New Licensing Deal for Lionel ERR Products

machinist posted:

I would appreciate a little guidance from the experts here as to exactly which ERR items I would need to order from 3rd Rail for upgrading the following engines.

1.   MTH Premier NYC heavy Pacific w/PS1 from the 90's(NIB).   I'm thinking the Cruise Commander kit,   Railsounds kit for medium steam,  along with GRJ's super chuffer items when available.   Do these sound correct for this engine upgrade?

2.   Sunset/3rd Rail Bessemer & Lake Erie 2-10-4 #643(3 rail) from 2007.   This engine has the Train America Studios/Engine on Board system which has already had some issues..   Would I need to gut the whole system and replace with the Cruise Commander kit and the Railsounds kit for large steam or use the Cruise Commander M kit?   I really don't know what parts are already in place with the TAS system.   Of course the super chuffer items would also be installed.

3&4.   Sunset/3rd Rail Canadian Pacific 2-10-4's #5931 & #5935(3 rail) from 2007.   These engines are both in the same situation as the above 3rd Rail B&LE engine as far as having the factory installed TAS/EOB setup which I wish to replace exactly like the B&LE engine. 

I will not be doing these installations-I'll leave that up to someone who knows what they're doing,  but I would like to get the parts ordered for when that time comes.   Help would be appreciated.   Thanks

Nick

You would pretty much need a Cruise Commander and Railsounds Commander for each of these. The TAS boards don't lend themselves to a Cruise M unless you have a huge tender as with TAS the motor driver is also the motherboard. 

You could salvage the audio boards but would have to get a motherboard from lionel to be able to reuse them. Not exactly plug and play but not excessively complicated either.

Best find and installer and discuss the options with them before ordering.

Pete

Scott, I can completely understand the costs involved in running your own business and supporting it.  In my photography business the inventory costs alone would make many folks lose sleep, ex having to buy $20,000 worth of photo paper at a time in order to get a good deal on it.  I think the prices are reasonable, but expect there are some things that could be done if production costs are the reason for needing higher prices. 

I would be very surprised if the actual cost to produce any of these boards was much more than $20, and if so it may be worth taking the time to revise the components used to find less expensive, equal/better parts and/or ones that are expected to remain in production for years to come.  

Something to consider as well, if there is any interest in producing any of the less in-demand boards.  You could consider designing a more efficient panalization for production.   It's likely that the boards will be produced on a panel  that contains around 25-30 individual boards.  It may be worth while to investigate designing the panel so that 1 or 2 of those boards are a less demanded product.  In this way you can have a couple "free"  ACC commanders for every 25 Cruise commanders that are produced.  


machinist posted:

I would appreciate a little guidance from the experts here as to exactly which ERR items I would need to order from 3rd Rail for upgrading the following engines...

 

...I will not be doing these installations-I'll leave that up to someone who knows what they're doing,  but I would like to get the parts ordered for when that time comes.   Help would be appreciated.   Thanks

Nick

I might suggest speaking to whomever you are going to have do the installs.  It is probably beneficial to all involved to have the tech order the parts.  In this way first, they will know what is needed.  Second, if you happen to choose an authorized ERR dealer, someone in the chain will save some money.  It may be you pay less for the finished job, or it may be your tech makes a little extra, but in either case there is a savings to be had, and the tech knows exactly what part they are installing.  

JGL

$ This is John Galt speaking.  $

“I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.” 

 

 

Trying to fit a Cruise Commander in with the TAS boards is more trouble than its worth. Just buy the Railsounds Commander and you’ll getvsuperior sound as well. None of the TAS Railsounds system sound nearly as good as the new Railsounds boards.

Matt Makens posted:

Trying to fit a Cruise Commander in with the TAS boards is more trouble than its worth. Just buy the Railsounds Commander and you’ll getvsuperior sound as well. None of the TAS Railsounds system sound nearly as good as the new Railsounds boards.

Well, Except in the area of volume!

Not sure where you get that Shawn, I don't have any issue with the volume from the ERR RailSounds Commander.  The same electronics that is used in the RS Commander is also used in virtually all new Legacy locomotives, and they're PLENTY loud.

Jim Harrington posted:
gunrunnerjohn posted:

Truthfully, I use the "steam" kit for everything.  I don't know if it actually happened, but they were supposed to all merge into one "universal" one, and I believe the steam version was it.  The difference appears to be in the serial data handling, the "steam" handles a lower amplitude serial data signal without issue.

