New Licensing Deal for Lionel ERR Products

Hello everyone,

We are excited to announce that Scott Mann of 3rd Rail will be taking on a new licensing deal with Lionel for the distribution of ERR Products. Scott is a fixture in the train space and has been connected to Lionel using the ERR technology/boards in his products for over 10 years. Stay tuned for future updates as it will take a few months to receive parts inventory and for Scott and his team to get up and running.

Here is the link to the official announcement on the Lionel website: http://www.lionel.com/articles...el-Electric-Railroad

Thanks!

Dave Olson

Director of Engineering

Lionel LLC

Original Post

Folks,  We are excited about this arrangement/agreement as well.  We hope we can provide you the support you have been accustomed to.  But for now, give us a few weeks to get our order page up, and know that we won't have stock for at least 4 months from the time we order to the board maker. Hoping for an October delivery schedule.

Cheers and thanks to Howard and his crew for putting this together so quickly and painlessly.

More later.

Scott Mann

sdmann posted:

Folks,  We are excited about this arrangement/agreement as well.  We hope we can provide you the support you have been accustomed to.  But for now, give us a few weeks to get our order page up, and know that we won't have stock for at least 4 months from the time we order to the board maker. Hoping for an October delivery schedule.

Cheers and thanks to Howard and his crew for putting this together so quickly and painlessly.

More later.

Scott Mann

Scott are you nuts?Boy you came out of left field to save the day. Goodluck, and Oct delivery time frame actually works for me.

Let me allay some fears and give you a few more details to avoid a lot of back and forth emails and questions. 

A. We are licensed to  produce only the following products:

1. Cruise Commander v4.1 (Including) o R4LC o Prog/Run Switch o Antenna

2. AC Commander (Including) o R4LC o Prog/Run Switch o Antenna

3. DC Commander (Including) o R4LC o Prog/Run Switch o Antenna

4. RSOE (RAILSOUNDS KIT) o Interconnect cables o Speaker 

5. Cruise “M” o Motor Driver

I am sorry if you don't see other items you may have wanted. Perhaps in the future we can consider it, but for now this is all that has been released  based on previous order volume.

B. Dealers of Electric Railroad will be offered Dealership status with us as well. Dealer discounts by % are the same.  We know many of the dealers's business relies on this to provide upgrades and service with some profit. So don't worry...

C. Prices will be determined by costs. We will do our best to keep the costs down, but if there are increases at the board manufacturer, we will have to pass these on in our Dealer and Retail Pricing. We won't know until we have received a quote. Give us until June 30th to know the exact prices.

D. If you missed ordering before, you will be able to order soon when our web site is up and running end of May. Orders for October will be similar to our Reservation system. No deposit required, but you better buy  when the boards arrive, or we will look at you funny when you try to order again. Then just sit back and wait for a notice of arrival when the boards are coming to us.

E. Service calls for previous product purchases (Before May 15th), will be referred back to Electric RR Company.  We currently can't answer your technical questions until we have staff in place. We warranty what we sell after May 15th 2018.

F.  I think that's enough details for now.  Once I have reviewed our web site with the folks at Lionel, and get the OK, we will release our link. 

Until then, sit tight and play play play.

Regards,

Scott Mann

 

Glad to hear that this is going to happen.  Personally, I will show my support for 3rd Rail by purchasing more of their products to reward them for this community oriented approach.  Don't need any ERR products just now, but always can use another locomotive or piece of rolling stock .

sdmann posted:

Let me allay some fears and give you a few more details to avoid a lot of back and forth emails and questions. 

A. We are licensed to  produce only the following products:

[snip]

4. RSOE (Including) o Interconnect cables o Speaker 

[snip]

Pardon my ignorance, I assume that the RSOE is the RailSounds Commander kit, but what do the "O" and the "E" stand for?

I just thought about something-this is even better than most of us think. 3rd Rail and subsequently GGD will now become known by a larger audience which means less canceled projects, more growth for Scott and the team, and more cool offerings. One customer who came into the shop during the Christmas season was eyeing a Lionel ATSF Hi-Level set, but it wasn't close enough to the prototype for him. He had never heard of GGD, so I told him about the El Capitan sets in 3 rail that were still left at the time (very few, must have been 2 or 3). He came back the next weekend and had purchased an entire set plus extra cars. This is great news for all, many more will come to appreciate the art Scott and the team put out.

