JamesRx posted:

One more thing....when you all get a chance can you check if your front electrocoupler is working? Mine is not because the little white plug that powers the coupler is not plugged in. Twisted off the lion drive truck, spent a good hour getting the plug back in (due to an impossibly short cord on the plug) and then when I twisted the truck back on the plugged pulled out again! Fortunately I never really use the coupler on the lead engine, but still...

James - 

All couplers are working on my set. 

So not sure if I should alert our LHS that ALL his stock should be sent back?

 

TCA Number 16-71884

J Daddy posted:
BobbyD posted:

This isn't good if all these ALCO PA's have to go back.

Still not sure on that. I will be investigating

Friends have 2 Santa Fe sets with the issue, one is pondering repair vs the potential for damage and cost to return them to Lionel. the other guy is sending his in for a refund. I believe his exact words were "I didn't spend $1,500 to get defective/damaged units, I bought NEW ones" and the emphasis on "new" was his. I tend to agree, while they may fix these it is something that should never have happened. Does anyone here have a set that works?

Hey guys I know this is not related to the main issue on this thread but for yet more Alco problems check out my post, titled appropriately enough "More Alco problems" So far I have sent one set back due to an internal short circuit, complete with sparks,  dealt with super loud ticking rollers, a non-working front coupler (on both sets!), and now the dreaded blinking cab light! Good grief!

 

I wanted to give it a few days and hopefully I'm not jinxing myself here. On Thursday I used some contact cleaner on all 3 of the Run / Prog switches on my ABA. Ran the switches back and forth, sprayed on both sides, and then reprogrammed all of them.

So far over 4 days, and multiple power cycles I have not run into the issue with losing the ID on any of them. I will continue to run them at least once per day this week and see what happens.

BNSF-Matt posted:

I wanted to give it a few days and hopefully I'm not jinxing myself here. On Thursday I used some contact cleaner on all 3 of the Run / Prog switches on my ABA. Ran the switches back and forth, sprayed on both sides, and then reprogrammed all of them.

So far over 4 days, and multiple power cycles I have not run into the issue with losing the ID on any of them. I will continue to run them at least once per day this week and see what happens.

Best of luck Matt...hope or works out. Mine have so many other issues I'm hoping to find a way to keep from sending them back to Concord. There will probably be a long line of units going in for repair and I'd rather not be in that line!

JamesRx posted:
BNSF-Matt posted:

I wanted to give it a few days and hopefully I'm not jinxing myself here. On Thursday I used some contact cleaner on all 3 of the Run / Prog switches on my ABA. Ran the switches back and forth, sprayed on both sides, and then reprogrammed all of them.

So far over 4 days, and multiple power cycles I have not run into the issue with losing the ID on any of them. I will continue to run them at least once per day this week and see what happens.

Best of luck Matt...hope or works out. Mine have so many other issues I'm hoping to find a way to keep from sending them back to Concord. There will probably be a long line of units going in for repair and I'd rather not be in that line!

Thanks James and I hope you get your issues resolved without having to send them in. I don't particularly like shipping my units to get them fixed, the last one I sent in to get fixed came back working but damaged.

BNSF-Matt posted:
JamesRx posted:
BNSF-Matt posted:

I wanted to give it a few days and hopefully I'm not jinxing myself here. On Thursday I used some contact cleaner on all 3 of the Run / Prog switches on my ABA. Ran the switches back and forth, sprayed on both sides, and then reprogrammed all of them.

So far over 4 days, and multiple power cycles I have not run into the issue with losing the ID on any of them. I will continue to run them at least once per day this week and see what happens.

Best of luck Matt...hope or works out. Mine have so many other issues I'm hoping to find a way to keep from sending them back to Concord. There will probably be a long line of units going in for repair and I'd rather not be in that line!

Thanks James and I hope you get your issues resolved without having to send them in. I don't particularly like shipping my units to get them fixed, the last one I sent in to get fixed came back working but damaged.

I hear you! So many people have had similar experiences. These trains don't travel well when they are not on the tracks!

I am glad I waited and let you guys be my guinea pigs on these new Legacy PAs.

I was interested, but now, I will pass.

This QA stuff with Lionel is getting old.

Ok so running day 5. Turned on power; returned A unit is ok, super bass B unit ok, trailing A unit is starting up in conventional now. 

Remove shell, found magnet glued to top of shell with double sided sticky tape has fallen down and noted that there are two wires to the antenna. One wire was loose, resoldered, reprogramed, shut power off and on, ID remembered. 

When did the Antennas go to two wires and sticky taped to the shell? This is what gets Lionel into trouble... non-standardization. 

Well, will continue running and will report out what I find. 

Cheers.

