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I have been lookuing into going DCC for my Scale O, 2 rail, layout and maybe for use in my G scale outside. I came upon an ad for Air Wire battery DCC control and I am very interested in the system.
I would llike to know if anyone has used the Air Wire system in G scale and there satisfaction. Also I would like to hear from anyone that has used Air Wire in Scale O locomotives and if there is an issue of space for installing the decoders and batteries in Scale O.
Thanks,
Mike
 

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Mike,


I am going to install QSI Sound, G Wire, Li-on battery power and use the Air Wire 900 transmitter for control of my Aristo GP40. I heard and used an Aristo RS-3 with QSI, etc and it was really great. I think battery power R/C is the best way to go in my opinion. Lots of people are defensive of their forms of their train power and control systems and that's cool but we all have our reasons for the systems we choose. I think there seems to be less negative press with Air Wire than other systems so I chose to use that. Very nice. My planned railroad mainline is very long and the thought of cleaning rails, etc scares me. I just want to run trains.

Nate
 

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Mike, you might want to search and read a bit, many people use that combination.

There are functions in the QSI that need higher "numbered" function keys, and there are 2 different transmitters available, and a new chip. All of this has to do with accessing these "higher" functions.

I recommend the "higher level" transmitter, but you can do well with the less expensive one.

There is a thread somewhere that describes this in more detail.

Regards, Greg
 

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The AirWire system is very good. I actually use the AirWire receivers and Phoenix P-5 sound systems instead of the QSI system. I also install almost all systems and batteries in the locomotivve instead of putting them in a battery car.


I installed batteries and an AirWire receiver is 2 O scale box cars for someone. I don't think batteries are the best thing for O scale since the locomotives are so much smaller that G scale and battery cars become almost mandatory.
 

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In most cases, it is easy to come up with some place to hide a switch and have it accessible from the top. It just depends on which engine is being converted. On occasion, I am forced to put the switch on the bottom of the tender. If you have a specific engine, what is it?
 

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I have a QSI sound decoder and Gwire in my GP 40. It was my first QSI and I love it, kinda. The only problem with it is it has the older QSI decoder with the thermal protection thing in it and it causes the loco to shut down too often. I am going to remove the decoder and remove the thermal thing like I did on the rest of my decoders and it will be fine. I use QSIs Quantum programer to program all of my decoders. To use the Gwire and the Airwire throttle you have to reprogram CV 29 to change it from analog to Gwire and somehow I always mess that up. The Airwire throttle leaves a little to be desired. I have problems with loss of signal strength and can't ring the bell of toot the horn often. QSI has indicated that they plan to come out with their own transmitter and I hope they do soon. Overall it is a great system, the biggest problem is that there isn't that much documentation to look at.
 

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I'm just wondering since Aristocraft loco's already has a switch for battery or track power, can I re wire that switch and make a charging track that will allow the battery to be recharged when the switch is set to track power?
 

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Charging the battery from track power is an interesting challenge. If you hook the batteries to the track, you will have a real problem if there is a short. In order to properly charge the batteries, you should connect the batteries directly to the charger. You could trickle chrge the batteries from the rail without monitoring the batteries but you must severly limit the charge current.

Are you trying to charge the batteries as you run or just charge them when sitting still? If you are charging when sitting still, why not just put in a charging jack to charge the batteries.
 

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My thought was to have no track power anywhere on the system and be solely battery r/c. However I would have a section of track big enough for my biggest locomotive electrically isolated from the rest of the track on the system as a charging track. My initial thoughts were clip the connector off the Aristo Li-On charger and hook directly to the rails of the "charging track" section. Thus the rails would just be an extension of the wires coming out of the battery charger. The charge would then be routed from the charger via rail via wheels of the loco through a switch and charge the batteries. I hope that makes sense. I don't know if I am explaining what I envision very well.

Nate
 

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I forgot to add that I do not want the train to charge while the loco is riding around on thew main line.

This charging track would be off on a spur or something electrically isolated from the rest of the system though the loco could still pull up on the section due to it's battery power. When the loco is wired correctly, it would be nice to flip the switch to track power and recieve the charge while parked.


Nate
 

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Sorry, two forgots in a row. One way i thought of doing this was to bypass the track power switch completely. I would think I could splice into one of the MU battery leads and connect that to the wheel power leads to pick up juice from the charging track when the charger was turned on. Any way this can be accomplished may eliminate the possibility of ever running on track power again. But that's ok with me. It would probably also elimintae the need to use the track power switch on the loco. But, I would think there was a way to utilize the built in switch and not the lose the ability to run on track power if needed.
 

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One diode in one of the leads from the track to the battery will protect from discharge. Yes, you could make a charging track. I also believe that the aristo packs have all the smarts in the pack, and the "charger" is merely a power supply. I have not had this confirmed, but I believe it to be true. (Maybe someone will pull apart a "charger" some time to look inside.

In any case it could work.

Regards, Greg
 
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