Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

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Mike_R
Posts: 394
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:05 pm

Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

Post by Mike_R » Fri Feb 01, 2013 5:57 pm

This could go under d.c. or DCC, as I'm using DCC it is here.
I have been fitting resistors to all my stock for block detection, I found that only metal axles worked well. Not a problem on most stock as I could just fit Intermountain wheels in place of any plastic axles, reaming out Athearn one as they, and some Atlas use shorter axles. The problem was Athearn Genesis cars, with the rotating bearing caps, they have plastic axles with special shaped metal ends. I resigned myself to leave the few I've got unfitted, or having to change trucks.
Today I was painting the wheels on one, (I'm working my way through the fleet painting trucks and wheels, weathering can come later, but removing shiny wheels and trucks makes a vast improvement on my high layout), when I found the wheels pull out of the axles easily and the axle is a tube. So I thought I could fit a resistor in the axle, I use 402 SMD resistors, tiny. I would need a wire on each end to contact the axle ends. Then a brain wave! Kadee knuckle springs, I have loads of spares. An hour of trying to solder half springs to the ends of these tiny resistors another brainwave, I only need to solder a full spring to one end! far easier and it gives a better join with no insulating needed. It was done in five minutes. I pushed the resistor and spring into an axle, tested it and great it worked!
So now I can buy more of these cars if I want, knowing that they are actually easier to fit resistors to than my other cars.
Mike Ruby

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torikoos
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Re: Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

Post by torikoos » Sat Feb 02, 2013 9:00 am

great tip!
Are you intending to have block detection (or already have) on your layout, or is this for modular purposes (we discussed this subject when we were thinking on double sided modules)?

Koos
Koos Fockens -Devon UK. North American Model Railroading
Age is just a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, then it doesn't matter.

Mike_R
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Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:05 pm

Re: Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

Post by Mike_R » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:09 pm

My home layout already has block detection, but no signals yet. Even so It helps the dispatcher, who is downstairs from the layout, to see where trains are. Plus it looks good as the track diagram lights up as trains pass through. That's a video I plan to do.

We are planning to fit detection on the new main loop for the modular layout, the junction will have it as it will be signalled. This was the reason for putting the feedback bus in our modular wiring requirements along with the booster bus, which was used for the first time at the last meeting. This also allows branch modules to be fitted as well if we want.

The problem in using detection it is that trains need to be detectable, the plan is to ensure detectable cars are on the rear of trains. Short blocks and long trains will cause trouble, but I doubt we will persuade members to equip all their cars. For some short blocks we may use optical detectors as well to help with non fitted cars.
I've only about 10 cars to go after making well over 400 resistor wheel sets.
Mike Ruby

Mike_R
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Re: Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

Post by Mike_R » Sat Feb 02, 2013 9:25 pm

Talking of track detection, don't plan on using it straight after ballasting. Today I ballasted a short section of track, the diluted PVA caused a block occupied indication for several hours before it dried enough to increase the resistance.
This has given me the idea on one of my blocks which doesn't pick up a single 10K wheel set, two no problem, I'll put a resistor across the track feed so that little extra resistance will trigger it. This seems like an easy way to tune a block detector that I haven't come across before.
Mike Ruby

mikehughes
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Location: Worthing, West Sussex, England

Re: Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

Post by mikehughes » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:09 am

What would you suggest for optical detectors?

This is the next stage for my loft layout so I'm starting to look for ideas now.

Mike_R
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Re: Wheel resistors on Genesis cars

Post by Mike_R » Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:11 pm

mikehughes wrote:What would you suggest for optical detectors?
Depends on where you have space, whether the lighting levels change and how disguised they need to be.

MERGE do the Hector kit, which is similar to IRDOT. They bounce an infrared beam off the car, normally mounted between the rails. They don't pick up every car, I find black tank cars are a problem, still picks up the trucks though. I have these alongside crossings, once I have lights and barriers they will allow them to lift as soon as the train clears the crossing.

A straight light detector picks up the light dimming as a car passes over. Different light levels in the room can affect them.

Through beams are another option, if placed at an angle across the track at coupling height, they should pickup everything. Vellman kit no MK120, does this. I have a few but not built them yet. I plan to put them at the ends of my storage yard to see if I can get JMRI to automatically stop the trains.

For signalling and interlocking I prefer current detection, but ideally you want all cars with resistor wheels sets.
Mike Ruby

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