Thursday, October 6, 2011

Add terminal strips to DCC Specialities PSX-1

OK, so this is not exactly a decoder install.  But I found that I really like these solid state DCC circuit breakers and figured anyone who was into DCC in any scale might benefit from this information.

This is a great little unit for setting up power districts on a larger layout.  It's a solid state circuit breaker that will trip when there is a short on the track and then clear itself when the short is cleared.  The basic hookup is real easy and there are also options on the board for the following:
  • Track power on remote LED
  • Track shorted remote LED,
  • Block occupied input
  • Block occupied remote LED
In my application I was installing 6 of these into a portable DCC power unit for a modular layout, that might be another post sometime.

The board comes with the green terminal strips on the ends for the DCC in and out but nothing for the other external connections I wanted to use.  I did not want to just solder the wires to the holes and the instruction sheet only says "Available from your dealer".

The spacing between the holes on the board for J4, J5, J6, J7, & J11 I thought was somewhat uncommon at 3.5mm but I was able to find a perfect fit.  Because all of the holes are in even numbers and the functions connections in pairs, I decided to use a 2 position terminal strip.  This type of terminal strip can be mechanically linked together to form a larger terminal strip as needed. 

I wanted to use the optional connections for track power ON and track shorted remote LEDs but the terminal strips I found will work for any of the external connections related to any of the optional functions.

Source:  Digi-key Corp.
              701 Brooks Ave. South
              P.O. Box 677
              Thief River Falls, MN 56701-0677

Here is the information for the terminal strips.  It is actually cheaper to just get the 2 position ones and link them together as needed to make bigger terminal strips.

 Digi-Key Part #      Description                                                 Cost
281-1402-ND          Weidmuller 4-pos 3.5mm pitch terminal          1.89
281-1400-ND          Weidmuller 2-pos 3.5mm pitch terminal            .89

 Here is a link to the DCC Specialities instruction for the PSX-1:

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