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Electric Loco Land!
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   Electric Loco Land!
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   Author  Topic: Electric Loco Land!  (Read 4271 times)
dgmarklin
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #80 on: Aug 3rd, 2007, 12:27am »
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The Master Switch, voltmeter, soundcard power, and volume switch; all of that lines up with a door for easy access!

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Dean
dgmarklin
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #81 on: Aug 3rd, 2007, 12:37am »
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This is the motor drive system, 2 axle.
 
I found it kinda funny that they had a discoverlivesteam.com article with the same config. just after i built all of this.  But they used two smaller motors and wired together, still about 5/8HP system though.
 
That is a reduction shaft under the motor.


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Dean
sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #82 on: Jun 7th, 2008, 10:54am »
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It looks like I have found where to get information on electrics.  I am building a SW1000 from scratch and am using 24 volt motors.  I am going to have two 12 volt batteries in series.  I am also going to have a gas engine driving a generator.  I was given a 28.5 volt 100 amp generator off a M14 Russian radial airplane engine.  The problem is I do not have a voltage regulator for the generator.  Automotive stores do not carry 24 volt regulators.  Has anyone dealt with this problem or know where to get one?  Also I was going to use deep cycle batteries and after reading this thread it sounds like regular car batteries might be better.  So they can quick charge from the generator.
 
Stephen
 
Pictures of build progress.
http://www.sonex761livesteam.blogspot.com/


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C-ville_man
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #83 on: Jun 7th, 2008, 11:35am »
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Stephen,
 Some aircraft use 24 volt systems. There are several regulators out there.
 You can contact repair shops at airports, or supply houses for information and applications.
 Hope this helps.


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BILL
moose_the_caboose
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #84 on: Jun 8th, 2008, 6:31pm »
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hi all,
 
stephen: i understand the fact that you want to use a gas engine and generator to re-charge the batteries...great!  even though the sw1500 hood seems large enough, the more stuff you want to put in, the smaller it grows.  so here's something to think about.  if you look around the gov't surplus yards, you'll find most of the equipment has been manufactured for 24vdc.  that means alternators, electronic gear, winchmotors, ect.  military supply depots are a great place to look for 'stuff'.  good luck with your hunt!
 
using the battery and generator setup has 2 approaches.  the first is to use the brute strength of the alternator/generator and filter it through your batteries for a 'smooth' dc signal path with only a few 'ripples' in the produced current.  this is a good method, but requires some engineering to make sure the batteries won't be overcharged.  the second method is the one that you are suggesting...use the batteries for main power and use the alternator for re-charging.  this means a fine-tuned charging circuit...the very thing you're trying to find.
 
there another approach, a rather crude one, but just the same, it works.  if you remove the built-in rectifier circuit from most alternators, they become 3-phase ac alternators (just as the name implies).  with some fancy electronic foot work, the 3 phases can be combined into a single phase.  for automotive alternators, the resulting voltage would be 90 vac.  by putting large diodes and filter capacitors on the ground side(after the motor and f-n-r switch), your voltage would drop to @ 45 vdc.  that would be @ 0-45vdc depending on engine throttle setting and motor demand.  with a little experimentation, you could set it up so that your throttle never exceeds 30 vdc.
 
having said that, here's the most hassle-free approach.  why not use a 24-36vdc golf cart controller?  the equipment can still be had (controller, 24vdc chargers, ect), all in all still reasonable, and quite reliable.  by using 4 6vdc golf cart batteries in series or 4 12vdc deep cycles in series-parallel, you have a great combination.  by pulling the lighter loads that most people do (500lbs  or less), you probably won't have to re-charge for @ 12 hours of operation...give or take another 12 hours.  the loco would be re-charged at a rate of 1 1/2 hours for every hour of operation.
 
about batteries...using car batteries isn't recommended for deep discharge applications.  you'll be buying more in just a matter of time.  they like being 'hit' briefly, then re-charged immediately.  re-charging deep cycles may take longer, but the extended service life is worth it.   want another battery option?  if you've no lack for funding, try the 'six pack' batteries.  they'll discharge far longer and far harder than any other battery type.  in an emergency, they can be re-charged at the same rate as car batteries.  
 
 
on Jun 7th, 2008, 10:54am, sonex761 wrote:       (Click here for original message)
It looks like I have found where to get information on electrics.  I am building a SW1000 from scratch and am using 24 volt motors.  I am going to have two 12 volt batteries in series.  I am also going to have a gas engine driving a generator.  I was given a 28.5 volt 100 amp generator off a M14 Russian radial airplane engine.  The problem is I do not have a voltage regulator for the generator.  Automotive stores do not carry 24 volt regulators.  Has anyone dealt with this problem or know where to get one?  Also I was going to use deep cycle batteries and after reading this thread it sounds like regular car batteries might be better.  So they can quick charge from the generator.
 