TCA Number 16-71884

Just took delivery on the PRR Lionel PA (1933191) and PB (1933193).  After fully programing the engines, when placed on the same track with other engines already programed, the new engines will not respond and have to be reprogramed.  The new programing works fine (crew sounds, signals, engine sounds, speed) until the unit is placed on a powered track with other locomotives, then the engine will not respond.  Only happens with these two new PA/PB units.  Any one else having this issue?

Pennsyforever

pennsyforever posted:

Just took delivery on the PRR Lionel PA (1933191) and PB (1933193).  After fully programing the engines, when placed on the same track with other engines already programed, the new engines will not respond and have to be reprogramed.  The new programing works fine (crew sounds, signals, engine sounds, speed) until the unit is placed on a powered track with other locomotives, then the engine will not respond.  Only happens with these two new PA/PB units.  Any one else having this issue?

Pennsyforever

Do they respond when using Engine ID 1?

That's right Matt, once you program to engines, and then cut power to the track, and turn power back on, all the previous programing is lost.  Seems Lionel's PAs are as problematic as were Alco's!  And it also seems to problem is pretty universal across owners.

pennsyforever

Craignor posted:

I am glad I waited and let you guys be my guinea pigs on these new Legacy PAs.

I was interested, but now, I will pass.

This QA stuff with Lionel is getting old.

Craignor, I hear you! And nobody gets more frustrated with anything less than perfection at these prices then I do. It reminds me of the quote often attributed to Albert Einstein. Something about the definition of insanity being doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result! But in this case I prefer the old joke about the man who goes to a doctor complaining that his brother thinks he is a chicken. The doctor says why don't you get him some help? The man replies we would but we need the eggs! So I would give up on these Alcos too if it  we're not that they are so good-looking and good sounding and so close to the prototype of my beloved New York Central!

I have certainly been through stuff like this before but Dean at Lionel has always made things right and in the end I always believed it was worth the wait because you end up with some really spectacular trains to run.

But I certainly respect and understand your decision!

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JamesRx posted:
Craignor posted:

I am glad I waited and let you guys be my guinea pigs on these new Legacy PAs.

I was interested, but now, I will pass.

This QA stuff with Lionel is getting old.

Craignor, I hear you! And nobody gets more frustrated with anything less than perfection at these prices then I do. It reminds me of the quote often attributed to Albert Einstein. Something about the definition of insanity being doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result! But in this case I prefer the old joke about the man who goes to a doctor complaining that his brother thinks he is a chicken. The doctor says why don't you get him some help? The man replies we would but we need the eggs! So I would give up on these Alcos too if it  we're not that they are so good-looking and good sounding and so close to the prototype of my beloved New York Central!

I have certainly been through stuff like this before but Dean at Lionel has always made things right and in the end I always believed it was worth the wait because you end up with some really spectacular trains to run.

But I certainly respect and understand your decision!

It has been 2 weeks since I received mine.  I did some things that I posted earlier in this topic.  I have been gone for 1 week without touching them.  Came home last night from a business convention and fired up the layout.  Works like a charm  Cycled transformer on and off.  Cycled engines on and off.  Perfect operation.  To summarize:

1)  Flipped program/Run switch fast back and forth about 30 times.

2) Assigned ID per instructions with the following EXCEPTION:  Don't cycle transformer power on and off during the assigning.  1) Transformer power off 2) Place engine on track with switch in program. 3) Assign ID - DON'T TURN POWER OFF ON TRANSFORMER 4) Flip switch to run mode. 5) Turn engine off with CAB.

From that point I was done with assigning and have had no problem whatsoever for 2 weeks.  I recommend giving that a try before giving up.  I am convinced it is a switch issue.

Hopefully it works for you guys also.

Bryant

TCA 18-73717

Bryant Dunivan 

1)  Flipped program/Run switch fast back and forth about 30 times.

2) Assigned ID per instructions with the following EXCEPTION:  Don't cycle transformer power on and off during the assigning.  1) Transformer power off 2) Place engine on track with switch in program. 3) Assign ID - DON'T TURN POWER OFF ON TRANSFORMER 4) Flip switch to run mode. 5) Turn engine off with CAB.

From that point I was done with assigning and have had no problem whatsoever for 2 weeks.  I recommend giving that a try before giving up.  I am convinced it is a switch issue.

Hopefully it works for you guys also.

Great helpful post. I sure hope it helps others with this problem. 

