Model Train Forum banner
1 - 20 of 54 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I have peco pl10 which recommends a 16v power supply. I thought I had one that was 16 but cannot find it or was mistaken when reading it. I have plenty of 12v but I doubt thise will work unless I'm mistaken on that.

The only thing I have (that I can actually use) is a old laptop variable power supply.
Is there anyway to get it to work?

Taking a pic of it

Grey Font Communication Device Gadget Cemetery
 

· Registered
Joined
·
5,811 Posts
So I have peco pl10 which recommends a 16v power supply. I thought I had one that was 16 but cannot find it or was mistaken when reading it. I have plenty of 12v but I doubt thise will work unless I'm mistaken on that.

The only thing I have (that I can actually use) is a old laptop variable power supply.
Is there anyway to get it to work?

Taking a pic of it

View attachment 593217
Conductorkev;

Yes, either the 12 volt supply, or the 15-20 volt one shown in your photo, should work. The Peco PL-10's coils should work fine on 12 volts. Since the computer supply goes up to 20 volts, you might want to add a 15 volt regulator between it, and your PL-10s. However, as the current through a PL-10 is momentary, its not likely that an extra 4 volts will do any harm.

Traction Fan
 

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Conductorkev;

Yes, either the 12 volt supply, or the 15-20 volt one shown in your photo, should work. The Peco PL-10's coils should work fine on 12 volts. Since the computer supply goes up to 20 volts, you might want to add a 15 volt regulator between it, and your PL-10s. However, as the current through a PL-10 is momentary, its not likely that an extra 4 volts will do any harm.

Traction Fan
I'm putting a cdu in between them. It's probably going to be 7 I'm going to do this way and eventually get them on a decoder.. so it shouldn't hurt the cdu either way?
 

· Premium Member
Joined
·
246 Posts
So I took the computer plug and took the end off which left me stumped.

3 sets of strands each insulated from each other however which is which?
Mmm, well, I'd say it's time to dig out the old multimeter . . . ;)

And, FWIW, I've come to believe that "stumped" may pretty much be my new normal when tackling new things . . . or even old. :sneaky:
 

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The pic was a bit out of focus, but it appears to be of concentric shielded coax design of some sort, not common on power supplies -- IME power conductors usually rely on an in-line choke to suppress noise, rather than shielded wires.

Coax always has a solid wire in the middle this Is like 3 of the wire mesh (like coax).

See if this pic is better

Finger Thumb Wood Nail Automotive tire


The black was the outside coating the long strand went next. Stripped came to the mesh in the middle then the smaller one was inside that.
 

· Premium Member
Joined
·
246 Posts
Yep, still looks like coaxial cable, but with concentric inner layers rather than either a single inner conductor (like that used for TV, other RF or older computer network wiring), or a single shield around braided conductors. Still not a clue why they would go to the trouble and expense of using such an unusual configuration for a pedestrian power supply connection, though.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yep, still looks like coaxial cable, but with concentric inner layers rather than either a single inner conductor (like that used for TV, other RF or older computer network wiring), or a single shield around braided conductors. Still not a clue why they would go to the trouble and expense of using such an unusual configuration for a pedestrian power supply connection, though.
It was a universal power plug for laptops. Any idea which is hot/cold/ground?
 

· Premium Member
Joined
·
246 Posts
Well, I'm pretty sure the outer braid would be ground, and if the power supply offered multiple voltages, I'd guess the inner braid and center conductor will each show varying voltages to ground, and likely between them as well. As I said, time to break out the multimeter -- this is not something you want to trust to analysis alone!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well, I'm pretty sure the outer braid would be ground, and if the power supply offered multiple voltages, I'd guess the inner braid and center conductor will each show varying voltages to ground, and likely between them as well. As I said, time to break out the multimeter -- this is not something you want to trust to analysis alone!

Hate doing anything with live exposed wires..... I would put the meter on DC right
 

· Premium Member
Joined
·
246 Posts
Well, I can think of no reason to make a doubly-shielded inner wire a ground (since the ground is usually the conductor closest to the outside, to avoid a short if the outer insulation is penetrated), but since I don't understand why such a fancy cable was used in the first place, I suppose anything is possible. I don't know your multimeter, but yes, you're almost certainly looking for a relatively low DC voltage (so I doubt your life or limbs are at risk!), and you want to be sure to test all possible pairs for their potential. For instance, on a tutorial I saw about recycling an old computer power supply to provide multiple output voltages, stacking the various power taps can yield a startling range of output voltages, and something similar might be happening in with your "universal" power supply. In any event, good luck!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,189 Posts
The receptacle plug suggests it has no ground wire, just like a floor lamp.
If there is a wide blade and narrower blade on the plug, the wide is neutral (white), the narrow is the line/load side (black). If you can check for continuity between the line/load blade(prong) and the center conductor you’ll figure out which is white & black.
No need for “live” wires when checking continuity. One probe on the narrow plug blade, put the other probe on the central conductor. If 0, try on the surrounding shield wires.

The outer most steel mesh is probably reinforcement and nothing more.
 

· Premium Member
Joined
·
246 Posts
The receptacle plug suggests it has no ground wire, just like a floor lamp.
If there is a wide blade and narrower blade on the plug, the wide is neutral (white), the narrow is the line/load side (black). If you can check for continuity between the line/load blade(prong) and the center conductor you’ll figure out which is white & black.
No need for “live” wires when checking continuity. One probe on the narrow plug blade, put the other probe on the central conductor. If 0, try on the surrounding shield wires.

The outer most steel mesh is probably reinforcement and nothing more.
Whoa -- just to be clear, be sure the power supply is unplugged from the wall before you test for continuity between either prong of the input plug and any output conductor! o_O
 

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The receptacle plug suggests it has no ground wire, just like a floor lamp.
If there is a wide blade and narrower blade on the plug, the wide is neutral (white), the narrow is the line/load side (black). If you can check for continuity between the line/load blade(prong) and the center conductor you’ll figure out which is white & black.
No need for “live” wires when checking continuity. One probe on the narrow plug blade, put the other probe on the central conductor. If 0, try on the surrounding shield wires.

The outer most steel mesh is probably reinforcement and nothing more.

I get volts when I have one on center mesh and either of the other two. When I try the other two not the center I get probably less than halfthan when trying with the center.

The other end goes into what is converting the power. The side I took off to expose the wires is a small round plug thst you see going into laptops. I'll see if I can expose the connections in there.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,189 Posts
So on the wall plug end, put the red probe on… well either blade. And red or black probe doesn't matter. The other probe on the center conductor.
When checking for continuity you’re looking for the meter closing a circuit, aka the probes seeing each other through that transformer. If 1 probe is on white and one is on black, you’ll get nothing. If both are on white OR in black, they should show continuity through the transformer. Knowing which blade is which will tell you which stripped wire is hot and which is neutral. Wide blade is always neutral/white.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
So on the wall plug end, put the red probe on… well either blade. And red or black probe doesn't matter. The other probe on the center conductor.
When checking for continuity you’re looking for the meter closing a circuit, aka the probes seeing each other through that transformer. If 1 probe is on white and one is on black, you’ll get nothing. If both are on white OR in black, they should show continuity through the transformer. Knowing which blade is which will tell you which stripped wire is hot and which is neutral. Wide blade is always neutral/white.

The plug in side is only two prong into the wall
 
1 - 20 of 54 Posts
Top