Jim Harrington posted:

GRJ - How soon till the next batch of Supper Chuffers and Chuff Generators? 

I'll have to dust off the order book.

Good point, the TMCC stuff is much less interesting if we can't have sound!  Of course, since 3rd Rail is already using the OEM sound boards that are the same stuff ERR sells, one could logically assume that they should be able to offer them at some point as well.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Good point, the TMCC stuff is much less interesting if we can't have sound!  Of course, since 3rd Rail is already using the OEM sound boards that are the same stuff ERR sells, one could logically assume that they should be able to offer them at some point as well.

Lol, Railsounds too. - So, we will have to use a command board in dummy's. But, who cares.

sdmann posted:

Don't know why they call it RSOE - But the link to ERR shows it to be the Railsounds Kit:

Great Scott.  I was confused about the cable reference, I thought it was just some wiring.   I've never stumbled across that particular PDF before, I thought I had all the ERR documentation.

sdmann posted:

Let me allay some fears and give you a few more details to avoid a lot of back and forth emails and questions. 

A. We are licensed to  produce only the following products:

1. Cruise Commander v4.1 (Including) o R4LC o Prog/Run Switch o Antenna

2. AC Commander (Including) o R4LC o Prog/Run Switch o Antenna

3. DC Commander (Including) o R4LC o Prog/Run Switch o Antenna

4. RSOE (RAILSOUNDS KIT) o Interconnect cables o Speaker 

5. Cruise “M” o Motor Driver

Will that include the Cruise Commander Lite, or did that one get left at the station?

sdmann posted:

Don't know why they call it RSOE - But the link to ERR shows it to be the Railsounds Kit:

http://www.electricrr.com/Manu...lSoundsCmdr-Inst.pdf

Only referenced at the bottom of the manual.

Sorry Shawn, no conspiracy or controversy here.

Scott

Well now, now, isn't that good news! All that hateful banter too for NOTHING.... Don't mess with someone's train collection!

 

err surviv

 

TCA Number 16-71884

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I'll be there. I must admit that 3rd rail was one place that I thought might be a candidate to fill the gap; the other one was much farther back East. 

Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't understand Scott's "better order now or we'll look at you funny when you try to order again" comment (that's only an approximate quote). Huh?

Sound is important, but Control is more so. If the inventory needs to veer away from much Sound so Control can survive, so be it.  Sound is also more "fiddle-able".

Don't misquote me:

D. If you missed ordering before, you will be able to order soon when our web site is up and running end of May. Orders for October will be similar to our Reservation system. No deposit required, but you better buy  when the boards arrive, or we will look at you funny when you try to order again. Then just sit back and wait for a notice of arrival when the boards are coming to us.

You said "ORDER", I SAID "BUY".  Better buy what you order, or if you try to order again, we will look at your order as not so serious.

Scott Mann

For Dave Olson: What is Lionel's position regarding orders placed and PAID for via CC the weekend the ERR shutdown was announced? I realize ERR may not have inventory to support those orders, but they DID charge our CCs (mine was almost $400.00). When does Lionel think they are going to refund those monies since they can't fill the orders? It would be nice to have the refunds (or the ordered product) by this June.

I am happy that Lionel was able to salvage this in hurry, but can you image how much better 3rd Rail could have hit the ground running with TMCC upgrades if this deal would have been planned and transitioned over the last year or even 3 months?.... But this is just 20/20 hindsight thought. the situation is what it is and we are where we are.

A tip of the hat to Lionel for getting this back on the "Rails" and pat on the back to 3rd Rail for extending a helping hand. Thank you to both companies for keeping our trains rolling!

H1000

I wonder if they'll bring back the same boards (form factor, power consumption, components) or if this might be an opportunity for a redesign that has the same functions but performs better, is more robust, smaller, easier to install and may even cost less.  I'm not holding out for latter.

Scott,

After the initial rush will you be stocking product like ERR did, or will it all be advance orders only? I normally stock 5 - 6 Cruise CMDRs, 1 each DC CMDR and AC CMDR, and then order other items per my customer's requirements or as inventory gets low.

Best wishes for success in this additional venture.

