Am Flyer Baldwins are here !

Thank you Rusty and Rich. The tiny rollers work OK on home layouts with very good to excellent track work. Those typically don't have much of a gap between any rail or track sections. Club layouts on the other hand can a different matter.  The tiny rollers sometime get caught in gaps of 1/8 of an inch or even larger.   

Dave

S happens

TCA, NASG, ACSG W&OD

x-Chief Wrench & Bottle-washer of Precision Flyer Repairs 

Santa did it right as my Baldwin arrived today and not on the 26th. 

As said earlier the manual inside the box was wrong.  I called Charles Ro and they said they had no other calls about the manual.  The Ro employee I talked to said that they would contact Lionel by week's end and find out about getting the right manual.  I tried calling Lionel but after waiting 20 minutes I gave up.

Now to try it on the layout!!!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS 

Well, the Baldwin has a bad sound chip and I have called Charles Ro.  They will be sending me a FedX label so I can send it back.  When they get it they will send me a new engine.  DARN not Christmas present yet.

Anybody else had problems with this Baldwin?

I wrote my contact at Lionel and when he gets back to the office later in the week he is going to check on the manual situation and get a download manual set up.

Roundhouse Bill posted:

Well, the Baldwin has a bad sound chip and I have called Charles Ro.  They will be sending me a FedX label so I can send it back.  When they get it they will send me a new engine.  DARN not Christmas present yet.

Anybody else had problems with this Baldwin?

I wrote my contact at Lionel and when he gets back to the office later in the week he is going to check on the manual situation and get a download manual set up.

My Baldwin went back to Ro this morning with the "no sound" issue. I got a return authorization yesterday but wasn't offered a shipping label. It cost me $15.55 to ship it back. So much for the savings for early purchase. Oh, well. I just hope it comes back fixed. It's a fine looking engine.

I also mentioned to Ro about the wrong manual issue, but they didn't seem to say they were aware of the problem.  I suspect everyone is in the same boat. 

I too received my Patapsco Baldwin switcher on Christmas eve. That beat the projected delivery date of 12/26/18 from Charles Ro.

So....there are some pluses (++++) and minuses....(----) to report.

Pluses--

1. All of the advertised functions work as planned. Front and rear electrocouplers open  fully and allow remote switching operations with ease.

2. The dual motors function well with no "growling" that was experienced by myself and others when the GP7's were released.

3. The sound system worked perfectly. The volume was excellent and could be heard across the room when the horn, bell or announcements were selected. There was no distortion or speaker "buzz" that some of the Geeps had.

4. The directional lighting worked great and the headlights are what I call "warm white"...not that harsh "blue" light so many LED's have.

5. While I haven't tested what the max. load these engines might pull, with two motors and eight traction tires I suspect they will pull an impressive number of cars if desired.

 

Minuses--

1. My engine, The Patapsco and Black River Baldwin S-12, has a small flaw in the paint.

It appears that perhaps a wisp of glue of some sort landed on the shell prior to painting and was then sealed in under the paint. It's a small flaw and actually can't be seen when viewing the engine from above or at a slight downward view (as most models are actually viewed). To see it you have to hold the engine nearly upside down in a bright light. Will I send it back to Ro for this?   Absolutely NOT.

2. The instruction manual is not correct (this has been described earlier in other posts). The manual is for the Pre- Bluetooth Baldwins from 2015:

It has also been reported that Lionel may issue a downloadable manual correctly describing the models functions. Send it back for this? NO

3. The label on the actual box is incorrect. Mine is for the NS engine.

So here's my ask...if anyone else has received their PB&R Baldwin and the box label is correct could you please scan the end of the box showing the content description...Lionel # etc., and post the scan here? I will then resize the label as needed, print it on self-adhesive label paper and attach it to  my box.

Thanks in advance to anyone who can provide a copy of the PB&R box end.

Mark

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The new AF Baldwin manual Bill mentions is attached to this post.

