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Offline Fireguy911  
#1 Posted : 05 December 2011 21:40:16(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Good day everyone.

I inherited my dad's Marklin train collection. He had it all set up many years ago and running flawlessly. There is non digital and digital, all new or like new in condition. I should have paid more attention as to how he had it all set up because today, even though I have Marklin manuals to follow to set this digital equipment up, all I get is a little noise in the new digital "test" engines on my test track. I must be doing something wrong because he had it all working fine. These is the digital equipment I have:
2 Transformers (6002), 1 Booster (6015), 2 Keyboards (6040), 1 Central Unit (6020), 1 Control 80 (6035), 1 Control 80f (6036), 1 Control Unit (6021), 1 Interface (6050), 1 Memory (6043). No computers were ever used. He also used an old transformer (the old blue 110V transformers) somehow connected to this digital equipment. Like I said, he had it all working so very well, three levels of tracks in half a basement and running many trains. I remember hearing many switches triggering all at once and trains would go through no problems at all.

For my test track I tried 2 combinations.

1: Transformer to Central Unit to track. Only causes a slight momentary hum in the engine then nothing. No lights worked.

2: Transformer to Central Unit with Control 80 and control 80F connected to the left. Same results when I enter the engine's address.

These engines work on non digital track and all are like new.

Any ideas ?

For those who wish to see my train collection, it is posted on "http://www.collectorsweekly.com/user/renoir911"

I look forward to your assistance.
I do have a Marklin z scale set up (shown on Collectors Weekly).
I have the space and would like to set up a HO layout but need to master this digital equipment first.

Wishing you a great day.

Fireguy
ren7039@gmail.com

Fireguy911 attached the following image(s):
Marklin digital problem 001.jpg
Marklin digital problem 004.jpg
Marklin digital problem 003.jpg
Marklin digital problem 002.jpg
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by Fireguy911
Offline H0  
#2 Posted : 05 December 2011 21:48:25(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 14,603
Location: DE-NW
Hi!

The 6021 is newer than the 6020, I'd try that. Two wires (yellow and brown) to transformer, two to the track (red (centre rail) and brown (outer rail)).

Without knowing your locos it's difficult to tell how to verify the addresses (some have DIP switches, some are "programmable").
Regards
Tom
---
"In all of the gauges, we particularly emphasize a high level of quality, the best possible fidelity to the prototype, and absolute precision. You will see that in all of our products." (from Märklin New Items Brochure 2015, page 1) ROFLBTCUTS
UserPostedImage
Offline Nielsenr  
#3 Posted : 05 December 2011 22:25:05(UTC)
Nielsenr

United States   
Joined: 06/10/2010(UTC)
Posts: 882
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Hi!! Welcome to the Forum!!

I agree with Tom, connect the 6021 and transformer as Tom directed and try that. I assume you have the original boxes for the locos, so find the manual for one loco and check for the default address.

Nice collection in your pictures!! Can you tell me the Marklin number of the Coca Cola 3 car tank set that I saw in one of the pictures. I am a real Coca Cola fan!!

Thanks!!

Robert
Offline Fireguy911  
#4 Posted : 05 December 2011 22:55:09(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Hi Robert. Thank you for the nice comments. Cocacola three car set is # 84519. Yes, I have the boxes and the correct default adresses. But nothing is working.

The digital equipment lights up. Adress remains lit and no flickering. Aside from, just entering the adress (07), is there anything else I need to do or press before trying the speed control ? No lights, no movement, only a slight buzzing for a second or so. Using K track. All connections are good and clean. I am meticulous when it comes to Marklin.

I vaguely remember my dad using an old transformer along with the digital equipment but I do not know how he had it set up.
Kind regards.

Ren
Offline H0  
#5 Posted : 05 December 2011 23:16:40(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 14,603
Location: DE-NW
Hi, Ren,

Addresses can be changed so the default address may not be correct.

There are feeder tracks (with capacitor) for analogue operation that must not be used for digital.

The 6021 has a GO key that activates track power (indicated by an LED). It's on by default but goes off on short circuits or overload.
With "function" and "off" you can try the headlights of locos (just in case the hardened oil stops the motor from running).
Regards
Tom
---
"In all of the gauges, we particularly emphasize a high level of quality, the best possible fidelity to the prototype, and absolute precision. You will see that in all of our products." (from Märklin New Items Brochure 2015, page 1) ROFLBTCUTS
UserPostedImage
Offline mike c  
#6 Posted : 05 December 2011 23:31:49(UTC)
mike c

Canada   
Joined: 28/11/2007(UTC)
Posts: 7,443
Location: Montreal, QC
Originally Posted by: Fireguy911 Go to Quoted Post
Good day everyone.

I inherited my dad's Marklin train collection. He had it all set up many years ago and running flawlessly. There is non digital and digital, all new or like new in condition. I should have paid more attention as to how he had it all set up because today, even though I have Marklin manuals to follow to set this digital equipment up, all I get is a little noise in the new digital "test" engines on my test track. I must be doing something wrong because he had it all working fine. These is the digital equipment I have:
2 Transformers (6002), 1 Booster (6015), 2 Keyboards (6040), 1 Central Unit (6020), 1 Control 80 (6035), 1 Control 80f (6036), 1 Control Unit (6021), 1 Interface (6050), 1 Memory (6043). No computers were ever used. He also used an old transformer (the old blue 110V transformers) somehow connected to this digital equipment. Like I said, he had it all working so very well, three levels of tracks in half a basement and running many trains. I remember hearing many switches triggering all at once and trains would go through no problems at all.

