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I would like to run some track around the walls of a 30x14 foot room, about 90-100 ft of O track. I'll run just one train, maybe 6 cars. I'm thinking of 1x6 shelving supported by decorative brackets into the wall studs.
With this kind of run, what is the best way of supplying all that track with power.I have a Z-1000 transformer to power the track. :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Good ol' Lionel O gauge 3 rail. Picked up most through Ebay, all cleaned up and ready to go.
 

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If you use the standard way of crimping the openings in the rails to make a tight connection, you will need several lockons along the track. If you use my method of bending the rails where the pins are inserted, you could likely get buy with only one lockon. It will depend on how clean the insides of the rails are.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yep, just a loop, all around. I can run the main feed to terminal strips, then pick off into lock ons. would four or five lock ons do it?
 

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I have run 40 ft of track in a loop with only one lockon. The Lionel recommended method for keeping the connections tight between sections is to slightly pinch the open end of each rail closed a slight amount. This doesn't work very well. What I do is this: Hold a track section with the pins facing away from you. Bend the center rail (not the pin) slightly to the right and the left rail slightly to the left. Grab the rail where the pins is installed so you don't crush the rail. When you insert the pins in the adjoining section, the pins will have pressure on them where they contact the inside of the rails. You only have to do this once as when you disassemble the track sections, the rails remain bent and you can reassemble them again. This works much better than Lionel's methos.
 

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THANKS GUYS.....I've replaced a lot of pins during cleaning, tightened any loose ones. I think with the advice here, I'm good to go. Might even have enough power for some lights here and there.:D
 

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I wouldn't use lockons with a permanent layout. After you get nice clean tight pins in the track solder 18 gage feed wires to the bottom of select track sections spaced 4-5 feet apart. Under the layout run 14 gage power bus wires. Tap into the bus wires with tap splices, AKA suitcase connectors. This method will insure smooth consistent power everywhere in the layout for your trains.

I would recommend wider shelving if possible. I have a circle-the-room layout and I found an 8" or wider shelf gives me room to position a few accessories along the line.
 

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You can always lay it out in a garage or attic. Try it to find the loss of power locations. Add your wires and try again. Do it while the wife shops with the car. My track is so bad I need them every 8 feet.
 

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I have a layout that is about 10 feet long, 27 inches wide (got to love 0-27) and I have wires soldered to the bottom of a straight track, and I have no issues with it until I put on switches, then I have to put a lockon on the other end of the layout
 

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O27 switches are notorious for having internal power break issues. Plan on having to feed power to both sides of the switch. You should probably have 3 evenly distributed power taps.
 

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I wrote a post on the CTT forum describing how to fix the 1122 switches. I looked for it a while ago and couldn't find it. The primary difficulty is getting the bottom cover off of the switch and then replacing it. As an alternative, you could solder wires to connect the 3 center rails together. That might be the easiest way to fix them. If I remember correctly, the power to the coils is soldered to one of the center rails.
 

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I agree with the above two posts.
Connecting the center rails should work.
The K-Line Lionel service manual shows the coil getting power from the center rail of the diverging route.
The 1121 switch is slightly different from the 1122 in some details.
 

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not a problem, I have two older manual switches without a cover on the bottom that might do the trick, add a couple of insulated wires to the 3rd rails, and call it good lol
 

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I would like to run some track around the walls of a 30x14 foot room, about 90-100 ft of O track. I'll run just one train, maybe 6 cars. I'm thinking of 1x6 shelving supported by decorative brackets into the wall studs.
With this kind of run, what is the best way of supplying all that track with power.I have a Z-1000 transformer to power the track. :confused:
I got a 17 x 28 foot room. only one drop on the whole single loop near the ceiling like what you are doing. I got one siding to park the cleaner lash up. TMCC on it all fed with one lock on. works great! O gauge track. I like what gunny said about soldering the joints but I haven't had to. If I start having problems. I'll solder them but probably wont run more drops. the cross section area of that steel tube rail is probably every bit the equivalent AWG 16 or 18 anyway. I think the multi drop setups and advice comes from the tolerance of loose connections between rails. if your clean- you should be just fine!
 

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The key is conductivity. On a run that long, I suspect over time the joints will start to develop some resistance. TMCC is actually more tolerant than conventional to drops in the track, since it's not using the voltage as a direct throttle linkage. :)

I'd recommend three-four drops for a large run like plandis has.
 

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You will get a better connection if there is contact pressure between the pins and the rails. That is why I recommend bending the rails where the pins are installed. This creates good contact pressure. Try using a meter to measure the resistance of a single rail. Put both leads on one rail and don't apply much force. Then increase the force and watch the resistance drop.
 
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