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DCC Programmers - DCC - Tutorials - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sun Feb 17th, 2019 03:46 pm
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John Dew
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Good Morning

Afraid I missed the earlier part of the conversation.

Max is correct.....I have the Lenz USB interface connection although I am not sure if it the most up to date one. I need it to connect the Lenz system to RR&Co. It has some other features but I dont use any of them. It just sits there quietly in the background.

I definitely wouldnt buy one Peter just to connect to Decoder Pro. At this stage a spreadsheet should be sufficient.

I would recommend spending some time investigating and deciding how you want to eventually run the layout.
Download the demo version of RR&Co.... it is free and can be used without restriction in simulation mode........that and the free manual should be sufficient for you to decide whether that is the way forward.

Once the decision is made it will clarify your budgeting.......in every sense. Once I was hooked there were no locos bought for at least two years!  If you go down the computor control route you will need an occupancy detection system.......it makes sense to at least wire this in when track laying.

You definitely need to make a decision/committment on your DCC control system

Lenz DCC is very robust but somewhat old fashioned (although the long awaited update is now fairly imminent.) However if you go down the RR&Co route there is really no need to look for an alternative DCC system  If on the other hand you decide you dont like RR&Co it may be worth while looking at some of the other DCC systems which could give you an element of automatic control (route setting for instance) at less overall cost than full fat RR&Co.

One final point (oops sorry)  Lenz Turnout decoders LS150 will operate with all the major DCC systems like ECos, NCE ,Digitrax etc. You do need to remember that LS 150s were designed to operate twin solenoid point motors (Peco /Seep etc).............they will operate stall motors like Tortoise and Cobalt but you have to do that fiddle with resistors and more importantly they pass on commands sequentially rather than simultaneously.........this causes delays and can cause derailments far more readily than Marty's Miss Davies :lol:

I am not sure of your ratio of Solenoid to Tortoise or how many LS 150s you have?

With a green field site like yours I would try and keep the LS 150s for solenoids and isolated Tortoises.....ie dont have Tortoises operating a xover or ladder on the same LS 150...........I learned this the hard way and ......in the end I bought a NCE switch 8 for the critical tortoise had to do a lot of re wiring to redistribuite the others.

If you are buying more tortoise/cobalt I would buy either a NCE or DCC Concepts decoder

Long rambling email but hope it helps

Best wishes

John   





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 Posted: Sun Feb 17th, 2019 03:47 pm
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Petermac
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Briperran wrote: Ok replies coming already

my question

A Question for the Digikeijs users within the group. A fellow model enthusiast has a Lenz 100 system and was considering connecting it to a computer but the Lenz interface alone is around £140 so i said why not look at the Digikeijs system which the command station is around £169 with all the connections already built in. His questions were will his Lenz ls 150 accesory decoders he has work with the system and is it possible to use his Lenz hand controllers with the system or will they be redundant?
many thanks in advance

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1
Neil Smith all full compatible, that is the idea of the dr500


2
Jan Har The DR5000 will support the Lenz LS150 switch decoders (bog standard DCC items) as well as the Lenz controllers (especially with the right Xpressnet settings as described in section 7.5 or the DR5000 manual).



Neil Smith also using a DR5039, you can use the Lenz 100 as a booster at a later date if required. PS they are DR5000 are £147.99 from Amzon


So in just a few minutes all the answers are there Ls150 yes compatable and you can use your Lenz handsets with it.
I will post any more answers later when i look


Brian











Many thanks Brian. :thumbs

Most certainly an option to look at very closely. :hmm



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 Posted: Sun Feb 17th, 2019 03:59 pm
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Barchester
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If you scroll down to the picture of the Sprog II in the link Peter you should see the small green block connector at one end. Two wires connected there and then connect however suits you at the track. My Z21 is connected via Male female jack plugs so I can unplug and plug in my dc controller if I want DC running. Simple but foolproof as I can ONLY have one or tother plugged in at any time   :thumbs
Cheers

Matt

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 Posted: Sun Feb 17th, 2019 04:11 pm
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Petermac
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Many thanks for your input John - much appreciated from someone I consider one of our "Lenz Gurus".

