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I was thinking of that possibility, I just don't understand how. Looks like it's a simple mechanical operation. If the points are moving then the contact should as well. I may dissect one this weekend. The locos all seem to do fine on the plastic frog turnouts with the nail polish, so I suppose I could just disconnect power from these frogs as well.

If I go DCC, how would that change anything? We are mostly running the loco genies now, which is essentially like DCC using regular DC current and signals are sent wirelessly instead of through the rails. Point being, you run full power to the rails and they don't like power hiccups. They seem fine on this setup once we got past the initial issues.

I'll have about a week on my own coming up, so I hope to have time to actually investigate and read further.

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vette-kid;

Yes, as I suggested earlier, you could just remove the metal jumpers feeding power to the frog, and carry on with a "dead" frog. If that doesn't work well with all your locomotives, you could always install a Frog Juicer. Since it is a purely electronic device, with no electromechanical contacts to get dirty, it would be very reliable.

Going to DCC wouldn't fix your short circuit at that frog. It would only give you better slow speed performance and the possibility of having sounds come out of your locomotives. If you're happy with loco genies, and given the small size & simplicity of your layout, I would think you can do without DCC, at least for now.

regards;

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The frog appears to be electrically connected to the points (check that with a multimeter) both points should be connected together and to the frog. Of course that does not explain what you see happening. Don't leave us hanging it you find out what the problem was:)
 

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Discussion Starter #63
vette-kid;

Yes, as I suggested earlier, you could just remove the metal jumpers feeding power to the frog, and carry on with a "dead" frog. If that doesn't work well with all your locomotives, you could always install a Frog Juicer. Since it is a purely electronic device, with no electromechanical contacts to get dirty, it would be very reliable.

Going to DCC wouldn't fix your short circuit at that frog. It would only give you better slow speed performance and the possibility of having sounds come out of your locomotives. If you're happy with loco genies, and given the small size & simplicity of your layout, I would think you can do without DCC, at least for now.

regards;

Traction Fan
"should" being a key word there. My son loves the loco genie, what kid doesn't love anything with a remote control?! I have aquired several locomotives, some DCC ready, but all DC only for now. After having a taste of the remote control and sound, he is hesitant to play with the DC models. Understandable. I'd like to upgrade some of my locos with DCC and that way he can use his along with mine (loco genie equipped trains can operate in either system). I may try a genie in one of them, but I'd like to experiment with other decoders and see if the performance is better.

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"should" being a key word there. My son loves the loco genie, what kid doesn't love anything with a remote control?! I have aquired several locomotives, some DCC ready, but all DC only for now. After having a taste of the remote control and sound, he is hesitant to play with the DC models. Understandable. I'd like to upgrade some of my locos with DCC and that way he can use his along with mine (loco genie equipped trains can operate in either system). I may try a genie in one of them, but I'd like to experiment with other decoders and see if the performance is better.

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vette-kid;

Whatever you and your son want, that works, is automatically the best option for you guys. Perhaps I used the wrong word regarding the frog juicer option. "Will", rather than "should." There are hundreds, if not thousands, of frog juicers in use, and they do work very reliably. Frog juicers are made for the specific purpose of changing the polarity of a frog. (Though they can also be used with reverse loops.) They change what kind of electrical "juice" goes to the frog, hence the name. They actually work because of the type of short circuit you are experiencing. The frog juicer senses the short and instantly reverses the polarity. Whether you use one, or stick with the original Atlas contacts is strictly your choice. If you take the turnout apart, you may find the actual contacts, and cleaning them may solve your problem. I hope so, and I would be curious to see a photo of what's actually in there.
As I said before, I have zero experience with Atlas "Custom Line" turnouts, since they're not made in N-scale. The only Atlas turnouts I do have experience with are the "Snap Switch", plastic frog, variety. Back in the distant past I used some HO-scale "Snap Switches" with brass rail, about the same vintage as yours. Later I had experience (mostly bad) with the N-scale "Snap Switches."

I don't know anything about loco genie. I didn't even know that it existed until you first mentioned it. Now you say you have sound with it? That's good. Your son probably loves it! What kid doesn't like a toy that makes noise?

regards;

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Discussion Starter #65
Ok, started having troubles with turnout A again. I THINK I figured out what going on. Maybe I painted the wrong end of the rails, the plastic on the inside of this rail is worn off and I'm getting contact here. I'll paint that and try again.

Side note,I hooked up the home built DCC and ran the loco genies with it. Works great and my son prefers using his tablet! So now I have a few DCC/sound decoders to install on some other trains and we are off!

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Discussion Starter #66
Well I tried to upload pics but I seen to have reached my monthly limit.

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