Friends:  I am considering getting a standard LC RS-3 starter set loco (from set No. 6-85253- "End of the Line Express"), but intend to run it via a conventional transformer, either an MTH Z-1000, or a Lionel CW-80.  I have seen so many opinions on this approach here that my head is spinning!

SO:  1) can I run this LC RS-3 loco with either of those transformers?;  2) if so, do I just set them at 18v track power & use the hand-held remote?;  3) must I replace light bulbs my illuminated rolling stock if running at 18v?  SEPARATELY:  Does this starter set RS-3 have the power to pull 8-10 cars?  Would adding weight to the loco in some way improve its traction & pulling power?

And please... I refer only to LC locos.... not LC+. 

THANK YOU in advance... I apologize if my questions repeat those in the past, my searches did not return anything specific to me.

Original Post

1) LC Locomotives are not designed to be controlled by conventional transformer, but they may be powered by a conventional transformer.

2) 16-18VAC would be ideal in most cases.

3) No - the factory setup should be just fine for modern equipment.

4) Probably, but if your curves are very tight, the train may not adhere to the track folding in on itself.

 

RadioRon posted:

Friends:  I am considering getting a standard LC RS-3 starter set loco (from set No. 6-85253- "End of the Line Express"), but intend to run it via a conventional transformer, either an MTH Z-1000, or a Lionel CW-80.  I have seen so many opinions on this approach here that my head is spinning!

1) can I run this LC RS-3 loco with either of those transformers?;

Should be able to, but several folks have offered the opinion that the CW-80 may kill your locomotive.  I'd be a bit surprised if that happens, but the CW-80 doesn't enjoy a stellar reputation.  Also, make sure you don't have the early Z-1000, they output a max of 24 volts, too much for Lionel electronics.

2) if so, do I just set them at 18v track power & use the hand-held remote?; 

YEP

3) must I replace light bulbs my illuminated rolling stock if running at 18v? 

If you have cars that were designed for conventional use, and you want to run them at 18 volts, yes.  The 12-14V bulbs will have a very short life at 18V.

SEPARATELY:  Does this starter set RS-3 have the power to pull 8-10 cars?  Would adding weight to the loco in some way improve its traction & pulling power?

Probably depends on what you're pulling. 8-10 passenger cars with pickup rollers is probably not going to happen, but modern free-rolling freight cars should be no problem.

 

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