Tech Tips Circuit Breakers

Our circuit breaker kits were originally designed for the purpose of saving the solid-state circuits in some of the modern enginesw, but we have discovered other really cool things they can be   how do used for.


When doing our layouts we are careful to make sure the pins are nice and tight and are clean both out and inside the rail tubes. But are they?

Here’s how to find out. After you install your kit, turn the power all the way up on the transformer. Take a screwdriver and short out the center rail to an outside nrail very near to where it is connected to the track. The kits breaker should open almost immediately. If I. In no case should the transformer blow its breaker before the kits. If it doesn’t you either do not have it installed improperly, or you have a transformer problem. Note the kit is designed to work with transformers larger than 125 watts. A smaller transformer may not have enough oomp to trip the kit. If it does not work properly call us.

Now assuming it does trip the breaker, take your screwdriver and go to the far end of your layout and repeat the screwdriver test. If it blows the breaker, great you did a great job of installing your tracks! What if it doesn’t?  Worked by the transformer why doesn’t it work at the far end?

It’s because you don’t have enough current there to blow the breaker. Not surprising, no matter how careful you are, the facts are the current is flowing thru lots of connections. Every place you have a connection you will lose some power. Immediate solution. Run a wire from the output of the kit going to the track to the center rail where you did the test and repeat the screwdriver test. If now it blows that’s great, problem solved. If it still does not blow, the problem may be in the outside rails. If that is the case then run an additional wire for the outside rails.

In the process it is a good idea to do the screwdriver test at various points on your layout.