Stephen
 
Pictures of build progress.
http://www.sonex761livesteam.blogspot.com/



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sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #85 on: Jun 20th, 2008, 10:12am »
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Talking about about battery options.  My plan was to use the generator as the main power source.   It is a 28 volt 100 amp continuous duty generator.   So the battery's would be there in the event of drawing greater than 100 amps.  This could happen momentarily on startup seeing that it is powered with 4 24 volt 500 watt motors.  So the question is would you want regular car batteries or deep cycles. (expensive options are out of the question.)
 
Stephen


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« Last Edit: Jun 20th, 2008, 10:16am by sonex761 » Logged
tomc
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #86 on: Jun 20th, 2008, 1:08pm »
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Nice lookin engine there.   From what I remeber about power I calculate that each moter can only draw a max of 20.8 amps.  If that is correct, you would never draw much  off the battery.  You need to find out what RPM the generator puts out 80 amps as that is where you will meet the max need.  Plus those motors probably would only draw max when stalled.  I think a good quality car battery woud do.  I suggest a brand called Optima.  Red or yellow top would be a good choice.
 
Tom C.


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Later;

tom_srclry_com
Lost somewhere in Michigan!
moose_the_caboose
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #87 on: Jun 20th, 2008, 8:39pm »
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hi all,
 
stephen:  looks like you've got a great start on a loco!  congrats!
i know i'm an old fuddie-duddie, but i figure my amperage needs by taking the max-stall amps of my motors x 2.5 times.  okay, sounds like a lot?!  now, add to that enough 'head-room' so that at full motor capacity, you still have more than 40% more capacity from your control system.  why so much capacity...because things go wrong in a hurry...motors are cheaper than control systems!  i've built a couple of electric locomotives, one with brute strength (275 amps) and one with finesse (70 amps).  i'll run the one with strength 'til the dogs won't come home and drive the one with finesse like it's a raw egg.  both are pictured in the early pages of this thread so i won't post them again.  the one with brute strength, i'll tackle any train on the rails...even be part of a mega-train, if asked.  the one with the finesse...is an engineering model for proof of a concept.  there are some great running locos (with finesse) out there, but would you tack'em on to a train of 15 or more cars and run'em all day?  i build my electronic systems the way i used to build show-staging, robust.  i can build a stage to hold of an elephant out of 1x2 lumber...given enough lumber.  it's all a matter of what you want to do with the equipment you build.
 
as i said early about batteries, yes you can use car batteries, but ask the rv'ers in your area why they have a vehicle start battery and a bank of deep cycle batteries.  tom had a great idea about using optima batteries (the six pack battery).  i've talked to one of the company (optima) engineers about them.  they were originally designed by georgia tech on an electric vehicle grant.  they will discharge far harder, far longer before the main charge fails.  that's the problem with car batteries, they give up the ghost too soon.  as voltage falls, the amperage increases...and so do the loses from heat-sinking.  optima batteries were designed to hold the voltage level up for a longer period of time, there by, the amperage level stays lower.  the six pack batteries are a compromise at best.  they'll take a deep discharge hit like starting a boat motor or aircraft engine and still keep the deep cycle characteristics of holding up the voltage level, but they won't stand up to routine abuse.  normal car batteries are rated by cold cranking amps.  their plate structure is designed to take that amperage hit(they also want to be re-charged immediately after).  try pulling that many amps with a deep cycle battery all at once and you'll likely buckle the plates.  the results would be the need for new batteries.  deep cycle batteries have a plate structure that supports long, steady discharges.  they normally like a re-charge rate of 1 1/2 hours per 1 hour of use.  they are also temperature  and voltage sensitive...they want what they want at the rate they want and temperature they want.  deep cycles (and deep discharge car batteries) won't charge until their temporature range is reached.  if you've tried to re-charge in freezing weather, you know what i mean.  until that range is at hand, your charger is just heating the electrolyte...then the charging begins.  deep cycle batteries don't want to charge too hot or too over-voltage and if treated well, should last more than 5 years.  as to the costs?  i buy blems and seconds, usually $35 to $40 per battery.  in central florida, six pack batteries sell for $150 or more, depending on capacity.  i can't and won't speak for other areas, maybe they're cheaper where you or tom are.  
 
maybe i'm a little twisted (okay, a lot twisted, pockets), but i like the idea of having enough torque to pull the barn doors down.  when we were testing the blue english welder, bruce r volunteered to by my 'hood ornament'.  with him 'seated' on the engine, we proceeded to pull a 10 or 12 car train up-grade.  we added about 100 lbs of ballast after that and never looked back.  it pulled trains of people for years without a problem.  just build'em robust i tells ya!
 
moose
 
btw...what's supporting the particle board between the centers of the engineered beams?!
 
 
on Jun 20th, 2008, 10:12am, sonex761 wrote:       (Click here for original message)
Talking about about battery options.  My plan was to use the generator as the main power source.   It is a 28 volt 100 amp continuous duty generator.   So the battery's would be there in the event of drawing greater than 100 amps.  This could happen momentarily on startup seeing that it is powered with 4 24 volt 500 watt motors.  So the question is would you want regular car batteries or deep cycles. (expensive options are out of the question.)
 
