Kato Unitrack help

Rob Slopek Mar 20, 2020

  1. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    I have purchased the HV3 turnouts with 2 left hand turnouts. The train runs through then short circuits when I switch or it will not go in reverse. Help! I'm new to building layouts and wiring.
     
  2. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Can you show us a picture of how you set up the track? DC or DCC?

    first guess: with 2 switches, you set up an oval with a crossover track through the center of it. But that causes what is known as a reversing section. If this is what you set up, and tO understand, place your finger on a single rail, and follow it through the center crossing. Notice that as you go around, your finger has “switched” rails!
     
    Hardcoaler likes this.
  3. COverton

    COverton TrainBoard Member

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    A crossover type Figure 8 track arrangement has two 'reversing' loops than can make trains loop around them and return back the way they came. If you start where you leave the outer oval, and follow what happens to the rails, they end up coming back not to themselves, but to the opposite rail, and when they meet, they short as soon as the first metal tire bridges the gap between them, usually at the frog.
     
  4. dalebaker

    dalebaker TrainBoard Member

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    You don’t say if you are running DC or DCC, either way you can deal with it. Either with a double-pole, double-throw toggle switch (DC) or a reversing module (DCC). You will have to install isolation at the point you get the short. I run DCC so on my wye track, the isolation is on the reversing leg and works great.
     
  5. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    I'm running DC. I have a shelf train layout. I am starting with the track first. I know what buildings I will use. I'm would like the engine to start on the left side and either go straight through the turnout to a coal factory. I would like it to also have to ability to use the turnout to go to front track and then reverse to pick up the box car and then travel straight along the front track to a supply company.
     

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  6. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    OK - so assumptions were incorrect. Where do you have track power attached? Those switches are what is known as "power routing" - power only flows in the direction the switch is set to.
     
  7. Mr. Trainiac

    Mr. Trainiac TrainBoard Member

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    It’s probably not shorting, most likely it is getting stuck on dead track and can’t go back because there isn’t power anymore. When you throw the switch, it cuts power to that section, which is why the locomotive doesn’t move. It isn’t an electrical short circuit. You would just have to add more feeders on each of the four legs for them to be powered all the time.
     
  8. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    The power is located on the straight track going into the turnout, where the engine sits in the picture.
     
  9. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    So do I need to add feeders to the beginning of the turnout (where the power track is starting) and the end of the turnout? Or in the middle where the frog is?
     
  10. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    As for the feeders, if I solder the feeders where do I connect the wire to in order to get power? Basically, if I put the wire into the joint connector on the track where does the other end go? I'm confused! THANKS for you help.
     
  11. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    You really should have power feeding all 4 legs, but you can only feed the upper right and lower left legs, if you want upper left and lower right legs to be "dead" when they are not available due to switch position.

    I presume you used a Kato Feeder Track in the upper right, so you could use another one in the lower left. Just make sure they are oriented the same way, and use a another of the 3-way extension cords you've also used for the switches. Or, you can make a "bus" from your controller, and solder the feeders to the bus.
     
    gjslsffan likes this.
  12. sidney

    sidney TrainBoard Member

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    blue white blue white maybe this will help (i think )
     

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  13. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    ok...so right now I have 1 feeder and the power track. Do I need more than 1 feeder? I have the power track on the inner track leading into the turnouts. Where should I put the feeder, top left on the outer track? Then should I order another set of feeders?
     
  14. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I believe this captures what you have, with your current feeder track in blue. You absolutely need the red feeder, and the other two legs are optional (if you want to "park" a loco there, don't add the extra two).
    DC  Unitrack Feeders.jpg
     
  15. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    ok...yes that is exactly what it looks like. I put the main feeder where the blue "feeder" is. I added the 2 feeder unijoiner to the end of the track coming off the turnout but it still won't give any power to the outer track. The blue line runs fine out and back (reverse), then when I switch the turnout it doesn't move. Then it shuts off the power pack, which I assume is a short. Should have a power feeder track or can just the unijoiners work?
     
  16. Mr. Trainiac

    Mr. Trainiac TrainBoard Member

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    Are the feeders turned opposite each other? Make sure that the same colored wire is going to the same rail for both feeders. The controller’s breaker opening means something is wrong. Is this a new set of track or used? If it came out of a new box, we could have other extraneous issues, but if this was a pre-owned purchase, the previous owner could have made some modifications that are causing this.
     
  17. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    It's a brand new piece of track. All of them are new. I have switched the blue and white several times thinking that is the problem. I'm going to look under the feeder track as well.
     
  18. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    In this drawing I have marked the rails blue and yellow (for white). Without power to the track, use a multimeter to ensure there is no connection between the rails marked in yellow and the rails marked in blue. (sorry for the wobbly lines)

    DC  Unitrack Feeders adf.jpg
     
    Rob Slopek likes this.
  19. Rob Slopek

    Rob Slopek New Member

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    I GOT IT! I unscrewed it and tighten the 2 screws going to the black/red wire. That's all it needed. Thank you all for the help
     

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