So my R-17 Redbird (with very low mileage and Chrono) derails, and then all **** breaks loose.

It would light up, but no sounds, no click, no movement, and would NOT come off the Inactive List and go Active. 

So I run it over to John's Train Shop in New Jersey, who I trust, and is extremely knowledgeable on MTH engines (MTH Authorized Service Center).

John indicates that the board is DEAD in the water, and because it's a 2003 Engine, it's next to impossible to get that board in the after market. These were not just generic PS2 Boards, but were specifically made for MTH Subways so they fit the cab, and incorporated the unique Subway features.

One option was to upgrade to PS3, but cost was a factor (around $300 bucks, parts and Labor).

I mean at that price, I might as well just go buy a PS3 Redbird. Or pick up a PS2 Redbird on eBay.

Right now I'm looking at a 5-Car R-17 Subway Set, and a Dead Engine, going no place fast.

(Hey, I can always turn the Dead Engine into a Dummy, then I'll have a 6-Car Set, going no place fast).

Any ideas on other options, or someone who might be able to fix the existing board would be welcomed.

Pat C...

 

 

 

 

Pat C...

 

*** If you find yourself in control, then your not going fast enough   ~    Mario Andretti...    ***

Original Post

That’s about the size of it. Even if you do upgrade, it still might be a problem as the subways seem to be difficult for these mth certified technicians to repair. I had my ps-2 Redbird upgraded to ps-3 after its board died.  It took about three returns before the tech got it right. Certain Lights didn’t work, then subway stops sounds were problematic, etc.  I tried a different tech in my area when my cherished R-32 premier engine died. This Is the first mth premier subway and I had to have it fixed.  This MTH certified repair guy was worse than the first and although it now runs, the speed control is not functional and the auto mode will not operate. THis model has manual operating doors and is a nightmare to remove the shell without breaking something, so I’ve just decided to leave it as it is, even though I wasted $250 on the upgrade.  If you do decide to upgrade, try and find someone that has significant subway experience. Maybe someone on this board will chime in and suggest someone. If they do, it would be well worth the shipping to send it to a competent technician. 

 

 

 

Strap,

Thanx for your input.

I was wondering, if I was willing to do without the special Subway features and routing, could I squeeze a generic PS2 upgrade board in there, and load Subway sounds to it...???

At least if this was possible, I can get it moving with sounds, rather than getting depressed seeing it sit there and just collect dust...

Pat C...

Pat C...

 

*** If you find yourself in control, then your not going fast enough   ~    Mario Andretti...    ***

Subway Vic,

Thanx for the input.

Did you go with the Williams board because they fit, or might you know if a PS2 Board could be shoe horned into an R-17 body...???

I typically don't run conventional, having all MTH Engines, and would like to stay that way.

Do you think there is any chance that the the bad board could somehow be fixed.

(Maybe someone on the Forum knows of an individual who could tackle this).

Or possibly I could find a original replacement board on the after market...???

As you can see I'm running out of tricks, and looking for someone to throw me a lifeline...

Pat C...

Pat C...

 

*** If you find yourself in control, then your not going fast enough   ~    Mario Andretti...    ***

Pat, I’ve read some posts on this forum where people changed a capacitor or some other repair and were able to bring one of these back to life but it’s rare. These are old boards and they are failing in a lot of engines. Even if you were to get a used PS-2 board, why pay someone to install it if it will only fail shortly thereafter?  You’ve already had it checked by an mth tech that you trust and he says you need a new board. So I would rule out repair. Your only other realistic options are Ripping out the mth electronics and replacing it with some other possibly cheaper alternative, like subway Vic did, or bite the bullet and upgrade to PS-3.  If you don’t care to use command control (DCS or lionels version) then  the conventional control “downgrade” like subway Vic did with Williams electronics, may be the cheapest option.  Ask your MTH authorized technician for a quote on converting it to non command (conventional control) MTH, Lionel, or Williams electronics. He may have some cheap spare conventional boards lying around from people that upgraded to command control.  Let us know what he says.

For me, I wouldn’t want to give up the subway stops/sounds with that option. My problem is getting someone that is competent enough to do a ps-3 subway upgrade without problems. 

 

 

 

I would ask GGG George on the forum I'm sure he could tell you if its possible to restore newer board and make work the way you want only depends if mth makes the correct flash code to me your engine act like it did with a ps 2 5 volt board did, the old boards were flashed for the special effects!

 

o gauge  trains ,music ,computer repair windows 7 and 10!

ASC Tech MTH school completed! 2019 !

Hi Pat, I had converted the Williams engines to tmcc [ ERR] and had the original boards in a box, so I put them to good use. They fit in the R-17 once you gut them, must stand them vertically. I too run DCS, run the conventional ones with remote using variable track setting. Beggars can't be choosy ! On regular PS2-5v, that is not subways, I take a chance on a working one and change the elect. cap and battery. I've been lucky but like others have said it's a chance. I bought a trolley at a show took it home, worked twice and died. Another candidate for a Williams board.

Thanx to all for your input and insight.

Not sure what I will do at this point.

Maybe I'll just put my 5-Car set of non-powered cars on the market and try and sell them.

I just can't get my arms around $300 bucks for a PS3 upgrade, when the whole Set cost me $379 when it was originally purchased.

I'll have to do a little more research, cause I'm not really sure what the over riding benefits of PS3 are, verses PS2.

(Other than maybe having the latest and greatest)...

Pat C...

 

*** If you find yourself in control, then your not going fast enough   ~    Mario Andretti...    ***

Pat C... posted:

Thanx to all for your input and insight.

Not sure what I will do at this point.

Maybe I'll just put my 5-Car set of non-powered cars on the market and try and sell them.

I just can't get my arms around $300 bucks for a PS3 upgrade, when the whole Set cost me $379 when it was originally purchased.

I'll have to do a little more research, cause I'm not really sure what the over riding benefits of PS3 are, verses PS2.

(Other than maybe having the latest and greatest)...

That's a bit of a flawed comparison. What you should be looking at is:

  • Can you get another set The SAME SET.
  • If you can get another set, How much will it cost compared to the Ps3 upgrade.

member:Golden Spike Club Charter Member

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