Skip to main content

Well...I was lucky to pick up this engine for a fair price online. Wasn’t sure what to expect, given it is now 18-19 years old, but -

I am blown away!!! Hard to believe this one goes that far back. It has aged gracefully!

The all-die cast construction is very nice and actually satisfyingly detailed, given the inherent limitations of such a mold. Compared to the MTH Premier Verandas, which I previously owned, I am more impressed with the detail and overall hefty look and feel of this one. (Was originally hesitant because the pilot looked exaggerated in photos, but in person it is not so bad at all.) Graphics and coloring are nice too. Just impressive all over.

The only thing that gave me a scare was figuring out the smoke units (there was no book included with mine so I found the answer here). Once I got them both operating it looked awesome the way the rear unit switches off and over to the middle unit at a certain speed. Given how kooky it was to turn them on and off via TMCC - I decided to leave both on in command mode and just flip the switches off on the bottom if I’m not going to run smoke. Easier.

Some of the LED/incandescent Mars/directional lighting is sweet, and Sounds are impressive and it runs good, strong, and very smooth and slow - for early Odyssey. I almost don’t see a need for a future Legacy version, although I would welcome one if it ever does happen.

If you can get one - it’s worth it. Very impressive.

*I am curious if anyone else who owns this loco has ever manipulated the smoke units at all and found a way to keep the rear heater going at all times (the same way the middle unit does when left on). It seems that the rear heater cools down when the unit switches to the middle smoker and it then takes a while to warm back up once it switches back to the rear smoke, so there is a short lag period there where it seem as though there is no smoke working at all. Not the end of the world, but probably my only little gripe. Would be cool to tweak. - Worst case, I may install a small little heater driver for the rear unit that I can switch to (and leave the factory wiring intact, but offline-able), so I can achieve this effect without permanently damaging or altering the original schematic and electronics.

Last edited by DdotCdot
Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

It could be done with a fairly simple circuit, but I never figured the short delay was all that annoying, and I have tons of other pressing projects. A relay driven from the turbine smoke unit could switch from the internal smoke controller (on the motherboard) to a fixed supply that would just pre-warm the heater, much like whistle steam smoke units are handled in Legacy.  It would not be enough heat to produce smoke, but when the rear smoke unit smoke controller was switched back into the circuit, it would have a head-start to produce smoke immediately.

I had the MTH version as well, but IMO, they didn't do as good a job on it.  The smoke units ran continuously, I like the way that the Lionel model switches them prototypically with sounds to match.  I sold the MTH version and kept the Lionel one.

Believe it or not, I bought the Lionel Veranda when it was released, and it has never seen the light of day. I finally got my yard finished so I can have more than just a couple engines on the layout. Maybe I know what box I can open this Christmas morning!!!



BTW - here is the Veranda manual pdf  https://www.lionelsupport.com/...ents/71-8149-250.pdf

Veranda smoke unit tips

https://www.lionelsupport.com/...ents/71-8149-251.pdf

Veranda wiring diagram

https://www.lionelsupport.com/media/servicedocuments6905_UseverandaWiringDiagramcomplete.pdf

Last edited by MED

I had both Verandas and sold the MTH one to someone here who was looking for it. The Lionel version is what I say is the ultimate Diesel engine even though it is a diesel/ turbine engine.

My smoke units have a small peculiarity in their operation. Rear comes on with diesel sound, shuts off when turbine sound kicks on with front smoke unit going on pouring loads of smoke. A lot more running with no decrease in speed and it shuts down and the rear unit comes back on which it should not do. I think the front fan unit shuts off as the resistor stays on as some smoke still comes out.
Regardless, it is one cool engine and a HEAVY BEAST!!

Last edited by Ted Bertiger

Smoke control is done by a custom motherboard with logic and triac smoke drivers.  That's why you need the special secret handshake to turn on and off the individual smoke units and not the standard smoke controls.  You can see the logic in the middle and the triacs on the upper left corner.  That's the one part I see on these that would be very difficult to replace with any substitutes as they're no longer available.  I managed to snag a spare for my engine before they were gone.