Rod Miller

I tried Bryant's tricks.  Didn't work for me.  1. flipped program/run switch back and forth about 15 times (sorry, my figures got tired), 2. powered down the track, 3. put engine on track, 4. powered up the track, 5. Put PA in program mode, 6. Used the number already assigned to the engine and hit "set." As usually, it fires right up with great sounds.  Checked the front coupler, works fine.  7. Tried flipping the program/run switch back a forth a few times, 8. Turned Engine off with the CAB2. 8. Turned engine on again with the CAB2, 9. Works fine, until, 10. Turned engine off with CAB2, 11. Powered down the track, 12. Powered up the track, 13. Tried to power up the engine, dead as the dodo, as usual.  Last night I sent a message to Lionel's "TalktoUS" center.  Usually they respond by the next morning.  This time, no response.  I have never thought the PA was better looking than an EMD E (Nose too long, body too short for me) but these Lionel PAs do sound great.  But even the great sound is not enough to keep $1,700 worth of bad electronics.

Pennsyforever 

J Daddy posted:
When did the Antennas go to two wires and sticky taped to the shell?

Well, Lionel has has the sticky copper tape for an antenna for many, many years, maybe they're going back to their roots.   I've also seen quite a few locomotives with two wires for antennas.

pennsyforever posted:

I tried Bryant's tricks.  Didn't work for me.  1. flipped program/run switch back and forth about 15 times (sorry, my figures got tired), 2. powered down the track, 3. put engine on track, 4. powered up the track, 5. Put PA in program mode, 6. Used the number already assigned to the engine and hit "set." As usually, it fires right up with great sounds.  Checked the front coupler, works fine.  7. Tried flipping the program/run switch back a forth a few times, 8. Turned Engine off with the CAB2. 8. Turned engine on again with the CAB2, 9. Works fine, until, 10. Turned engine off with CAB2, 11. Powered down the track, 12. Powered up the track, 13. Tried to power up the engine, dead as the dodo, as usual.  Last night I sent a message to Lionel's "TalktoUS" center.  Usually they respond by the next morning.  This time, no response.  I have never thought the PA was better looking than an EMD E (Nose too long, body too short for me) but these Lionel PAs do sound great.  But even the great sound is not enough to keep $1,700 worth of bad electronics.

Pennsyforever 

Pennsy,   That’s interesting because I always felt the same way about E units versus PAs. To me the E8 is so much more elegant than the PA. Apropos of our discussion, I had to return last year’s Legacy E8 four times before I got one that I was satisfied with. It was an ordeal but in the end I have the engine I always wanted. As for the new Alcos, mine actually have many more problems than the ones the people on this thread have. The one problem I don’t have is addressing the engine because on my tiny layout I simply run it as factory setting engine one all the time. At one point I had four different threads running about all the problems with my set. Of course some of the problems were quite minor but I am not good at fixing anything so I always ask for help on the forum, Even though I have had to weather the occasional snide remark. It is well worth it for all the great advice you get. I have managed to reduce all the problems down to just two. In addition to the front coupler, which doesn’t bother me really, and I could fix if I could ever figure out a way to get that little white plug back in without pulling it right out when I put the truck back on, the only real issue left is that occasionally one unit or the other either loses power or signal and start a tug-of-war with its brother. Right now my guess is that it’s a signal loss problem and I will look into improving that situation. But the bottom line is I am keeping them because I know that if necessary Dean at Lionel will make it right. He got me through all the problems with the E8 and now it is my favorite engine and works perfectly all the time. So even though it is extremely frustrating and time-consuming and sometimes drives you crazy, to me it is worth it to have the engine that I want. Just my opinion. 

 

Norton posted:

All the radio boards used in RCMC have a two wire connector for the antenna.  Its used on steam engines which have a wire for each handrail eliminating the wire nut. Not sure its needed on plastic engines but it can't hurt.

 

Pete

Correct. However my point was does the two wire connection need to have a closed circuit so the locomotive will "see" the TMCC signal. On previous board designs it is not needed and this was usually one wire in previous command diesels. 

TCA Number 16-71884

Holding On!!!  Dear Jamesrx, just because of your good experience with Dean at Lionel, I am going to hang on.  I have a Lionel E8 and have never had a problem with it.  After one day of working with four new PAs, here is the situation: 1. Started with voiced and powered A unit not holding its programing when track power is cut.  This problem remains.  2. One PB unit was also not holding its programing when track power was cut but started working as specified.  I did nothing to it, it just started working.  3. Second PB always worked as specified.  4. Powered, non-voiced PA unit has always worked as specified.   So overall, I have three of four units working as specified.  5. I hear no difference between the PA versus PB (super bass) sounds in terms of volume or sound quality (horn, engine, crew talk). 6. The PA/PB sound volume and quality is noticeably better than the 2018 Lionel E8 or TMCC.  So far, in my experience, the only sound that could rival these new PAs/PBs, if the vision line GG1, but I have not done a side by side comparison.  I would like to know the experiences of others.

