DCC in the garage

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I'm building a new layout in my garage & will use dcc having just purchased a NCE Powerhouse pro system. My question (after viewing all the tiny electronic components) is: will these (electronic components) be effected by the less than perfect environment in an unheated garage? Winter temperatures can sometimes drop to low 30s & possibly moisture in the air outside when raining, summer temps can hit 100 and dry. I live near Sacramento, Ca. Obviously I would love to have a special train room with heat & air & carpet & lights, etc..but just not the case at this time...I havnt heard this topic discussed before so maybe its not a problem but I'd hate to damage the system or locos when 30 or so expensive steam engines with decoders are parked all winter on the layout...thanks, Paul

-- Paul Nunes (Pstonecastle@aol.com), December 21, 2003


My experiences with DCC in the garden are relevant. I keep my trains in the garage and run them into the backyard on a track that runs out the garage door.

I have not experienced any problems that I would relate to humidity and wouldn't expect any. I think you should be fine in that regard.

Between 94-97 degrees, you will possibly experience temperature related thermal overload. Above about 97 degrees you will likely experience trouble. Since you will not be experiencing direct sunlight you may luck out and not experience any problems at all.

Problems include errratic operation to complete inoperability. Problem goes away when locomotive cools down. I have not determined that any particular manufacturer's decoder is better than another.

Other than you having a month or two out of the year where you might experience problems, electronically, you should be fine. I would be more concerned as to what temperature and humidity will do to your craftman kit structures and most importantly, your trackwork. We can't help you with that.

-- Allan Gartner (wire4dcc_admin@comcast.net), December 21, 2003.

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