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NCE Throttle Confusion

John models in N scale and asks:

“So I’m getting into DCC for the first time and a while back I purchased a 7623 Baltimore & Ohio steam locomotive. Next, I was trying to find an NCE starter set but couldn’t find one in stock. I did find an NEC Deluxe Pro Cab (R); rbo2 radio base station; p114 power supply and a Power Cab Panel which I thought could get me running. I now realize I’m needing to purchase a command station to send the power and signal mix to the track. Looking online all I see are Power Cab lineups but nothing explaining the use of just the Deluxe Pro Cab lineup. I have a 3×5 setup I’m putting together and not into buying the Power cab throttle. At this point, I’m looking at an NCE 52 4008 CS 02 command station. My question is, is this command station going to do the trick? I don’t want to go thru the expense of buying this if it’s not what I need to finally run the locomotive using the NEC ProCab.”

7 Responses to NCE Throttle Confusion

  • John Newmansays:

    Basically what NCE command station will work with the ProCab not having the power pro throttle?

  • Tom Osterdocksays:

    I’m not quite sure what you are asking so… I think you bought the procab hand held throttle. I did the same thing to be able to run on my modular groups layouts. That works great but I could not use it on a layout at home since not command station. I then bought a layout and it came with a powercab system which works but I can not use my procab with it. It also had a engineers hand held which worked with it also. I wanted to get a system to be able to operate the procab and powercab together and the engineer throttles also and more. So the question is wired or wireless. In the modular groups I run in the southern group uses NCE and the northern group uses MRC. I like both systems and have hand helds for both systems. Our systems on the modules are wired using RJ45 connnectors and cabling. Then either system and including Digitrax will work just fine. MRC sys uses the RJ45s which is an eight wire system and the NCE system uses RJ12 which is a 6 wire system and digitrax uses a 4 wire system. So we use RJ45s for our modules. All the systems have a center alignment pin that is plastic to put the cable into the RJ45s and that centers the cables. So the digitrax uses the center 4 wires and NCE uses the center 6 wires and MRC uses all the wires. now the three systems are not compatible to work together so only one system can be used at a time. If I go south my modules do not need any new wiring to operate on NCE system and North it works just fine for the MRC system. Now this is just added info for you. now About the NCE systems. I decided instead of going wired I would get the wireless system for my home use.With the wireless system I can use the wireless handhelds just fine. the wireless system is also plugged into my module bus so all the wired connections work So my engineer cabs can be connected to it the powercab is not the boss now so it also works just fine and the procabs also work just fine. The antenna for the wireless also plugs into the wired bus for wireless control. So the wired systems will work just fine with all the cabs and the wireless will also work just fine. I have the NCE PH PRO-r 5 amp wireless system. I could get the 10 amp system but so far I don’t need that much power and my system is just less the booster that the 10 amp system uses. I can get that system any time I find I need it. Our modular group has the 10 amp system. Just so you know I have both wireless systems MRC and NCE. Any of my friends can come run on my system and no problems. You can get answers with http://www.ncedcc.com. You can also call them and they are very helpful. I got my systems from ebay and I looked for the system I wanted and googled it to find who carried it and looked for the best prices. If you are not in a hurry then there are sales at different times. just watch and look. If you have questions on all that I have told you which is actually quite a lot and more than you need but now you can see where I am coming from and can contact me anytime you need.
    Tom Osterdock

  • David Stokessays:

    Ahhhh – the joys of DCC. Just two wires and you can run 99 locos they said. Yere, Right!

    I confess that I am seriously considering going down the DCC path, but not before I’ve done a lot more research and put an application into the UN for financial assistance.

    • The N-Scale Nerdsays:

      Whilst I too started with NCE, I’m going down their path. Their DR5000 talks to EVERYTHING!! You get USB, WiFi or LAN connection to the controller, which also has ports for LocoNet B Loconet T, ext88N, RS Bus,and a couple of others I’ve never even heard of!! Screw terminals for Track Ouput and Programming Track output too, at 3 Amps. Multi-output voltage power supply included. The free software comes with throttles for controlling locos and it also has a switch board for testing turnouts.

      You can use you tablet or phone to wirelessly connect to the system using a Train Driver app, too.

      They also have a transponder product which gives you 16 channels for under $A20 a channel

      For Automation, you are going to have to go down the path of software. That’s a whole other story, but I started with JMRI.

  • Murray Russellsays:

    You’re right Dave, research is the key!!! It sounds like what you bought John was everything but the command station. NCE command station #CS02 is the current one. On a 3′ x 5′ with a single locomotive this is going to be a little bit of over kill. What you really could have used was a NCE POWER cab, not a Pro cab. The Power Cab comes with a PCP panel which allows you to program your loco and send the signal to the track. They are really great . They were marketed as the NCE “nothing wasted” growth plan as you could add to it as you expanded your layout. I run a HO shelf style layout, modeling 1990 BC rail that is approximately 100 linear feet of single track (plus sidings) and the only thing I added was a NCE SB5 booster

  • Howard Blasczyksays:

    It appears you bought the Pro Cab throttle. It requires a PowerHouse or Power Pro NCE system to operate (which has a Command Station and power supply). This is typically used on a club layout or a large basement home layout
    The PowerCab system includes everything you need to get a small home DCC layout up and running. It includes the hand held programmer/controller, a power supply, a plug-in panel, and a flat 6-wire cable. The PowerCab is also supplied with a 4-wire coiled cable that allows it to be used as a controller on the PowerHouse or Power Pro NCE systems.
    The club I belong to has a Power Pro system and I have the PowerCab at home.

  • Frank Bsays:

    Do research before you buy anything. Obtain and read a basic book on DCC.

    This will enable you to get an overview of the system requirements, to decide on what you want to do, and what equipment you need to do it.

    You can download for free the various manufacturer’s manuals from their websites, which show you what you need, and how to set up their systems.

    All NMRA standard DCC manufacturer’s control systems will work with all DCC manufacturer’s loco decoders. (There are only a few proprietary systems that are not compatible with others.)

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