G Scale Model Train Forum banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I'm new to the hobby but not to the love of Trains. I'm in the process of building a Garden RailRoad, however, mine's a little different. My wife knew I had been wanting to do a garden railroad for years, so a two years ago she bought me a train set for christmas. However it was O-Scale(she didn't know better)plus the guy who owned a small train store was going out of business so she got it a great price. Long story short, I have very limited space and budget. I started building the railroad about a year ago and have laid the track(nickle-silver three rail made for outside)but I'm having problems dead/lag spots where the train almost stops or does stop.
I was wondering if O-scale trains can be converted to battery power? I have less then forty feet of track and very little grade. I hope someone can help me out. Thank you.
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,324 Posts
You certainly can. The new smaller batteries and on board controllers fit nicely in O Scale box cars. Your title suggests 2 rail O Scale but you've stated that you're using nickel silver 3 rail outdoors. It would be necessary to know which brand of locomotives you have. All the newer MTH 3 rail locomotives have DC motors. Even though AC is fed through the track, the AC is converted to DC to the motors. You can isolate the motor leads and feed them DC power from the batteries and decoder.

You can still use the 3 rail track if you'd like.

Some of the Lionel remakes still use AC motors but they are a minority.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Posted By RailRoad Newbe on 06/22/2008 2:23 PM
Hello, I'm new to the hobby but not to the love of Trains. I'm in the process of building a Garden RailRoad, however, mine's a little different. My wife knew I had been wanting to do a garden railroad for years, so a two years ago she bought me a train set for christmas. However it was O-Scale(she didn't know better)plus the guy who owned a small train store was going out of business so she got it a great price. Long story short, I have very limited space and budget. I started building the railroad about a year ago and have laid the track(nickle-silver three rail made for outside)but I'm having problems dead/lag spots where the train almost stops or does stop.
I was wondering if O-scale trains can be converted to battery power? I have less then forty feet of track and very little grade. I hope someone can help me out. Thank you.




Less than 40ft of track and you have lags? What type of power pack are you running, and how many feeders do you have attached to the rails?

I'm currently running 90+ feet of Aristocraft track on one set of feeders, and even though I'm operating with an Ultima 10amp power supply and the aristocraft TE, I have almost no lag or stops. Once I install four sets of feeders, I expect zero lags or stops.
Unless you're 100% committed to spending the money to convert to battery power, I would suggest possibly getting a 12-14g bus wire and 14-16g feeders to different (at least four quadrants) on your layout, and see if that helps your connectivity issue.

mdt
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,484 Posts
Be sure to use Silicone Di-electric paste(auto store) on each joint. Use brass rail joiner clamps also. I assume you are using SVRR rail? THeir brass clamps are great to use. I have their NS rail outside with one hookup and it does a 120' loop real easy. I've even used a cheap Bachman starter set transformer and it worked fine. Check over each joint with a multimeter, that will show you the one where you are losing power. It is pretty easy to solder jumpers between rails also. Just drill a hole through the web, snake your wire through and use a 100 watt soldering iron with some flux. Jerry
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,510 Posts
I think the term "Di-electric" is the wrong term... (I know even some manufacturers label their product with that term, but it means "NON-conductive") it is an insulator. I think on your joints you want a conductive paste to promote electrical connection. I guess such a product could be used as a corrosion barrier if the electrical contact is made some other way (simple pressure to make and maintain metal to metal contact).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the help, but what are feeders? The power supply I'm using is the one that came with the set. It is an 80watt supply. I do use brass railclamps from Split Jaw products, but I only have them on the outside rails, not on the black middle rail,(Atlas Nickel Silver 3-rail) I use a regular connecter on those. When I did my test layout(layed out all the tracks and connected them on my garage floor everything ran great. When I moved to the outside sight I started having problems). I was thinking about getting an LGB power supply or a more powerfull power supply. Thank you.

jeff
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
63 Posts
Check out this site for help. This guy is amazing.

http://web.mac.com/hankb/wrr/Home.html

I suspect that the reason you are having problems is that you do not treat the middle rail like the outer rails. In three rail track, the middle rail is the hot wire, the outer rails go to ground (common). Use the same rail joiners on the middle rail as you do on the outer rails.

Good luck, keep us posted.

Oh, one other thing, you might consider using pressure treated 2 X 6 stock as a sub-roadbed for your track. That will hep keep the natural movement of the earth over the seasons from causing problems. Another method to consider is the "ladder" method. You will find good articles on both in the archives.

SteveF
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,034 Posts
OK what am I missing here? He said he has O scale it should be 2 rail. Then he said he laid 3 rail track that should be like lionel and run on AC. Have they come out with something new? confused!
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top