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Are Shinohara Turnouts Dcc Friendly

author
Carole Stephens
• Friday, 01 January, 2021
• 17 min read

Summary:A commercial DCC Compatible” turnout is manufactured or wired for use with Digital Command Control. Commercial switches are often labelled Friendly or For DC and DCC Use on the packaging.

wiring crossover switches dcc double track scale turnouts train friendly walthers trains turnout shinohara wire gauge bus layouts non section
(Source: trains4africa.co.za)

Contents

All turnouts are compatible with DCC, while older ones may need some attention to mechanical and electrical aspects of their construction. The most obvious feature of a DCC Compatible turnout is the gaps that electrically separate the frog from the point rails.

When track work and wheel sets are properly gauged, there should be no momentary short circuits occurring at turnouts. Many Digital Command Control Boosters are very sensitive to sudden changes in current flow.

Just the wheel grazing the switch rail and allowing current to flow can be enough to trip their protection circuit and cut power. Older technologies employed by analog power supplies were not a sensitive to a momentary short.

DCC Boosters can deliver three times or even more current than was typical for analog operations. Verifying the correct gauge of the wheel sets on your rolling stock will also identify offenders which may cause an issue.

Handmaid track usually has no issues with DCC as the NMRA Gauge is an integral part of making a turnout. Many track manufacturers will recommend the use of NMRA RP-25 S4 profile wheel sets for the best results.

dcc turnout wire shinohara crossover double way friendly walthers switches rail frogs short walther closure requires gapping note supported process
(Source: www.wiringfordcc.com)

The Ideal Turnout for use with Digital Command Control has the following features: It is also important that the turnout is gauged properly using an NMRA gauge, as well as the wheel sets.

The complete assembly consisting of a switch and frog is called a turnout Unfortunately there are a lot of mislabelled diagrams with incorrect terms available on the internet.

In operation the wheel should smoothly transition from the wing to point rail. Also see this video from Fast Tracks: How A Railway Frog Point Works.

====Power Routing Turnouts ==== Turnouts which are advertised as “power routing” are wired so that the switch rails are electrically connected to themselves, the frog, and the point rails beyond the frog. In older turnouts, the two switch rails were often connected together with a metal strap at the throw bar.

With some turnouts shorts can occur if the point rails are one electrical unit, or if a wheel tread bridges across them. DCC systems are very quick to react, unlike analog power supplies.

Note: when building a crossover, power routing turnouts that are non-isolating can cause a short where the point rails are connected together. The frog is often unpowered, and gaps sever the electrical connection between it and the switch rails.

This can be an electronic device called a Frog Juicer, the contacts on a Tortoise slow motion switch machine, or the contacts on solenoid or motor driven switch machines. This is usually needed for short wheelbase locomotives, like switchers, with four axle trucks, or an 0-4-0 or 0-6-0.

Rail Gaps at Frog With analog, the practice was to gap the point rails just past the fouling point (where two trains on adjacent tracks can collide). For DCC, the gap in the point rails should be much closer to the heel of the frog, to eliminate a potential short should a train run past the fouling point gap.

This means the turnout is completely live (except for the tip of the frog), no extra wiring required. If the turnout is being used as a switch to isolate a section of track then it is simple job to remove the wire that joins the centre-rail and stock-rail, and it will work like a current Insulting.

The frog is being powered by contacts included in the ground throw mechanism. Images used with the permission of Fastbacks for illustrating various track work concepts.

If you turnout doesn't have the features in the photos, then you have the old style and should read this particular web page. SUGGESTION #2-6a: Make a Walther's(Shinguard) Turnout Friendly.

Making a Walther's (Shinguard) turnout DCC friendly is my most frequently asked question. Drill out rivet from the pivot point near the closure rails.

Many, if not all, of the Walther's (Shinguard) turnouts now use joiners to attach the points to the closure rails. Pry up the metal strip that is under the pivot and connects the two closure rails.

Then either cut it in half with a cut-off disk, sheet metal shears, or wire cutters. Larger pliers might draw away too much heat causing the Luke warm rail to melt the ties.