For my test track I tried 2 combinations.

1: Transformer to Central Unit to track. Only causes a slight momentary hum in the engine then nothing. No lights worked.

2: Transformer to Central Unit with Control 80 and control 80F connected to the left. Same results when I enter the engine's address.

These engines work on non digital track and all are like new.

Any ideas ?

For those who wish to see my train collection, it is posted on "http://www.collectorsweekly.com/user/renoir911"

I look forward to your assistance.
I do have a Marklin z scale set up (shown on Collectors Weekly).
I have the space and would like to set up a HO layout but need to master this digital equipment first.

Wishing you a great day.

Fireguy
ren7039@gmail.com



For testing, limit the track to a straight section a few feet long or a simple oval. Do not start with anything elaborate.
As was already suggested, connect one of the transformers # 6002 to the 6021 using one set of brown and yellow cables. Then connect the 6021 to the track using the red and brown cables.
I would then "reset" the 6021 by pressing the Stop and Go buttons at the same time. Once this is done, press Go, enter the address for one of your digital loks and see if it works.

If your dad was using the older protocol, which likely was the case with the 6020 you may have to adjust the dip switches on the back of the 6021 in order to use it on it's own. I will try to look up the correct settings.

For the moment, you should refrain from using the blue transformers with the digital equipment. The 6002 should provide sufficient power for a simple setup at the moment.

Regards

Mike C
Offline Fireguy911  
#7 Posted : 06 December 2011 03:07:56(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
To Tom and Mike, yes, I have done all those things.
My test track is K track, about 4 feet long on hard board.
My wiring is Marklin wiring.
Colors and connections as you per your posts.
The engines are not stiff as I had them running on another non digital test track. And I oil them before hand.
I've tried everything you guys mention even changing the addresses.
I'm using a brand new Alaska engine ( 3663) and also a small steamer from set # 2666.
Press go and enter the engine address and add speed....but nothing happens.
I am dumbfounded as my dad had it operating so well.

Not sure what to try next.

Ren
Offline cookee_nz  
#8 Posted : 06 December 2011 06:25:37(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 3,817
Location: Paremata, Wellington
Originally Posted by: Fireguy911 Go to Quoted Post
To Tom and Mike, yes, I have done all those things.
My test track is K track, about 4 feet long on hard board.
My wiring is Marklin wiring.
Colors and connections as you per your posts.
The engines are not stiff as I had them running on another non digital test track. And I oil them before hand.
I've tried everything you guys mention even changing the addresses.
I'm using a brand new Alaska engine ( 3663) and also a small steamer from set # 2666.
Press go and enter the engine address and add speed....but nothing happens.
I am dumbfounded as my dad had it operating so well.

Not sure what to try next.

Ren


Just out of interest, do you have any non-digital loco's? - if so, can you try one of those on the track - you won't be able to control it, it will run at about 2/3rd's full speed but it will confirm that there is voltage on the tracks.

I'm puzzled about the slight buzzing you refer to for a second or so - could this be a short-circuit causing the 6021 to trip out? (where is the slight buzzing coming from, the 6021 or the Loco)??

If so, there will be no power on the track at all so an Analogue loco won't even run.

I'm just working with what information we have.

Perhaps cut the track down to just 3 or 4 sections of track and try that - I'd want to be sure that the system is not overloading from a short-circuit

Hope this helps,

Cheers

Steve
Melbourne
Australia
Cookee
Wellington
NZ image
Offline Fireguy911  
#9 Posted : 06 December 2011 07:31:44(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Hi Steve. Thank you for your suggestion. I just tried it. I used a old TM 800 that works very well on regular tracks.

I had power to the Control Unit as the light stayed lit with the loco on the tracks. As soon as I turned the speed control, lights on the loco came on and loco buzzed for a second then all power to the loco AND Control Unit went out. The loco did not even move.

Offline Ian555  
#10 Posted : 06 December 2011 07:37:48(UTC)
Ian555

Scotland   
Joined: 04/06/2009(UTC)
Posts: 20,105
Location: Scotland
Hi Ren,

Welcome to the forum.ThumpUp

Ian.

Offline Nielsenr  
#11 Posted : 06 December 2011 07:47:17(UTC)
Nielsenr

United States   
Joined: 06/10/2010(UTC)
Posts: 882
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Ren,

It sounds like you have a short circuit. Any chance of posting a photo of how the wires are connected??

Robert
Offline Fireguy911  
#12 Posted : 06 December 2011 08:24:18(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
I even tried running digital on the other parallel track and the same thing happened.
Offline Fireguy911  
#13 Posted : 06 December 2011 09:11:38(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Ok, I posted 4 photos in my original post up above. They are clear and show the wiring setup and track itself.

Thanks everyone for welcoming me to this forum.
I have been a Marklin fan for years, mostly "z" scale and HO but non digital. It is my dad who switched to digital after many years of collecting Marklin. I value the collection he left behind and will always treasure it. Much of it will remain in glass display case. The amount of tracks is enough to run a large layout. As he was loosing his eyesight we sold quite a bit of his HO collection on eBay and we were impressed with what collectors world wide were willing to pay for his well kept treasures. I was sorry to see certain locomotives go, especially some that you see displayed on the front cover of Christie's catalogue. But he replaced it with Marklin "O" guage and other European manufacturers. There is one "O" guage steam loco in my display (on Collector Weekly website) that is one of a kind. It is blue but used to be black and different looking. A good friend of my dad in Germany restaured it to look like an Eastern block engine my dad likes. It took months but the result was amazing. Take a look for yourself on my "Weekly Collector" collection. Look for "Renoir911" and you'll see my page. Scroll down to where you will see this beautiful blue steam locomotive. My dad also built Aster steam locomotives, the big ones but no place to run them so he sold them also on eBay. It took me a couple of days just to properly package one of them. He had four of them and they worked smoothly. One is now on display in New Jersey in a businessman's office.
Anyway, trains have always held special meaning to he and I. I've always loved Marklin and this will not change. Now my dream is to set up a running layout with several trains running at once. I have the space and enough days off during the week (shift worker) to do a decent job of it. My "z" scale layout is also displayed on "Collector Weekly.com, under "Renoir911".

