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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

About three months ago I had issues with my DSC51 and sent it back to Digitrax to be repaired. I got it back this week and almost everything is fine.

My loco 3135 was on my layout when the unit stopped working three months ago. When I tried to use 3135 this week, there was no response. I successfully returned it to the factory setting (03) and it works fine when I use the 03 address.

I then tried to return it to the 3135 address. When re-addressing it on the main, all I got was a "dnd" error message. I then tried it on my programming track, I followed all the steps and it seemed to be fine (the 3135 address was accepted as the manual said it would be).

When I put in back on the Main and punch in 3135 nothing happens. It still works as 03 though.

Any thoughts on what is causing this? Recall that this unit was on the layout when my DCS51 stopped working.

Thanks,

Mike
 

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If I had to guess, there's a step missing somewhere in your process or in the repaired item's process. I'll explain:

All I know is the Super Empire Builder, an ancient system from Digitrax, which uses the DB150. That unit has both a programming mode and an ops mode. Once an address is successfully entered to the decoder using PG (which Digitrax strongly recommends), all other CV changes are/should be in Ops.

The tricky part is two-fold: getting CV29 configured properly for 'short' or 'long' addresses, and then cycling power. Those steps are often overlooked or simply forgotten. In my DB150's case, it asks me on the digital display if I want a long or short address? It requires me to know which type it should be, and this is NOT universal across decoders. I forget which, but one common manufacturer has its demarcation point between long and short addresses different from QSI and Soundtraxx, for example. In those cases, long addresses are from 128 and up. CV29 must have a number programmed into it to reflect what type of address, and I get the prompt from my DT400 throttle display when I press 'Enter' after generating the address. If the cab number is 1212, when I press "Enter", the display asks if it's a long address, "Y" or "N". Meanwhile, the system beeps and the loco does three jerks. But track power goes off (cycling). I press "Y", whereupon the DB150 powers the rails momentarily and makes that change in the decoder. Power goes off, but remains off. I have to manually restore power by pressing "PWR" and then "Y". The little red light goes on signifying track power, but a Paragon loco will do nothing. Others will probably power up. In the case of BLI's you have to assign the throttle a single speed step, BUT AFTER acquiring the new address (not "03") on the throttle. As soon as I rotate the encoder knob on the DT400, the engine comes alive and will move.

This was a long description, but it encompasses two important, critical, steps.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank guys:

Mesenteria, I'm pretty sure I handled the Address issue. The DCS51 prompts for Ad2 or Ad4...

What do you mean by Cycling Power?

What seems odd is that I seem to be able to successfully change the address on my programming track but when I try the local on the main it only works under 03

Lovin it, it is an older Life-Like with a Soundtraxx decoder.

Mike
 

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I had a Bachmann that had a soundtraxx decoder and the only way I could program it was in Digitrax Pg mode and using a Soundtraxx PTB-100 booster on my program track. That did the trick and it works great now.
 

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Thank guys:

Mesenteria, I'm pretty sure I handled the Address issue. The DCS51 prompts for Ad2 or Ad4...

What do you mean by Cycling Power?

What seems odd is that I seem to be able to successfully change the address on my programming track but when I try the local on the main it only works under 03

Lovin it, it is an older Life-Like with a Soundtraxx decoder.

Mike
Mike, cycling power means turn it off, then on. It's a step that many people want to bypass during a reset or an address change, but a DCC guru on another forum hounds people to make sure to cycle power to the rails after a major change like address or reset. I 'think' all Digitrax systems do this in PG Mode because that's what every press of 'enter' in Paged Mode does...it enters the value, the system beeps, the loco budges twice, thrice, and then, if you look, the power indicator, the red LED, should be dark. You have to press "PWR" on your throttle and "Y".
 

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"Cycling power" --
Reach over with your hand, lift up one side of the loco so the wheels are off the rails, hold it that way for a second or two, then set it back down... 😎
 

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That would work, but it means handling the locomotive. I prefer to minimize touching my locomotives because of the height of my operating surface on the benchwork and the damage my elbow might do reaching over to a locomotive, and also leaving body oils and acids from my fingertips on the paint. I find it far handier to press "PWR", press "N", press "Y", and it takes exactly that long.
 

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The 'pull the plug' technique is the first thing to do when any
electronic or digital device fails to work properly. I had to
do it for my TV last week, and fairly often for the a/c computer
in my truck. Presumably, it's the same as 'rebooting' your
desk or lap top computer. Many moons ago I had to pay
$75.00 for a TV service call. The tech pulled the plug and
replugged...then handed me the bill.

Don
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks again everyone. I tried your suggestions, nothing :(

Something else happened that was unusual: I had another loco (1559) that was having problems, so I put it on my programming track, reset to 03, powered off, reset the address, powered off, put back on my main - and it worked fine using the correct address (1559).

So, I followed the same process for 1559 as I did for the loco in question (3135); 1559 was successfully reset while 3135 wasn't. Can I assume there is something funky with the 3135 decoder?

Mike
 

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Have you tried a different address number? Try a number under 127 and see if it takes. Try it first without a leading zero, such as 115, or 122. Something above 99 but below 127.

If that chosen number works, reset it again to factory, and then try the same number with a leading zero.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks Michael. I'll try that this afternoon. Instead of 3135, should I try 135?

Mike
 

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You might try resetting 1559 again only this time after the reset, make sure it works on the main as address 03. That way you know the reset actually worked on 1559.
 
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