Remove both pieces of the contact plate from the closure rails this way. Trim the spikes and ties underneath the closure rails.

In the process, the joiner might spread where the point rail will slide in. That is fine; you can close it up with pliers before you slide in the point rail.

Before putting joiners on the closure rails to hold the point rails, use a motor tool grinder to grind down the ties that will be under the joiner. Failure to do this puts an upward pressure on the joiner and the point rails.

Trim the spikes and ties underneath the closure rails. In the process, the joiner might spread where the point rail will slide in.

That is fine; you can close it up with pliers before you slide in the point rail. Down where the throw bar was attached, I ground down the ties that are on either side of the throw bar somewhat so that the points would be making contact with the circuit board and not the ties themselves.

If the point rails are touching ties when you solder the new circuit board throw bar, you melt a few ties and the points may not move freely. Electrically isolate the frog by cutting it at the four points indicated in the turnout diagram above.

Here is how one of my readers, Gary Eagle enigma@mcs.com, chose to approach the task: A little trimming with a Drexel fixed the problem for me, but next time I might try holding an ice cube against the frog as I cut the rail.

Use a Drexel with a cutting disk to shave off the heads of the rivets on the point rail pivots. Remove the whole point rail piece and the plastic throw bar.

This will make step 5 easier, since you will only need to slide out one rail at a time. Carefully, slid out the closure rails with the plate still attached.

Great care needs to be taken not to damage the ties and especially not those tiny plastic spike heads. Once the closure rails are free, you can easily remove the plate with a soldering iron.

Ed further suggests: Before putting the closure rails back, add a dab of epoxy to the ends that will be adjoining the frog to avoid any possibility of rail creep causing a short. File the epoxy to the cross-section of the rail if needed.

It is a lot easier to do this before sliding the closure rails back in place. You must slowly guide the rail back through the spike heads by gently pushing on the sides of the rail to line it up as you pass through each tie plate.

Once you have the rails back in place, the absence of the plate provides enough room for a cut in half code 100 joiners. I used code 100 because it allowed the point rail to swing with complete freedom.

For me, it eliminated the tie melting step of trying to remove the pivot plate from the closure rails. I soldered the closure rail end of the joiner without any noticeable melting.

By the way: I also discovered the necessity of placing small squares of folded paper between the point rails and ties when soldering the point rail to the PC board throw bar. This ensured that the rails had enough clearance to move freely over the tops of the ties.

Alternatively, you could place the paper under the throw bar to shim it up. I guess this might not be a problem if your PC board throw bar material is thick enough.

Of course, if it is too thick it may get pinned under the switch when you lay the track. I ran into that too... To avoid a short should someone come into the switch with the points thrown against them, I suggest you use a bulb.

Basic points: 1) I do all work on the bench, not only for ease, but also so that the converted turnouts can stand by themselves either in inventory, or can be eventually salvaged intact from the layout for the inevitable next user (there always is one!). I also am very interested in keeping jumper wiring invisible to the naked eye, sometimes difficult on the layout.

Do not even think of using M-E joiners, unless desperate (the Shinguard rail web is too thick, for one reason). 4) To prepare for wire jumpers connecting the point, closure, and stock rails, clip off the molded webbing and clear the underside of the rail flanges as per the pattern in the photos.

With a small round Drexel bit, along the path of the jumpers, I plow furrows along the remaining intact webs and ties just deep enough to hide flush the wire. 5) I now place the turnout face down, weighted, on a piece of steel or other flat piece of metal which effectively serves as a very efficient heat sink- almost completely sparing the molded plastic ties.

6) Using a very hot iron with a small tip, carefully and very quickly spot a small drop of solder at each exposed site on the underside of the rail where a jumper wire will be attached. By extending the soldered ends of the point/closure rail jumpers one tie away from the hinge in both directions, this leaves adequate flexibility for point assembly movement.

I enhance this flexibility by pressing each wire into 90º angles to closely underlie the hinge assembly. 8) Plastic tie heat damage is usually quite minimal, and is usually due to operator error, and in most cases is invisible once the turnout is cleaned up and turned over.

