Matt, my lead A unit stopped working as mysteriously as it started working.  Both B units and the A unit w/o voice, are working.  There is no way around this, we need a serious fix from Lionel.  Unfortunately, Lionel is not responding to any of my inquiries.

Pennsyforever

pennsyforever posted:

Matt, my lead A unit stopped working as mysteriously as it started working.  Both B units and the A unit w/o voice, are working.  There is no way around this, we need a serious fix from Lionel.  Unfortunately, Lionel is not responding to any of my inquiries.

Pennsyforever

Lionel won't be issuing RAs for at least a couple more weeks. Everyone is going to have sit tight for a while before this problem is addressed.

Pete

This is the response from my retailer—

We have been in communication with Lionel regard this problem.  It appears that the
main board has to be "reflashed" to correct the problem.  Lionel is handling this
directly, they will issue a call tag to pick it up, fix it and return it to you at
no cost to you, you should call their Customer Service and they will arrange this
for you.  They may be closed for the 4th of July holiday so you may not get them
until the 8th
Bryant Dunivan 111417 posted:

Thud......., that’s the sound of a white towel being thrown in the ring.   Just like Matt, it happened to me last night and I reprogrammed a both A units to get it running.  I hope shipping is kind when Lionel fixes it.  They are beautiful locomotives. 

Yeah I’m ready to go for the return trip to North Carolina too, but dreading what could happen to these beauties in shipping. A large part of the appeal for me is the physical appearance and that’s what often takes the hit in shipping. But mine have so many more  problems than the rest of you guys that I really need to bite the bullet.

pennsyforever posted:

This is the response from my retailer—

We have been in communication with Lionel regard this problem.  It appears that the
main board has to be "reflashed" to correct the problem.  Lionel is handling this
directly, they will issue a call tag to pick it up, fix it and return it to you at
no cost to you, you should call their Customer Service and they will arrange this
for you.  They may be closed for the 4th of July holiday so you may not get them
until the 8th

Boy that’s going to be one busy email account come July 8th. 

Good luck to everyone here on getting a successful resolution.

pennsyforever posted:

Matt, my lead A unit stopped working as mysteriously as it started working.  Both B units and the A unit w/o voice, are working.  There is no way around this, we need a serious fix from Lionel.  Unfortunately, Lionel is not responding to any of my inquiries.

Pennsyforever

Pennsy Lionel is in the process of moving their entire service department from one building to another. I’ve been speaking to Dean about it...big job but they are almost there. Be patient and he will make this right.

Ok so I was on vacation when my Santa Fe's arrived and I read some of the problems while out of town. I was about to order a set of UP when I started reading this information. Now I am afraid to open my Santa Fe. Is it ALL PA's that are having a problem and "All" will need to be sent back or is it random?

Home of the Texarkana & East Texas Railroad (Cotton Belt,

Texas & Pacific, MoPac, KCS, and T&NO)

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Well, if it's really programming as Dave stated, I suspect all of them would have the flaw.

I agree with John.  By the nature of the process "Garbage in, Garbage out".   Programming is great when right (100%).  Not so great when wrong (100%).

Let's hope the Challengers are fine.  There will be a lot of ALCOs on Big L Workbenches.  I understand from Steve Nelson, Challengers have shipped and on their way to him.

Bryant

TCA 18-73717

I was informed to call back after the 8th as when I described the issues which was a couple of weeks ago now this was considered new issues with these new units.   Have the NYC set and the second A unit cab lights lit and could control smoke levels from remote but that was it.   Just boxed it back up and send back when I get the RA.  

They are fantastic looking and the one working unit sounds & works great but does not look so great by itself.

Was going to get the B unit and thought of another but will wait and see how this works out.

I don't know if  believe that the issues with these are just programming. After cleaning the contacts on my run/prgm switch my faulty A unit has been 100%. Powered up/down several times and also let it sit several days and then turned it back on and have had no issues with it remembering who it is. Hopefully it stays this way. Even if it does need a reflash, I won't be sending mine in unless it quits again.