Please note that the instructions (page 25) to adjust the volume using the remote are incorrect. Do the following to adjust the volume using the remote.

"To adjust the volume you need to hold down the ANNOUNCEMENT button while turning the dial left for quieter and right for louder."

Step 1. Turn on track power and remote. 

Step 2. Hold down the announcement button and turn the dial all the way to the left. This will mute volume.

Step 3. While still holding down announcement button turn dial clockwise and listen for volume levels to increase. Play horn, voice and bell to hear how they sound. Turn dial FULLY clockwise for loudest volume.

Step 4. Release the ANNOUNCEMENT button when you have reached your desired sound level.

Step 5. IMPORTANT! Turn dial back to center position. This will set the volume level.

To change the volume level again... repeat the above steps.

 

 

Thanks Bill for sending me the manual PDF.

Lionel should really send every AF Baldwin purchaser a copy of this manual through the dealers who shipped them.

Mark

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the manual, I have been using the APP. to run my blue tooth engine and it seemed to work well, however I am a little puzzled when I went thru the Baldwin manual, first off when I use the APP. on the Baldwin I noticed that the  engine ID is not loaded, while it function with the APP. it does not pick up the Baldwin number? everything else seems ok. it operates with 1234 number shown, second when I went thru the manual I noticed that the APP shows on page 15 volume control it allows you to control pitch and custom levels how do you get to that screen, I cannot find it.

also when I load the Santa FE 2849 when you read the screen it states it has smoke which I know it does not? 

Does the APP ever get updated maybe I do not have the latest?

it seems that nobody proof reads any of this stuff do they have the same issues on the Lionel     (3 rail) side?

while I am happy that we get some attention from Lionel I would have hoped that it would have had a little more attention to detail.

Happy New Year to all

toy1 posted:

Thanks for the manual, I have been using the APP. to run my blue tooth engine and it seemed to work well, however I am a little puzzled when I went thru the Baldwin manual, first off when I use the APP. on the Baldwin I noticed that the  engine ID is not loaded, while it function with the APP. it does not pick up the Baldwin number? everything else seems ok. it operates with 1234 number shown, second when I went thru the manual I noticed that the APP shows on page 15 volume control it allows you to control pitch and custom levels how do you get to that screen, I cannot find it.

also when I load the Santa FE 2849 when you read the screen it states it has smoke which I know it does not? 

Does the APP ever get updated maybe I do not have the latest?

it seems that nobody proof reads any of this stuff do they have the same issues on the Lionel     (3 rail) side?

while I am happy that we get some attention from Lionel I would have hoped that it would have had a little more attention to detail.

Happy New Year to all

I don't use the APP as I don't have a smart phone. I have read that others who had similar APP problems needed to delete the APP then reload it and all worked well.

Maybe that will work for you also.

Mark

thanks Mark that worked great I deleted the APP and it loaded up correctly, still there are things in the manual that I do not think are accessible on the flyer chief  APP, maybe that is Lionels way of saying if you had 3 rail Lionel your life would be better!

toy1 posted:

thanks Mark that worked great I deleted the APP and it loaded up correctly, still there are things in the manual that I do not think are accessible on the flyer chief  APP, maybe that is Lionels way of saying if you had 3 rail Lionel your life would be better!

You're welcome! 

Mark

So, let me see if I got this right, the new Flyonel Baldwin’s came through with outdated instruction books, and the ones put online to correct the situation contain erroneous information on top of it all? How inept is that? 

Also, Regarding the too small electrical pickup rollers on the trucks, are these just supplemental to the pickup already provided by the wheels, or will the loco not run without them?

One has to be amazed that Lionel has been making toy trains as long as they have, and yet they still keep making mistakes like these...

Bill in FtL

Bill Nielsen posted:

Also, Regarding the too small electrical pickup rollers on the trucks, are these just supplemental to the pickup already provided by the wheels, or will the loco not run without them?