The point throw bar is a sawn piece of unclad circuit board material. The rails are soldered to short pieces of 0-80 brass nodding material threaded into the throw bar.

This allows the individual rails to individually rotate on the throw bar, and in this manner removes a major source of undue stress on the point assembly as it is repeatedly thrown. I largely copied this method from Dan Holbrook in Chicago many years ago- and it works.

Denny uses a circuit board throw bar without any cladding on it as I show above. Denny attaches his points to the throw bar by using 080 threaded rods.

Ace hardware stores commonly stock it as a very reliable rubber/contact cement that has a fairly long working time (c. 10-15 minutes), high tack, very high strength and resilience, but a longer final setting time (12 hours). It is similar to GOO, but is far easier to use, far less “stringy”, and IMHO is a much better product.

The high tack means that things will hold steady in place while you can do final adjustments. One of the very best features of this glue is that its consistency allows it to be applied in the very smallest of droplets.

This feature is enabled by simply drilling a small hole through the crown of the tube cap and stopping it with a tee-shaped specimen pin or similar. I apply almost all glue through this tiny hole, rarely if ever actually removing the cap.

A tube so prepared lasts about two years maximum shelf life before it starts to thicken up and become impossibly stringy- like GOO. SUGGESTION #2-6b: Make a Walther's(Shinguard) Double Crossover Turnout Friendly.

Both of these differences will cut in half the amount of effort it takes to make the double crossover DCC friendly. Of course, you may want to fill the gap with a piece of styrene and epoxy as you would do with any rail cut.

Therefore, be sure all turnouts contain light bulbs as shown or some other method of localizing the influence of shorts on the rest of your system. With no change in your expensive plastic molds, your turnouts move a big step towards DCC friendliness by using joiners instead of a common pivot.

What I have written above is based on my examination of a Shinguard double crossover. Steven found that he had to do a few more things to ensure that the crossover was free of shorts.

Here is what Steven did to eliminate shorts and make his crossovers Friendly. Drill out rivet from the pivot point near the closure rails.

Many, if not all, of the Walther's (Shinguard) turnouts now use joiners to attach the points to the closure rails. Pry up the brass metal strip that is under the pivot and connects the two closure rails.

Then either cut it in half with a cut-off disk, sheet metal shears, or wire cutters. Larger pliers might draw away too much heat causing the Luke warm rail to melt the ties.

Remove both pieces of the contact plate from the closure rails this way. Trim the spikes and ties underneath the closure rails.

In the process, the joiner might spread where the point rail will slide in. That is fine; you can close it up with pliers before you slide in the point rail.

Failure to do this puts an upward pressure on the joiner and the point rails. Trim the spikes and ties underneath the closure rails.

In the process, the joiner might spread where the point rail will slide in. That is fine; you can close it up with pliers before you slide in the point rail.

Down where the throw bar was attached, I ground down the ties that are on either side of the throw bar somewhat so that the points would be making contact with the circuit board and not the ties themselves. Tip: place a piece of card approx 1 mm thick underneath the closure rail either side of throw bar before you solder, this will stop the closure rail from melting the sleepers when it gets hot, plus gives it a bit of clearance, so it can operate more freely.

If the point rails are touching the ties when you solder the new circuit board throw bar, you melt a few ties and the points may not move freely. I made my circuit board throw bar just under 4/64” wide.

Solder a color wire underneath at the closure rails make sure you solder it to BOTH of the closure rails at the frog you will find the plastic molding missing in the required areas for this. Solder the wires as close towards the middle of the crossing track as you can.

(This puts the power back on to the closure rails and makes it LIVE) Close to the sleeper away from the crossing track.3 per turnout 2 at the closure rails / frog.

DO NOT CUT THE SOLDER JOINTS Cut the curved stock rail approx 1¼ inches or 40 mm from the end closest to the crossing on the curve. Making sure the bond wire connection is on the crossing side of the cut.

Join the same colors together and put into a terminal strip 4 separate connections. Important Make sure the switch wire from point motor switch goes to the correct color wire you have attached to the frog / closure rail for that turnout.