However, I need to find out why my digital is not working. I know it worked very well for my dad. I think he had a at least 35 locos running at once on his old layout years ago. I appreciate all your assistance. I hope the photos I just posted will uncover something and get me on the road to success. Thanks so much everyone.
Offline cookee_nz  
#14 Posted : 06 December 2011 09:33:58(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 3,817
Location: Paremata, Wellington
Originally Posted by: Fireguy911 Go to Quoted Post
Ok, I posted 4 photos in my original post up above. They are clear and show the wiring setup and track itself.

Thanks everyone for welcoming me to this forum.
I have been a Marklin fan for years, mostly "z" scale and HO but non digital. It is my dad who switched to digital after many years of collecting Marklin. I value the collection he left behind and will always treasure it. Much of it will remain in glass display case. The amount of tracks is enough to run a large layout. As he was loosing his eyesight we sold quite a bit of his HO collection on eBay and we were impressed with what collectors world wide were willing to pay for his well kept treasures. I was sorry to see certain locomotives go, especially some that you see displayed on the front cover of Christie's catalogue. But he replaced it with Marklin "O" guage and other European manufacturers. There is one "O" guage steam loco in my display (on Collector Weekly website) that is one of a kind. It is blue but used to be black and different looking. A good friend of my dad in Germany restaured it to look like an Eastern block engine my dad likes. It took months but the result was amazing. Take a look for yourself on my "Weekly Collector" collection. Look for "Renoir911" and you'll see my page. Scroll down to where you will see this beautiful blue steam locomotive. My dad also built Aster steam locomotives, the big ones but no place to run them so he sold them also on eBay. It took me a couple of days just to properly package one of them. He had four of them and they worked smoothly. One is now on display in New Jersey in a businessman's office.
Anyway, trains have always held special meaning to he and I. I've always loved Marklin and this will not change. Now my dream is to set up a running layout with several trains running at once. I have the space and enough days off during the week (shift worker) to do a decent job of it. My "z" scale layout is also displayed on "Collector Weekly.com, under "Renoir911".

However, I need to find out why my digital is not working. I know it worked very well for my dad. I think he had a at least 35 locos running at once on his old layout years ago. I appreciate all your assistance. I hope the photos I just posted will uncover something and get me on the road to success. Thanks so much everyone.


Well everything looks connected correctly - what about the same setup but with the older controllers (Central Control plus Control 80 or Control 80f)?

And where is the slight buzz coming from?

Cheers

Steve
Cookee
Wellington
NZ image
Offline GlennM  
#15 Posted : 06 December 2011 11:34:44(UTC)
GlennM

United Kingdom   
Joined: 09/05/2011(UTC)
Posts: 2,779
Location: Somewhere, But Nowhere Near Manchester, England
Welcome to the Forum

Regards

Glenn
Don't look back, your not heading that way.
Offline river6109  
#16 Posted : 06 December 2011 15:24:21(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 13,965
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
Welcome to the forum Ren.

What tansformer are you using.

Yellow and brown from transformer to 6021 (left hand side) brown & red right hand side o 6021 to track red wire = middle contact brown wire = track.
With any digital equipemt you have to be sure before connecting it to the transformer your wires are connected properly.
Turn the 6021 on without anything on the track and turn the off and on button and see if it stays on (red light)

John
https://www.youtube.com/river6109
https://www.youtube.com/6109river
5 years in Destruction mode
50 years in Repairing mode
Offline H0  
#17 Posted : 06 December 2011 17:09:12(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 14,603
Location: DE-NW
Originally Posted by: cookee_nz Go to Quoted Post
And where is the slight buzz coming from?
You hear a slight buzz when there is a short circuit.
There's a red LED on the CU 6021 that should go on when you press "go" and will go out when you press "stop". If red LED goes out within seconds after pressing "go" then there is a short circuit, an overload condition, or another malfunction.

Ren, try this first without track connection, then with track connection and empty track, then with loco on the track.
Red LED should stay on after you press "go" - if it goes out automatically within seconds after pressing "go" then stop the test run.

I cannot tell a digital feeder track (without capacitor) from an analogue feeder track (with capacitor). I don't see a capacitor on your pictures, but it may be under the track (maybe a K track expert can answer that).
Regards
Tom
---
"In all of the gauges, we particularly emphasize a high level of quality, the best possible fidelity to the prototype, and absolute precision. You will see that in all of our products." (from Märklin New Items Brochure 2015, page 1) ROFLBTCUTS
UserPostedImage
Offline 5HorizonsRR  
#18 Posted : 06 December 2011 18:14:22(UTC)
5HorizonsRR

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2004(UTC)
Posts: 3,188
Location: CA, USA
Are the 4 dip switches on the back of the 6021 set properly?
FS + SBB Era 2-5 and Vintage Marklin
Offline Fireguy911  
#19 Posted : 06 December 2011 19:13:23(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Responding to JOHN, STEVE and TOM:

Ok, with nothing on the tracks, LED light on the 6021 stays on.