Pennsyforever 

1. Started with voiced and powered A unit not holding its programing when track power is cut.  This problem remains.

2. One PB unit was also not holding its programing when track power was cut but started working as specified.  I did nothing to it, it just started working.

3. Second PB always worked as specified.

4. Powered, non-voiced PA unit has always worked as specified.  

Pennsyforever- 

Can I clarify a few observations on what you are seeing?

1. Are you saying the lead A unit with sound will not take a unique program ID number and reverts back to 1 every time the power is turned off?

2. Can you confirm this one is taking commands? Or is it just starting up in conventional? Can you change the ID or program?

3. Worked as specified? can program to new ID and will retain new ID and functions properly in command?

4. Worked as specified means; can program to new ID and will retain new ID and functions properly in command?

I would like to compare observations that I am seeing as well.

TCA Number 16-71884

J Daddy posted:
Norton posted:

All the radio boards used in RCMC have a two wire connector for the antenna.  Its used on steam engines which have a wire for each handrail eliminating the wire nut. Not sure its needed on plastic engines but it can't hurt.

 

Pete

Correct. However my point was does the two wire connection need to have a closed circuit so the locomotive will "see" the TMCC signal. On previous board designs it is not needed and this was usually one wire in previous command diesels. 

One wire could break and the antenna would still be functional. The two contacts on the board are wired together. One wire to either or both contacts is sufficient. I am assuming the factory has wired all the antenna connectors with two wires so they can be used for either steam or diesel and then just tie them together on the diesels.

I just opened my RS11 which also has Alzheimers. It too has two wires soldered to the antenna plate. 

Pete

Dear J DADDY:

1. The lead A unit with sound takes a unique program ID number and works fine, until the power is turned off.  If the power is turned off, I cannot tell you what it reverts to.  All I know is that it will not take a command with the ID assigned.  So I start all over again by reprograming it.

2. Once the track power is cut, the lead A unit with sound will not start up at all if power is returned, until it is reprogramed.  I don't run conventional so I can't tell you what it would do in conventional.

3. The two PB units and the non-voiced A unit are working with the original IDs I programed them with.  I have not tried to program new IDs.  If it aint broke, don't fix has been my approach.  That is, I can power down the track and power up, and they (PBs and non-voiced A) take full commands.

4. One of the PBs with acting like the lead A unit, but the problem went away yesterday on its own.  Since that time, it has been working perfectly.

5. Also, I have not tried them in a lash up.

Pennsyforever

Norton posted:
J Daddy posted:
Norton posted:

All the radio boards used in RCMC have a two wire connector for the antenna.  Its used on steam engines which have a wire for each handrail eliminating the wire nut. Not sure its needed on plastic engines but it can't hurt.

 

Pete

Correct. However my point was does the two wire connection need to have a closed circuit so the locomotive will "see" the TMCC signal. On previous board designs it is not needed and this was usually one wire in previous command diesels. 

One wire could break and the antenna would still be functional. The two contacts on the board are wired together. One wire to either or both contacts is sufficient. I am assuming the factory has wired all the antenna connectors with two wires so they can be used for either steam or diesel and then just tie them together on the diesels.

I just opened my RS11 which also has Alzheimers. It too has two wires soldered to the antenna plate. 

Pete

Thanks Pete.  Than I think what happened to mine was the antenna plate lost its adhesive to the shell and grounded the signal out on the frame . When it was sitting loose inside the unit . 

TCA Number 16-71884

pennsyforever posted:

Dear J DADDY:

1. The lead A unit with sound takes a unique program ID number and works fine, until the power is turned off.  If the power is turned off, I cannot tell you what it reverts to.  All I know is that it will not take a command with the ID assigned.  So I start all over again by reprograming it.

2. Once the track power is cut, the lead A unit with sound will not start up at all if power is returned, until it is reprogramed.  I don't run conventional so I can't tell you what it would do in conventional.

3. The two PB units and the non-voiced A unit are working with the original IDs I programed them with.  I have not tried to program new IDs.  If it aint broke, don't fix has been my approach.  That is, I can power down the track and power up, and they (PBs and non-voiced A) take full commands.

4. One of the PBs with acting like the lead A unit, but the problem went away yesterday on its own.  Since that time, it has been working perfectly.

5. Also, I have not tried them in a lash up.

Pennsyforever

Pop the lids and see if your antenna is floating around in the housing. 

TCA Number 16-71884

The same TMCC receiver hardware is used in diesel and steam, so it makes sense that it would be optimized for either use. 

pennsyforever posted:

Got up this morning, powered the track, Lead A unit fired right up with everything working!!!!  Can't explain it, but nice to have it working.  Next, will try a lash up.

Pennsyforever

Is this with the new ID number or ID #1? 

Pete

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