 

Bill in FtL

I did a continuity check on an FC Geep last year.  Unless something has changed, the rollers are the only source of electrical pick up, the wheels are fully insulated from the electronics.

Rusty

Bill in FtL .

The pickup rollers have been on AF diesel engines for some time now. The AF 6-48065 Commemorative GP9 had them way back in 2007:

Image result for american flyer commemorative GP7

So it's good you haven't ordered any of them in the last 11 years.

When operated on track with large gaps between the rail ends you could have a problem. However, if your track is installed like that you've got bigger problems than snagged rollers.

Mark

JohnActon posted:
Bill Nielsen posted:

One has to be amazed that Lionel has been making toy trains as long as they have, and yet they still keep making mistakes like these...

Bill in FtL

But how long have the chinese been making them ?          j

Long enough, almost 15-20 years.  However, we don't know what the turnover in the factories is like.

Lionel's products are designed here...  So if a product fails or has a weak link because of a design issue, well...

Rusty

banjoflyer posted:

Bill in FtL .

The pickup rollers have been on AF diesel engines for some time now. The AF 6-48065 Commemorative GP9 had them way back in 2007:

Image result for american flyer commemorative GP7

So it's good you haven't ordered any of them in the last 11 years.

When operated on track with large gaps between the rail ends you could have a problem. However, if your track is installed like that you've got bigger problems than snagged rollers.

Mark

Mark, you are correct! Actually, that pic sums up why I have no Flyer Geeps, besides not being able to stomach their stamped sheet metal handrails, I think the 6 wheel journal trucks are an abomination, and the four wheelers aren’t much better. Those tiny little rollers can’t possibly do well in turnout frogs, unless you used closed frogs, which might be less of a problem. I do still like the Flyer Atlantic’s (and most of their other Steam) however, so go figure! I gritted my teeth over those awful molded-in boiler handrails on the Berkshire, which spoil an otherwise nice model, but the Flyer Geep handrails and trucks are simply too much for me to take. A friend of mine ordered the AF Baldwin, and I’m waiting to see it. I just hope he’s not as disappointed as I would be (it’s his first S Gauge loco). He loves his LionChief O gauge diesel loco,  which actually looks pretty good, even to me. And I do also very much like the Lion/Flyer Chief Control System, especially the BlueTooth versions.

Bill in FtL

Bill in FtL, You should look at the new FlyerChief GP7 as Lionel has installed a new more correct truck.  Gilbert used the disproportionate truck in 1950 so it could use the same power truck chassis as the PA.  It was never corrected.  However there are real GPs with 6 wheel trucks. 

Roundhouse Bill posted:

Rusty, I have been told by Lionel people that they aren't completely designed here. Engineers on both sides of the Pacific do design work based on Lionel's direction.  In fact there are times when Lionel doesn't even own the tooling.     

Enter and exit....the flionel mikado and pacific...

Ben

NASG&CASG
NotInWI posted:

I must have missed it, did some report an issue with the rollers? I don’t see any first hand issue brought up on this thread.  

Ben

I seem to recall a discussion in another thread where the too small rollers would snag and come off of the truck. If the rollers are the only contact points, that would be a disastrous result!

Bill in FtL 

I got both FlyerChief NS Baldwin and Reading GP7.  This is some solid engineering.  Simple and rugged in the PW sense...yet colorful with a splash of modern graphics applications.   These certainly have a superior drive train to the Gilbert ancestors.  

Michael...

TCA, LCCA, TTOS, NASG, MTHRRC

NotInWI posted:
Roundhouse Bill posted:

Rusty, I have been told by Lionel people that they aren't completely designed here. Engineers on both sides of the Pacific do design work based on Lionel's direction.  In fact there are times when Lionel doesn't even own the tooling.     

Enter and exit....the flionel mikado and pacific...

Ben

Not sure what you're trying to say here.