The second a I put a loco on the track, it goes OFF.

If I have a loco on the track and turn the 6021 ON, the LED light goes off immediately.

Steve, no difference with Control 80 or 80f.

Tom, light goes off immediately. Regarding these tracks: These are the same tracks my dad used in his setup and he never had any problem. What bugs me is that I recall him using an older (blue) transformer in addition with some of the digital equipment. The Control 80 speed button numbers are well worn so he used that for sure. The Central Control looks unused. Crazy huh ?

To all who are welcoming me here, thank you.

Ren
Offline Fireguy911  
#20 Posted : 06 December 2011 19:19:32(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Reply to 5 HORIZON RR !

I wondered what these DIP "switches were for". They are presently set as follow:

# 1, 3 and 4 are DOWN

# 2 is UP

By the way, I am on the West coast, CENTRAL TIME. Not on the East coast. I've done that for security reasons as my dad had shown his collection to too many people, some who found me and desperately wanted to buy some of it. Does location make a difference in these settings ? I am in Alberta, Canada.

I have never heard my dad discuss these DIP switches so thought they were factory set.
Offline 5HorizonsRR  
#21 Posted : 06 December 2011 19:55:45(UTC)
5HorizonsRR

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2004(UTC)
Posts: 3,188
Location: CA, USA
Hi again,

I sold my 6021, so I no longer have a manual to reference, but the position of those dip switches does matter if I remember right. (may have had something to do with 1 gauge DC versus HO scale AC?)

If you have a manual it is in there for sure. Sorry I'm not more help, but I know that is something to check
FS + SBB Era 2-5 and Vintage Marklin
Offline H0  
#22 Posted : 06 December 2011 20:06:33(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 14,603
Location: DE-NW
Originally Posted by: Fireguy911 Go to Quoted Post
I wondered what these DIP "switches were for".
The DIP switches have the factory setting for best compatibility with old and new locos - there is no reason to try other settings.

So it seems there is a short circuit somewhere as soon as you put the loco on the track. I have no clue what goes wrong.
Regards
Tom
---
"In all of the gauges, we particularly emphasize a high level of quality, the best possible fidelity to the prototype, and absolute precision. You will see that in all of our products." (from Märklin New Items Brochure 2015, page 1) ROFLBTCUTS
UserPostedImage
Offline CCS800KrokHunter3  
#23 Posted : 06 December 2011 20:09:06(UTC)
CCS800KrokHunter3

United States   
Joined: 03/04/2007(UTC)
Posts: 1,605
Hi Rene,

Sorry I can't be of much help with the digital stuff. I've never actually set up a digital layout before but just have some basic knowledge on the equipment. Troubleshooting and setup stuff is way beyond me...

If you ever need help with the 30s, 40s, and 50s 00 and O gauge stuff, let me know! I could get that SK 800 motor in the first photo running in no time if is broken.

Best regards,

Paul
Offline David Dewar  
#24 Posted : 06 December 2011 20:15:41(UTC)
David Dewar

Scotland   
Joined: 01/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 7,078
Location: Scotland
I presume this happens with all locos that you have. I looked to me it was the track but as you say it only happens with a loco then that rules that out. Is there anybody near you who has another type of controller that you can try.

dave
Take care I like Marklin and will defend the worlds greatest model rail manufacturer.
Offline Fireguy911  
#25 Posted : 06 December 2011 22:40:56(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Hi Paul. Those SK800 in the photo work perfectly. My dad was amazing at repairing and finding parts. He believed in preventitive maintenance, meaning that if it did not operate perfectly, it did not belong on the show case! I remember him spending hours, even half the night trouble shooting and making things work again. He spoke three languages so he had no difficulty calling up friends in Germany or elsewhere to discuss things. I just wish I had been more observant as to how he set things up with the digital. I have many digital engines to use on a layout. I thank each and everyone of you for trying to help. Maybe someone will surface who has more ideas. I'm going to try testing the engines without the track, just with electrical wires to see if there is something wrong with the tracks.
Offline Fireguy911  
#26 Posted : 07 December 2011 01:16:57(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Well, the problem is definitely NOT with the track. The second I put the two wires on the engine (red on pick up shoes and the other on a wheel)the LED light went out. Same thing happened with other digital engines I tested. And the same thing happens no matter what combination of power source I use. Some of these engines are brand new in the box, never used. They run ok on regular tracks so not the engines. I am baffled! DOes anyone know who to contact at Marklin in Germany ? I am about ready to ask them what the problem is. Thank you.
Offline Fireguy911  
#27 Posted : 07 December 2011 02:15:47(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
SUCCESS!!!!!!!

Can't beleive I did not see that before! Both transformers are 220V ! Both have the round power plugs with adapters to fit North American power outlets. I remember never having seen these two transformers in use with HO! But I think he used them for his "O" guage.

I went back to using the old blue transformer (found a short statement in the Control Unit booklet that says it is ok to use it). Wiring colors are the same but needed to turn the speed dial a bit to power up the Control Unit. Now my locomotives work and very well at that!

That's how my dad did it!
I guess eventually I should purchase a digital 110V transformer.

Thanks to all you good people for trying to reason this out when it could not be done with the digital transformers I have.

Ren
Offline Nielsenr  
#28 Posted : 07 December 2011 02:33:15(UTC)
Nielsenr

United States   
Joined: 06/10/2010(UTC)
Posts: 882
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Ren,

Good to see you got it worked out!

