Good day all,

 

I'm toying with the idea of converting over to Legacy control.  We just finished getting our track down and switches (All tubular Menards track with O22 switches) - and I am currently using block wiring with sidings that are switchable, as well as a passing siding that I can switch out.

 

Here is an overview:

Layout-Map-11-27

This is currently controlled with two postwar ZW's that I refurbed.

Now - I recently realized that I will need to create more isloated blocks (that I can switch on and off) in order to get more useful operation.. i.e. the Green loop needs to be isolated from siding C so I can park a train independantly of that siding.... but nevermind all that... point is - I hate wiring and have more junction blocks than I care to deal with.. which got me thinking about going to TMCC and Legacy.

 

My understanding is that all I need to do to run Legacy is hook the controller base into the common.  Then just set all the throttles to max, turn on all the blocks and sidings - and legacy will do the rest.  Obviously this will only work with a TMCC or Legacy locomotive..

 

Is that really all there is to it?  Hook up one wire - supply power to all the track and go?  It can't really be that easy..

 

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That's really all there is to it!

I've taken the Legacy system and a couple Legacy locomotives to some retirement home clubs and shown them how easy it is to be running command, they're always suitably impressed that it's that easy!

You will increase your success by making sure you plug the Legacy base into a properly grounded 3 prong outlet.  You also might want to consider some modern transformers or some adding some quick reacting breakers or fuses to your existing setups to prevent harm to the TMCC and or Legacy locomotive's electronics.

Marty

 

Below the Signature...

" Number One, make it "O"!"

 

What John said.  One wire to the layout usually works. Command control is independent of volts/amps.  You can have no blocks at all if you are only using Legacy/TMCC/LionChief/LionChief+ locos in command mode. 

Blocks are useful if you want to park locos without power on a siding or block, as John pointed out.  Think you are likely to enjoy this additional capability.

Piggybacking off the discussion here, since I'm also considering upgrading to Legacy/DCS/both, can locomotives be set to operate and maintain a certain minimal spacing on a loop? I'm involved in a fire dept Christmas layout and we'd like to add to the number of trains per loop without having to babysit, if command will allow this. (We previously have been conventional only).

MartyE posted:

You will increase your success by making sure you plug the Legacy base into a properly grounded 3 prong outlet.  You also might want to consider some modern transformers or some adding some quick reacting breakers or fuses to your existing setups to prevent harm to the TMCC and or Legacy locomotive's electronics.

Yep - I added external breakers to both ZW's.  Thanks for the warning!

Andrew B. posted:

Piggybacking off the discussion here, since I'm also considering upgrading to Legacy/DCS/both, can locomotives be set to operate and maintain a certain minimal spacing on a loop?

They can be set to run at the same speed, and presuming they're in good shape and running properly, they can maintain spacing for a considerable length of time.  That being said, they're independent entities, and there is no automatic spacing option. 

Your embarking on having the most enjoyable train running experiences of your life. Legacy command control is awesome, and if you’ll look in the Lionel catalog, 2020 edition, in the back area with all the Command products, you’ll see ASC’s, BPC’s both which enable you to control blocks and accessories with the hand held Cab 2 Remote. Remember, if you place a newer Powermaster in line, you can operate Conventional and or Legacy engines on your nice layout. Welcome to the Wonderful world of model railroading, 2020 style. Happy Railroading 

General question - the engine I have been testing with is a Lionel FM Trainmaster with TMCC.

The outer mainline has a grade climb up and then down again - about a 2% grade.  I'm having trouble keeping speed constant - boost seems to launch it into hyperdrive, and the train brake goes from not doing much, to full stop..

 

Is this because I haven't setup the stall speed yet?  

I've been playing with momentum and understand it in principle, but don't think its doing anything more than making the issue worse in this case, which makes sense as more momentum will make it harder to get the train rolling and stopped..

 

Is this an engine that was built with TMCC or was this feature added? I would look at the operators manual/or the label on the engine box cover to see if it is equipped with Lionel’s Oddysey feature for constant consistent speed control. It may not have this feature and will operate in command but need your help when climbing hills, or descending hills. Do not get discouraged, just make sure your next purchases have this odyssey feature. 

If the locomotive has Odyssey then it will maintain constant speed up and down grades.  Momentum only changes coast.  There should be a switch to turn it on and off.  Early TMCC locos did not have this feature.  Which loco do you have, model number?

Also, make sure your train brake (left side slider on Cab-2) is slid all the way up.  That can impact how much throttle you need to move.  

6-18322  Pretty early TMCC I believe..  that explains it.

Doing more research...  

Will the RL4C board from ERR add this capability?  (from my reading it looks like the RL2C board is TMCC and the RL4C board adds legacy - but I can't find many details).

Basically I'm taking stock as to how much it will cost to update all my engines v.s. selling them (all are conventional control) and just buying a legacy engine or two..

Yes, your engine has the pullmor motors, so no speed control.  Upgrading is expensive and time consuming.  I would keep the engines I really like as conventional engines, sell the others and look to buy Legacy engines. Legacy has 200 speed steps which makes it fantastic with slow speeds and constant speed up and down grades.  Early TMCC with speed control only has 32 steps; later TMCC has 100 steps (I think). Some of the other manufacturers are licensed to have the later TMCC (not MTH), so you can look at other companies. You might look at the For Sale topic on the forum. I would try to stay with engines made after 2013 with Legacy as they have most of the latest features.

Thanks!

So - I think I get it now.

As with all my other hobbies - research is always key.

Most of my loco's are Williams Diesels - and all of these can be updated with Cruise Commander and sounds for about $220 plus shipping for the boards..  This should give me the legacy equivalent with cruise.. 

 

So I'll likley cherry pick a couple that I really like and convert them, and sell the rest to fund other legacy loco's.  The pullmor Lionel loco's it seems will have to go unless I'm willing to live with the lack of cruise... hmmm...

I don't recommend leaving the remote on the command base all the time.  It gets too hot, and the command base gets hot as well.  If you want to charge it, just leave it on until the charge is complete.

Better yet, use a separate charger and two sets of batteries.  I actually use the #993 charging base, it doesn't heat up the remote like the command base does.

Escher posted:

I'm having trouble keeping speed constant - boost seems to launch it into hyperdrive, and the train brake goes from not doing much, to full stop. 

Boost is a waste- I wish I could just lock out that feature in the software, so that the rocker switch is JUST push for direction.

As others have posted, the change in speeds is unavoidable for early TMCC locos with Pullmor motors.  IMO the smoothest runners are the newer Legacy locos with back-drivable gears.  Once you have a couple of those, you'll sell your whole Williams fleet!

Creep, coast, and pull.  We're not talking about cold fusion here.

Back to an earlier question, TMCC is TMCC and Legacy is Legacy.  Swapping in a Legacy R4LC will not make your loco work in legacy.  Some parts will, but Motor drive will not.  Modern Legacy is DC motor based and has cruise etc...

Also beware R4LC is the hardware, and ERR uses that board R4LC, but with TMCC code.  So putting an ERR R4LC into a legacy loco (those that used R4LC; new ones don't) also will not work.  More reading on the forum will bring you up to speed.  G

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Thanks for the info!

 

Going to be doing some experimenting over the next month or so...  I have a couple of older "odyssey" generation loco's on order that I got cheap... and will play with those.  Unfortunately, our budget wont allow for Legacy Loco's at this time.. so we are going to do some experimenting and comparing and figure it out as we go.  That's why its called a hobby, right? 

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