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Discussion Starter #1
I am interested in this signal system for my new DCC layout build. I like the appearance of the signals and the simplicity of operation with the sensors etc. I want to add 3 or 4 double lane crossings 949-4330 and 3 or 4 of the 949-4331 single lane crossings in phase 1. To operate these signals I need to get 2 of the 4359 Walthers SceneMaster Model Railroad Grade Crossing Signal Controllers. Simple enough right?

Well, the issue comes into play when the 4359 controller says "for DC operation". I have several DC power supplies already that I have accumulated over the years and had planned to use a few of those here and there for lighting, signals etc.. Unless I am mistaken Walthers has not made a DCC controller for their signals so this leaves me with the questions of why do the signals say DC operations only? Wouldn't the signals/controller be safe used as a DC use on a DCC layout?
Would doing so cause damage to the signals and/or signal controller? I just want to be sure before I proceed because as many of you know these signals are not cheap. A decent size layout can easily use up to 12 signals and 2 or 3 signal controllers. At about $40 each per signal and controller you could burn $1000 of signals very easily if not used properly.

I was about 2 clicks away from a initial $500 or so purchase of Walthers signals/controllers when I happen to catch the wording of "DC operations" in the controllers description.

If someone could shed some light on this issue for me I would appreciate it.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
5 minutes after I posted this I did find a more informative break down and it seems that using the Signal Controller on a DCC layout can damage the controller....

I guess the new topic here would be what type signals do you guys use on your DCC layouts?
 

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A decoder capable of operating the controller would do it. Remember, decoders use square wave AC, which is that DCC is. BUTTTT....they rectify that current and then meter out DC voltage to both the lights and the drive. Can motors are DC. And, since your speakers are those found in radios, cameras, or smart phones, which operate on batteries, they, too, are DC. So, a decoder meant for stationary placement (not in a locomotive, but those that control lights in buildings, or the position of points on powered turnouts) should with a little research, help you to achieve your aims with the lighting and signals.

I could be quite mistaken, but hopefully someone else will chime in quickly.
 

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Speakers actually function on AC. The alternating current is what drives the speaker cone in and out from its neutral position to generate sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Definatley worth looking into yes. I hadn't even thought of that as a option. I will look into it for sure.

Thanks for the info.
 
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