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 The Tam Valley Depot DCC Booster

This review is a work in progress, not completely through with the installation and testing.

 


DCC Booster board without the power supply.  These boards can be used to make locomotive Power Districts or an Accessory District with a shared power supply.  A jumper is used to set either Accessory Mode or Power District Mode.  Each board can supply up to 3 Amps continuous duty and 5 Amp peak with a suitable power supply.  
  1. Max power supply voltage: 40V
  2. Power Connector: 5.5 mm (outer)/ 2.1 mm (inner) barrel plug, center positive
  3. DCC input: optically isolated, 5-24 Volts (voltage level on the DCC input pins has no effect on output voltage level)
  4. DCC Connectors: Screw blocks
  5. Max output: 5 Amps for short periods, 3 Amps continuous
  6. Peak-to-peak output voltage: Power Supply voltage minus 0.8-1.4 volts (decreasing with load and independent of voltage on the DCC input)
  7. Short Trip Point: 5.6 Amps
  8. Short Trip Off Time: 1 microsecond
  9. Short Trip Recovery Time: 200 microseconds
  10. No Auto-reverse
  11. Board Size: 3" long x 2.5" wide x 0.5" deep (including heatsink) (76mm x 64mm x 12mm).  Green blocks extend another 0.3" (8mm)

Suggested retail price is $49.95

 

 120 power plug P5128797 120 power plug P5128796  120 power plug P5128798  375 booster 1 3 P5128795
Look at these three pictures closely. The booster comes shipped with the connectors in place. I point this out because it was not obvious to me the connectors could be removed, much less repositioned to a vertical position. I found it much easier and reliable to remove the connectors before inserting the wires.  1 of my 3 boosters has a cold solder joint perhaps agrivated by my torquing the screws while the connector was on the board.  Just looking at these pictures helps to see what I am talking about.  

I am in the process of installing and tuning 3 of these units. My intent is to power the entire layout with them. I am also converting my 12 vac accessory bus to a DCC bus. I'm using a PS2012 to power my command station a Lenz LZV100 and the 3 boosters. Each track booster has a dedicated RRamp meter to monitor the zones with each booster driving into a PSX-2 dual circuit breaker from DCC Specialties.

Pros:  

  1. Low cost, < half the cost of most DCC boosters.
  2. Runs off the DCC Track output of the command station,
  3. Simple wiring, only two wires in and two out plus power of course.
  4. The removalbe connectors are NICE, easy peasy connections.
  5. Simple jumper changes the booster behaviour from track to DCC Accessory

Cons:

  1. Cannot adjust output voltage
  2. Would have preferred the in and out be on opposite ends of the board
  3. No connection to remote monitor tripped or on states for large layouts
  4. I don't like the 5 minute automatic turn-off.  I've asked for it to be optioned so it stays on until I turn it off by removing power.
  5. Too few dealers, not a lot of product out there.

 

 

 

 

 

 
   

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