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@jimentre

I believe your timing is good on wishes for ps3 upgrades.  


The upgrade is obviously available now for I had a Railking upgrade accomplished last week and the engine is now on route home 💁‍♂️

I recommend that you pick out which engine that you wish upgraded the most and begin searching for the local MTH service person.

have a good weekend!

$300 a pop is also the price I have been given. That’s $9,000 total. Are you sure you want to invest that much money into PS1 locomotives given that upgrades typically do not raise the value of the locomotive significantly? If the locomotives are sentimental to you and you got the cash I say go for it. I have upgraded 3 locomotives to PS3 and I still have two kits left. I am having a tough time deciding which locomotive to upgrade as I have about 5 or 6 that need electronics. Good luck on whatever you decide.

$300.00 a piece is a good  price find a local MTH tech.. The shipping cost  will kill you, will need someone with that many kits and the time  to do them. If you are in the New England area  I have kits and time for that many if you get started soon. September starts the big rush for me on repairs.    As for value I have found an upgrade engine has more value with upgrade than with PS-1,but depends on the quality of the engines  to start with.

I have three engines that were upgraded to PS2/3.  $300 plus shipping is roughly what it cost.  It's probably more than what the engine would be worth on the secondary market, but the ones I had upgraded were likely produced in limited numbers and I doubt very much I'd ever see them reissued.  I run DCS/TMCC on my layout and wanted to run them in a Command environment.

Over the years I've converted perhaps 18 PS1 locos to TMCC; they are superb runners. I have about 40 command control locos. I have a big layout, can handle 4 simultaneously running trains for an open house. I think my point is it's hard to run 30 or 40 locos regularly...

Given the money involved, in rough terms you can convert two locos for the cost of a new loco. I might be tempted to build a magnificent shelf display of thirty locos, then take the same money shopping for 15 new toys.



Jan

It's hard to justify a $300 upgrade for some engines.  I have a dead PS2 Railking steam engine that I paid around $350-$400 for when it was new 15 or so years ago.  $300 to fix a $400 engine has kept this engine on the dead line. I've considered buying a small PS2 steamer online to rob the electronics out of it but I haven't quite gotten to that point yet.

Dale

@Pennsylover posted:

It's hard to justify a $300 upgrade for some engines.  I have a dead PS2 Railking steam engine that I paid around $350-$400 for when it was new 15 or so years ago.  $300 to fix a $400 engine has kept this engine on the dead line. I've considered buying a small PS2 steamer online to rob the electronics out of it but I haven't quite gotten to that point yet.

Dale

Last PS3 kit I bought a few months ago was 200 bucks. Can you buy a working PS2 engine for that amount? Then you have remove that parts. These kits were designed to upgrade PS1 engines and for the most part require little modification of the engine. Using a kit to repair a PS2 or PS3 engine may lose some features without added work or you can send those to an MTH shop where they have access to the factory type boards. Replacing a Railking engine with a newer engine may make sense but its unlikely you will be able to purchase a new Premier engine with MTH or Lionel electronics (should Lionel purchase those) for what you can repair it for.

Pete

@Norton posted:
but its unlikely you will be able to purchase a new Premier engine with MTH or Lionel electronics (should Lionel purchase those) for what you can repair it for.

I'm not so sure about that.  There is an advertiser on this forum selling brand new MTH PS3 Diesels for $419.  One I was looking at was an SD40.

The op did not say his PS1s were RK or Premier.  But no matter, have you seen the market for used PS1 engines? 

The Op could buy a new PS3 diesel and sell his PS1 diesel and would most likely break even or even make money over the conversation prices stated above of $300 professionally installed.

Of course sentimentality and favorite road names are not considered in the above.

Ron

Local MTH shop said $300+ to fix the engine (almost certainly the blown 5v board), or they could rewire it to permanent forward or install an electronic e-unit. I didn't like any of those options.   I like the engine, but I'm not sure I want to have a $400 engine that I've put $700 into.  So it sits on the dead line until either I break down and get it fixed or I dump it.

