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Messages - Tom

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It was a little disturbing to read the comments on this string.  The Ring response to Heath came across to me as more defensive and disdainful of RPUG than anything else.  Ring says “We know one of the user on the user group is a criminal.  We know that he has violated both copyright law and EULA license agreement laws in the past.”  That could be true or not, but to indict the entire forum seems not to serve any purpose other than to alienate the most avid supporters of his products.

On the other side, I do not have the Hughesnet problem, so do not totally understand it.  But, if one trip “to use the wifi at McDonalds in order to use Rings server” is what it would take to download the RailPro Assistant software which could then be used to via Hughesnet to then download sounds, lights pictures, etc. to an HC-2, I would do it in a heartbeat.

RailPro Software Updates / Re: New Ultimate Series HORNS and WHISTLES
« on: December 21, 2018, 06:05:04 PM »
Anyone know when Ring is going to have an EMD567 ULT?

General Discussion / HO LOCOMOTIVE REPAIR
« on: October 25, 2018, 03:49:01 PM »
Can anyone recommend an HO locomotive repair shop?

I have a Proto 2000 Berkshire which initially would stop occasionally due to motor overload and then became increasingly frequent until it will not run at all.  The local repair shop said it was the linkage binding up and loosened it to allow it to run for a while longer.  It has bound up permanently now and he does not want (thinks it cannot be corrected) to work on it.

To make matters worse, it fell off of a table and there are quite a few plastic pieces from the front of the engine that I do not know how to put back together.  Obviously would not want anyone dealing with this until the linkage binding is fixed.

Any suggestions on whom to contact would be appreciated.

RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: Making a Lanyard for your RailPro HC
« on: October 23, 2018, 07:40:30 PM »
I had not run across this post before, but am very interested.  When using the HC-2 I feel comfortable holding in my hand, when not wanting to do that it is easy with a small layout to just lay it on the table and even manipulate the HC2 there.  I see the problem as what to do with it for a few minutes when one does not want to hold it. I am betwixt and between on the lanyard vs. the belt/key chain.

So what is the “standard” method used by the DCC crowd for their hand held controllers which are sometimes cell phones?  And, BTW, what about some kind of a holster?


New Users Start Here / Re: Introduce Yourself...
« on: September 13, 2018, 09:42:58 AM »
Hello all.  As a kid living near the main lines of the New York Central and Nickle Plate a stones throw from each other, I enjoyed the parade on many summer days, especially the steam.  I dabbled with some HO during those years, but dropped it for 50+ years.  Even after having been retired for a number of years, it took a lost Rivarossi berkshire during a downsizing household move used once a year on a 4 x 5 board with a Christmas tree in the middle to rekindle the interest.  While researching my options for DCC, it took a while before stumbling across RailPro.  Not being a wizard at any of this, it just seemed that RailPro was technologically way ahead of the DCC stuff.  So here I am with my very modest RailPro 4 x 8 layout in my 12 x 12 office.

Tom Hanson

RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: Loco stoping
« on: September 02, 2018, 06:14:36 PM »
I would like to jump on this thread with a related problem that is very perplexing.

I have one turnout with the frog powered by an AR-1.  One of five locomotives stops > 50% of the time in one direction on the turnout, but not the other.  The AR-1 light changes dutifully each time the direction is changed indicating it is working – I think.  This one locomotive does not stop anywhere else, including 3 Caboose 220S Sprung w/contacts, .165 ground throws.

Is there any possible explanation for this?


RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: STANDARD DC
« on: August 21, 2018, 09:49:01 AM »
Thanks to all for the comments, no LokSound it is with little trepidation.  Also added to my knowledge base on related issues.


RailPro Discussion & Help / STANDARD DC
« on: August 20, 2018, 09:02:01 AM »
I am considering two preorder locomotives from Walthers, and naturally do not want to waste money for the LokSound.  The two options are:

•   EMD SD9 - Standard DC -- Nickel Plate Road 353 (As delivered, black, yellow)
•   EMD SD9 with ESU LokSound Select and DCC -- Nickel Plate Road 341 (As delivered, black, yellow)

I have always understood that DCC ready is what I want for LM-3S installation to run with a PWR-56.  Now I have to contend with “Standard DC.”

Will the Standard DC work with an LM-3S and a PWR-56, or for that matter DCC if a locomotive with LM-3S installed is taken to a club?  If not, can it be modified to work with little expense?

Thanks to anyone who can help.


RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: Sound Setup Help
« on: August 14, 2018, 06:29:56 PM »
One option is to update the LM-3S software as they do not always come with the latest version installed.  I have noticed that the CI-1 can be a little cantankerous.  Maybe just copy the sounds again onto the LM-3S and/or download to the CI-1 then copy to the LM-3S again.


OK, I do not understand most of this (use an installer myself), but if there is a very real potential for a quirky aspect of the LM-2 vis-à-vis the motor, factory circuit board, or whatever else, Ring might be willing to look at the locomotive with those various parts to see if he can figure it out.  I have sent a locomotive with the LM-2 installed to Ring and it turned out the LM-2S was defective, which was rectified.


