59079Re:TCS announces 2 new DCC decoders for AZL and MTL
- Dec 11, 2008Hey,
I learned a ton! Here it is to read again!
> Ron and Jack:
> TCS is not revolutionary but brings a practical to install decoder to
> the AZLs where everything else had to be shoe horned or custom fitted
> in there. Now ANYONE can put one in ! They also bring competition
> (and a better fitting decoder) for the MTL products along with 4
> functions instead of Digitrax's 2 functions (MTL locos only)
> The new TCS Z2 is a 2 function and comparible to the Digitrax DZ123M0
> (<---that is a zero on the end) or the older DZ123 that has wires on
> it for any loco. Both are 2 functions. 2 functions are fine for 90%
> of the users as most are only use for the 'headlights'.
> The new TCS Z2 is for the AZL's and has to be wired in (VERY easy if
> you can solder and someone can tell or show you how, even on the
> phone if you spend $15 for a soldering iron). You COULD use it in
> the MTL locos but why when you have two choices of drop ins.
> The new TCS MZ4 is a 4 function and only designed to go in the MTL
> products, competing with the Digitrax DZ123M0 <--a zero there. But
> now you have a 4 function decoder so some of us can add those ditch
> lights or extra light functions like a top beacon or second front
> headlight in MARS mode.
> The default for the 2 functions is F0F (that's a zero in there) for
> the first function output a and F0R for the second output. (Man,
> don't ask me why it is not F1R as I have never found the [idiot]
> reason why). The FOF and FOR means Forward and Reverse as they are
> for lighting (99% of users). These are referred to function 1 and 2
> only when you are counting the number of functions. They start
> at 'zero' as it is a digital based system and zero is a value !
> (wink). So, when you run the loco, F0F activates when going forward
> and F0R when you go reverse. No matter which way you put the loco on
> the track. No programming on your part. Just drop that baby right in
> there. They are not always "on" by default so you press the F0 button
> on the Cab (the hand held 'throttle'), usually labeled Headlight on
> most cabs (look on the back or next to back page of a Model
> Railroader magazine at an MRC ad an you can see the buttons). They
> will light in what ever direction you are going. Same if you push it
> again, they will go off. You can program a variable to make them
> stay on and in a certain desired way, read on !
> Virtually all DCC decoders can redefine the function outputs and the
> way they work. Say you don't have a rear light (e.g. most steam,
> F7's, etc.). You could remap the F0R (that's the second function if
> you are still following me) to another F0F but make it's light
> a "MARS" like light rather than solid on like F0F or better, make it
> F1 so you can control it seperate. You can make them turn on only
> when actually moving (speed >1) rather than just on (default mode if
> you press the direction button on the cab, the light immediately also
> changes [helps idiots know which way their loco will be going]). Or
> maybe you have a yard beacon on the top.
> Now, the cool thing is if you put 2 or more locos in a consist, only
> the front loco's light will come on and when you go in reverse, the
> rear-most loco's light will come on. A lot of railroads had a rule
> that if the loco was active, the lights had to be on so when in
> reverse, the front light would dim rather than off. This has to be
> programmed but you will soon learn this is a single variable, a
> brainer to do !
> 4 (or more) function decoder have the same first two functions: FOF
> and FOR + 2 more: F1 and F2 (again, don't ask me about the numbering
> system). These extra 2 are used to turn on sound, smoke, beacons,
> ditch lights, etc. For ditch lights (those 2 alternating white
> lights on some diesel locos) requires 2 function outputs.
> If you run several trains on your layout, run a main line (or two)
> AND want to just let them run while you do switching functions or,
> you want to go to a larger show layout, you definitely want to go
> DCC. If you run only one loco at a time or a small layout, you may
> just want to stay DCC. But DCC can make your locos run better at low
> speeds. $150 for a starter set (NCE Power Cab, MRC-k-e-y Prodigy or
> Digitrax [Zepher?]) plus $25 for a decoder and you can play with the
> big boys ;)
> And don't forget, you can run DCC locos any direction and any speed
> on the same track. Just in case you like driving in traffic, you can
> make that loco hug the front train's rear !
