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Discussion Starter #1
I just installed a Digitrax SDH166D sound decoder with their PX112-10 power xtender into a Mantua 0-4-0 shifter. The engine has been remotored with a can motor many years ago. However it still has factory track pickups ie two wheels on the engine for right track power and tender wheels for left track pickup. My layout has dead frogs that are average 2 inches long. Which is about 1/4 to 1/2 inch longer than the wheelbase of the engine. I had installed the power extender in hopes that it would keep the engine alive long enough to cross the dead frogs. However it does not. As soon as it loses power it stops but sound continues to play. I have opened a ticket with Digitrax but have not received a response. Can anyone tell me what I need to do to get the engine to say alive long enough to cross the dead frogs? I have disabled the DC option.

Thanks
Jim
 

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Convert the tender trucks for ALL WHEEL power pickup.
That way a pickup wheel will always be on a 'live'
rail.

Don
 

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My 0-6-0 had both pickups on the drivers and nothing on the tender. Added pickups to both tender trucks using Intermountain metal wheels and my little engine can now just crawl right through the frogs. If you can find a way to add a pickup to your other set of drivers, and then also grab power from both rails on the tender trucks, you'll be set for pretty much anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for all the responses. More than I got from Digitrax. I ordered some phosphor bronze sheet and some pc board today. Hope to be able to make some pickup wipers with them. I was just disappointed not to get better performance from the power extender. Of course all of the videos I had seen on Youtube are using TCS KA2 keep alives. Wonder if one of those could be connected to a Digitrax encoder?

Jim
 

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For the tender trucks, a common method that I used is to use the copper spring boxes from Kadee #5's, but that assumes a metal axle and only allows pickup on one side of the truck.
 

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My first thought was that the PX112-10 power xtender may only be for the sound part. But Digitrax does mention keeping the engine going also. If your always running the tender then the suggestion of all wheel pickup sound good, other than that an extra wire to run across the engine to tender gap. I think you've done the right thing - called Digitrax (calling might work better than email). Interesting as to what they say!
 
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