Surefire posted:

I don't know if  believe that the issues with these are just programming. After cleaning the contacts on my run/prgm switch my faulty A unit has been 100%. Powered up/down several times and also let it sit several days and then turned it back on and have had no issues with it remembering who it is. Hopefully it stays this way. Even if it does need a reflash, I won't be sending mine in unless it quits again.

That is correct. Testing quite a few of these now and there seems to be 3 or 4 failure modes. Flashing the chip is only one of them.

Well I am in the barrel too. just unpacked my santa fe units. first impression, beautiful looking units. powered up the B unit, seems to work fine. sound is awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! powered up lead A unit. worked fine until first power shut down. upon powering up, it had lost id memory. reprogramed and worked fine with the exception of loud clicking noise while running. shut down again, lost memory upon start up again. repacked unit to send back to lionel. how can lionel make any profit on these, if they have to have them all back for rework. imho not a great way to run a business.

Had the same clicking noise. Bachmann contact lube quieted it temporarily...new rollers eliminated it. Looks like they had a bad batch of rollers when they made these. Two of the rollers on one of mine didn’t roll at all....excellent track cleaners!!

J Daddy posted:
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 . 

I just realized from your post that all my stalling problems could be from signal loss due to antenna issue. You mentioned yours was loose inside the frame. Did things improve after the fix? 

The stalling started with one A unit, then started in the other. Definitely looks like signal loss. All my other engines run fine on same track. Could it be my plates also came loose? Of course I would have to take off the shell to know, and I’m probably not going to (not a good mechanic at all!), but just for fun could you show me which screws hold the shell on?

Dave Olson posted:

These will need to come into Service to be reprogrammed. Service should start accepting repairs again sometime in July once the move is finished.

@Dave Olson

I started another thread thinking it was just my units, not knowing this was just the latest widespread defective offering.  So, my apologies, it didn't need another thread as it sounds like you're on top of this - thank you.   

Want to document  my issue here for your reference, Dave:  my issue is a little different - I programmed the "lead" unit first via Legacy and that went as it should. But the other A unit and the B unit do not allow me to program them at all.  I've only tried operating them for a few minutes so far, so maybe the rest of these reported  issues are present too - I just dont know yet.  

There are posts from non-Lionel people reporting what they say are Lionel responses, but would you be so kind as to please provide one comprehensive post that spells it all out?  Meaning, that these will be issued an RMA with no cost to your customers for shipping? And how and when this might take place?  

Many thanks,

Peter

Here are my observations:

1) Some units cannot program and they start up in neutral conventional - root cause was the antenna falling off the top of the shell and grounding on the frame

2) Some units cannot program start up in command mode -switch wire to main mother board was not engaged into its connector

3) Some units cannot retain their program when power is shut off and revert back to ID no. 1 : This is a software issue and they must be sent back to Lionel for a reflash

4) Some units making a loud ticking sound: The sensor on the reader board is hitting the flywheel ring. It will eventually ground the ring down and the locomotive will take off or run erratic. - I pulled the flywheel and gently pried the sensors apart to provide spacing for the flywheel ring. My E6's has the same issue. 

5) Some units cannot program ID at all - Bad program / run switch

You may see additional failure modes. This is what I have found so far.

 

PJB posted:

Oh, forgot to mention - there's also a clicking noise as it is in motion.  

A lot of these sets have bad pick up rollers.  A little oil helps temporarily, but I replaced mine and it eliminated the clicking completely.  I recommend when everyone sends them in for repair to mention the need for replacement rollers. 

I tried one more time before packing everything back up. The trailing A unit still is totally nonresponsive when trying to program it.  The B unit allowed me to "add" it (I get the whistle blast) but then when switched to RUN, it 100% does not accept any Legacy commands, including starting up.  It sits there dead. 