Stephen



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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #88 on: Jun 21st, 2008, 8:48pm »
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hi all,
 
stephen:  after i re-read my post from the other day, i've come to the conclusion that i haven't had enough to drink...the original assessment of controller capacity of 2.5 x the stall current is correct.  that's your safety factor as well as a cushion against explosive failure.  this is what i did for the 'brute' force unit.  the 'finesse' unit was figured at what most people want to do...cheapest.  that unit is figured at motor stall current + 40% additional 'headroom'.  both units work great, but i'm always on my toes not to over-stress the 'finesse' loco.  capacity comes with a price, but safety and reliability are priceless.  my apologies for the confusion...comes from long hours of work and too few hours spent in the shop in the last month!
 
mmooossee
 
 
on Jun 20th, 2008, 8:39pm, moose_the_caboose wrote:       (Click here for original message)

i know i'm an old fuddie-duddie, but i figure my amperage needs by taking the max-stall amps of my motors x 2.5 times.  okay, sounds like a lot?!  now, add to that enough 'head-room' so that at full motor capacity, you still have more than 40% more capacity from your control system.  why so much capacity...because things go wrong in a hurry...motors are cheaper than control systems!  
 



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B+MNW21201
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #89 on: Jun 21st, 2008, 9:44pm »
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Stephen this is off-tpoic, but is that an airplane in the background? You are lucky enough to have a hangar for a workshop?  
 
Bobby


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sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #90 on: Jun 21st, 2008, 10:56pm »
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Bobby,
Yes that is an airplane in the background and yes it is a hanger.  That one is not mine, but my other project is an airplane.
 
Stephen


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sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #91 on: Sep 5th, 2008, 11:54pm »
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I am starting to work on the electronics of my locomotive.  I was wondering if anybody has experience with wire size.  I am looking at running 80 Amps (motor rating)  The electronic speed control is rated for 200 Amps.  Any suggestions on wire size.
 
Stephen


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Bear_Creek

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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #92 on: Sep 6th, 2008, 6:09am »
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Stephen, nice looking engine you have there. For wire size, 80 Amps mininum wire size I would go with (based on a 3 wire cable) is # 4 AWG.  
This is acording to the Canadian Electrical Code. You might be able to look through a code book in your area at the local libary.
 
Hope this helps, and good luck
 
Adam


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sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #93 on: Jun 11th, 2009, 11:38am »
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It has been awhile, but what can you do when you get busy on your locomotive.  I have good news.  It is on the track.  I have a few items that still need to be done.  I am going to have it at the train mountain triennial this year.  The initial tested showed about 5-10 draw on the flats and about 25 amps pulling 6 cars up about a 1.5 percent grade.

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sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #94 on: Jun 11th, 2009, 11:40am »
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The locomotive is equipped with a lawnmower engine and a 24v 70 Amp alternator.

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sonex761
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
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« Reply #95 on: Jun 11th, 2009, 11:51am »
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I am planning on a dynamic braking system but as of now it is not built

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dgmarklin
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #96 on: Jun 11th, 2009, 11:21pm »
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Very Very Nice!  I had also thought about that idea many moons ago but never was able to quite get things lined up to build it.  I am looking at one day building a generator car to expand my locomotives battery life time...
 
As for my GE 44, she is getting work done to her!  Today, I located some small bolts to place the hinges on for good, all the doors will be able to be opened, or closed.  I will be locating another battery for the locomotive, since I only still have one deep cycle.  I might have to place the one in a car behind for now, but that's O.K!  
 
Still no reverse, I need to order the solenoids online but have located some to work just fine!  I got the sound card hookup correctly, finally, so that is very exciting to get to play the horn and bell while it's in the garage...
 
Greetings to all here at railfan.net, again...
 
