Z4000 IS NOT WORKING .

Hi Guys

I have two Z4000 transformers, which I bought about 08 years ago. Both have worked well, so far, but today one of them stop to work. The  problem is the following:

when I turn on the transformer, I read on the meters: Left side 40V and 0.0A; Right side: 0.00V 22A. I understand that this is a normal condition.

After about 20 seconds, the panel turns off, the fan stops working, however the auxiliary voltages 10v and 14v continue working.

I disconnected the transformer from the circuit and turned it on empty on the bench work. Same condition

I wonder if anyone has ever detected this type of failure and can guide me what to do.
Just for clarification, I live in Brazil and send the transformer for repair in the United States will be very difficult.

I am an electronics engineer and maybe with some "tips" I can solve the problem. Thanks in advance for your comments

A.C.Sant Anna

Original Post

Greetings Antonio,

There is a repair thread for this on the forum. It has some diagnosing tips and had photos of the board and the devices to that need replacing. If you can solder reasonably well, you can repair it. it's a 2.5 or 3 mm hex wrench to remove the case screws.

Contact forum member GGG by private email for assistance. You should be able to send him just the control board for repair. Perform an Advanced search, select member search and use GGG as the search parameter. Open the profile to find the email address.

if I find the thread, I'll post it. I haven't located it yet.

Carl

Arctic Railroad

I CAN NOT just repair a Z-4000 circuit board.  Need the whole transformer.  I would call MTH service and talk to tech, they would walk you through possible issues.  G

MTH Authorized Service Center

Authorized ERR Dealer

Lionel Independent Repair Tech

Virginia Train Collectors Member

The numbers that  come up on the volts/amps readouts for the first three seconds are:

      40 00  this indicates the transformer is a Z4000  ( on volts)

     01 23   (or other number) indicates the software version (on amps)

Look on the back of the transformer, what are the FIRST four digits of the serial number?

if 0398 - it tells you it was built in March 1998.

For repairs you must send it to someone who works on them, MTH Certified Tech or MTH itself.

When packaging the transformer place it in the original box, inside another box and mark the box "Fragile"

The transformer must be protected,  do NOT leave the handles unprotected in the package.

 

Antonio,

There is limited problem solving you can do on a Z4000 by yourself.  some items you can check are:

check both throttle pot for security of mounting, wiring,  the pot itself should be 0 ohms in OFF position and is linear up to 10K  ohms at full range.

check the 12A circuit breakers.

check the power switch.

Verify that the fan leads are plugged into the power board.  The fan is polarity sensitive.

Other than that, I would send it to GGG or MTH itself.

good luck,

bruce

 

Ive fixed a few of them. The issues Ive seen are the handles skip so it gets a weird voltage at start up or no voltage at all. The pots get bent on the brackets and they turn any more, or the FETs blow in which case you get a direct short tripping the 12 amp breaker or you get nothing when you move the throttle. It all depends on how the FETs fail. I have 2 of them and have had no issues with either

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

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repair technician posted:

the potentiometer is a 10 ohm pot not a 10k pot!

Alan

I think you better check again!  A 10 ohm pot would make little sense in the electronic control circuit, 10K seems a LOT more likely.  I'm not going to take my Z4000 apart to check, but I would be very surprised to see a 10 ohm pot in there.

Bruce, I didn't think to look in my manual.   I knew it couldn't really be 10 ohms.

Verify throttle pot is working properly (pot is 10K linear, should go from 0 to 10K ohms through full range of rotation of the knob.)

I do not want to call someone out publicly, but they have given bad advice on multiple occasions so are they a certified tech?  I also do not appreciate my name being used by them when they give bad advice.  I would rather do that on my own.   G

MTH Authorized Service Center

Authorized ERR Dealer

Lionel Independent Repair Tech

Virginia Train Collectors Member

I am a certified tech and I get it wrong sometimes too so now I check my notes and my books first but by that time you full time pros beat me to the solution.

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

HI, G.

.

Thanks for the reply. I already sent an e-mail to  Midge at MTH, with a brief description of the problem just for the record the failure. Also I sent the serial number of the Z4000.

She is out of office and will be back on September 21. I hope MTH has those boards to sell. I intend to buy the two boards.  I do not know which one  is not working.

Anyway, I´ll keep you informed.

Regards

A.C.Sant Anna

Normally they will not sell those, and they need the bad boards back.  I doubt both are bad, but your out of luck if you can't ship the Z.  G

MTH Authorized Service Center

Authorized ERR Dealer

Lionel Independent Repair Tech

Virginia Train Collectors Member

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