Dave- again, this isn't you - it's a Lionel QC issue.  You are incredibly responsive and I am grateful. I don't expect you to reply to this, but until a few years ago, every locomotive I bought from L was perfect.  In the past few years, every single locomotive, Legacy and Vision, I've purchased requires immediate service due to an operating defect. Started with one of my N&W Pocahontas sets with the aluminum passenger cars. The locomotive had jittery non-smooth operation.  Sorry to say that even after 2 trips back to L for service it remains that way.  Knowing they have an obvious QC issue, is L making any attempt to implement a QC control check (e.g. bump up testing to say 10% instead of 1% or whatever your actual numbers are - if L even does this) so they catch this stuff before the headache is passed along to the customer?  I know speed to market matters for revenue recognition, but a delay in RR must be superior to a dwindling customer base as people get turned off and decide to take their business elsewhere?   Thanks for listening.  

 

Apparently, the problem is with the TMCC receiver that plugs into the RCMC.  Of course, since Lionel started soldering the TMCC receiver on, now you have to return the entire locomotive since it's not possible to remove the little TMCC receiver for programming!

wow, what a fiasco. why is lionel having such problems that 3rd rail and mth do not? is it they use a different mfg? and how long can lionel last with these kind of losses along with lost customers ? sounds like manufacturing rules the roost, with qc having very little influence. 

Hate to say it, but IF this issue is really that widespread, this is like amateur hour.   I mean we aren't talking about Chinese knock-off Rolexes here. We're talking about very pricey toys from what's supposed to be a premier brand name.  My hope is that this serves as the needed wake up call. 

Since it's the TMCC receiver or the RCMC that's common to virtually all the current Legacy stuff, it would seem pretty logical that they all got programmed wrong!  So, you're going to be singing this song until they round them all up and get them reprogrammed!  Too bad we can't fix this in the field.  It's spanned a number of widely divergent models, so my sense is that it's the TMCC receiver that has the problem.  That's also likely the board that remembers the TMCC ID.

Curiously, I don't see how that one is programmed, no program pins or connector.  Since it's soldered on now, it'll be a major PITA if they have to replace those with new boards!  Before the soldering, it would have been just pop the new board on the RCMC.

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I am not convinced they are all wrong. Only time will tell. My 3 unit set is doing fine. Also another colleague has the Santa Fe A-B-A and he is reporting no issues with his ( as far as holding the new ID's).

My latest issue was the antenna...I was able to re-stick the antenna to the top of the shell and everything was fine. 

Begs the question - if smoke fluid wicks inside the shell …it will be only a bit of time and the double sided sticky tape will fail again.

What I find to be odd is that I have had two different sets, both of which had the same issue, yet no one else here has reported any similar issue with theirs. My main problem has been the motor stalling upon, or a few seconds after, slow-speed startup. I have gone through a number of theories, but have proven them all wrong. At first it was suggested that the O36 curves were too tight for the engines to manage a slow-speed startup. But then it started happening on straights tracks too. Then it seemed very likely that it was a loss of signal issue. I got some great advice on that from Ameen on this forum, and learned a lot about Wi-Fi as well! After changing the channels on both my Wi-Fi router and the Legacy base all seemed well again. But a couple of days later the problem came back with a vengeance. Keep in mind that none of my other Legacy engines have ever had this problem even once after years of running, and they're still not experiencing this problem when I test them out now. So here I have experience with four different Alco PA A units experiencing, with increasing frequency, engine lock up during slow speed start up, and yet no one else seems to have had this problem. I am glad no one else is getting this aggravation, but it still seems odd.  By the way, once the engines get running even at very slow speed the problem never happens. They can run all day at speed step one without stopping if they get past the initial startup.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Since it's the TMCC receiver or the RCMC that's common to virtually all the current Legacy stuff, it would seem pretty logical that they all got programmed wrong!  So, you're going to be singing this song until they round them all up and get them reprogrammed!  Too bad we can't fix this in the field.  It's spanned a number of widely divergent models, so my sense is that it's the TMCC receiver that has the problem.  That's also likely the board that remembers the TMCC ID.

Curiously, I don't see how that one is programmed, no program pins or connector.  Since it's soldered on now, it'll be a major PITA if they have to replace those with new boards!  Before the soldering, it would have been just pop the new board on the RCMC.

WRONG.  The receiver board does not have any programming.  

jon

Lionel LLC (2006-2017)

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