The Quaker Valley Railroad has a CTC Panel well under development using
the Panel feature in Decoder Pro. The Dispatcher operates the turnouts
by mouse clicking on a picture of the lever. See the link at QV_CTCnew.html
This requires using accessory decoders to operate the switch machines.
I've got a pair of NCE Snap-It accessory decoders operating twin coil
machines, a single NCE Switch-It operating a pair of Hanks Craft slow motion
motors, an older AD4HA and five AD4HC decoders each operating 3-4 twin
coil machines. They all work well on the Quaker Valley, and I didn't
find it a problem to program the NCE accessory decoders on the program
track before installation. I haven't had to reprogram any since installation,
but the AD4 cards can be removed from the 44 pin card holder and taken
back to the program track if needed.
On my more recent AD4HC installtions, I made a wooden holder for the socket and wired it at the workbench. It made installation real easy as it just took two drywall screws to fasten under the layout. I used a 50 pin card connecter (cheaper and available) and fastened a piece of styrene to block out the 6 unused pins.
I do like the AD4 decoders as they offer the option to use one or two
buttons for each switch machine. They also allow the local buttons
to be disabled. This is done by programming a CV "on the main".
There is a broadcast address that allows me to turn all of the AD4 on or
off at the same time. I can do this from a NCE cab, but plan to add
it to my JMRI/Panel Pro CTC panel on the PC. This will allow the
Dispatcher to take control., locking out all the local push buttons
CVP also offers a AD4MC, now the one to use for slow motion machines. The programming is the same as the AD4HC which has the capacitive discharge supply for the twin coils I installed many years ago. I installed an extra 4700uf capacitor on the AD4HC to kick two twin coils at the same time. I would use the slow motion machines on the Quaker Valley if I were to start over. (But that won't happen soon.)
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