So the the steam kit will work with diesels, stem with tether, and with IR drawbar?

Thanks.

If that's the case and there's no difference or at least universal, there's no point in Scott listing three, just have one made.

I was told at least a year ago that the plan was to have a single board that worked in all environments, and I presume the "Steam" one is it.  Jon Z. is the guy to ask, he surely knows what the differences are.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Truthfully, I use the "steam" kit for everything.  I don't know if it actually happened, but they were supposed to all merge into one "universal" one, and I believe the steam version was it.  The difference appears to be in the serial data handling, the "steam" handles a lower amplitude serial data signal without issue.

GRJ

Which Cruise Cmd would you recommend for use in Lionel TMCC Berkshire Jr w/tether?

Gerry

I just did a full upgrade on a 3rd Rail DMIR 2-10-4 and that thing is really loud. And the quality is orders of magnitude above the TAS system that came out of that loco. Only a sucker would use that tiny little “Fatboy” speaker they include with the kit. Everybody knows the bigger the speaker the bigger the sound. Couple that will a quality enclosure and you can get really first rate sound with plenty of volume and deep low frequency bass. If you can’t get the volume out of the ERR Railsounds 5 board you’re doing it wrong.

Well guys,

Thanks to everyone for all the information,  suggestions and advice on my questions about which ERR products to use on my 4 engines that I asked about.   Looks like it will end up being the Cruise Commander and a couple of different steam Railsounds Commanders for all these engines.   Plus GRJ's chuffer products.   I will need to make a few inquiries with a couple of reputable installers to see about getting in line for having these upgrades done when the various products become available. 

Nick

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Not sure where you get that Shawn, I don't have any issue with the volume from the ERR RailSounds Commander.  The same electronics that is used in the RS Commander is also used in virtually all new Legacy locomotives, and they're PLENTY loud.

I have done at least two MTH Premier steam and one diesel with the RS commander and found the sound volume inadequate. The steam engines used the tender body sealed as well as possible as a speaker cabinet and in the diesel, I made a speaker cabinet from a large pill bottle filled with fiberglass and covered with heavy packing tape. All three of these locos used the included fat boy speaker and all three had insufficient volume to be heard on a public/club layout.

Is there a better speaker to use? If so, may I have the part number and/or source of this speaker, please?

RoyBoy

You can use an 8 ohm or 2 - 16 ohm speakers in parallel or 2 - 4 ohm speakers in series as long as you keep the impedance at 8 ohms. The included fat boy speakers are a joke. I have bought some very nice speakers from ESU, but any speaker you can find that will fit in your loco will work. Remember, the bigger the speaker the more air it can move and the louder the sound. Also bigger speakers can produce better low frequency sound.

Enclosuers are also important, you have to isolate the sound between the front and the back of the speaker. The front of the speaker produces a positive sound and the rear of the speaker produces the opposing negative sound wave. If you do not isolate them the 2 waves cancel each other out.  I’ve been building my speaker enclosures out of 1/8 inch Lexan, I’ve gotten very good results.  

Matt Makens posted:

I just did a full upgrade on a 3rd Rail DMIR 2-10-4 and that thing is really loud. And the quality is orders of magnitude above the TAS system that came out of that loco. Only a sucker would use that tiny little “Fatboy” speaker they include with the kit. Everybody knows the bigger the speaker the bigger the sound. Couple that will a quality enclosure and you can get really first rate sound with plenty of volume and deep low frequency bass. If you can’t get the volume out of the ERR Railsounds 5 board you’re doing it wrong.

You are using the fat boy speaker. I have used the board in places that the fat boy speaker was not usable. I perceive a difference in volume....

Also, If I remember correctly some of the earlier boards did have the low volume isssue. I believe it was corrected on later runs... Jon, would know!

 

Art Lites posted:

Does anyone have a source for electric couplers carried by ERR?

Lionel Parts

Specifically, Lionel Parts Coil Couplers.  They have tons of couplers of all sizes.

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gunrunnerjohn posted:

I was told at least a year ago that the plan was to have a single board that worked in all environments, and I presume the "Steam" one is it.  Jon Z. is the guy to ask, he surely knows what the differences are.

