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Old 07-04-2018, 09:41 AM   #1
collectors
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Default Wiring size

Hi, i am building quite a large set up over possibly 2 rooms & getting a bit confused on best way to go, & if there is an advantage or disadvantage on types of wiring, IE: Radial or ring.
There will be a total of 53met of 16.5mm track with the farthest point being 13met away from the main dcc controller & power. What size wire & sort of layout is recommended. Thanks for any input.
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Old 07-04-2018, 10:53 AM   #2
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I take it you are asking about the track power bus wiring?

There is no particular advantage to any configuration, other than the amount of wire used.
The power bus can be radial, tree and branch or a ring. Although there can be issues with a completed ring on very large layouts (see reading matter linked to below).

The important bit is to use correct size wire, good wiring practice and not to skimp or cut corners.
On that size of layout, 2.5mm˛ (AWG 13 or 14) wire would be appropriate for the main power bus.

Dividing the layout in separate power districts and/or sub districts will have practical advantages too, such as isolating shorts and helping with fault finding.

Your plan suggests there are Y junctions, which will need DCC autoreversers, to avoid electrical shorts as the trains cross into sections of track with the reverse polarity.

One recommendation often given, is to have wiring runs no longer than about 10 metres (approx. 30 ft) from the track power output of the DCC system or booster.
That distance includes electrical routing via both the power bus and the rails.

Lots more here.....

http://www.wiringfordcc.com/track.htm

https://www.brian-lambert.co.uk/DCC.html





Last edited by Miles Away; 07-04-2018 at 10:56 AM.
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Old 07-04-2018, 10:54 AM   #3
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Hi
As the layout is fixed you can use solid wire. I would be looking to use 2.5mm2 possibly stripped from former mains cable. Just remove the outer grey sheath and use the insulated pair of wires. The bare copper wire from the former earth wire can be used for things that are not DCC controlled as a common return wire if wished?

I would run the wiring as a radial as its wire gauge is ample. There is no real advantage of a ring, but one can be used. A ring of course uses more wire!
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Old 07-04-2018, 11:10 AM   #4
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Ah, thanks for the quick response. Fortunately i have a few hundred meters of of auto electrical wire in red & black that's 3.00mm2 & was hopping this would be large enough. Phew!. I think with the cable i have, i will go down the radial route. Its not shown on the basic drawing above, but there is areas with sidings, would it be best to have a part of the main track & a siding area on one radial & so on with other areas. Also i take it an area/zone is just separated with insulated joiners?
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Old 07-04-2018, 01:29 PM   #5
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Hi
Yes, any zone that's either feed via a booster or has some form of DCC electronic cut-out fitted must be totally isolated from the rest of the railway. So all rails leading into and out of the zone have IRJs (Insulated Rail Joiners) fitted.
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