All my equipment is currently boxed up so I can't be exact but I think I probably have more SEEPs than Tortoise motors - I have around 18 Tortoise I think.  I have 4 x LS150's but do recall reading about your woes with RR&Co when they wouldn't fire rapidly enough so maybe, I won't buy any more.  I note your preference for Switch 8's.

I have come to terms with the necessary diodes for the Tortoi and was quite proficient at wiring them before Maxmill was dismantled.  I was quite impressed with DCC Concepts Cobalt surface mounted motors - they looked much more business-like than Peco and, sure as eggs is eggs, I'll need a motor exactly where I've put a timber frame at some stage !!!

I have now, half decided that the Lenz interface is not for me - at least, not at their price !!!  My favoured option at the moment, is the Sprog 2 or maybe, 3.

Whilst the Digikeijs system does look very interesting, and, if I were starting out, may be the front runner, somehow, I don't think I could bring myself to sell the Lenz just so that I didn't have to buy their interface.  I do like the system now that I'm more used to it and, having bought it already, I'm not looking at Command Station investment differences now..

Regarding future plans (RR&Co in particular), whilst I do like what it can do and it's high on my "wish list", apart from the cost of it, I'm honestly not sure I'd have the patience, or understanding, to go through the very steep learning curve to master it.  I will however, have a play with the trial version to see if anything between my ears clicks.

Having said that, I do plan to install the necessary infrastructure on the new layout so that, should I go that way, everything will be in place.  RR&Co or A.N.Other system would still need detectors.  If I don't go down that route, I'll have wasted the difference between purchase and re-sell price - I've wasted far more in my time ................. :roll:



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 Posted: Sun Feb 17th, 2019 04:15 pm
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Petermac
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Wow - what a fantastic response to my question.  I'd always said we have more skills and people willing to help on here than one could ever dream of.

I really am very, very grateful to you all. :cheers




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 Posted: Mon Feb 18th, 2019 07:23 pm
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John Dew
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Petermac wrote: Many thanks for your input John - much appreciated from someone I consider one of our "Lenz Gurus".

All my equipment is currently boxed up so I can't be exact but I think I probably have more SEEPs than Tortoise motors - I have around 18 Tortoise I think.  I have 4 x LS150's but do recall reading about your woes with RR&Co when they wouldn't fire rapidly enough so maybe, I won't buy any more.  I note your preference for Switch 8's.

I have come to terms with the necessary diodes for the Tortoi and was quite proficient at wiring them before Maxmill was dismantled.  I was quite impressed with DCC Concepts Cobalt surface mounted motors - they looked much more business-like than Peco and, sure as eggs is eggs, I'll need a motor exactly where I've put a timber frame at some stage !!!

I have now, half decided that the Lenz interface is not for me - at least, not at their price !!!  My favoured option at the moment, is the Sprog 2 or maybe, 3.

Whilst the Digikeijs system does look very interesting, and, if I were starting out, may be the front runner, somehow, I don't think I could bring myself to sell the Lenz just so that I didn't have to buy their interface.  I do like the system now that I'm more used to it and, having bought it already, I'm not looking at Command Station investment differences now..

Regarding future plans (RR&Co in particular), whilst I do like what it can do and it's high on my "wish list", apart from the cost of it, I'm honestly not sure I'd have the patience, or understanding, to go through the very steep learning curve to master it.  I will however, have a play with the trial version to see if anything between my ears clicks.

Having said that, I do plan to install the necessary infrastructure on the new layout so that, should I go that way, everything will be in place.  RR&Co or A.N.Other system would still need detectors.  If I don't go down that route, I'll have wasted the difference between purchase and re-sell price - I've wasted far more in my time ................. :roll:

Glad to be of help Peter

I think al of the above is a very sound strategy.

One advantage of checking "if anything clicks" with RR&Co is that you may find it a useful tool in planning the layout.......its not scale layout planning tool .....the track plans are purely schematic but the switchboard diagram does provide a useful overall glimpse of possible operations and equally important potential choke points.

Best wishes

John



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