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Old 08-10-2019, 11:19 AM   #31
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3) It is annoying when fasteners / retaining features have been removed / broken which hold the locomotive together. The classic example is a steam loco which has been retrofitted with a smoke unit and the front end of the boiler is not secured to the chassis. “

Not sure what smoke units have to do with DCC in particular.
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Old 08-10-2019, 11:29 AM   #32
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TW started this discussion, so I'll add my 2 cents. DCC adds a layer of technology between you and the running locomotives that may not appeal to everyone. If you running a single locomotive it just may not be worth the complication of DCC. I built my first layout when I was in High School and it was at the period that CTC (I think that was the acronym) was just being discussed in Model Railroader. I was on my way to becoming an Electrical Engineer and CTC fascinated me. I had a dual Cab DC only dogbone layout with on locomotive (a Varney Dockside). That 60's layout was the last Layout until the 90's, when I restarted the hobby with the intent to try DCC with a small layout that I've used to test construction techniques and DCC implementation. For me, DCC has been great, but then I like the technology! For me the fun is the electrical end of the hobby.
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Old 08-15-2019, 06:56 PM   #33
Diesel Fuel
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I don't dislike DCC, it sounds cool. BUT... I have all old vintage engines and stock and don't want to convert it, guess I'm old school
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Old 08-15-2019, 08:53 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Diesel Fuel View Post
I don't dislike DCC, it sounds cool. BUT... I have all old vintage engines and stock and don't want to convert it, guess I'm old school
Well, it's really a matter of personal choice; no one has to do DCC. I would not, however, let the age of your locomotive fleet be the ONLY reason that you don't adopt it. Yes, it's more work to install a decoder in an older model, but it's far from impossible.

I have done 4 myself, and if I can do it, anyone can (I can barely spell solder, let alone do it). I did have to punt on a 5th, but that was an issue of the other parts of the drive train falling apart, not the difficulty of the install.

If you only ever operate one loco at a time, and you have lots of electrically-isolated tracks on which to park the rest of your fleet, then there's really nothing to be gained by converting. Otherwise, it's definitely worth a look.
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Old 08-16-2019, 02:53 PM   #35
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Since this thread is still going and not much else happening during the Summer, I thought I'd take time to read through it. One thing stands out to me that a lot of people seem to have repeated over and over -- "Adding DCC will not improve a poorly running motor."

I beg to differ, but it most certainly WILL, up to a point. I have some old steam locos, a Bachmann from the 90's and a Tyco from the 70's which I have installed cheap DCC decoders in. In both cases these locos would never run at a crawl under DC and usually needed 1/4 to 1/3 throttle to even start moving. But after installing DCC, both of these locos can run at a snail's pace, even pulling a load. Technology has been installed which overcomes the limitations of slow speeds on DC motors, and it makes all the difference in the performance.

Also please don't say you can get the same results with newer PWM powerpacks and such. Of course you can, because once again you are installing technology to overcome the problem (just in a different location). In fact you are using exactly the same method that DCC uses to makes those motors crawl with torque. If you want to talk about pure DC, then check how well your loco runs with an old-style power pack that uses a simple variable resistor to change the amount of voltage applied to the track. That is my apples-to apples comparison between DC and DCC performance, and DC will lose out every time.

Maybe I'm just ranting but it seems unfair to dismiss the advantages of DCC when a lot of DC enthusiasts are actually using exactly the same technology in their power packs to gain the same advantages in locomotive performance. Sure there are always going to be situations where DC is all you need, but please don't try to justify DC as being 'better' when you're actually using a limited version of the same thing found in DCC.
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