Consisting Information

This section covers 3 topics:

1) What is Consisting: See below.
2) NMRA DCC Consisting:  A vendor independent discussion of the types and the advantages and disadvantages of each type.
3) Consisting Term Confusion:  A translation table of each DCC system manufactures terms relative to NMRA terms on consisting.




What is Consisting?

Consisting also goes by another names such as MU or Multi-Unit, Locomotive Lashup, Double Header ect.

It simply means the combining of multiple engines to work together on pulling the same train under the control of a master throttle.  A "helper set" is a consisted set of engines the responds to a single throttle.   In steam days, the combined engines but the lead engines was the master engineer who signaled the other engines engineers what to do via whistle blows.  With Diesels "MU cables" tie the engines together and in modern times radio is also used to remote control unmanned helpers allowing one engineer to control a train of any length.


NMRA DCC Consisting

DCC system all suport consisting in one method or more.  Using NMRA Consisting terms, they are 3 basic forms with each offering advantages over the others depending on your point of view is or goals.  They are.

1) Address
2) Basic
3) Advanced

Combining methods or "Hybrid Versions" are also allowed.

To learn more about various form the advantages each, see: NMRA DCC Consisting


Consisting Term Confusion/ Translating Terminology

With the 3 type supported and hybrid versions of them this has lead to some Consisting Term confusion.  It comes from the fact that:

a) Not all DCC system manufacture will use all of the available consisting methods that are supported by the DCC standards.  

b) Not all DCC system manufactures, for various reasons (marketing), are consistent with the terminology used to talk about the same consisting methods.


To get the consisting naming story straight, go here: Consisting Term Confusion