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Hello again all. Ok so this weeks project is to get the track wired up, and I have questions. Of course I always have questions :p

On hoslotcarracing.com, he provides a schematic for a 4 lane track. What I want to know is this: Is this color coding universal? If I wire it up this way and then hook Parma controllers to it, the red will go to the red, black to black, white to white?

Below I attached Greg Braun's schematic. (Please let me know if that is not kosher with message board policy.)

I ask because once upon a time at my friendly neighborhood 1:24 raceway, I blew a fuse and smoked my controller because I wasn't paying attention and hooked the 3 clips up wrong. Embarassing. Don't want that to happen because one guy's version of color coding didn't line up with Parma's.

Also, this track is wired for brakes. What would be different if it wasn't?

 

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Positive Wiring for single lane with Brakes:

White is power from Positive (+) supply source to white controller terminal.
Black is power from controller terminal to driver's side rail in direction
of travel.
Red is from passenger side rail(direction of travel) back to red controller terminal and Negative (-) side of power source.
 

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The schematic is OK, but don't place the red (brake) post next to the white as you can short the power supply if you accidentally connect them together.

I think the schematic makes it look way more complicated than it is.

Run a white wire from the positive (+) side and a red wire from the negative (-) side of the power supply to each driver's station. Use a large enough conductor (14 ga.) and it can simply be one wire - place a fuse in the white wire.

Run a black wire from each driver's station to one rail and a red wire to the other rail.

This is called "positive" wiring because the controller is placed in the positive wire. Some tracks (Ninco I believe) use "negative" wiring, i.e. placing the controller in the negative wire. This is only an issue for electronic controllers.

I don't have the drawing skills of others, but the sketch below should let you visualize the wring better.



I think what can be confusing is that both the white and black wires are "positive". They are connected by the controller. Think of the controller as a switch.

The red wires are the "negative", "ground" or "neutral". The car completes the circuit between the positive (black) and negative (red).

In a controller with brakes, a "load" is placed in the circuit causing the electric motor to stop spinning.

The sketch is over simplified as you will need connections between the drivers station and track. Greg Braun shows terminal strips. I used wire nuts.



The wires coming through the tables are from the track and are connected to the wires leading to the drivers station.

The white & red twisted wire are the wires from the power supply to the next drivers station.

Search the track building forum as there are many posts on track wiring.

Bob B.
Clifton Park, NY
 

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Isn't the usual standard red = positive and black = negative? That's the way my power supply is marked. Wouldn't it make sense to use that standard on the track wiring as well? Just asking...

Todd
 

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yes and no.
the standard in the slot car industry is as stated above for whatever reason. the brake coming into play needs the extra warning of the red color I think.
on a track without a brake circuit, it is not as important.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks once again for the replies fellas. A couple of follow up (and sorta random) questions.

1. Assuming I went by the original schematic, or rbrunne's, how would the controller hookups work if I was to just use stock race set (no brake)controllers? One controller lead to black, one to red?

2. What would be different in the track wiring if I were to forgo wiring the track for brakes? Is it just a matter of leaving something out, or is it wired completely different? (this is more out of curiosity than anything)

3. Assuming the track is wired for brakes, and I'm using controllers with brakes, what is it that would cause a short out? (one of the black or white controller leads hooked onto the red peg?)
 

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1. one to white one to black, the white lead comes from the positive post on the battery and the black lead goes to the left rail of the track in the direction you are running. you vary the voltage through the controller that way.

2. the red lead from the battery/power supply would go directly to the right rail of the track in the direction you intend to run.

3. the black lead from the controller being put on the white post ( positive lead from the battery ) while the red lead from the controller is attached to the red post ( negative lead from the battery ).
 

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I agree with Al :D

Don't over think the wiring. What seems to confuse everyone is that since a controller has two leads, one should go to plus and the other should go to negative. The controller is like a switch and switches are placed in-line with one side of the circuit to control a "load". In slot cars, the car is the "load" that you're controlling.

I agree that the color coding is confusing, too. In home wiring, black is "hot" (positive) & white is "neutral (negative). You would never want to directly connect black to white!

I'm not sure how in slot cars black became positive and red became negative - the exact reverse of most power supplies.

The reason this convention is important is that if other people come to your track, they'll hook up their controllers properly.

If the controllers are hooked up properly...no short. If you use posts, the alligator clip from the white post could simply touch the red post causing a short...that's why you want the black post in between. Plugs or recessed posts are safer for that reason...you can't accidentally contact two connectors.

Search the forum as there have been numerous posts explaining all this in great detail.

Bob B.
 

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Trevor it might be easier to think of the white wire and the black wire as one wire.
One end of the white wire goes to the positive side of your power,and one end goes out to your left rail.
Where the white and black wires would be joined or spliced together is where your controller goes.
Then you run another wire from the other (righthand) rail directly back to the negative side of your power supply
Brakes can be retro-fitted at anytime down the road.
The red brake wire goes directly to your negative post on the power supply.
The guys above have pretty well got it laid out.
It helps if you can draw yourself a picture,i use a pencil and paper lots to lay out wiring diagrams.
Draw out your 2 track rails,and your positive and negative of your power supply,then run a pencil line from the positive side of your power to your white controller post,then another pencil line from the black controller post to your left rail,then the third pencil line goes from the right rail back to the negative side of your power.
A fourth pencil line goes from the red brake post also back to the negative side of your power supply:wave:
Rick
 

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Rick - that's just how i was trying to explain it, but that's much clearer :thumbsup:

One other tip: build your assemblies (i.e. driver's stations and power taps) using the color coded wires. Once you have the proper color wires in place, it's just a matter of connecting white to white, black to black & red to red ;)

Bob B.
 

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Thought I would post this one since no one else has yet. We used it to wire our 4 lane Tomy with reverse switches at each drivers station. Believe it or not, turned on the power and the whole thing worked!

 
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