Robert
Offline Fireguy911  
#29 Posted : 07 December 2011 03:32:28(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Yes! Now I have a lot of engines to go through to find their "addresses" as my dad changed many of them but did not record them. He had them memorized. That's ok, love to spend time with my newly REDISCOVERED hoby.
Wishing you and all a very Merry Christmas and wonderful new year!

Ren
Offline river6109  
#30 Posted : 07 December 2011 04:20:00(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 13,965
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
Get a digital transformer for 110 V as soon as possible.
You better get yourself a proper instruction booklet, you don't turn the knob on the blue transformer to be able to run the 6021 unit.

If you don't use the proper voltage you can damage your digital 6021 unit. be aware and you have been warned.BigGrin

John

Edited by user 07 December 2011 07:58:47(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

https://www.youtube.com/river6109
https://www.youtube.com/6109river
5 years in Destruction mode
50 years in Repairing mode
Offline Fireguy911  
#31 Posted : 07 December 2011 07:05:49(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
Ok John, advice taken. I'll order one pronto. There's a dealer in my Province and I also buy from Bill Ott at Modelbahn Ott in the USA. I wonder how my dad operated his system for so long without damaging anything. Luck I suppose. Glad you let me know.
Offline river6109  
#32 Posted : 07 December 2011 08:02:37(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 13,965
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
Originally Posted by: Fireguy911 Go to Quoted Post
Ok John, advice taken. I'll order one pronto. There's a dealer in my Province and I also buy from Bill Ott at Modelbahn Ott in the USA. I wonder how my dad operated his system for so long without damaging anything. Luck I suppose. Glad you let me know.


Ren,

Also it could be said, what your father knows or knew what you know and what information we have given, so it is better to be on the save side.

John

https://www.youtube.com/river6109
https://www.youtube.com/6109river
5 years in Destruction mode
50 years in Repairing mode
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by river6109
Offline cookee_nz  
#33 Posted : 07 December 2011 09:21:39(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 3,817
Location: Paremata, Wellington
Originally Posted by: river6109 Go to Quoted Post
Get a digital transformer for 110 V as soon as possible.
You better get yourself a proper instruction booklet, you don't turn the knob on the blue transformer to be able to run the 6021 unit.

If you don't use the proper voltage you can damage your digital 6021 unit. be aware and you have been warned.BigGrin

John


Hi all, well it just goes to show how something unexpected can cause havoc - all of us would have assumed the Transformer to be the correct voltage. I never picked it because I too have a 6002 running my Digital so the number was very familiar. If we had thought about it in relation to your domestic 110v, then of course it should have been 6001.

For what it's worth, I have run my digital off Blue Transformers many times without mishap - I think where you went wrong is that you connected the 6021 to the Brown and Red outputs rather than Brown and Yellow. B/Y would give you a full AC output whereas B/R goes through the rheostat controller.

However I'd better qualify that - if the quality of your domestic power where you are is good, then you would probably be ok with the Blue Trafo. Where the newer Trafos designed for digital come into it (in theory) is better protection for over-voltage (surges/spikes) and under-voltage (brown-outs).

Or at least that is what Marklin might have us believe. I've never had reason to open a White trafo as yet so whether or not there is any protective electronics inside, or just the same old wire-wound transformer remains to be seen. Perhaps someone has first-hand knowledge and can confirm? Otherwise, I will accept in good faith that the White Trafo's are better suited to Digital and should wherever possible, be used.

Cheers

Cookee
Cookee
Wellington
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Offline cookee_nz  
#34 Posted : 07 December 2011 09:25:06(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 3,817
Location: Paremata, Wellington
By the way Ren, I quite like the way the pairs of wires are twisted - it gives a tidy appearance.

I use a heavier grade of wire myself to minimise voltage drop, but it's a bit bulky and the twisted wire you have used will achieve the same result with more flexibility and just looks quite neat.

Cheers

Cookee
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Marklin digital problem 001.jpg
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Offline Western Pacific  
#35 Posted : 07 December 2011 10:11:41(UTC)
Western Pacific

Sweden   
Joined: 19/09/2009(UTC)
Posts: 841
Location: Lidingö, Sweden
A couple of comments on transformers and voltages.

In Europe we earlier had different supply voltages coming into our houses and offices. I don't know when, but it was decided to create a standard that would also include specified tolerance levels.

This standardization was something that was, to my knowledge, done for Western Europe, since it started before the fall of the Berlin wall, German re-unification and the fall of communist regimes in Eastern Europe. The standard was adopted as a rule for the EU countries and for EFTA (European Free Trade Association; with members like Austria, Finland and Sweden (all now EU) as well as Iceland and Norway to name some).

Most of these countries had 220 V, but the UK had 240 V and the UK being a member of the EU needed the standard to be written so that it could be implemented without too high costs. So the standard was written to be 230 V with asymmetric percentage tolerances which made both 220 V and 240 V fall within them. The purpose of the standard was basically two aspects: i) to define the quality of the voltage delivered to houses and offices and ii) define tolerances for voltages in order to allow manufacturers of equipment to use one design all over Europe, in other words there should not be a need to have one product line for 220 V and another for 240 V.

Since the standard has been adopted electric supply network have been “fine tuned” to be closer to the specified 230 V (or in case 3-phase 400/230 V as in for instance Sweden from the earlier 380/220 V).

Back to Märklin and transformers. Märklin evidently produced both 220 V and 240 V blue transformers. This means that in an electric network that has been changed from 220 V to 230 V the output side (B[ahn] = red and L[icht] = yellow) will be close to 5 % too high if an old blue 220 V transformer is used. On the other hand an old transformer for the UK market would result in too low output votlage on "B" and "L".

