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speed steps - Electrics - DCC - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 12:53 pm
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Matt
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i was having a play last night with speed steps. i worked out that they go to 255. meaning that a loco would take about 4 minutes to speed up and slow down. i settled on 30 for a warship and 60 for a castle loco which seemed to look about right.
as most of you will know i have automated signals so the loco will stop at red. this is done by an isolation section. is a graph available for distance to stop for each speed step? or is this just trial and error.
at the moment my stem loco will slow down gradual over about 22 inches which is fine. this will stop at a red light. my class 08 will enter the isolated section and stop about 15 inches from the signal.
as i am still at the installation and test stage is it best to...

re do the 8x isolation sections to a set length of say 30 inches and then calculate each locos deceleration to stop at the signal.

it mentions in the hornby mag about this third party software and the grapths. is it worth going down this path?

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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 01:00 pm
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henryparrot
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Matt

When you say third party software i assume you mean software packeges like Jmri that is a free open source package that has differant elements
One of them decoder Pro allows you to configure your decoders
for example in decoder pro you can adjust your speed curve through a graphical graph on computer screen which is a lot easier than entering values through a keypad.

Just type JMRI in search engine and download it or it actually could be in our index here.

cheera Brian.W

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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 01:46 pm
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Robert
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It wasn't in the Index Brian but it is now.



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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 02:34 pm
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Matt
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the third party software was taken from the hornby mag, i have heard of decoder pro and the grapth but never taken past reading a thread on the forum. i will download this later and have a play.
does this cover braking distance or braking time?

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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 02:42 pm
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henryparrot
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Matt

decoder pro can be as complex or as simple as you wish have a play with it if you mess up you only have to reset the decoder which you can do in decoder pro aswell

there is a yahoo group jmri that often has a lot of info and files you can download aswell


cheers Brian

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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 03:04 pm
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Ken
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I've just realised that these guys must be from the Planet "Gobbledegook" 'cos I don't understand a word of it :!: :wink: :lol:
It's enough to make me go back to ship modelling!!!!!!!!!!! :cry:
Ken.



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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 03:10 pm
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henryparrot
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Ken

It does sound complex but all things dcc can be as complex or as simple as you want.

never be put of by the goobledegook words they often are describing quite simple things really

all matt wants to do is adjust his speeds of his loco to whatever he wants and the speed of the acceleration and also how quickly or slowly it brakes when power is removed.

cheers Brian.W

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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 05:55 pm
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Christrerise
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It certainly can be as simple or as complex as you want!

I have about 40 locos dcc'd up and I have never touched a CV yet, if you ignore changing the loco address.

One day I may venture into this but it all works at the moment. DC is really no different - you can have two wires to each circuit from your controller or you can have a full-blown control panel with miles of wiring. Neither is right or wrong, just what you feel comfortable with is fine.

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 Posted: Thu Jul 31st, 2008 09:56 pm
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Sol
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Yes, DCC is a facinating thing - I am learning more & more each day about it.

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 Posted: Fri Aug 1st, 2008 09:51 am
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Matt
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i like dcc as it opens up doors and on the other side is a room full of junk you need to sort out. the reason i looked at speed steps is. my locos will enter a section of track with no power if the signal in front is red. i wanted the loco to slow gradually and come to a halt rather than go from a decent speed to a halt in about 3 inches. then when the light changes to green or amber the loco will pick up speed gradually rather than reach full speed from the off.
i done this with 2 locos so they take 30 inches to slow on a live track. then i isolated the track so no power was on the same stretch for 30 inches. using the same loco with the power on 1/2 as it was for the previous test. the train entered the isolated section and stopped within 3 inches.

the outcome of the experiment was
if you want to use the acc and dec function you need live track. you cannot cut power to the track and the loco slows gradually. i have been informed that lenz silver decoders have this function :roll: looks like i will soon have some spare hornby decoders.

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 Posted: Tue Aug 19th, 2008 12:47 am
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Iansa
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Sol wrote: Yes, DCC is a facinating thing - I am learning more & more each day about it.

14yrs of DCC and I am still learning
 
Iansa



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 Posted: Tue Aug 19th, 2008 05:59 am
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Christrerise
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As a matter of interest Matt your problem of getting each train to stop in the correct place is exactly the same on the real thing and is why automatic train control and moving block etc still do not exist, except on self-contained routes where the train types are all the same.

Until somebody can sort out how to calculate the braking curve of every train on every route it will probably remain unsolved as well - the difference between an ECS Multiple Unit and a 1000 ton freight train for instance is huge!