Put the wires from your bus bar to the switch one either side. What this will do is change the polarity of the frog, so it will be correct and put power through the crossing and out the other side on one rail only.

When the opposite diagonal turnout is thrown the frog polarity is changed as well and puts power on that rail. Make a Walther's (Shinguard) 3-Way (Lapped) Turnout Friendly.

It is a fine piece of special track work, and its use can dramatically decrease the space needed for a yard ladder; and in the same way increase the usable track space gained thereby. However, the higher expectations of electrical reliability with DCC are not met with this wiring alone, and although several proposed “fixes” have been published over the past few years, I have respectfully found them to be ultimately confusing and incomplete, with no report that their applications work in real time.

I attempted the basic simplified approach on the bench some years ago, and like others have reported long before me, it worked some, or even most of the time, but the number of shorts experienced was unacceptable on a layout where zero defects was a serious goal. After many weeks of head scratching over the years, and with the more recent help and advice from Max Caginess, Jeff Ala, and Don Tolerate, I now have one of these turnouts modified, installed, and wired in place, and it is working extremely well in a closely-monitored DCC environment with a wide variety of tested locomotives.

Each of the three frogs is isolated and power routed through DUST contacts coupled to the switch motors. There is nothing spectacular nor really different in the diagram from other good long-term well-established principles of DCC turnout modifications.

If the reader already knows how to apply these principles, skip the text and just examine the photographs included below, and go at it! Fully isolated the polarity of the two respective R and two respective L point rails from each other by replacing (discarding) the metal span bars, pivots and throw bars with fully insulated new bars (unclad PCB).

Temporary control the Tortoises and routing with two DDT switches. Cutting rail gaps: Use a Drexel tool with a thin diamond saw (I use a high grade saw with a nominal thickness of .010”) at sufficiently high speed that the saw will not have the opportunity to get “hung up”.

Max Caginess suggests the use of “electronic fish paper” Destabilizing the turnout: Cutting gaps in certain places can leave rail segments unsupported.

If such seems possible, stabilize the rails involved with clamps, tape, or even glued “splints”, none removed until the gaps have been cut and the adjacent rails re-supported by the gap being filled with a glued-in styrene strip (ACC or epoxy). Gapping metal pivot and throw bars: Replace with PCB board or ties, or other hard insulating material.

The best is unclad PCB material with each point rail fastened to the bar independently in pivoting fashion, either to a protruding rotating 0-80 threaded rod (with solder), or to a pin protruding through a hole drilled in the rail flange and then bent over. Soldering directly to PCB board is possible, providing that the fixed geometry that results will allow the point hinges to continue to function compatible with good electrical continuity, and the throw bar sufficient clearance to swing between the headlocks without binding.

Melting ties: Before soldering to rails, clean wax residue (from the molding process) with 90% alcohol. A hot iron (45 watts) with a small spade tip, wielded with a determined “quick-in/quick-out” mindset works well.

I use fairly broad based heat sinks made from cheap small metal flea market clamps with the insulating tip covers removed. When soldering to points already in place, I slip pieces of paper between the points and the underlying ties to prevent the heated rails from imprinting, or even embedding into, the underlying ties.

I use #24 single strand tinned with the wire tip flattened, bent over, and trimmed like a spike head. There is enough of a surrounding network of support that nipping these out does not alter the turnout’s structural integrity.

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Sources
1 www.lifewire.com - https://www.lifewire.com/am-i-running-a-32-bit-or-64-bit-version-of-windows-2624475
2 www.digiaware.com - https://www.digiaware.com/2018/12/32-bit-vs-64-bit-which-is-best-download/
3 www.lifewire.com - https://www.lifewire.com/32-bit-64-bit-2624554
4 www.thoughtco.com - https://www.thoughtco.com/determine-if-your-computer-is-32-bit-or-64-bit-2034273
5 forums.heroesofnewerth.com - https://forums.heroesofnewerth.com/index.php
6 elearning.adobe.com - https://elearning.adobe.com/is-your-windows-64-bit/
7 social.microsoft.com - https://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/8bc54dbd-592c-47fe-82dc-81a03aa18e43/64-bit-version