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Author Topic: Annoying electrofrog  (Read 311 times)

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Offline daveg

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Annoying electrofrog
« on: November 26, 2019, 03:04:48 PM »
Can somebody please advise/help explain why a point (Peco electrofrog) can work fine in the turn direction but not in the ahead position?

Droppers appear to be soldered OK and the point has worked for months. Spring works with decent click and looks if seating well. Really good clean hasn't made any difference.

I'd hate to have to replace it as ballast and scenic work all done  :'(  but if I must ....

Advice appreciated.

Dave G

Offline Ditape

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2019, 03:08:32 PM »
try using a 4B graphite stick on it.
Diane Tape



Offline lil chris

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2019, 03:20:37 PM »
You do not say if you are powering the point and by which method and do you have the frog powered with a switch. I have recently dissembled my old layout and on the fiddle yard I was using peco motors. Some of the points and the motors were showing signs of wear, they do go with a clunk. Have you got a track tester, can you check the voltage on the rails to make sure current is getting through on the rails, also check the frog is powered when the point is set the ahead position.
Lil Chris
My new layout here, Irwell Valley Railway. https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=47127.0

my old layout was East Lancashire Lines.

Offline daveg

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2019, 03:46:10 PM »
Thanks Chris.

The point is manually changed. No point motor.

Power is OK at either end of the point which also works in the 'turn' but not 'ahead' position -  makes it more frustrating!

I'll rummage and find that graphite pencil Di suggests and report back in due course.

Dave G

Offline kirky

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2019, 03:59:47 PM »
Does it work in the straight position if you *gently* squeeze the blade to the stock rail? If it does work then youve got gunk in the gap between the blade and stock rail. Are you using DC or DCC? If DCC, then I recommend a frog juicer. If you are DC, best to fit a switch to the frog. All IMHO.
cheers
Northallerton will make its next public appearance at the LINCOLN MODEL RAILWAY CLUB ANNUAL EXHIBITION Feb 29th -1st Mar 2020



Layout: Northallerton: http://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=1671.msg16930#msg16930

www.northallertonngauge.co.uk

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Offline lil chris

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2019, 06:00:51 PM »
If you are on dc make a track tester with any 12v bulb and two bits of wire. Then turn the power on then try the rails touch the rails to see if you get a light,try squeezing the rail to the stock rail and see if you get a light.with live frog points it's better to power the frog with a switch otherwise you are relying on good contact with the switch rail.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2019, 06:02:50 PM by lil chris »
Lil Chris
My new layout here, Irwell Valley Railway. https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=47127.0

my old layout was East Lancashire Lines.

Offline ntpntpntp

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2019, 06:34:51 PM »
Run a short wheelbase loco across the point until it stops, or use a track testing light as @lil chris suggests. Check continuity between the blade and the stock rail, and if that's ok also check continuity across the blade pivot point where it joins the closure rail half-way to the frog.

I use a comfortable pair of snipe nose pliers to bridge across, and if that gets the loco moving then you know where the problem lies and you then have a suitable tool already literally in-hand to gently squeeze or adjust things  :)
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!

Offline bigmac

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2019, 08:11:49 AM »
I was having to do this only yesterday
i used to be indecisive...but now i'm not so sure.

Offline daveg

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2019, 05:12:18 PM »
Thanks for all the advice. 

Got the darned thing working after a lot of mega applications of IPA  and 'blade adjusting'.

Seems like I have another similar challenge on the little branch line spur. Maybe temperature or humidity related but I now seem to have a fix.

Thanks again.  :thumbsup:

Dave G

Offline ntpntpntp

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #9 on: December 03, 2019, 07:17:54 PM »
This is why so many of us fit a frog feed and a polarity switch, to avoid these blade contact problems which often develop as points age and dirt accumulates.  All of the points on the scenic side of my exhibition layout are so fitted, and I can honestly say that since its first show in 1996 the pointwork has been pretty much 100% reliable over 70+ shows here and abroad.
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!

Offline daveg

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #10 on: December 03, 2019, 07:22:36 PM »
Never picked up on these sort of tips until too late!  :doh:

If there is ever a Next Time, I shall do something about it.

There'd be too much rework to retro fit now.

Dave G

Offline ntpntpntp

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #11 on: December 03, 2019, 08:03:32 PM »
There'd be too much rework to retro fit now.

Oh I dunno - it's simple enough to solder a frog feed somewhere near the frog V (before the isolating joiners), and disguise with a little paint.   All of my feeds are added after the track is laid, though admittedly before ballasting, but sometimes I've found I need another feed adding later (usually when I add another isolating section on a siding).  If that's the case I just dig out a small hole in the ballast next to the rail, clean away the plastic webbing and solder the feed.

You say the point is thrown manually, is it by "wire in tube"? You can add an SPDT slide switch to change the frog polarity and act as the lever.    It's a bad idea to throw points directly by finger, so many people seem to do it by touching/pushing the blades not by pushing the tiebar, and this both damages the blades and adds finger grease.
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!

Online Bealman

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #12 on: December 03, 2019, 08:24:05 PM »
Dave, the points on my ancient layout all have motors, and are live frog. Most have switches, but unfortunately they are all tied up with a complicated signalling system, so I rely on blade contact.

Generally they've been pretty reliable, although I have had to adjust the blades on a few of them over the years.
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Offline daveg

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2019, 09:49:09 PM »
I have always used the tie bar as the obvious risk otherwise is to damage the fairly delicate blade.

Layout is almost fully ballasted and scenic bits are pretty much in place and there's no plans to dig anything up!

As an example, you can see what I mean here:



Dave G

Online Bealman

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Re: Annoying electrofrog
« Reply #14 on: December 03, 2019, 11:23:26 PM »
I like the railcar parked at the brewery! Brewery tour in progress, obviously.  :beers:
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

 

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