 

jackson, CEO, Not-So-Great Eastern RR, aka The Never Done Line

          Division of the Southern Adirondack Railway Cartel

 

 

This is terrible news! So much hysteria, hand wringing and hate--all wasted! Howard Hitchcock told us early on that Lionel was trying to--and likely would--do this; and, darn, he wasn't just trying to pull a fast one on us. I'm so upset now, I'm going to sell off my layout and never buy even a black module from Lionel!

Retired is a misnomer.  Should be detired--less tired, more fun!

Kirk R posted:

I wonder if they'll bring back the same boards (form factor, power consumption, components) or if this might be an opportunity for a redesign that has the same functions but performs better, is more robust, smaller, easier to install and may even cost less.  I'm not holding out for latter.

Don't shoot the moon, I'm sure the initial thought is to bring back the existing product line, or at least the announced parts if it.

D&H 65 posted:

For Dave Olson: What is Lionel's position regarding orders placed and PAID for via CC the weekend the ERR shutdown was announced? I realize ERR may not have inventory to support those orders, but they DID charge our CCs (mine was almost $400.00). When does Lionel think they are going to refund those monies since they can't fill the orders? It would be nice to have the refunds (or the ordered product) by this June.

D&H 65, and others who are concerned about refunds:

Ken refunded all Paypal orders last Thursday and Friday.  Paypal will take a couple of business days to process them.  Once processed at Paypal, your CC will be credited.  We don't have any control over Paypal's timing for a CC refund;  I did notice quite a few folks have gotten their refunds already, judging from the posts I have read. 

Please be assured we handled this as fast as we could, and I would ask folks to email Ken if their refund is not received by next Monday, the 21st. 

jon

Past Head of Engineering at Lionel LLC (2006-2017)

Keith L posted:

This is terrible news! So much hysteria, hand wringing and hate--all wasted! Howard Hitchcock told us early on that Lionel was trying to--and likely would--do this; and, darn, he wasn't just trying to pull a fast one on us. I'm so upset now, I'm going to sell off my layout and never buy even a black module from Lionel!

Would be here right now with this deal between Lionel & 3rd Rail if people woulnd't have spoken up and expressed (yes I agree, a little excessively at times) their anger, unhappiness, and opinion about the initial closing of ERR?

Lionel caught a lot of flack for they way they handled this, but now we can move on and be happy that they got this temporary nightmare back on track.

H1000

Here's what I suggest regarding stocking boards.

I will be buying boards to satisfy the factory minimums, to keep the prices as low as possible, in line with the volume of orders by you all from the past and forecasted into to near future. Same as I do with our model train projects.

But I suggest, that each of you, retail and installer, stock the boards you think you will need in the next couple of years, because at anytime, a components that makes up these boards can go Unobtainium on us. That would require a redesign, higher production costs and higher retail and dealer costs. Or it could prove to be too much for such a product line to survive. You just don't know until it happens and you get that email from the factory. 

So if everyone buys what they foresee in the next couple of years, to stock up on boards that will be going in your favorite pieces, and spares in case there is damage or failures, then everyone will be happy.  Including me.

But if you think we will be making these forever, we won't. Minimums may change, component availability changes and then your up s..t creek. 

But until then, it's full steam ahead.

Scott 

sdmann posted:

Don't misquote me:

D. If you missed ordering before, you will be able to order soon when our web site is up and running end of May. Orders for October will be similar to our Reservation system. No deposit required, but you better buy  when the boards arrive, or we will look at you funny when you try to order again. Then just sit back and wait for a notice of arrival when the boards are coming to us.

You said "ORDER", I SAID "BUY".  Better buy what you order, or if you try to order again, we will look at your order as not so serious.

Scott Mann

Got it. (And I did say "approximate quote".)

Thanks for taking this on, also.  

This is great news.   Thanks to Scott & Lionel for listening to the great unwashed!

Now, are all the folks who swore off Lionel forever back on the bandwagon?

gunrunnerjohn posted:
sdmann posted:

Don't know why they call it RSOE - But the link to ERR shows it to be the Railsounds Kit:

Great Scott.  I was confused about the cable reference, I thought it was just some wiring.   I've never stumbled across that particular PDF before, I thought I had all the ERR documentation.

Image result for great scott

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jon Z.: Thanks so much for your input and clarification on the intentions going forward. I'll keep my eye out for the PayPal refunds.