Dale

@Pennsylover posted:

Local MTH shop said $300+ to fix the engine (almost certainly the blown 5v board), or they could rewire it to permanent forward or install an electronic e-unit. I didn't like any of those options.   I like the engine, but I'm not sure I want to have a $400 engine that I've put $700 into.  So it sits on the dead line until either I break down and get it fixed or I dump it.

Dale

So it's dead?  A shelf queen... Right?  You have nothing to lose trying a repair of your own to gain some experience.  That is how I started.

Go to a train show (or online) and find a similar inexpensive RK or Rugged rails engine PS2 (3v board) or PS3 and do a transplant.  Take the guts out of the good and put them in the bad.

Then sell the donor engine as a dummy unit.

I have done this several times with little expense.  And experience gained.

Have Fun!

Ron

IMO, we often tend to get too wrapped up in how much we've already spent for something and what we could sell it for (happens to me all the time) but maybe we are missing the point.  As a general rule, especially for modern trains, the collectabilty ship left port long ago and sank in the bay, so why worry about it?   To me, the relevant questions are:

If I like the engine, can I enjoy running it in conventional mode?  Lots of people do this.

If I can't enjoy running it in conventional, can I buy a similar PS2 or PS3 engine?  Maybe swap shells and sell the extra bits?  (I've seen WTB posts for PS1 boards.)

If neither of those options is a possibility and I have a sentimental attachment to the engine, I'll swallow hard and pay for the upgrade.  If that brings pleasure, the extra couple hundred bucks will be long forgotten.

My 2 cents.

Quick question (sort of in line with this discussion), how hard is it to upgrade to ps3 an engine that was conventional or something like ps1 (sound only)? My impression is that as a DIY project it is a lot more difficult than doing let's say ERR (not saying ERR is better than PS3 or cheaper, meant level of difficulty). Plus I assume PS3 is for DC motor units only ie wouldn't work on an AC engine?

@bigkid posted:

Quick question (sort of in line with this discussion), how hard is it to upgrade to ps3 an engine that was conventional or something like ps1 (sound only)? My impression is that as a DIY project it is a lot more difficult than doing let's say ERR (not saying ERR is better than PS3 or cheaper, meant level of difficulty). Plus I assume PS3 is for DC motor units only ie wouldn't work on an AC engine?

Putting PS3 in a PS1 engine is the easiest as they were designed to do this and the instructions more or less assume thats what you plan to use the kit for. Putting PS3 in a non MTH engine will take more skills. Likely have make a new mount for the tether, create openings for switches, play with the tach strips or sound files to get the engine to run and sound right.

For non MTH engines ERR is probably easier for the novice. PS2/3 is only for DC motors.

Pete

@GGG posted:

Why didn't you guys start your own thread on arguing the value of doing a conversion or the cost of ERR versus PS.  These subjects have been beat to death over the years.  The gentleman asked about who.  Not should I, can I, which system, etc.....

I understand that our alternative comments possible take business away from your George, but with all due respect The OP did not ONLY ask Who.  Re-read the title and the body.

@jimentre posted:

Anyone have a recommendation on the availability of the upgrade boards and where one might get them.

I interpret that to mean the Op is considering buying boards and upgrading himself.

@jimentre posted:

Conversely is there a recommended service center that can do the upgrade reasonably and quickly. Thanks for any info.

Conversely, meaning with change of order or relation.  I.E. if I don't take this task on myself, who would you recommend? 

I certainly agree with the others you and GRJ are two of the very best in this area.  You both have repaired stuff for me and I would not hesitate to use both of you again.  And... there are plenty of past threads which beat that horse too that the Op could have found confirming you two come highly recommended.

Should we hold our tongues when there is more than one way to solve a problem?  I'm not sure that is what a forum is all about.

Respectfully submitted with no ill intent.

Ron



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