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Author Topic: Electrofrog points  (Read 821 times)

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Offline Tonee

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Electrofrog points
« on: June 11, 2017, 11:58:44 am »
Hi
can anyone help me set up my Electrofrog points please?
They are the SL-E392F left hand and SL-E391F which don`t have the spare bit of wire that all the help sites keep asking for.
I am setting up a DCC type track so what I would like to know is where do I put the wires if any and do I need a switch attached to them?
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 12:16:40 pm by Tonee »

Offline mattycoops43

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2017, 12:14:20 pm »
Hi

I don't know why the finescale points don't have a wire, I haven't used them, (I am sure someone will enlighten us both) but just for your information, you can use electrofrog points without wiring, you insulate the frog rails as per usual with insulating joiners, then the frog will just be powered by the blades making contact. I did this on a large 00 layout without any issues.

Matt

Online Bealman

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2017, 12:41:29 pm »
That's exactly how my electrofrog points are wired on me ancient DC system, however, I  must report sparking and problems with blade contact.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 12:42:46 pm by Bealman »
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline newportnobby

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2017, 02:52:20 pm »
I use a lot of those points but know naff all about DCC. The points can limit/prevent juice getting through to the tracks if you rely on blade contact only so probably best power them with point motors with frog polarity switching. You have plenty of makes to choose from.

Offline Tonee

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2017, 07:16:58 pm »
Any suggestions on best inexpensive make of point motors

Offline ntpntpntp

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2017, 07:41:56 pm »
Peco PL10-E works fine for me, I mount them under the baseboard along with the mounting plate and twin micro-switches for frog polarity.   Don't need to cut a huge hole like you would have to do if you mounted the PL10 directly to the point.
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!

Offline terrysoham

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2017, 10:54:13 pm »
You can just use the switch blades touching the stock rails to swap the polarity of the frog.  It is said that some people never have any problems so long as you keep the switch rail and stock rail clean where they touch.  However,  I have always attached some form of additional switch to power the frog.   This means you have to solder three pieces of wire (often called droppers) to the Peco points: one to each stock rail and one to the frog.  If you are using solenoids both the Seep and the Peco type can be fitted with a form of mechanical switch.  In my view neither are particularly satisfactory and I have recently fitted Cobalt digital point motors to a friend's layout which, whilst expensive, are a doddle to fit and get to work.   If you do a bit of research, you will find that DCC Concepts do some very good leaflets which explain how to wire up the points and their Cobalt point motors.
I hope that this helps.
Regards
Terry Metcalfe
Ely and District Model Railway Club
Owner of Neely, modern N scale representation of Ely, available for exhibitions

Online Bealman

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2017, 11:55:20 pm »
Agree with  all above. When I  did the bulk of the work on my layout back in the late eighties - early nineties,  the only switch available from  Peco was the single black one that you superglue under the motor.

The automatic signaling system on the layout relies heavily on a complex interlocking of these switches with relays, optocouplers  and diodes. Hence the switch couldn't handle the point polarity!

Peco suggest that you can glue a second switch under the first, which I have tried, but never had any success with. The motor simply has not got the grunt to throw the point and two switches.

The firm subsequently put out a double switch, which, if  they had been available at the time, I would have used for the point polarity.
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline ntpntpntp

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2017, 07:55:29 am »
Funnily enough I still prefer the old black sliding switch for some situations. I find it's less fiddly than having to set up the twin microswitches, and the big plus for me is that the slide switch doesn't apply any counter spring pressure to the point rod.   

Occasionally I've used two black sliding switches glued together on the same point motor, with no problems.
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!

Online Bealman

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2017, 08:10:04 am »
You've had better luck than me, then. I suspect my motors which are screw mounted beneath the baseboard, may be not quite at the correct angle, causing them not to have the grunt.

Good to hear that they can be ganged successfully!  :thumbsup:
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline Tonee

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2017, 09:48:21 pm »
 :confusedsign:
Next question is, how do i get these points to work with a DCC controller and which controller is best.
I have looked on the internet and some people say I  need to set up bus and feeder wires and others say I only need to use decoders.
Also can I control points and trains from the same controller?
« Last Edit: June 12, 2017, 09:50:08 pm by Tonee »

Offline ntpntpntp

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Re: Electrofrog points
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2017, 10:10:59 pm »
You mean how to operate the points by DCC?   You need an accessory decoder designed for the type of point motor you're using (eg, for solenoid type, reversible motor type, servo type or whatever).  There are many different accessory decoders available, with one or more channels (point outputs) per unit.

You can simply connect the accessory decoders to the track bus, but many recommend using a separate power bus which then be put on its own dcc power district in case of track shorts.

How you operate the points depends on the DCC system you have. Some of the most basic entry-level systems don't support accessory decoders, but typically it's a case of calling up the decoder address for the point and pressing "open" or "closed", "normal" or "thrown"  to change the point. If you have a computer hooked in with suitable software then it's possible to have a diagram on screen and click points to change.  Depends what style of operation you prefer  (personally I prefer a proper panel with real buttons and switches, and even this is possible with certain DCC systems which have modules to handle this).  some systems will let you string together "macros" or "routes" whereby several points can be changed at once.
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!

 

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