Powered Tortoise Adapter

Direct Base Tortoise Adapter

Our Powered Tortoise Adapter is a handy problem solver for modules and distant Tortoise motors. Tortoise machines are most commonly controlled using our Direct Base Systems which handle multiple machines from a single base. 

This Powered Tortoise Adapter mounts right on a Tortoise! So easy to mount and wire – It’s a single Tortoise powering control base built into a socket adapter. Just connect to DC, or DCC power, plug in a Touch Toggle and go! The Touch Toggle plugs right in at the turnout, so wires are all short and simple. Power it with AC, DCC, or DC without worrying about polarity!

Great for modules, the Powered Tortoise Adapter lets you operate with fewer components and the least amount of wiring. This no-solder design makes the ultimate in field-serviceable control. Use our 3-Pin Extension Cables to reach Toggles more than 10″ away.

This powered adapter is also a great solution for lonely turnouts and crossovers far from the busier areas with lots of switches. Pair it with a Mini-Cup Toggle to eliminate the need for a panel too.

Use our new Twin-Toggle model to be controlled from two Touch Toggles in separate locations! Plug both Touch Toggles into this adapter and touch either one to operate the turnout. Both Touch Toggles will change to correctly display the turnout position. Great for Freemo and other two-sided operations. (For 3 Toggle operation use our Multi-Input Adapter instead)

The Powered Tortoise Adapters have motor power output terminals to power a second Tortoise in a crossover situation. Use a Tortoise Easy Wire Adapter for the second machine if you’d like to make all your connections plug-and-play.

dbta-rAn indicator light on the Powered Tortoise Adapter changes color to match the Touch Toggle, so you can see what’s going on even while under the layout. Simply rotate the base to reverse the turnout’s red and green positions, or move a handy jumper to reverse the operation when you’re in a tight spot.

Onboard power correction lets you run the machine from either 12v AC, DCC track power (10-16v), or a 12v DC buss; Either way you won’t need to worry about polarity. Only 40ma (.040 amps) are needed to power a Tortoise and a Touch Toggle together. DCC can be wired from the track or from a supply buss. DC can be supplied from any supply; even old unfiltered power packs.  You can create a simple DC buss using your own wire, our 12v Power Supply, and a DC Terminal Output Adapter.  Read About Power For Touch Toggles for more information.

Please note: This powered adapter can only be powered from 2 wires on the terminal strip! It does not have a barrel connector, so usually it is used separately from our standard table-mounted Direct Bases. For a traditionally wired control base try our Direct Base 2 for about the same price.

Also: This is a powered adapter. If you are looking for our un-powered adapter to use with a Direct Base please use our Tortoise Switch Machine Easy-Wire Adapters.

Motor power is available right at the terminals, so it’s easy to operate a second Tortoise in a crossover from just one base-adapter. You can use that power to operate signal lighting too!

DBTA_siteImportant Note: Like our popular Tortoise Switch Machine Easy-Wire Adapters, this base has a different connection order than the Tortoise. No matter how you think about it, the original Tortoise contact order is hard to get right, especially upside down and backwards working under the layout.

Our motor power output connection is at the center of the terminal strip. You’ll only need to connect to these if you are running signal lights or a second Tortoise in a crossover situation.

The switch contacts are the outer three contacts on either side. In our adapters, the common contact is in the center of each group of three. The left and right contacts are to the left and right.

This order seems neater, easier to remember, and makes them consistent with the terminal order of our other products.

We offer the Powered Tortoise Adapter alone, or in packages that come with the needed Touch Toggle.

Choose below to select the style of Touch Toggle that suits your design. Toggles come with one of three light arrangements with different appearances but identical in function. Read More about Touch Toggles

Add a Tortoise Switch Machine Easy-Wire Adapter to your package to add a plug-in addition for a second Tortoise in a crossover.

Two Light Red/Green Touch Toggles
One Light Red/Green Touch Toggles

Our Mini-Cup Toggles are ready-to-install fascia controls that fit in a 1″ hole in the front of your layout. Now in one-light and two-light versions.


If you are ordering our mechanical Push Button Toggles for Lionel and High Rail systems, these do not have wire pigtails. Be sure to choose the required 3-pin extensions. Mini-cup mounts in packages are for red-green 2 lights. Choose other Mini-Cup mounts, snd LED options in the Push Button Toggle page


Legal stuff: This product contains chemicals known to the state of California to cause cancer (lead). Unused or retired products should be recycled properly or may be returned to Berrett Hill for disposal in accordance with RoHS standards.

The Tortoise switch machine and trademark are property of Circutron.

We manufacture our products in the USA. Orders over $140 include free shipping to US addresses.

Click on the description to choose the right parts from the pop-up menu, and set the correct quantity below.


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