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New Member
Building an 11 x 14 U-shaped N-Scale layout. I'm using code 80 Atlas Snap track. All the track is down, and I'm using an MRC Prodigy Elite 10amp DCC system. I did not solder the track. I have stringers down, but when trying to run my Kato EMD SD70M with a TCS K1D4 decoder, I get stutter starts, stops, and no movement. I checked the voltage with a DCC voltmeter and have power to the rails. What can I do for more reliable train running?


Same Ol' Buzzard
First of all, welcome aboard to our forum.
I would first look at the loco wheels and make sure that they are clean. I would also clean the track, even if it is new. Use an old tee shirt and some 90% alcohol if you have nothing else.


New Member
Willie, thanks for the Welcome. I did clean the track with rubbing alcohol first, then ran the train. It seemed that after a few minutes, it would stutter out. Now, it won't even pcik up any currnent. I know I'm going to maintenance the engine, but I just ran another engine and after a few minutes, it too started to stutter out. Track is mostly new track, and I "glued" it to the roadbed with latex caulking.


New Member
To the question posted in the "Help" section, I did clean the tracks before running any trains. I had a different engine run around the layout 2-4 times, then it started to stutter-stop too. Thinking I'll need to drop several more feeders at the very least.

PRR Modeler

Well-Known Member
Welcome to the forum. A couple questions:

1. Does the track use joiners? If so are they tight?
2. Does every piece of track have feeder wires (especially if no rail joiners) otherwise about every 3 feet.
3. If rail joiners are used solder them for a good electrical connection.
4. Do the locos lose power in the same spot?
5. Check track with a small level to rule out dips or bulges.
6. Verify that you have good solders with the feeders.

Hope this helps.


I didn't know MRC even made DCC throttles. But assuming you're OK here, as PRR says above, are the rail joiners tight ?...I do disagree with the idea of needing feeders, because if, IF the joiners are tight, and/or soldered you then have a completely reliable circuit..
My last layout benchwork was against a wall, about 33' long x 5' at one end and slimmed down to about 1.5' at other end, then made a 90 deg turn to an 8' x 1.5 yard and I had zero stallouts nor loss of power throughout, using an NCE PowerCab sometimes running 1 or 2 other trains slowly at same time with a walk-around tethered satellite throttle... You also can build the track system and add a feeder/s if you start noticing a power problem in a particular area/s..


New Member
MRC has had DCC for several years. It was the first DC transformers I had when I got into N scale a very long time ago so I'm comfortable with the company. I have started to solder track and still have some stutter stops. I'm working on a small section of the track to get it to run perfect then use that knowledge to improve the rest of the layout. I'm dropping feeders and testing with two different engines for comparison. It's very frustrating to have all this and still cannot get reliable train running. sigh

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