I am not sure you have asked the right question.

Using track rails for sensing (computer managed or analogue) is not usually (just) an issue between the rails of the same piece of track, but between the rails of adjacent pieces of track. For K-Track you would still have to do some work to remove the fishplates.

When you say ...
Quote:

This means that every piece of track has to be "cut" to isolate the 2 tracks

... are you meaning "the 2 rails"
... are you also not stating the work needed for the adjacent rails and extra power/sensor dropper wires
... and I am afraid you have me lost with "every piece of track"

Anyway .. No.. I do not think Marklin got it "wrong".

Do I think you are going overboard with reworking 1000 pieces of track? - Yes

P.S. Neither do I think ...
Quote:

Marklin is promoting C track as being the best standard

... It is but one option.

P.P.S. If you simply wanted isolated rails use Trix . you will have to reinstall the 3rd rail hardware Glare
Peter

Offline cookee_nz  
#8 Posted : 23 May 2012 11:36:58(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 1,753
Location: Wellington
Originally Posted by: youngagain Go to Quoted Post
Hi Everyone,

I'm in the process of setting up my computer program so as to automate the layout. I'm using "Train Controller" from Railroad & Co. and being very ably assisted by a forum member. The main problem that I have at the moment, is that my layout consists of C track. For the s88 connections to work correctly, the tracks have to be isolated. This means that every piece of track has to be "cut" to isolate the 2 tracks - a big job when my layout consists of over 1,000 pieces of track. Confused Confused Confused Confused

My question is, do you think that Marklin have made a design error with C track - i.e. should they have produced the track like K track in that the rails are isolated? I realise that many users will never computerise their layouts, however, if Marklin is promoting C track as being the best standard, then they should produce the C track with isolated rails. Please let me know your opinions.

Regards
Greg


Hi Greg,

Take a look also at my article from some years ago now where I used the centre rail for detection - sure it only works with a pickup shoe but might give you some further inspiration...

Ross Stewart set me onto this tip when I was playing around with "C80Prox", a useful PC control program (script-based) written by Ross and Peter Worboys, this detection method works remarkably well.

Cheers from Melbourne

Cookee

Edited by user 24 May 2012 03:53:19(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Cookee
Wellington
NZ image
Offline nevw  
#9 Posted : 24 May 2012 05:03:13(UTC)
nevw

Australia   
Joined: 27/08/2005(UTC)
Posts: 11,545
Location: Strathpine QLD
Greg,

I intend to use computer control.
I have marked out (Using masking tape) the beginning and end of the block, so the end of one block is the beginning of the next block etc. (this is a guide)

So in each Block at the beginning I have used a red insulator between the adjoining blocks, on hte FIRST piece of track I have cut the joining piece and attached the S88 Contact to the spade.
at the end of that piece of track I have put a red isolator. (on some blocks I may have made the isolation 2 track lengths). at the end of the block similar, decide how long the isolation is to be. Insert a red bit, cut a few connecting strips and then a red bit at the end of the block. and so on.

I have made my blocks approx 2 - 2.5 metres long.

Hope that helps.

Nev
wearing the Pink Pinny, which is hard to see and now have a new shiny tin Hip that is badly in Need of Repair
Junior member of the Banana Club, a reformist and an old Goat with a Bad memory, loafing around
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