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New HO Proto PA Acts Like A Generator? October 21, 1998

Posted by on Jan 9, 2014 in Locomotives, Tony's Tips | 0 comments

New Lifelike Proto PA units are causing problems for DCC users.

1. Stall current is over 2 Amps so choose an appropriate decoder.

2. Two PA’s in consist may have sufficient starting load to cause most DCC 5 Amp boosters to go into fault mode.

3. Heavy flywheels cause locos to coast when throttles are off. Motor rotation during coasting generates back EMF (motor acts as generator) effectively doubling motor voltage & current. This can reduce a decoder to ashes pronto!

4. Solutions

  • Use decoders rated above 2 Amps like DG-380.
  • Remove flywheels.
  • Use limiting resistor (TBD).
  • Remotor (TBD).
  • Use load comp decoder (TBD).
  • Life Like is studying the issue.

Note: NMRA plug/socket connections rated at 1 Amp should not be used.

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