Attachments

Images (1)
  • mceclip0

It could be done with a fairly simple circuit, but I never figured the short delay was all that annoying, and I have tons of other pressing projects. A relay driven from the turbine smoke unit could switch from the internal smoke controller (on the motherboard) to a fixed supply that would just pre-warm the heater, much like whistle steam smoke units are handled in Legacy.  It would not be enough heat to produce smoke, but when the rear smoke unit smoke controller was switched back into the circuit, it would have a head-start to produce smoke immediately.

I had the MTH version as well, but IMO, they didn't do as good a job on it.  The smoke units ran continuously, I like the way that the Lionel model switches them prototypically with sounds to match.  I sold the MTH version and kept the Lionel one.



the more I think about it, the more I’m thinking it might be wise to just disconnect and drive both units heaters off a single buck converter, together in parallel, separate from the boards, since I won’t want to mess with turning those off via tmcc anyway and would rather give my irreplaceable driver board a greater chance at longevity without heaters being driven off of it and just leave it to do its job with the fans and the proper sequencing.

perhaps I could run a relay off the output that currently drives the middle heater (since it is independently controllable via tmcc) and then run the newly proposed buck converter driven powered heater circuits, controlled by the relay circuit, so they only draw from the easily replaceable buck converter but do not put a load on the original board, thus I can turn off both heaters via remote, or each fan via remote using all original commands and when I do run the heaters - both are warm and ready to go and produce good smoke with no delay. To me, this makes more sense than the original design anyway - seeing as how you have to leave the turbine unit heater on at all times anyway before it kicks in. Why not have both heaters warm and ready to go??

now to find the right drop-in relay that will fit...

*Re-reading your response here gunrunnerjohn - I think this is exactly what you’ve proposed, no?

Last edited by DdotCdot
@DdotCdot posted:

the more I think about it, the more I’m thinking it might be wise to just disconnect and drive both units heaters off a single buck converter, together in parallel, separate from the boards, since I won’t want to mess with turning those off via tmcc anyway and would rather give my irreplaceable driver board a greater chance at longevity without heaters being driven off of it and just leave it to do its job with the fans and the proper sequencing.

I'd just run it until it fails, chances are pretty good you'll get years of service and be able to enjoy all the cool features.  If I wanted a neutered one with lame smoke control, I could have kept the MTH model.  I plan on using the cool features until they don't work.  At that point, I'll take a stab at repairing the board, which I suspect is quite possible for many failures.  When all else fails, then it's time to get out the bandaids.

I'd just run it until it fails, chances are pretty good you'll get years of service and be able to enjoy all the cool features.  If I wanted a neutered one with lame smoke control, I could have kept the MTH model.  I plan on using the cool features until they don't work.  At that point, I'll take a stab at repairing the board, which I suspect is quite possible for many failures.  When all else fails, then it's time to get out the bandaids.

You make a good point. At least I’ll know in advance what to do when the day of failure comes, if it comes.

Just ran it again and realize it doesn’t bother me enough to crack it open for this little thing. It’s a great piece for its time and still holds up. I really enjoy it.

A Vision Line UP Gas Turbine Electric Locomotive (GTEL) would be awesome. I want the 3-unit, 8500HP version. That would be just amazing. The sound, especially with Lionel speakers (I've heard that they have great sound and I agree), would blow out your eardrums and blow your mind, too. The set could include the A and B units for the turbine, as well as the tender. With the Legacy system and Vision features, the turbines could be some of the greatest Vision Line locomotives ever made. If I had the money and the right size of curves (probably O-72s), I would totally buy a Vision GTEL and some matching freight cars.

I have the TMCC Veranda, still new in the shipping carton, when I bought it when it first came out. As my fading memory tells me, had to wait  two years or so from order to delivery. Was  my first "big" engine purchase.  Also as I recall, was going to be the first engine with Odyssey speed control, and the motors were a new "stackable" design to work with Odyssey - stackable in the sense that if the engine design needed more pulling power, Lionel would "stack" more field/commutator pieces. So a simple engine might have a two stack motor, whereas a behemoth like the Veranda might have quad stack motors. Lionel found they could design Odyssey to work with can motors, and thus the "expensive" stackable motor design wasn't necessary.

Again, if my memory is correct, the ACL F3 was the first engine released with Odyssey.

Add Reply

Post
OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
330-757-3020

www.ogaugerr.com
×
×
×
×
Link copied to your clipboard.
×
×