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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Folks: I've a couple of Micro Trains 990 40 915 powered turnouts. My loco ( 0-6-0 Marklin steam) stalls in the centre of the turnout. Motion restored all the time by applying pressure to the point of contact between the stock and diverging rail. (toothpick usual tool used) Since this is 1) nearly 100% of the time, and 2) eroding the "fun factor" :thumbsdown:, I'm asking for your experienced advice.

I've cleaned the inside of the track at these points, so I'm confident that it is not an issue of built up crud. The loco is plenty heavy as it's running under a Peco N3n cast metal body shell.


Is this a "known issue" with Micro Trains Z turnouts? In any case, if you've found a fix, I'd be interested in what you did. Thanks,
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Timothy - I'm not exactly confident of pulling off a scratchbuilt of what would be a first ever for me - and in Z yet! So, I'll have a look for the ones you suggest. Do you happen to have their url handy? John.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Timothy D Thanks, I like the look of the Rokuhan R047 Rail Siding Set as it has a LH and a RH turnout for less than each bought singly. They are less expensive than Micro Trains - and if the continuity through the turnout is solid, look like a way to go. However, not familiar with them at all. There appear to be no switch motors. Yet the description say "Remote", suggesting they are powered turnouts.
The control is through just 2 rather than the 3 wires I would expect (ground ,through, divergent) So, do you know the story on this? "Enquiring minds need to know"
 

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The switch machine is built into the roadbed. They are two wire switched by a the Rokuhan switches or a DPDT momentary switch. They can be set for power routing or always powered

Here's a screenshot showing my turnout wiring.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
TimothyD Thanks, that is SO cool, not having clunky non proto-typical switch machines hanging off the edges. Makes working in tight spaces between tracks[ my situation for these puppies ] much easier! I appreciate the wiring diagram, and if I get them, I'll work out an operating system once they are sitting in front of me. (In other words your diagram is at the moment opaque to my limited understanding.:dunno:)

Thanks again.
 

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Thanks Timothy That's more my level! I'll look in my box of switches left over from 2 layouts back - IIRC there were some momentary DPDTs in there. This looks more do-able day by day! :smilie_daumenpos:
 

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A switch solution

:eek:
Hello Folks: I've a couple of Micro Trains 990 40 915 powered turnouts. My loco ( 0-6-0 Marklin steam) stalls in the centre of the turnout. Motion restored all the time by applying pressure to the point of contact between the stock and diverging rail. (toothpick usual tool used) Since this is 1) nearly 100% of the time, and 2) eroding the "fun factor" :thumbsdown:, I'm asking for your experienced advice.

I've cleaned the inside of the track at these points, so I'm confident that it is not an issue of built up crud. The loco is plenty heavy as it's running under a Peco N3n cast metal body shell.


Is this a "known issue" with Micro Trains Z turnouts? In any case, if you've found a fix, I'd be interested in what you did. Thanks,
DER5997;

The problem of points not being reliable electrical contacts is not unique to Z-scale, or Micro-Trains turnouts. Many "current routing" turnouts, in any scale, have exhibited the same frustrating symptoms.
There are two common solutions. Which one you choose is dependent on whether you want to maintain the current routing feature or not.
A current routing turnout acts as an electric switch (besides being a track switch) When the turnout is set for the main line, then that main track is supposed to receive power to it's rails through the turnout. Alternatively, when the turnout is set for the siding, then only the siding gets power through the turnout. The points make poor electrical switch contacts. The smaller the points, the less reliable they are. Z-scale points would be about as small as points get.
Unless you really, really, want desperately to maintain this current routing business, I recommend the simpler of two solutions. Connect a pair of feed wires to the main/straight track of the turnout, and a duplicate set of feed wires to the siding/curved track. both sets can be connected to each other, but you will need to cut gaps in the two short rails that branch out from the frog, at the very start of the two routes. In simple terms, look at the wide end of the turnout. There are four rails there, two for each route. Cut gaps in the two middle rails only. This is necessary to prevent short circuits.
The turnout is now no longer current routing. Both the main, and siding routes are powered all the time. If your turnout has decent connections from the points to the frog, your 0-6-0 loco should run through it smoothly. If it does not, then more major surgery to the turnout may be needed. In that case ask for more detail on said surgery.
If, for whatever reason, you wanted to keep the current routing feature then the second solution would be to have an electrical micro-switch operated when the turnout points move. Good luck with that idea using a Z-scale turnout, with the switch machine attached to the side, and on top of the table. This is a lot simpler when using a separate, large switch machine/motor that is mounted under the table.
I make my own (N-scale) turnouts and operate them with stall motors. One of the advantages of making my own is that I can build both mechanical, and electrical, reliability right into the design. I don't know if this is something you would be interested in, but there is no real reason it couldn't be done in Z-scale, provided that an NMRA gage, or some other reliable track gage, is available in your scale. I'm attaching a photo of one of the many turnouts I've built. Also attached is a link to the directions on how to build them.

Traction Fan:smilie_daumenpos:

Painted turn out 1.JPG

View attachment How I scratch build turnouts new(8).pdf
 
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