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Author Topic: new locomotive  (Read 2427 times)
112040025

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« on: September 15, 2009, 08:33:11 PM »

i want to get a steam locomotive and i can't decide on which i was going to get. do the locomotives with sound have smoke? could you use a regular transformer and shill have the sound or do you need to have dcc? which ones have sound and smoke, and what is their prices?
« Last Edit: September 16, 2009, 12:13:42 AM by 112040025 » Logged

what is the point of going fast. you are just going in circles!
the Bach-man
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« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2009, 10:18:06 PM »

Dear 11,
Most sound equipped locos don't have smoke, and operate much better on DCC.
Have fun!
the Bach-man
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simkon
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« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2009, 12:37:34 AM »

No Bachmann locomotives come with factory installed sound and smoke. So if you want smoke you would have to buy a loco with smoke. Your choices are a USRA 0-6-0 switcher, a 2-6-0 Mogul, or a 2-6-2 Prairie. They come in plain black and in several different liveries (roads). Then you must purchase your favorite steam sound decoder (ie. Tsunami light steam). Because all the locos equipped with smoke are not DCC ready meaning they do not have an eight or nine pin socket, you cannot use a deccoder with an eight or nine pin plug. So you must hard wire the sound, or have someone do it for you. This is a particularly difficult task especially for beginners and those inexperienced. So the practicality is not there due to the lack of space in the loco, as well as other issues, namely it would be hard to find someone that would install a decoder in one of these locos for a reasonable price.
An USRA 0-6-0 w/Smoke & Slope Tender with Smoke is $75.00
A 2-6-0 Mogul is $95.00
and a 2-6-2 Prairie is also $95.00
A Tsunami sound decoder is $120.00
Finally plus whatever your local service dept. charges to install the decoder.
So even if you do it yourself it would cost at least $200.00 for a 0-6-0 and $220.00 for a 2-6-0 or 2-6-2.
An E-Z Command Digital Command Control System is $127.00. So if you want to be able to control the sounds...It would run you $347.00 MSRP plus service (if applicable), lets say he does it for about $50.00 puts you at $400.00 even.

Also if you chose to buy a Sound On board locomotive, it is advisable that you have some means to control the sounds or you will effectively be limited. Some locos sounds won't work unless you have either a DCC system (it can be as simple as an EZ-command or advanced as a Prodigy Advanced or a Dynamis for example) or a sound box that works with the sound decoder installed in the loco. The MRC sound box is an example, BLI, and Proto2000 also have similar products that can be purchased for those operating straight DC or analog.
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Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


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« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2009, 01:00:38 AM »

Or you could buy a DCC locomotive with sound and install a smoke unit.

Jim
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simkon
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2009, 01:02:19 AM »

the bottom line is... if you want a Bachmann locomotive...you can have smoke...you can have sound...but you can't have both unless you want to hard wire a decoder into a limited amount of space. Either get a smoke loco if you want smoke more or a sound loco if you like sound better or chose a different company. $75.00 MSRP sure beats $400.00 MSRP and thats being generous because the decoder installation would probably end up being like $150.00 if you can't do it yourself, because it is hard work, so if you don't have a friend who is raesonable your looking at possibly another $100 or more...putting you at $500.00 MSRP.  I know MTH has HO locos with DCC sound & smoke.
Note that I put the MSRPs, I realize things can be purchased cheaper online and on ebay, but I didn't want to look everything up specifically for the cheapest price of each.
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simkon
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« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2009, 01:09:52 AM »

True Jim, but it is not always possible to add a smoke unit. Sometimes there isn't enough space and its also not the easiest of tasks depending on the circumstances. Would you say a smoke unit runs like $40-50? How much would a service technician charge to install it approximately?
112040025 if you know what your doing and have some experience, I think your best bet would be to get a loco with sound that has adequate space for a smoke unit and install it yourself to save money. But if you're not comfortable working with it, I suggest you look at other brands that have them pre-installed. I think Proto2000 also has factory smoke and sound in addition to MTH.
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CNE Runner


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« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2009, 10:04:36 AM »

Having run several Lionel 'smokers' in an enclosed room (a situation the would strike fear into an OSHA representative - as well as [probably] violate the Clean Air Act); I would leave smoke units to the prototypes. A well set up steam locomotive, running at speed, doesn't produce all that much smoke anyway (dense smoke, issuing from the stack, is mostly unburned fuel and usually occurs on start up or under heavy demand). In the day, the road superintendant looked very carefully at coal useage and many a runner 'danced on the carpet' for waste.

Ray
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Jim Banner

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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2009, 03:55:28 PM »

First let me say that I don't like smoke units - they take up space that could better be devoted to more weight, they produce an oily smoke that gets on everything, they rarely look very authentic, and they cause a lot of us old ex-smokers to choke up pretty badly.  Having said that, if you want them, then go ahead.  simkon is right that not all locomotives have room for smoke units, just like they do not all have room for sound.  But a smoke unit is much easier to install than a sound system if room can be made in the locomotive.  And there are a lot more locomotives that you can fit a smoke unit into than there are locomotives that you can fit a sound system into.

The usual way to install a smoke unit is to cut a chunk off the boiler weight and/or the front of the frame.  Sometimes it is necessary to come up with a different way of tying the mechanism to the body, but this isn't usually too hard - some plastic and some drilling and tapping.  If you want smoke bad enough, and there really is no room in the locomotive, there is always the tender or side tanks.  For best results,  I like to include a switch, either a manual one or one controlled by the decoder. 

As far as cost is concerned, a brand new Seuthe is less than $26, complete with wiring and a bottle of oil.  Tony's installs them for $49 plus the unit.  I have never charged more than $50, including the smoke unit, but then I usually have some sitting around.  (Did I mention I don't like smoke units in my locomotives?)

Bottom line - Smoke, Sound and Traction - in most cases you can have any two, but not necessarily all three.

Jim
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