Soldering & DCC? : LUSENET : Wiring for DCC : One Thread

Hello.... I am already impressed with this site,and feel sure over time,i will learn a great deal about the world of DCC. DCC is a new world to me, i do not have a layout as yet,have been a armchair modeller 40 years +!

Have only just in recent days, started to look at DCC and what it`s all about, first impressions are very good..although it all seems a little bit daunting...from what i have read...

my first question, i would like to ask,refers to Soldering!!!!

Have little to no experience of this,and just wondered how critical it is to solder turnouts,and all the other bits i have read about...

I live in Norway, although i am English,i intend,one day to run a HO european layout.and would wish the layout to be of the highest standard possible...and using best practice? whatever that maybe,for a given area of the layout,if the advice is Solder all joints, then i will have to, but can soldering be avoided? and still attain good running results...

Of course over time i will have many questions, to ask you all.. but i thought i would start with this one

look forward to hearing from you.

many thanks


-- Steve Sylvester (, January 19, 2005


In a nutshell...NO! Don't solder ALL the joints as you will have no end of grief with thermal / humidity expansion and contraction problems. A better plan is to solder track together in 6 ft (2 meter) segments and attach a feeder wire to every piece of track that has rail joiners at the ends. The goal is to not rely on a friction-slip-joint metal clip to carry any significant rail current and to not require rail current to flow more than 3 ft (1m) through the higher resistance of the rails. A 6ft soldered rail length limit is not critical. You may want to solder more rail joiners on curves to prevent kinking if there is provision for some rail/track movement. But here as well at track switches, plan on dropping down multiple rail feeders to ensure good electrical continuity.


-- Don Vollrath (, January 20, 2005.

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