Moving on to the North American scene. Earlier I’ve always seen voltage being specified as 110 V (my wife is from California and she brought a few electric items for which we got transformers 220 to 110 V), but more recently I’ve seen 115 V on equipment for the US market. This means there could be a similar situation in North America.

Finally, besides the voltage changes, the oldest blue Märklin transformers hade casings made from metal and the safety features of them are not up to date and furthermore even if the cable looks OK, the insulation in it and more importantly inside the transformer may have aged and thus be a health hazard. The situation is a bit better with newer blue Märklin transformers having plastic casing, but with them there is still a risk of frying the decoder if a modern lok would be run in analogue mode with them because voltage pulse for switching driving direction is too high.

So to conclude, even if older transformers look OK, I would discourage using them (with possible exception for qualified electricians or electrical engineers who can assess the risk level they are prepared to accept).
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Offline river6109  
#36 Posted : 07 December 2011 10:13:47(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 13,965
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
Cookee,
this is one reason I've pointed out to get a 110 V transformer, not having all the informations before us we may think what we do (240V) is the same what Ren has and it may has gives him the wrong information he needs.
I've found sometimes when it coems to electricity it is either not to recommend anything, especially when it comes to full household voltage and to get an electrician and with secondary voltage it may not harm you personally but could blow up your digital system and especially with members or modeltrain enthusiasts who are not familiar with the wiring aspects.
I think you're right when you said he has connected the wires to the brown & red and therefore had to turn on the blue transformer to get the voltage across to the 6021. Just imagine had he pressed the knob accidently and pumping the reversing voltage into his 6021.

So what his father did and it looks on the surface he had or has more experience than his son, I thought it would be better to start him off fresh and without any confusions.
Your example (downloaded photo) at least gives him the opportunity to see what is the right way to connect the wires from and to the 6021 and the transformer.
Althought the blue transformer as you said should be alright so long one knows what to do.
I'm fully aware of ones predicament when it comes to a subject you know very little about it and trying to sort things out you really don't understand, e.g. computer bits and bites, I'm hopeless with them when it comes to set CV's on my ECoS for instance.

John
https://www.youtube.com/river6109
https://www.youtube.com/6109river
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Offline RayF  
#37 Posted : 07 December 2011 11:01:02(UTC)
RayF

Gibraltar   
Joined: 14/03/2005(UTC)
Posts: 15,799
Location: Gibraltar, Europe
Hi Ren,

I'm glad you sorted out your problem. Sometimes we forget that mains voltage is set to different levels in different countries.

Using the fixed (accessory) output from your blue transformers should be OK as long as they are in good condition. There's nothing magical about a "digital" transformer. 16V AC is 16V AC irrespective of the colour of the plastic housing!

Have fun with your trains!
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.
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Offline cookee_nz  
#38 Posted : 07 December 2011 11:12:59(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 3,817
Location: Paremata, Wellington
Originally Posted by: river6109 Go to Quoted Post
Cookee,
this is one reason I've pointed out to get a 110 V transformer, not having all the informations before us we may think what we do (240V) is the same what Ren has and it may has gives him the wrong information he needs.
I've found sometimes when it coems to electricity it is either not to recommend anything, especially when it comes to full household voltage and to get an electrician and with secondary voltage it may not harm you personally but could blow up your digital system and especially with members or modeltrain enthusiasts who are not familiar with the wiring aspects.
I think you're right when you said he has connected the wires to the brown & red and therefore had to turn on the blue transformer to get the voltage across to the 6021. Just imagine had he pressed the knob accidently and pumping the reversing voltage into his 6021.

So what his father did and it looks on the surface he had or has more experience than his son, I thought it would be better to start him off fresh and without any confusions.
Your example (downloaded photo) at least gives him the opportunity to see what is the right way to connect the wires from and to the 6021 and the transformer.
Althought the blue transformer as you said should be alright so long one knows what to do.
I'm fully aware of ones predicament when it comes to a subject you know very little about it and trying to sort things out you really don't understand, e.g. computer bits and bites, I'm hopeless with them when it comes to set CV's on my ECoS for instance.

John


Hi John,

You're absolutely right of course, I was more trying to reassure Ren that he's unlikely to have done any damage this time round, but yes, the reverse spike sure would have given the 6021 something to think about.

The whole topic of Trafo's and varying output voltages is quite interesting and probably worthy of a separate new topic in itself with measurements and contributions from others for comparison.

Cheers

Steve
Cookee
Wellington
NZ image
Offline Western Pacific  
#39 Posted : 07 December 2011 11:24:28(UTC)
Western Pacific

Sweden   
Joined: 19/09/2009(UTC)
Posts: 841
Location: Lidingö, Sweden
Originally Posted by: RayF Go to Quoted Post
Hi Ren,

I'm glad you sorted out your problem. Sometimes we forget that mains voltage is set to different levels in different countries.

Using the fixed (accessory) output from your blue transformers should be OK as long as they are in good condition. There's nothing magical about a "digital" transformer. 16V AC is 16V AC irrespective of the colour of the plastic housing!

Have fun with your trains!


I agree with RayF in most cases, but if the transformer is rated 110 V and the actual voltage in your house is 115 V then the output on the 'L' outlet will be higher:

The following relation applies: 16/110 = u/115, where u is the voltage you will get on 'L'.

or written differently: 115*(16/100) = (u/115)*115 <=> u = 115*(16/110) = 16.73 V

If the voltage is 120 V then the 'L' is 17.45 V

A switched power supply is normally designed to give the stated output voltage irrespective of input voltage as long as it is within the specified range, whereas for a transformer there is a ratio between input and output voltage and as a consequence higher input voltage means higher output voltage.

