View single post by jtrain
 Posted: Wed Jan 1st, 2014 03:44 pm
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Joined: Sun May 27th, 2012
Location: Missoula, Montana USA
Posts: 1000
Diodes operate like a one way valve, allowing electricity to flow in one direction, but not the other.

I believe most parts have a voltage rating. I'd go to a circuit store or an electronics store rather than radio shack anyways, they know cell phones, but they don't know electronics (at least that has been my experience). I'd check the labels on the diodes and pick up about 12 or so.

Also, Amps need to be considered. Amperes in G scale can reach 5 amps for one locomotive while in HO scale, you could run a 5 engine consist and barely touch 5 amps.

Since diodes are essentially a one way resistor, the diode will step down the current a certain amount, and thus will have a certain "maximum" voltage the diode can take. However, assuming the diode acts like a regular resistor, there is no minimum voltage.

So if it works for large scale, it should work for all smaller scales, but a small diode on an On30 display may not be big enough for large scale.

Here is a link to an article which explains the details well:


Last edited on Wed Jan 1st, 2014 03:50 pm by jtrain

James W.

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