Scott: Thanks so much for rescuing the ERR product line from termination. I will be sending an order once your website is up and running.

Scott,

Congratulations.

Delighted you took this aboard at your place. Absolutely demonstrates that you ARE crazy!

Seriously, wonderful  news for everyone who wants to fix or upgrade their trains with

TMCC components.

Ed Boyle

 

 

 

Scott and his team absolutely deserve credit for jumping in to save the ERR products. However, everyone should heed Scott’s own words that this can’t last forever and 3R/GGD should not be vilianized (in the way Lionel was) when the product ultimately is discontinued for technology turn/obsolescence reasons. That day is coming, and when it does, it won’t be Scott’s fault.  TMCC is contemporaneous with Windows 3.1 - a technology Microsoft replaced 23 years ago and wholly stopped supporting 17 years ago. At some point, a replacement technology will be required no matter how much goodwill and effort Scott’s team infuses into the current effort. In the meantime, it’s great Scott’s team can make it work for everyone involved. 

Rider Sandman posted:

Scott and his team absolutely deserve credit for jumping in to save the ERR products. However, everyone should heed Scott’s own words that this can’t last forever and 3R/GGD should not be vilianized (in the way Lionel was) when the product ultimately is discontinued for technology turn/obsolescence reasons. That day is coming, and when it does, it won’t be Scott’s fault.  TMCC is contemporaneous with Windows 3.1 - a technology Microsoft replaced 23 years ago and wholly stopped supporting 17 years ago. At some point, a replacement technology will be required no matter how much goodwill and effort Scott’s team infuses into the current effort. In the meantime, it’s great Scott’s team can make it work for everyone involved. 

Great post, I can agree with you in most of what you said. I may or may not speak for myself here but the root of the issue here isn't the "inevitable death of TMCC", I mean every type of technology dies, like windows 3.1 and the extremely useful Turbo button lol, BUTTTT those technologies were replaced with new, better, shoot even more affordable and durabel technology. What I'm trying to get at, and the reason I think people "villainized" ERR and/or Lionel, which was the same company technically speaking, was  because they are saying that the technology is becoming obsolete but not offering a viable replacement.

Look at MTH for example, I've used their PS3 upgrade kits, be it a killer on the wallet and a little harder to install, with great success and that is, and will always be, their product for those with great running engines but want to add some current features and/or you are like me and just like tinkering with stuff, I digress...

If Scott and Lionel really want this to work for the long term, and that's a big IF, gosh knows what they have planned to be honest; Those upgrades, be it to TMCC or LEGACY or TMCC with new components and features or LIONCHIEF Extreme, whatever it will be called, needs to be available. If it's not, it just looks like Lionel is just making it's customers buy new engines VS continue to enjoy our investments by adding a new smaller investment. It's a win win for Lionel to offer the upgrade.

Daniel Gonzalez

Guys, 

What's really great about this business is that the customers have some really intelligent and thoughtful suggestions. I listen even if I don't respond.

I think in the future, the path for upgrades will continue.  It's just a little early to see who and what will be involved in the upgrade business or even what the technology will be. But what I did see, is that it was too early to drop the ERR product without something else to jump to. My hope too, is that I can be involved in this evolution. But one never knows, you can just keep yourself open to it and positioned for it.

I want to take this opportunity to thank Jon Z.  Without his invention and creativity, we wouldn't be having this discussion. 

Scott

Dear Scott

Thank you and please let us have the web address as soon as it goes live. I hope the website does not crash from the orders that will come thru.

When you can also let us know if you get any other parts of the ERR product line. I have some milk cars, log and coal cars that need a refit.

Kris

 

A proud member of the Brotherhood of Carpet Layouts.  Permanent layout scheduled for Spring of  2019. New Home of Phoenix Train Works (Name of Layout)

 

sdmann posted:

I think in the future, the path for upgrades will continue.  It's just a little early to see who and what will be involved in the upgrade business or even what the technology will be.  But what I did see, is that it was too early to drop the ERR product without something else to jump to.

Scott

I think Scott succinctly states the salient point in this whole affair - the product shouldn't have been dropped until a replacement was available, as many others above have noted as well.  It's wonderful that he's picking up the loose ball and is going to keep running with it.

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