TRW

Roundhouse Bill posted:

Bill in FtL, You should look at the new FlyerChief GP7 as Lionel has installed a new more correct truck.  Gilbert used the disproportionate truck in 1950 so it could use the same power truck chassis as the PA.  It was never corrected.  However there are real GPs with 6 wheel trucks. 

Hi Bill,

The only EMD hood units I’ve seen that used six wheel trucks were called SD’s rather than GP’s, and all axles were powered on them. I know other locomotive brands such as Alco, used six wheel trucks but only 2 of the 3 axles were powered, the third axle was an idler (called A1A truck’s, I think), to better spread the weight load on lighter duty track such as found on branchlines. SD locos were also usually longer than similar GP’s. What were the six axle GP versions called?

I’ve seen the newer flyer trucks, and while they do look better, they still aren’t quite right (and Flyer still has those flat handrails)...

Bill in FtL

Bill Nielsen posted:
 SD locos were also usually longer than similar GP’s. What were the six axle GP versions called?

 

Bill in FtL

In the finest tradition by Lionel since the 1989 when they added 6-wheel trucks to their modified O Gauge so-called GP20 to make an equally so-called SDL39, they called any Flyer GP with 6-wheel trucks an SD.

And yes, an SD9 was not usually, but always noticeably longer than a GP9:

And before anybody asks, the SDL39 was purpose-built for one railroad only, the Milwaukee Road.  All axles were powered:

Rusty

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Received my PRR Baldwin and am happy to report it all works as it should, very much enjoy running via my Android Bluetooth Lionelchief ap V 2.30.  This thing pulls like the dickins!  Sound is loud but easily adjusted by the ap.  IMO, the paint is NOT Brunswick green to my eye, but black for sure.  I know B. Green can vary in darkness.  Next to a black freight car there is no difference.   Compared to the other models offered, it is very plain, but I'm a Pennsy guy, so there you are!  This model will really creep along, and the drive system is smooth.

 

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.  -  Clarke's Third Law"

Roundhouse Bill posted:

Charles Ro sent me an email with the Baldwin manual today.  It looks like Lionel is following up as appropriate.  I would expect everyone who bought the Baldwin will get the manual from their dealer.

Good news Bill. That's pretty quick action in response to an oversight on Lionel's part.

Mark

My friend brought his new Baldwin by the club’s display at the library yesterday and we ran it on the loops of SHS S-Traxx we have set up on the stage. It does look nice and appears to run nicely, but our display track is just a pair of simple loops with no turnouts. He did mention that his temporary layout at home is all Lionel S FasTrack, with one turnout for a siding. He volunteered that the loco s really noisy when passing over the turnout. After looking at the tiny rollers, I am guessing that they are the source of the noise when going through the turnout. Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t the FastTrack turnouts have a set of 3 points, two at the entrance to the turnout, with a third in the frog, essentially making it operate as a closed frog with no gaps for the roller to drop into? If that’s the case, why is it so noisy going through the turnout. After seeing the too-small rollers in person, I am convinced that they will cause problems in a turnout, especially ones with conventional open frog design, snagging as the go over the unavoidable gaps in the frog. I also do not like the fact that this model has all eight wheels equipped with traction tires, which will require frequent replacing as they age and loosen up. There is no good need for so many rubber tires on a loco, especially a switcher. I much prefer my American Models switcher even though it has it’s own issues (at least traction tires aren’t part of its problems!).

I hope everyone enjoys their new AF Baldwin switchers, and while they do look to be improved over earlier issues, I’m glad I didn’t order one myself.

Bill in FtL

I just got another new GP-7 and one of the new Baldwin Flyer Chief locomotives. My top loop is S-Helper track with turnouts and the lower loop is American models track and their #5 turnouts. I have had no problems with the small pickup rollers on either track system. The locos performed as advertised!   I had 14 cars of mixed parentage behind the Baldwin and it operated smoothly. No original Flyer Baldwin even one with a can motor and extra weight performs as well.

