Use Switchmaster (Hankscraft) Switch Machines With the Rix Mounting Block. : LUSENET : Wiring for DCC : One Thread

I have successfully used the switchcraft type controls as described in the section on switch machine control. All is well until I power down when the pressure is relaesed from the micro switches. When I power up again I have to actuate all the switches once more before I can run. I have never heard this as a problem from anyone else and wonder if I am using the wrong type of micro switch or making the motors work too hard. Most of the switches I use are Peco, and I work in "O" gauge, 7mm to the foot. Robert Bradley

-- Robert Bradley (, March 01, 2005



The problem you are having is that your turnout controllers are not driving their outputs when you power up. They sound like they are not driving an output until you command the turnout to actuate.

I am using Digitrax DS-54s with a Digitrax Chief. Upon power up, the switch motors are energized and make their micro switches.

I don't know what system you are using, and since I am not familar with other systems, I don't have much advice for you. It is possible that your turnout controllers may have an option that will enable them to remember their last position at power down. Your command station may have a similar option. Unfortunately, there is the possibility that there is nothing you can do.

The spring in the microswitch does tend to push on the actuator arm of the Rix bracket. Also pushing on the actuator arm is the springiness of the piano wire. If you tried a Tortise switch machine, you wouldn't have the micro switch pushing on the actuator, since a Tortise does not have these, but you would still have the springiness of the piano wire. A Tortise may also not be powerful enough to move your turnouts. If you decide to try Tortise, I'd try one first before making a big investment.

-- Allan Gartner (, March 01, 2005.


a club is used to belong to used switchcraft motors and had the same problem as you have. We had to cycle all the switchcraft machines on power up before we could run. These motors were controlled by real switches so it was not a case of some electronic problem with powering up! This was just accepted as what had to be done on power up. I don't know the reason but was also reluctant to fiddle because some drove very complicated track work and had multiple microswitches on them. (If I had my way they would have all been replaced by Tortoise machines and external relays where necessary.)


-- Dale Gloer (, March 03, 2005.

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