RailPro Discussion & Help / RAILPRO LONGEVITY
« on: August 11, 2018, 05:33:12 PM »
I selected RailPro without much investigation into DCC for a small startup HO model railroad because it seemed to be more technologically robust.  Much has been posted here about RailPro vs. DCC and one of the more significant negatives is concern with how long Ring will stay in business, tempered with the suggestion that the downside is minimal in that without Ring one may eventually be forced to buy a DCC power supply and/or DCC controller to keep running LM modules.

I have no recollection of how I even ran across RailPro while looking for options, but I obviously did:

•   I am wondering how Ring markets RailPro products since I have not noticed any advertising and often the products are omitted from generalized internet searches that should identify them?

•   And, since existing RailPro users would seem to have a vested interest in seeing it grow, I am curious as to what RPUG members do, or could do, beyond word of mouth to promote their own interests?  A very large portion of model railroaders are heavily invested in the old DCC, resist new technologies (possibly due to marginal gains vs. expense), and definitely promote their interests (I have experienced it).


RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: MOTOR FULL LOAD CURRENT
« on: August 04, 2018, 10:48:54 AM »

Thank you for the great picture.  I am assuming that “RECTIFIED FILTERED DCC INSIDE THE MODULE” is, at least roughly, the same as “REGULATED DC ON THE RAILS AND INSIDE THE MODULE.”

Since I have no familiarity with DCC, one last question: is a DCC decoder doing essentially the same thing as a Ring Module (the middle row) for power, in addition to picking up command signals from the rails instead of over the air?

RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: MOTOR FULL LOAD CURRENT
« on: August 02, 2018, 06:14:56 PM »
I am happy to learn that manually setting the MFLC to anything will not harm an HO locomotive motor.

I should say I have had only a very few problems when consisting multiple locomotives, mainly uncoupling in certain circumstances due to one pulling or pushing slightly harder than the other.

Having said this, it is still demonstrable that linked but separated locomotives, mine anyway, will not stay the same distance apart by using the automatic MFLC.  I got all locomotives to run close to the same speed, that of about a 45-50 MPH scale speed, by trial and error starting with 3 locomotives and manually adjusting the closest two and then getting each additional locomotive in sync with one of those.

Having accomplished the above it is still noticeable that some locomotives move sooner and start faster than the others and travel at slightly different speeds at different throttle selections.  Overall I think they run more smoothly together, but would not want to do what I did with too many locomotives.

Most of the complex electrical comments in this thread are beyond my electrical level of competence, which is close to zero.  I still do not fully understand the differences between DC, DCC (never used DCC) and PWR-56.  Can someone provide a short lucid tutorial in laymen’s terms: from above comments, a PWR-56 is DC current, DCC is AC current, and Ring modules will run on both DC and AC powered track.  But do not run ring modules using a DC power pack with the throttle set at full speed.  Never mind for now the signals running through the tracks for DCC control.

RailPro Discussion & Help / Re: MOTOR FULL LOAD CURRENT
« on: July 30, 2018, 08:31:29 PM »

I agree with your stall limit test variations observations and have wondered if the motor temperature could have anything to do with it; among other potential variables.  Variations are within the 50 mA +/- range you mentioned, but that does not explain or address the speed variation between locomotive using the automatic setting of the load current.  It seems that if the automatically set load current is as reflective of locomotive performance as Ring says it is, it should work – within reason.  I am a little disappointed that the automatic load setting does not work entirely well for whatever reason.  GP9s are not new and I have no idea how used they might be and Ring is definitely oriented towards diesels as well as newer versions, so maybe older HO motor electrics are a problem for Ring in this regard?

Do you have any comments on how to easily get all locomotives running at the same speed (top speed changes have little or no effect) and whether or not they could be damaged by setting the load current manually too far from what the automatic comes up with?

On another related BTW issue, when locomotives are linked the overall speed at a speed % is less than for each locomotive individually not linked.


RailPro Discussion & Help / MOTOR FULL LOAD CURRENT
« on: July 30, 2018, 05:30:41 PM »
I have come to learn that there are at least several electrically knowledgeable posters on this site.

For some time now I have experienced that when linking two or more locomotives together after having set the Motor Full Load Current automatically they will not stay the same distance away from each other when not physically connected.  Sometimes it is not even close.

Having determined by trial and error that two locomotives will maintain an equal distance from each other at all speeds when the mA are about 200mA apart I manually set one locomotive 100mA above its automatic mA and the other 100mA below its automatic mA.  Which leads to some questions an electrically challenged RailPro user has:

•   Why does setting the Motor Full Load Current automatically not work as it is supposed to work, at least with regard to when it comes to linking two locomotives (both Athearn Genesis GP9) to work with each other?

•   Is there a much simpler methodology that RailPro users may have developed to get locomotives to run at the same speed when linked?

•   The most important question is what possible damage is likely to occur by setting the Motor Full Load Current manually 100 mA or more from the automatically developed one?


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