So the 16 V AC output is not always 16 V AC. :-(
Offline cookee_nz  
#40 Posted : 07 December 2011 11:33:59(UTC)
cookee_nz

New Zealand   
Joined: 31/12/2010(UTC)
Posts: 3,817
Location: Paremata, Wellington
Originally Posted by: Western Pacific Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RayF Go to Quoted Post
Hi Ren,

I'm glad you sorted out your problem. Sometimes we forget that mains voltage is set to different levels in different countries.

Using the fixed (accessory) output from your blue transformers should be OK as long as they are in good condition. There's nothing magical about a "digital" transformer. 16V AC is 16V AC irrespective of the colour of the plastic housing!

Have fun with your trains!


I agree with RayF in most cases, but if the transformer is rated 110 V and the actual voltage in your house is 115 V then the output on the 'L' outlet will be higher:

The following relation applies: 16/110 = u/115, where u is the voltage you will get on 'L'.

or written differently: 115*(16/100) = (u/115)*115 <=> u = 115*(16/110) = 16.73 V

If the voltage is 120 V then the 'L' is 17.45 V

A switched power supply is normally designed to give the stated output voltage irrespective of input voltage as long as it is within the specified range, whereas for a transformer there is a ratio between input and output voltage and as a consequence higher input voltage means higher output voltage.

So the 16 V AC output is not always 16 V AC. :-(


As per my reply to John above, you correctly point out the wide variance that can be found from different trafos.

The whole topic of Trafo's and varying output voltages is quite interesting and probably worthy of a separate new topic in itself with measurements and contributions from others for comparison.

Cheers

Steve
Cookee
Wellington
NZ image
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Offline H0  
#41 Posted : 07 December 2011 11:50:01(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 14,603
Location: DE-NW
Originally Posted by: Western Pacific Go to Quoted Post
So the standard was written to be 230 V with asymmetric percentage tolerances which made both 220 V and 240 V fall within them.
Asymmetric tolerances for a transition period that has expired, now it's 230 V +/-10 % (for the transition it was +10 %/-6 % in the UK, +6 %/-10 % in Germany).
Regards
Tom
---
"In all of the gauges, we particularly emphasize a high level of quality, the best possible fidelity to the prototype, and absolute precision. You will see that in all of our products." (from Märklin New Items Brochure 2015, page 1) ROFLBTCUTS
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Offline H0  
#42 Posted : 07 December 2011 11:54:32(UTC)
H0


Joined: 16/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 14,603
Location: DE-NW
Originally Posted by: RayF Go to Quoted Post
16V AC is 16V AC irrespective of the colour of the plastic housing!
I get 25 V reversing voltage from my grey transformers (230 V input, 24 V nominal reversing voltage) but 31 V from one of my blue transformers (220 V input, 23 V nominal reversing voltage).
Colour doesn't matter, but new transformers are made with smaller tolerances than old transformers.
And old transformers have no plastic housing!

Big production tolerances can add to the changed nominal input voltage (+4.5 % in Germany).
"16 V AC" can be 17 V from a grey transformer, but 18 or 19 V from a blue transformer.
Regards
Tom
---
"In all of the gauges, we particularly emphasize a high level of quality, the best possible fidelity to the prototype, and absolute precision. You will see that in all of our products." (from Märklin New Items Brochure 2015, page 1) ROFLBTCUTS
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Offline river6109  
#43 Posted : 07 December 2011 12:21:32(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 13,965
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
I think we all agree there is a lesson to be learned from not so experienced modelers without the proper instructions or equipment being used, which is sometimes not fully explained by other members asking or seeking help and we as members have an obligation to make sure we are giving information about elelctricity is accurate or a proper and safe advice is given, especially from the country the enquiry comes from.

John

P.S.

I've made the most stupidest thing in my life time, about a year ago or so.
I' ve bought a universal electricity adapter plug on ebay, nothing wrong with the product except it was a bit loose when pushing a plug into the adapter
I was able to unscrew a couple of screws and squeeze the clamps closer together, to see if it works and here comes the shocking admission, I didn't re-assemble the adapter back again pushed it into a socket and put my hand onto the live contact clamps.
A severe shock and at the same time the power shut it self off (safety power circuit breaker) without that I may not would have been able to tell the story and you could have one member less with long stories.BigGrin

Don't play with electricityThumbDown ThumbDown ThumbDown
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Offline David Dewar  
#44 Posted : 07 December 2011 12:24:30(UTC)
David Dewar

Scotland   
Joined: 01/02/2004(UTC)
Posts: 7,078
Location: Scotland
Might be a simple view but I always spend cash on transformers, controllers and track as they are the basis of a model railway. There are lots of old stuff out there that may well do the job but why risk it. A new transformer should last a lifetime (or at least a long time)

dave
Take care I like Marklin and will defend the worlds greatest model rail manufacturer.
Offline RayF  
#45 Posted : 07 December 2011 12:26:08(UTC)
RayF

Gibraltar   
Joined: 14/03/2005(UTC)
Posts: 15,799
Location: Gibraltar, Europe
Originally Posted by: H0 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RayF Go to Quoted Post
16V AC is 16V AC irrespective of the colour of the plastic housing!
I get 25 V reversing voltage from my grey transformers (230 V input, 24 V nominal reversing voltage) but 31 V from one of my blue transformers (220 V input, 23 V nominal reversing voltage).
Colour doesn't matter, but new transformers are made with smaller tolerances than old transformers.
And old transformers have no plastic housing!