Dean Gordon


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Dean
moose_the_caboose
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #97 on: Jun 15th, 2009, 5:39pm »
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hi all,
 
dean:  glad to see ya back in these parts!  also glad to see that work continues on your loco.  you mentioned that you needed reversing solenoids...latching continuous duty solenoids get rather pricey, so why don't you consider an f-n-r manual switch from a golf cart?  even with 4 poles to deal with, it would make a dandy and heavy-duty reversing switch.  cost runs about $35 on average.  depending on the current you are going to pull, most relays won't handle it.  you could try contactors, but most are built for ac, not dc...those that are, are still pricey.  solenoids normally require power to maintain contact, which means your power supply drains faster.
 
to all:  THE BLUE WELDER IS ALIVE!  gotta rebuilt controller put in it...now it moves under its own power!  some minor repair to the brake system, replace a horn switch, replace a battery or two, and spruce up the paint (red or black) needs be done, but that won't take long.  what's in the future for this thing?  could go down to the bcrr for work-train duty, could go to scout camp in north georgia for a new railroad, or could find its way to north to michigan...who knows?...but its alive!
 
moose


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Dan Watson
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #98 on: Jun 15th, 2009, 6:48pm »
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on Jun 15th, 2009, 5:39pm, moose_the_caboose wrote:       (Click here for original message)
you could try contactors, but most are built for ac, not dc...those that are, are still pricey.  solenoids normally require power to maintain contact, which means your power supply drains faster.

 
Moose, I've been searching for a DPDT contactor with a 24V coil to use as a reversing switch for my electric.  This would allow me to move all the high-current wiring to the loco, and out of the remote control panel.  A 25 amp contactor should be plenty.  Do you know if these contactors require current to the coil for both positions, or just one?  If just one position, I can wire it so that when not energized, the loco would be running forward, then it would only be energized for reverse.  I was thinking about one of these:
 
http://www.buildinghvac.com/acatalog/Products_Mars_43013M_Contactor_25A_DPDT_24V_Coil_43013_3673.html
 
Since I use the controller for starting and stopping, there shouldn't be arcing on the contactor.
 
Thanks for advice.
Dan


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Electric Loco Land!
 
« Reply #99 on: Jun 15th, 2009, 8:41pm »
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hi all,
 
dan:  the contactor you seek is used all the time in aviation support.  do you remember seeing the portable gensets used on small jets?  yes, the parts are expensive.  on to another possible solution, some golf carts are still using continuous use solenoids.  you might be able to find a few in a junk pile.  however, if you want to be bold, try using 1 or 2 igbt's in parallel.  what's an igbt? (I)ntegrated (G)ated (B)i-polar (T)ransistor...a large value transistor that when a set voltage is applied at its' gate, the current is allowed to flow from the collector to the emitter.  it's the big brother of the control circuit in your controller (mosfet).  depending on where you buy, the expense for one of the things can be from $5 to $500.  depending on selected model, they can handle 1 amp to more than 5000 amps...they make them that big!  in the last year, i've been working on a project for an old friend that makes use of them for energy transfer and motor control.  they can be used to turn things on or off.  there are that many variations of them.  i haven't mentioned their use before now because they aren't a tool meant for 'newbie' use.  if a circuit is designed without the requiste safe guards, they'll weld lots of metal..easily, but then, so will contactors.  if you are interested in hearing more, im or email me.  
 
as to the contactor you are looking at, plan on current capacity of 3.5 times the nominal load.  dan, as to your question of how the contactor is powered, they are dpdt, meaning they operate on simple logic.  there's no 'center' off position so there's only one actuation.  they can be used as normally 'open' or normally 'closed'.  if you can afford 2, then i would suggest using one as a fail-safe (normally 'open' removes power from the second one).  you'll be amazed at how somebody can mess up and cause a run-away loco.  the fail-safe contactor should be controlled by a kill switch.  you'll find that even when the contacts are closed, they'll take a whomping.  there is ever so much resistance in closed contacts that at maximum current draw, you need @ 40% more head-room for safety and longevity.  think of it this way, if your cabling gets any warmth at all, they're too small.  the only heat that you should have to disipate should be from the solenoid coil, not the contacts.  i have to laugh at the engineers who think just cheap enough, just capacity enough...and just enough fire extinguisher  
 
on Jun 15th, 2009, 6:48pm, Dan Watson wrote:       (Click here for original message)

 
Moose, I've been searching for a DPDT contactor with a 24V coil to use as a reversing switch for my electric.  This would allow me to move all the high-current wiring to the loco, and out of the remote control panel.  A 25 amp contactor should be plenty.  Do you know if these contactors require current to the coil for both positions, or just one?  If just one position, I can wire it so that when not energized, the loco would be running forward, then it would only be energized for reverse.  I was thinking about one of these:
 
http://www.buildinghvac.com/acatalog/Products_Mars_43013M_Contactor_25A_DPDT_24V_Coil_43013_3673.html
 
Since I use the controller for starting and stopping, there shouldn't be arcing on the contactor.
 
Thanks for advice.
Dan

 
 
moose


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