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Old 01-06-2020, 05:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default End of Track

Hello everyone,

It's been a very long time since I've posted here. I have moved into a great location where I can set something up a little more substantial.

I purchased some additional tracks from Reindeer Pass for my expansion project. I really like these folks. I was very excited to get this running. I have also purchased an automation device from Azatrax that will shuttle trans back and forth on a sort of "X" shaped layout. I'm using two "Y" turn outs where the two single ends are connected together and the 4 ends go out to four separate dead ends. The train does a forward and backwards through the switches out to each end. It's a lot more fun to watch than the big circle.

The system works by detecting a train passing through IR beams at each end and then slowly comes to a stop. It waits a few seconds then goes backwards to one of the other dead ends. It works wonderfully at managing the train speed, turnout switching, slowing down, stopping and returning, however, the system doesn't know how much track is remaining before coming to a stop. You just fiddle a bit with an adjustment to set rate of deceleration and timing for the train to stop. So far it's working great but, it does bother me that if the IR sensor should fail for whatever reason there's nothing to stop the train from running off the end.

I'm wondering if anyone is aware of a dead-man safety switch type of thing that can be employed to kill power to my DC powered system in the event this might happen? I've seen some end of track bumper like things from LGB and PIKO but none seem to do much other than provide a nice looking end of track bumper. Sorry, I don't know what these things are called.

Thank you in advance for taking the time to read my ramblings.
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Old 01-06-2020, 06:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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LGB TK half tracks used for reverse loops? Those might work...if you are using track power. Very unsure, though.
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Old 01-06-2020, 07:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I thank you for the suggestion. I did a google for LFB TK Half Track but the search doesn't return anything that seems appropriate.

Perhaps my long story was distracting so, for clarification, what I'm imagining is something at the end of the track that has a sensor or switch that acts as a last chance safety switch that if the train should go too close to the end that it would cut off track power preventing the train from running off the end.

I might be able to rig something up but if there was something commercially available that would be ideal.

Again, thank you very much for taking the time to read and reply.
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Old 01-06-2020, 08:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I think that this may be the one that he's talking about.
Go to Ebay,G Scale category, and type "track bumpers" into the search bar. There are several different types available.
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Old 01-06-2020, 09:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Punkin;

Not sure how much room you have to "play" with, but if you deaden (with insulated rail joiners) the last 24 to 36 inches of track before the bumper, the train may slide to a halt BEFORE slamming into the bumper. A bit hard on the drive wheels but not enough to cause catastrophic problems.

Another possibility is to have a derail that directs the train into some sand or chicken grit gravel. Derails are fairly easy to fabricate from PlasTruct I beams.

Just some thoughts, David Meashey
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Old 01-06-2020, 09:09 PM   #6 (permalink)
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far pricier than I remember, but: https://www.ebay.com/itm/LGB-10151-G...MAAOSw4x5dZZed

Played with these back when I had a reverse loop (and track power). Send the loco through one way, it let's it make the loop without issue. Send it through the other way, though, and the locomotive will reverse.
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Old 01-07-2020, 01:29 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You don't need any sensors.

What you can do is put a diode in the last section(s) of track to seperate the "tail" from the rest of the track.

If the engine passes the diode, it will stop automatically by itself with no assistance. When the current is reversed, the engine will come back to life and go the other direction.

All of my sidings have this feature also allowing these sidings to be used as "point-to-point" routes by simply placing a reversing unit between the power pack and track.

The link shows how this is done.

http://www.seekic.com/uploadfile/ic-...2125951708.gif
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Old 01-10-2020, 12:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Meashey View Post
Punkin;

Not sure how much room you have to "play" with, but if you deaden (with insulated rail joiners) the last 24 to 36 inches of track before the bumper, the train may slide to a halt BEFORE slamming into the bumper. A bit hard on the drive wheels but not enough to cause catastrophic problems.

Since the intent is simply an emergency stop should the normal operation with the IR sensor fail, Dave's suggestion makes the most sense and just requires a bit of extra track.


Todd's suggestion of course works as well, but for an emergency stop which hopefully will never be required, adding the diodes is a bit of overkill.
However, in the diagram shown, it seems to me the diodes are backwards for G-Scale (but correct for the smaller scales)
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Old 01-11-2020, 05:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thank you everyone. Some all very helpful suggestions. I'm really liking the diode solution. That's really easy and perfect for my "in case of emergency" application. I'll give it a go and report back.

Again, thanks to you all.
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Old 01-11-2020, 06:53 PM   #10 (permalink)
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You may even consider using two diodes at each siding; one placed near the end and the other set back a distance. Diodes are cheap.

If the train would typlically proceed down the siding engine first, you would want to use the diode set near the end of the track so you could take full advantage of the siding's length.

If on the other hand, you typically back down this siding (engine pushing the train), you would want to use a diode placed near where the engine ends up just before the first (last) railcar leaves the tracks.

Just place both diode in the track at the appropriate distances, and use a SPST switch (or even just solder two pieces of wire to the track sections that you can twist together) to by-pass the diode located further from the end if you intend to run into the siding "engine first."
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