Big production tolerances can add to the changed nominal input voltage (+4.5 % in Germany).
"16 V AC" can be 17 V from a grey transformer, but 18 or 19 V from a blue transformer.


Hi Tom,

You may have noticed I specified the accessory outputs, so the reversing voltage is irrelevant to the case being discussed here, which is the use of an old transormer to power a 6021.

I also made sure I mentioned the colour of the plastic housing. Blue transformers have been available for many years in plastic housings, and are much safer than the older metal cased transformers. I would have no problem with using one of the plastic cased blue transformers for accessories, including powering my 6021. I'm pretty sure 18 or 19V AC is OK as an input to a 6021.

BTW, I sometimes lay an oval of track for testing purposes to which I connect my old 66045 Delta control unit. To power this I use my old blue metal cased transformer from the 1950's. I rewired it with a new mains flex some years ago andregularly check the inside for signs of damage, but i would not leave it plugged in and live when I'm not present, just in case!
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  
#46 Posted : 07 December 2011 12:41:35(UTC)
river6109

Australia   
Joined: 22/01/2009(UTC)
Posts: 13,965
Location: On 1965 Märklin Boulevard just around from Roco Square
Ray,

All this is very true and should be harmless but when I read Ren connected the wires from a blue transformer (we don't know whether it is plastic or metal) the 6021 didn't work until he increased the knob position on his blue transformer.
I think he was very lucky his 6021 still works.

John

https://www.youtube.com/river6109
https://www.youtube.com/6109river
5 years in Destruction mode
50 years in Repairing mode
Offline Western Pacific  
#47 Posted : 07 December 2011 13:41:19(UTC)
Western Pacific

Sweden   
Joined: 19/09/2009(UTC)
Posts: 841
Location: Lidingö, Sweden
First, I should have said WelcomeRen!

Second, it's good Ren's problem got sorted out.

Third, having a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering and even if I haven't worked with electrical power distribution or anything like that, I feel it is important to make sure that "safe practices" are used when trying old equipment. This is of course most important when it comes to preventing people from getting electrical shocks, but having done that, the next thing is to prevent frying our loks or other MRR equipment using low voltage electricity. So to conclude, if I broadened the subject too much, then I'm sorry about that and I hope you can accept my apology, since I did it in good faith and having electrical safety in mind.
Offline RayF  
#48 Posted : 07 December 2011 14:04:18(UTC)
RayF

Gibraltar   
Joined: 14/03/2005(UTC)
Posts: 15,799
Location: Gibraltar, Europe
Nothing to apologise for, Per! Safety is paramount whenever dealing with Electricity.

I always say that if you are not completely sure of what you are doing then you should get help from someone who knows.

(BTW, I have a BSc in Electronic Engineering and I'm a UK Chartered Electrical Engineer.)
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 Fireguy911  
#49 Posted : 09 December 2011 08:08:37(UTC)
Fireguy911


Joined: 05/12/2011(UTC)
Posts: 34
Location: Canada
I am overwhelmed by all of your posts which have been extremely helpful. No one needs to apologize for anything here as I needed to be made aware. I thank each and everyone of you for your comments. I also found another older blue transformer with the main wire cut in two. My father probably found a fault with it and thought it best to cut the cable so it could not be used. He would not throw anything Marklin away as eventually, he would have repaired it. He used to fly his own model airplanes in Europe and even created the whole RC radio system he needed to fly them, he and his friends. Not much was impossible for him. In my case, I am relearning and now reading up on Marklin systems. I do have several books in English about Marklin digital but it is not explained as clearly as I need it to be. I will purchase a proper transformer (already inquired for prices) as I do take your comments seriously AND I do not want to destroy something my dad enjoyed so much. Actually, after reading some of your posts about possible safety hazards with older metal shell transformers, I've also decided to purchase a non digital one as well for those non digital locos.

I've added several albums to my profile, please feel free to browse through and comment.

I've checked out some of the wonderful layouts, photos and videos posted by Marklin enthusiasts on this website. I'm really enjoying everything I see. I enjoy detail and in my "Z" scale layout, I've tried to create as much detail as I can. Not done as it is a work in progress. "Z" scale is so small, it is a challenge. But all who see it in operation are amazed at how wonderful Marklin really is. I remember my dad telling me that when he was a child, all he would get for Christmas was a MArklin catalogue, too poor to buy the real thing. Then, slowly he started collecting while in Europe working for the RCAF. In his later years, he had acquired quite a HO collection. Then he started loosing his eyesight so he sold nearly half of it on eBay and started collecting "O" guage. I remember selling some of his HO on eBay, and was amazed at how much some sold for. My goal is to maintain his collection, and showcase it, for him. Where I am, it is dry, no humidity. I have all of the original boxes except for maybe a dozen which are replicas made for my dad by someone in Italy. That was years ago and that person suddenly disappeared from sight. The difference between the original and non original boxes were where he placed the staples. He did not put them around each corner like Marklin did. But the stickers and colors schemes, aging, is truly realistic. Anyway, thank you for welcoming me to this forum. I have much to learn and will proceed with caution after reading your responses. I am glad to have found a great group of fellow Marklin enthusiasts.
Offline Oliver SBB-CFF-FFS  
#50 Posted : 09 December 2011 08:19:51(UTC)
Oliver SBB-CFF-FFS

Sweden   
Joined: 22/06/2011(UTC)
Posts: 544
Fireguy, a very nice introduction and prospect. I wish you all the luck and hope you will share your progress with us here on the forum.

Oliver
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