Bill Nielsen posted:

My friend brought his new Baldwin by the club’s display at the library yesterday and we ran it on the loops of SHS S-Traxx we have set up on the stage. It does look nice and appears to run nicely, but our display track is just a pair of simple loops with no turnouts. He did mention that his temporary layout at home is all Lionel S FasTrack, with one turnout for a siding. He volunteered that the loco s really noisy when passing over the turnout. After looking at the tiny rollers, I am guessing that they are the source of the noise when going through the turnout. Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t the FastTrack turnouts have a set of 3 points, two at the entrance to the turnout, with a third in the frog, essentially making it operate as a closed frog with no gaps for the roller to drop into? If that’s the case, why is it so noisy going through the turnout. After seeing the too-small rollers in person, I am convinced that they will cause problems in a turnout, especially ones with conventional open frog design, snagging as the go over the unavoidable gaps in the frog. I also do not like the fact that this model has all eight wheels equipped with traction tires, which will require frequent replacing as they age and loosen up. There is no good need for so many rubber tires on a loco, especially a switcher. I much prefer my American Models switcher even though it has it’s own issues (at least traction tires aren’t part of its problems!).

I hope everyone enjoys their new AF Baldwin switchers, and while they do look to be improved over earlier issues, I’m glad I didn’t order one myself.

Bill in FtL

I'm currently looking over the FC Baldwin and will post about it later, but I'm going to sidetrack a little here and address Bill's comments:

Yes, the rollers will make things nosier when crossing switches.  The points and frogs are essentially "broken rail" and not a solid section.  My scale trains are also sound nosier when crossing switches.  It's the nature of the beast.

Here's a photo of the SHS switch frogs, of which the Lionel FasTrack is similar to the redesigned SHS switch.

SHS Switch Frogs 123018 001

This is the major source of the noise.  As can be seen, there are gaps before and after the frogs and even small gaps on the moving frog point on the right example.  Each gap will be a source of extra noise.  Add in the fact there will be an adjoining track joint on each side about 5 inches inches away and you get more rail joint noise from wheels and rollers.  It becomes like have three 5" straights together instead of one 15" section.

I wasn't able to get a clear shot of the rollers over the frogs, but admittedly the rollers will have a rougher transit over the original SHS design than the moving point used later by SHS and Lionel.  The rollers will cross, but not drop into the frog on the original design.

Now, both designs can be silenced somewhat if a small piece of plastic is glued into the gaps on either side of the frog, but the noise generated through the frog points will still exist.  Again, the nature of the beast.  Even the prototype is louder when crossing switches.

As to the rollers themselves, well I would prefer they not be the only source of electrical pick-up.  I would prefer that would augment wheel pick-up like the old Gilbert Flyer, but unfortuanely I don't think Lionel's going to go through the added expense of going back to the old method.

Rusty

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Good points of view and reviews.

PS The Berkshire manual on page 15 also provides incorrect volume control directions.  Correct: Hold down the cab chat/shift button while turning the throttle knob to desired volume.  Not the bell and whistle buttons at the same time for 3 seconds or more.  All that did for me was simultaneously sound the whiste and bell.  Learned this from watching an AF Berkshire YouTube video kindly posted by a train club. Or, of course, use the LionChief app which I think is terrific with the additional functions and adjustments that you can access with it. 

Dave

S happens

TCA, NASG, ACSG W&OD

x-Chief Wrench & Bottle-washer of Precision Flyer Repairs 

I do not feel the small roller pickups will cause any operating problems. I do not have a Baldwin but do have a GP7 with those rollers. A picture is below. Also I included pictures of a narrow angle crossing where one of the turntable leads crosses a main line. The final picture is of one of my turnouts. None of these cause any problems for the small rollers on the GP7.

BD24FAE2-0270-4A38-BC77-C9C3298B145D9F91DEBB-EBB2-4DE2-8C54-F8252A32F3AE25F80919-A53A-49C8-A0D1-DFC3A70115DE

Tom

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Roundhouse Bill


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