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Author Topic: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller  (Read 386 times)

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Offline springwood

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Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« on: December 31, 2019, 04:09:34 PM »
 :helpneededsign:

Santa kindly brought me a Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller but I am having a few (strange) problems with the installation/wiring in...let me explain.
I am dc and have the layout split into 4 sections (up and down mains, branch and depot). There are 4 'cab's' - C1 and C2 (via the Model D controller) and C3 and C4 (via an old AGW unit). The model W is 'powered' from the 16AC out on the Model D. For no particular reason, the Model W is wired into the 12v side of C4 and control of a section can be switched (via a SPDT, centre off) switch - see attached wiring diagram.

The Problem; with the Model D on, I can run a loco perfectly and normally on, for e.g., the up main using C1. As soon as I assign control of the same loco to C2, it goes fine in one direction but barely moves under FULL power in the opposite direction!! The moment I take the 16v ac to W out, everything behaves as it should.

I am finding this most odd - not to mention frustrating. Has anyone come across this or can offer any suggestions as to what might be the cause?

Offline PLD

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Re: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2019, 05:02:33 PM »
IIRC there are only two transformer secondary windings in the Model D.

The two uncontrolled outputs share a winding with one of the controlled outputs. This means that you can't use the uncontrolled output to feed another controller at the same time as using the paired controlled output as they will conflict when the direction switches are set to opposite directions.
In theory if the direction switch of one of C2 and the W is left in the 'centre off' position the other should work but you can't use both at the same time.


Online ntpntpntp

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Re: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2019, 08:29:05 PM »
Are your cab control sections double isolated (both rails) or do you use a common return?  I seem to recall that with common return wiring each controller must be on a separate transformer winding otherwise it can cause the symptoms you're describing.   

I've always made sure all track sections are double isolated, and all controllers are on separate windings.

[edit] Ah, just looked at the diagram, you do indeed have common return wiring.  That'll be the problem then.   Use a separate power supply for the new controller. [/edit]
« Last Edit: December 31, 2019, 08:31:42 PM by ntpntpntp »
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!
https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=50050.0

Offline springwood

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Re: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2019, 09:11:48 PM »

[edit] Ah, just looked at the diagram, you do indeed have common return wiring.  That'll be the problem then.   Use a separate power supply for the new controller. [/edit]

Gaugemaster 'suggest' the model M1 or 100M (both look to be very expensive!). Do you reckon this one would do the trick?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gaugemaster-GM-GMC-WM3-Supply-Mounted-Transformer/dp/B0196GBCHI/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=gaugemaster+gm-gmc-wm3&qid=1577826001&sr=8-1

Looks like the low voltage side of it is two-core, so could just chop of the jack and splay and bare the wires to connect to the blue and yellow 'supply' wires to the W. Output is rated at 16v AC.


Online ntpntpntp

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Re: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2019, 09:39:37 PM »
@Springwood  yes that supply will work, though I would do things differently and use a DIN plug and socket rather than just splicing the wires.  I use 5 pin 180 degree DIN plugs and sockets as my standard, leaving the middle pin unused.

Fit the socket to the control panel and wire the power supply and track feeds to it.
Fit a plug to the W (it is after all a hand-held "Walkabout" controller)





Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!
https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=50050.0

Online chrism

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Re: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2020, 06:44:27 AM »
Are your cab control sections double isolated (both rails) or do you use a common return?  I seem to recall that with common return wiring each controller must be on a separate transformer winding otherwise it can cause the symptoms you're describing.   

Thanks for this, it explains a similar, although more disconcerting, problem I found on Coniston.
I use a Gaugemaster 100M and power a Gaugemaster Combi off the 100Ms 16v AC supply so I can have a compact controller in the control panel. Since that meant I'd have two controllers I wired the layout up so that various sections could be controlled off controller 1 or controller 2 - with the negative rail common.

The problem I found was that, depending on the direction switch on the 100M, the Combi would control locos correctly in one direction - or send them off like an extremely scalded cat in the other. I measured the voltage and found something like 33v at the track  :o

I'd assumed that I must have managed to cross-connect the 12v dc uncontrolled, or (worse) 16v ac, and one of the controlled outputs but never managed to track it down. This explains it so, thank you, I can stop trying to find what I did wrong. I don't recall anything in the documentation about it, just the warning about connecting two controllers and having one not plugged in to the mains possibly leading to high voltage on the unplugged mains plug.

I'm now using the controlled output from the 100M for my overhead lighting, instead of the brightness control that came with the LED strips.

Online ntpntpntp

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Re: Problems with Gaugemaster Model W handheld controller
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2020, 10:43:15 AM »
Are your cab control sections double isolated (both rails) or do you use a common return?  I seem to recall that with common return wiring each controller must be on a separate transformer winding otherwise it can cause the symptoms you're describing.   


From way back in my Physics O Level days it was always my understanding that power sources need to be totally independent for common return circuitry to work. The electric current will then only circulate back around to its original source.

Further confirmation of this requirement can be found on various sites
http://www.gaugemaster.com/articles/guides/layout-control-and-common-return.html
https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=4350.0

Also on RMWeb etc...
Nick.   2016 celebrating the 20th anniversary of "Königshafen" exhibition layout!
https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=50050.0

 

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