> SF Bay Area Z
> --- In email@example.com, Jack Chase <cjc167x@> wrote:
> > Jeff:
> > Thank you for an absolutely excellent write up concerning these DCC
> decoders. It was very well written. When you state that the Z2 is a
> 2 function decoder, what does that mean, exactly? For instance, I
> have the Digitrax drop ins in my MTL engines. How would one describe
> these Digitrax 123?? decoders?
> > Oh, I was also in contact with Norm's and his TCS decoders are "on
> the way to him."
> > Thanks for the information.
> > Regards,
> > Jack Chase
> > --- On Wed, 12/10/08, Jeff BAZ-man <sjbazman49@> wrote:
> > From: Jeff BAZ-man <sjbazman49@>
> > Subject: [Z_Scale] Re:TCS announces 2 new DCC decoders for AZL and
> > To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> > Date: Wednesday, December 10, 2008, 2:38 PM
> > The MZ4A's won't ship until January and there will be plenty
> > available so no one should be "out of stock" as they will be
> > restocked.
> > While these are unproven or tested mainstream in Z, they are an
> > existing design from the N and HO series that are simply relaid to
> > fit in the Z locos. So I have faith. Plus 4 function versus 2 on
> > MTL loco version (we like to put in addtional lights rather than
> > common 2 function Forward and Reverse lights) I'm switching.
> > The TCS's will fit more easily. The Digitrax DZ123MO mounting
> > notches are slightly off location so you have to file the 'rear'
> > about 1/32 of an inch farther back so they will propertly start in
> > the 4 mounting posts.
> > Both will work. Both (actaully all decoders) have Back Elecro
> > Force (BEMF) that tries to compensate for speed changes with loads,
> > up/down grades or slow speed runnign. You can EASILY turn it off on
> > the TCS decoders by hitting F6 on your DCC Cab (hand held throttle)
> > or by changing CV61 to 'permanently' turn it off (or on). Digitrax
> > and others do not have the convenience of Cab Function controlling
> > and require CV changes to turn it off/on. Some Z locos may not run
> > well with it on, some run better. Normally, it is not a good idea
> > Consists (or MU for Multiple Units e.g. 2 or 3 locos lashed
> > as one will try and compensate and then the other tries to
> > so you sometimes see this surging difference between the 2 or 3
> > locos. There are normally several variables that can be changed to
> > tweak it but the loco performance or position in a consist or even
> > the direction can screw it all up. Turn it off in these cases.
> > You can order the Digitrax DZ123M0 (that's a zero at the end) from
> > number of places where as existing TCS resellers will have to stock
> > up on the TCS Z products. Norm's Trainworld
> > (http://www.normstra inworld.com/ dccz.htm) back in New England
> > have them in stock ! Guaranteed.
> > Jeff
> > SF Bay Area Z
> > --- In z_scale@yahoogroups .com, "mompey" <mompey@> wrote:
> > >
> > > --- In z_scale@yahoogroups .com, "Jeff BAZ-man" <sjbazman49@ >
> > > wrote:
> > > >
> > > > Tuesday 12/9: I spoke with John Forsythe, Owner of Train
> > > > Systems (TCS) whom I discussed the decoders with at NTS. The Z2
> > > for
> > > > the AZL GP7 and SD70/75's are now shipping. These 2 function
> > > > decoders sit on the chassis, under the rear LED and wire to the
> > > > contacts of the light board, after slipping off the bronze
> > shorting
> > > > bars used for DC operation. These new decoders are 0.26"
> > > > wide decoders [i][b]easily[ /b][/i] fit flat on the chassis. No
> > more
> > > > taking the cab off of the shell. Installation pictures will be
> > > > posted around the end of this week.
> > > > http://www.tcsdcc com/NewDecoders. html
> > > >
> > > Hi Jeff
> > >
> > > I was going to order the digitrax (DZ123M0) for my MTL loco's, Im
> > new
> > > to DCC but based on what your post said I assume I'd be far
> > > installing the MZA4 with BEMF??
> > >
> > > Also how long B4 manufactures will have decoders factory
> > >
> > > Thanks
> > > Mike..
> > >
> > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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