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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,
Been enjoying my layout and have recently made some modifications. I have one large loop on a 4x20 layout with a switch on one end to take the train on middle track running length of table. Works great no issues.
Last night i wanted to add a switch to connect the two outside tracks to one another. I hooked them up with insulaters on same rails as my current good running switch, and bottom line is nothing works. Niether switch works, nor does the train. My multiple pole transformer made a spring noise so i shut it down, im assuming a wiring issue but please help. Ill post pics in a bit.
 

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Since you tripped the breaker pretty good chance that you have a short somewhere in your added new section.

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you!
What would an example of a possible short be? I completely unhooked the added track and went back to original layout and still nothing....
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Ok...i am now at a complete and total loss!! I unhooked all switches and the middle section of track making just one all connected loop. NOTHIN!! Before i torched the thing i came upstairs to seek help.

Transformers are working but track doesn't seem to get power. Im at a loss, perfectly functioning train 24 hours ago, make couple changes, now nothing....please help.
 

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Your first photo shows power going to one side of the crossover.
Does that crossover have power to the other 3 center rails? Most crossovers do not.
Do you have feeder lines to other sections of the layout ? Where ever there is a break in the center rail power has to be provided to the other side of the break.
Use your OHM meter to test the tracks for power. No meter use a lighted caboose.

Bill
 

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Ok...i am now at a complete and total loss!! I unhooked all switches and the middle section of track making just one all connected loop. NOTHIN!! Before i torched the thing i came upstairs to seek help.

Transformers are working but track doesn't seem to get power. Im at a loss, perfectly functioning train 24 hours ago, make couple changes, now nothing....please help.
Do you have power at the track where the transformer is connected ?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Your first photo shows power going to one side of the crossover.
Does that crossover have power to the other 3 center rails? Most crossovers do not.
Do you have feeder lines to other sections of the layout ? Where ever there is a break in the center rail power has to be provided to the other side of the break.
Use your OHM meter to test the tracks for power. No meter use a lighted caboose.

Bill
I am using the crossover basically as a way to get power from the transformer to track. That is how I've been operating for awhile now, a lockon uses the outside and middle rail doesn't it?
 

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You likely have a short. First test the transformer by using your alligator clips on an engine - sans track. Perhaps it has failed internally.or the loco is the problem.

Did you do any rewiring when adding the new switches such as a an extra transformer connection at the far side of the loop to improve constant speed across a long loop? Maybe reversed power leads have created a short.

One approach is to isolate sections of track to narrow down the problem. For example, split the loop into two by disconnecting two tracks at either end. Then power each section one at a time with a loco to test. If one side works and the other trips the breaker, then you've narrowed down the problem - cut the location of the problem in half. Now split the remaining problematic section in two by disconnecting a track near the center. Same as before, test each new isolated section. If one works and the other doesn't, you have again narrowed down the problem to a smaller section of track. Close inspection of that shorted section section may help: A stray piece of metal or failed isolation between the center rail and a tie, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thank you!! I will try when get home!

I didn't do any extra wiring, just to one switch that I was trying to hook up but that is disconnected. No, i bvb have only one transformer hooked up.
 

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I am using the crossover basically as a way to get power from the transformer to track. That is how I've been operating for awhile now, a lockon uses the outside and middle rail doesn't it?
Yes, hot wire to the center rail, ground wire to either outside rail

I would start with a simple oval with no switches or crossovers and power feeds evenly spaced in 3 locations. If the loco works at expected power ranges then add one switch at a time and confirm that the addition works before adding another.

Bill
 

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Make sure there is nothing laying somewhere on the track, I see you have parts and pieces all over the place. Something, somewhere? A screwdriver or piece of track laying on top of another will most surly trip the breaker.
Without me referring to my transformer manual, I see that you have a RED wire connected to the crossing for power.
I guess you do know that the power rail is the inside middle rail? Not the outside rail, is that hooked to the transformer right? Like I said I would have to look in the manual, maybe it is and you just used the red for the ground side?
I see another transformer hooked up too some track, what is that for?
Why don't you just try by using the one transformer?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Yes, power rail is middle rail. Might be dumb question but is A or U the hot? Those are the two lugs im drawing from.
I am running track on only one transformer, the small lionel two lug one is powering my accessories independent of the track.
Yes, it was very clean till about 4am this morning when i began my frustrating dive into this, i have walked around that table a thousand times nothing laying on track, must be something somewhere causing it on a piece of track. I appreciate your advice! Ill begin troubleshooting
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yes, hot wire to the center rail, ground wire to either outside rail

I would start with a simple oval with no switches or crossovers and power feeds evenly spaced in 3 locations. If the loco works at expected power ranges then add one switch at a time and confirm that the addition works before adding another.

Bill
Can i run multiple switches on the same power supply and track? As i showed in the last picture?
 

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The U post typically is connected to an outside rail and the A, B, or C post should be connected to the center rail. If you have 2 transformers connected to the track they must be phased in or they will short out.

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I have only one transformer running the whole thing. It seems to provide plenty of power to operate the train. I have a separate transformer running my accessories
 
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