Tortoise Switch Machine Hum

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#1
Do Tortoise Switch Machines Hum? Mine seem to have a hum when idle. I just started using them and I thought that after they switched, they would cut off. On the other hand, if they cut off completely, I suppose they would not be able to reverse when polarity is reversed. Need help understanding what is happening.
 

D&J RailRoad

Professor of HO
#2
Tortoise machines are stall machines. In other words, they will continue to be powered for the last direction assigned until the polarity is reversed again.
They are supposed to be run on DC power, but you can also power them with skewed AC, pretty much the same principle of running DC locomotives on DCC power. If that is what you're doing, running on skewed DCC, you will get a hum. That application will eventually overheat the motor and burn it out.
 

Rico

BN Modeller
#3
I have a lot of tortoises but I've never heard them hum.
(I guess they know the words?)
What are you powering them with? Im using NCE switch eights on a DCC Digitrax system.
I think Ken may be on to something?
 

Greg@mnrr

Section Hand
#4
I use an adjustable DC power wall wart from Radio Shack that I use the 9 volt setting to run the Tortoise which number over 20 or so on the layout.

Greg
 
#6
Do Tortoise Switch Machines Hum? Mine seem to have a hum when idle. I just started using them and I thought that after they switched, they would cut off. On the other hand, if they cut off completely, I suppose they would not be able to reverse when polarity is reversed. Need help understanding what is happening.
What are you using to power them?
 

Greg@mnrr

Section Hand
#8
Bieland: Yes, I run all of my Tortoise off of one power source and I would have to check the output but I believe it's likely 500 milliamps of current at 12 volts DC. Nice power pack with adjustable output and internal curcuit breaker. Paid under $20.00.

Here's info from Circuitron's website about the the Tortoise machines....

"110 volt AC wall plug adapter outputs filtered 12 volts DC at up to 500 milliamps of current. Sufficient to power up to 30 TORTOISE™ Switch Machines. Also ideal for powering many of CIRCUITRON’s electronic circuits when a filtered DC power source is specified."

Greg

PS: Hobbytronics you beat me to the post. -Greg
 
#10
This afternoon I worked within feet of maybe five or six Tortoise machines and not a sound coming from them. Only a gear type noise when changing positions.

Just a thought, what is the output of the power supply?

Try a different DC power supply connected to the #1 and #8 terminals. Then see what happens or try one at the workbench with the current power supply and then try another power supply with DC output.

Lets know what you find out.

Greg
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
#11
I've got a whole bunch of Tortoise machines I purchased used,...likely many more than I will end up utilizing. If I test out their movement and all is OK, then can I be assured the rest of the 'machine' is OK?

I understand these are very reliable switch machines.
 

Rico

BN Modeller
#12
I Just thought of something, if you soldered the connections on the tortoise make sure there's no bridging between any of the terminals. A tiny short might hum or buzz, it will on higher voltages anyway.
 
#13
Beiland: Don't forget that the Tortoise have two sets of contacts for signals and other uses that could be defective. It highly unlikely that these contacts could be defective, but there are two sets should one be bad.

Greg
 





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