Just got an answer back, the "all steam" should work for any application.

gunrunnerjohn posted:
gunrunnerjohn posted:

I was told at least a year ago that the plan was to have a single board that worked in all environments, and I presume the "Steam" one is it.  Jon Z. is the guy to ask, he surely knows what the differences are.

Just got an answer back, the "all steam" should work for any application.

Sorry John still confused. Which one of Scot's offerings is the Cruise Cdr-M that might be suitable for The Berkshire Jr. with TMCC and Rail sounds and tether?

This module should work for any application. 

The only thing that the Odyssey Kit gives you is the 4-pin connector to splice into the harness in place of the 6-pin connector on the old Odyssey DCDS.  From what Jon said, all the kits at this point should probably have the same basic Cruise Commander M board, it's just the other bits in the package that might change.  Since all Scott's offerings are presumably being built in the future, they should all have the updated board.

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gunrunnerjohn posted:

Scott, there are a few people here that have a couple of ERR installations under their belt, that's for sure.

A few?  I have a few, you on the other hand you win hands down as the all time installer.

Ed posted:

Maybe we should have a forum titled TMCC Installation Issues.

It should all move over to the Control Systems forums>Lionel TMCC and Legacy.

That way the tech questions and answers can be separated from the constant and ongoing speculation on this thread

Music, trains, boneless chicken farming
David

Ed posted:

Maybe we should have a forum titled TMCC Installation Issues.

Since they shotgunned the forum with MTH sub-forums, hopefully they can see their way clear to adding a sub-forum for ERR in the Legacy/TMCC section.

Electric RailRoad (3rd Rail) Installation and Configuration might be a good title.

I’ve made my reservations for upgrade kits and CC-M‘s, some for “future” projects  

I hesitate to order Railsounds commander boards, as I have yet to define what the kits will be going in.

is there a physical difference in the sound boards?  Is the sound chip removable like the RS4 boards?

Can the sound set be re-written by EER?

Thanks - Jim

The physical sound boards are the same for all the RS Commander versions, it's just the sound files that are loaded into them.  I suspect that 3rd Rail will be loading them to order, but Scott is obviously the person that can answer that question with certainty.  I have no idea how they'll manage the loading of the sound files, or who will actually do the job.

Nope Jim, that's the CC-Lite that works in that environment.  You "may" be able to cram the Cruise Commander in there, but when I did mine, It looked VERY tight, and I went with the CC-Lite.  Unfortunately, that's not one of the boards that is initially being offered.

We have been loading sound files for all our OEM sets (1000s).  So we are also prepared to load the sounds for these ERR sets.

The only difference between OEM and ERR sound boards is that the ERR sound boards have a volume pot mounted on the board. The OEM has a plug. These sound boards can be loaded and re-loaded when needed. But they are delicate and do have higher failure rates than any other component of the ERR kits. In other words, you don't want to have to keep re-programming them.

I will monitor the requests for bring back some of the other ERR boards that are not in this first list of sanctioned boards.  We have to get permission to do this, but showing the volume need will make a difference in the decision making process. No promises.

Scott

sdmann posted:

We have been loading sound files for all our OEM sets (1000s).  So we are also prepared to load the sounds for these ERR sets.

The only difference between OEM and ERR sound boards is that the ERR sound boards have a volume pot mounted on the board. The OEM has a plug. These sound boards can be loaded and re-loaded when needed. But they are delicate and do have higher failure rates than any other component of the ERR kits. In other words, you don't want to have to keep re-programming them.

I will monitor the requests for bring back some of the other ERR boards that are not in this first list of sanctioned boards.  We have to get permission to do this, but showing the volume need will make a difference in the decision making process. No promises.

Scott

So based on this is it possible to reserve a “generic” sound board at this time, and decide which sound set when you receive inventory?

-Jim

Pete, pretty sure Jim is saying he has a few locomotives in mind, but he's not sure of the mix, so he doesn't know what characteristics he'd want until it gets closer to the shipment time.  We're not used to having to order this stuff six months in advance.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Pete, pretty sure Jim is saying he has a few locomotives in mind, but he's not sure of the mix, so he doesn't know what characteristics he'd want until it gets closer to the shipment time.  We're not used to having to order this stuff six months in advance.

John,

Yes. That was my point exactly.  It might be for a set of Williams FA’s or a T-1, etc...

-Jim 

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