My Christmas tree layout's inner loop is running a TMCC set, that came with a CW80. I have a LC RTR coming  any day.  I know that LC can run with TMCC/ Legacy. So my plan when I setup for this year was to swap out the TMCC train for the LC train when it gets here. Then I had a thought today. Can I power the LC with the CW80 or is the chopped wave an issue?

The outer loop is running a PS3 with an explorer and Z1000. The inner loop has one CC switch to a siding.

 

Mark W

Original Post

Lionchief locos should run fine powered by a CW or any other transformer on the market.  Chopped sine wave is never a problem for modern Lionel locos, or for that matter, any other Lionel products of the last 120 years, as far as I know.  The only problem with some of Lionel's modern transformers (MW, CW) has been with some of the PS1 locos from the 1990s from MTH.

Warning Warning Warning! I have had bad luck with CW80's and LC+ engines.  The LC+ engines ran fine using the included power supply, until I tried to run with a CW80.  It took only a few moments to kill the board. The tiny motor power transistors can't handle the chopped waves.  I'm sure some people here will say no problem at all, but if it happens, you'll know why.

Chuck Sartor posted:

Warning Warning Warning! I have had bad luck with CW80's and LC+ engines...

The CW  used at full throttle(about 17.9 volts) and preferably through the ACC terminals programmed to full voltage for LC/LC+ should be OK. This should present a nearly full, only slightly chopped sine wave. It makes sense that lower throttle settings can cause issues as you have described.

Rob

If the CW damages LC/LC+, why don't all the other chopped waveform transformers damage them?  The could have simply been a coincidence if it hasn't happened multiple times.

Moonman posted:

No problem - keep the voltage at or below 18VAC or DC for the LionChief. They won't tolerate higher voltages like MTH products.

Isn't That just the z500 & Z750? From reading on this Forum I thought the Z1000 is not 21V.

 

Mark W.

Well, in the case of the chopped waveforms, to really know what's going on you need a 'scope.

Witness the following example.  Note how the CW-80 with no load tends to have a LOT of ringing on the waveform, this doubtless accounts for some of the issues people report with this transformer.

The last two pictures are with a 2A load, note that the ringing is reduced to a minimal amount, though you can still see it.

CW-80 half throttle, no load

CW-80 full throttle, no load

CW-80 half throttle, 2A load

CW-80 full throttle, 2A load

Contrast those waveforms with the Z-4000

Z4000 No Load 11V

Z4000 No Load 21V

Z4000 2 Ohm Resistive Load at 4.9V

Z4000 2 Ohm Resistive Load at 12V

Z4000 2 Ohm Resistive Load at 19V

Attachments

Photos (9)

The thing to remember is LC+ can be run with a transformer too. If Mark took his brand new LC+ loco to a friends conventional layout and he is using a CW for power and run it with the selector switch in TRANSFORMER mode, it will probably not run for long. Lionel should address this concern.

I do repairs for our local train store. I get to see many, many LC and LC+ products. There are frequent PCB failures, trucks falling off, smoke unit failures, right out of the box. The way Lionel's QC is these days, it's a real roll of the dice, and sometimes you roll snake eyes and get two in a row that fail right off the shelf.   Chuck Sartor's unfortunate issues may have been doomed to occur regardless of the power source used.

Chuck Sartor posted:

The thing to remember is LC+ can be run with a transformer too. If Mark took his brand new LC+ loco to a friends conventional layout and he is using a CW for power and run it with the selector switch in TRANSFORMER mode, it will probably not run for long. Lionel should address this concern.

Mark, the original poster, indicated that he has/had a LC loco, not LC+, though.

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