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 Posted: Tue Aug 19th, 2008 02:45 pm
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owen69
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Matt,in the early days of dcc ( 28 yrs ago) it was called inertia control
it is the same now only called speed steps, then as now it was a case of trial &error
which boils down to exactly what you are doing now,
ie-measuring the distance it takes the loco to stop,mark that point for future use.
:oops::roll::lol::lol::cool:

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 Posted: Tue Aug 19th, 2008 03:14 pm
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phill
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Fascinating this thread is, hope to do the speed steps one day when my new layout has the tracks finishedWant to do it when the loco go's into a siding or the goods shed. Find this really interesting.

Phill

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 Posted: Thu Aug 21st, 2008 01:15 am
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Iansa
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Hi All, there seems to be a small cross up between inertia and speed steps. They are two different things.
 Inertia is now Acceleration rate (CV3) and deceleration rate (CV4). These CVs can be given diferent values to determin the rate each loco acelerates and or slows down.
 Speed steps are the speed the loco does at each step of the throttle. This is done with a speed curve which is set by giving each speed step a value in CVs 67 thru 94.
 All my locos are set to a top speed of 40mph(Using a scale speed trap).
In other words, I set CV94(speed step 28)  to speed of 40mph then set CV67 (speed step 1) so the loco just moves on throttle setting one(1). I then average the difference between 67&94 then set  CVs 68 to 93 accordingly.
 The speed curve is always done with CVs 3&4 set at zero(0).
 All this can be done wih most DCC systems but using programs like Decoderpro or Zug make things much easier and less time consuming. These can be downloaded from internet. Decoderpro is freeware, Zug  comes at a small price. There are other programs but they cost an arm and a leg.
To set a stoping distance signals etc., basically  means adjusting CV4 to suit each loco.  CV3 sets acceleration rate when signal goes green.

I hope this helps a little. It is not as complicated as it sounds.

Iansa



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 Posted: Thu Aug 21st, 2008 06:49 am
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henryparrot
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I agree with Ian Using decoder Pro is a far better way and faster .

It may well be worth us looking for a basic cv changing tutorial to put on here so members can follow it to get the hang of changing CV`s

I know many people never ever touch them but if we found a basic walkthrough

it may give members confidence to try it .

Anybody ever seen one or do we have any volunteer authors?

cheers Brian.W

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 Posted: Thu Aug 21st, 2008 07:00 am
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Sol
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I want to play with Decoder pro but my PC is 30ft away from my DCC command station & not sure where I will get a cable long enough to go between both places.

I will need a 9 pin D plug to a  USB connection.

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 Posted: Thu Aug 21st, 2008 07:09 am
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henryparrot
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Ron

Decoder pro is very good far better way of doing it im lucky i have a pc in the shed so distance isnt a problem .

I suppose you could make up your own cable as i doubt if you would buy one that length.

cheers Brian.W

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 Posted: Thu Aug 21st, 2008 12:29 pm
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Matt
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ron
have a look about in the paper, you may be able to pick a pc up dirt cheap to sit in the layout room. for the price of a loco you can be up and running. you will only need a basic second hand one.

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 Posted: Thu Aug 21st, 2008 01:14 pm
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Iansa
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henryparrot wrote: I agree with Ian Using decoder Pro is a far better way and faster .

It may well be worth us looking for a basic cv changing tutorial to put on here so members can follow it to get the hang of changing CV`s

I know many people never ever touch them but if we found a basic walkthrough

it may give members confidence to try it .

Anybody ever seen one or do we have any volunteer authors?

cheers Brian.W
Changing CVs is not really all that complicated.
First, get into changing CVs on the main on your system.
2nd, put in CV you want to change, try CV3 (acceleration rate)
3rd, putin a value, say 20 then press enter (enter is pressed after each step)
Your loco should now have a value of 20 and should accelerate slowly and smoothly to speed set on throttle.
All CVs are set the same way. Dial up CV , enter, put in value required, enter and return to running loco.

I am not conversent with each indervidual DCC systems. I am only experienced with Lenz and Ecos but once in CV changing mode it is all the same as above.
CVs can also be programed and read on an isolated programing track.
Always remember, no damage can be done by pressing buttons. The worst that will happen is things just won't work.
If a decoder gets to point of brain scramble just set it back to factory defaults and start again.
DCC systems can be set back to factory default too.

 I must admit, the only time I use  Decoderpro or Zug (Zug only talks to Lenz systems) is  doing speed curves. Most other CVs  I use the DCC system as I can usualy have it done by the time the computer boots up.
 AS time goes by I will try and do a bit more comprehensive explanation of CVs and programing them. If the group would like.

Iansa



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