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Is DCC what you are looking for?

David K Thompson author of the DCC Help e-book contributed this article to share:

Is DCC what I am looking for?

dcc technology for model trains

The DCC layout has several advantages over the conventional DC railroad model, but the end decision on whether or not you should get it for your project depends upon your considerations and requirements.

At the end of the day, it is all about ease of use, functionality, and worth based on the money. So, make sure you keep the following points in mind before deciding upon DCC as your final choice for your personal railroad model!

  • The Size of the Project – The magic of DCC is fully felt in large-size models – they do not need to have extensive accessories and a large number of branches and multi-tracks, but the larger-than-life experience is what makes DCC so functional and popular amongst hobbyists.
  • Even if your layout is simple, a large layout with multiple trains running within the same control simultaneously is what is the main advantage of DCC. However, if you want a small layout with only a single person operating a single train, then DCC won’t do anything special for you.
  • Go for DCC if you wish to control more than one train on the same layout at the same time!
  • The Number of Users to Operate the Model – DCC gives you the functionality of adding multiple throttles that can be used by different users at the same time to control different trains. The throttles can also be walk-around or wireless, which makes the experience more fun and exciting. So, if you are looking for that kind of multi-user experience, DCC should be the top choice on your list!
  • The Final Track work Setup – DCC operation does not require any extensive wiring skills, but it should be done with care and expertise to avoid any disruptions and short circuits. The track will have to be clean at all times, and free from any kinks and additional switching that can complicate things.
    The existing wiring does not need to be changed much – just the BUS wires have attached feeders, which are then to be connected and soldered correctly to the track keeping the polarity in mind. Using different colored wires and a good wiring diagram will do the trick.
    You do need to have any exceptional wiring skills – basic soldering and usage of wiring equipment will work just fine. So, if you are a beginner looking for minimum hassle and a straightforward wiring criterion, DCC will work great for you!
  • Cost and Budget Considerations – The DCC system may seem to be heavy on the pocket at the initial stages, because the investment in the decoders, the control station, and the boosters may seem to be pretty expensive.
    However, rest assured, a sound investment done once on the system will keep you happy and occupied for several years to come and you do not need to spend on any additional maintenance as well if you take the necessary measures for short circuits.
  • Many inexpensive and cost-effective systems are easily available in the market. So, for the record, a DCC layout is well worth the money it comes for!

For more help on DCC go here

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