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Railstars: Gauging interest in decoders for EMUs


CaptOblivious

Were specially designed EMU decoders (see below) to be offered for sale, would you buy?  

24 members have voted

  1. 1. Were specially designed EMU decoders (see below) to be offered for sale, would you buy?

    • No.
      7
    • Yes, but they'd have to be cheaper than what's out there now.
      4
    • Yes, and if it makes my life easier, I'd pay the same or more than what's available.
      10
    • Yes, I'll take 10 sets please.
      3


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Ive always wondered if at some point i wanted to start going dcc that i would put in the wiring but then just have a small plug that i could put a jumper in until the decoder was bought for it. unfortunately connectors like that can be pricy. always liked the idea of plug in decoders for testing, debugging, etc.

 

jeff

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cteno4,

 

A LOT of people have too many consists to DCC at a reasonable cost.  They buy harnesses in bulk and wire those in.  It's then just a matter of plugging in either a pre-programmed decoder for DCC or a bridging plug for DC operation.  I do this already with Kato DCC FuReNDaRi consists.  I have over 20, but only 8 sets of decoders, and no plans to buy more just yet.

 

I WILL be looking at the harness and bridge option for wired installs.  To date I've purchased 3 each of DZ123, DZ125 and DN135D, none of which have plugs.  I also bought a dozen TF4's on Ebay real cheap - before I learned that they didn't support auto-reverse and Rule 17.  The guy who sold them had probably just discovered that himself .... hahahaha ...

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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Yes with over 120 3 decoder consists even the cost of the harnesses is not going to be cheap. Going the harness route would at least let me get a jump on the work part on a longer time frame.

 

Jeff

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Update: we've got a fairly major backer for this project now, so there has been a lot of progress. The firmware is nearing 50% done (yes, including testing!), and new prototype boards are soon to be manufactured. We've even managed to make the decoder a tiny bit smaller—6.7mm x 11mm. You can read more about the Railstars Aegaeon series of decoders here:

http://railstars.com/hardware/aegaeon/

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Being a Virgil fan, in fact that was my nickname through university, I have to ask when the Cottus and Gyges ranges will be coming out?

 

Of course, you do know that Aegaeon's father, Uranus, threw the three Hekatonkheires into Tartarus because they were disgustingly hideous ... right?  :grin

 

Got me wanting to dig out some old books now ...  :grin

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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Cap'n

 

Er ... I've just read your RailStars page ... I had no idea Saturn had a satelite called "Aegaeon" ... however, I've just learned that it too was named after the Hekatonkheires ...

 

I just thought I'd clear that up before you think I'm completely bonkers ...

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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Cap'n

 

Er ... I've just read your RailStars page ... I had no idea Saturn had a satelite called "Aegaeon" ... however, I've just learned that it too was named after the Hekatonkheires ...

 

I just thought I'd clear that up before you think I'm completely bonkers ...

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

 

hardly bonkers. Aegaeon, at least on some accounts, was the key to overthrowing the Titans (by hurling mountain-sized boulders at them, 100 at a time!) Catch the undertones? ;)

 

 

On another note, watch this space for more info on the Aegaeon:L2, our two function motor decoder...in the same 6.7mm x 11mm package...

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Will RailStars be releasing a starter 3A DCC system this Fall?

 

We are going to buy one for the train museum this year. I may have to buy it and donate it so I don't have to use mine.

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Will RailStars be releasing a starter 3A DCC system this Fall?

 

We are going to buy one for the train museum this year. I may have to buy it and donate it so I don't have to use mine.

 

Depends on what you want. If you are wanting an NMRAnet-based command station, I'd really like to say yes, but the current state of the necessary protocols to make a command station a reality is far from complete. I am going to have to say spring at the earliest, unless some miracle happens. Really need to update the website, don't I?

 

That said, watch this space—other projects of possible interest to you are afoot that I cannot yet talk about.

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... Aegaeon, at least on some accounts, was the key to overthrowing the Titans (by hurling mountain-sized boulders at them, 100 at a time!) Catch the undertones? ...

 

 

Observers make better commentators for such analogies. 

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Update: we've got a fairly major backer for this project now, so there has been a lot of progress. The firmware is nearing 50% done (yes, including testing!), and new prototype boards are soon to be manufactured. We've even managed to make the decoder a tiny bit smaller—6.7mm x 11mm. You can read more about the Railstars Aegaeon series of decoders here:

http://railstars.com/hardware/aegaeon/

 

Cap'n,

 

Your online shop is misleading ... it says, "In Stock" ... and $5.00.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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Cap'n,

 

If you added Transponding, and a harness connection so that I could "hot swap", I would buy from you.  I have 55 consists.  I'll only ever own a dozen sets of decoders or so.  I plan to swap them around.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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Update: we've got a fairly major backer for this project now, so there has been a lot of progress. The firmware is nearing 50% done (yes, including testing!), and new prototype boards are soon to be manufactured. We've even managed to make the decoder a tiny bit smaller—6.7mm x 11mm. You can read more about the Railstars Aegaeon series of decoders here:

http://railstars.com/hardware/aegaeon/

 

Cap'n,

 

Your online shop is misleading ... it says, "In Stock" ... and $5.00.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

 

This is a limitation of the shop software. If I listed it as "not in stock", you couldn't order a reservation on it. The reservation is $5—that's a down payment on a future order. A little confusing, I know, so I wouldn't mind suggestions on other ways to put it.

 

The idea is this: You put $5 down now as an indication of interest, and when they are ready, you get a 20% discount on the MSRP (minus the $5 you already put down, of course!).

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Cap'n,

 

If you added Transponding, and a harness connection so that I could "hot swap", I would buy from you.  I have 55 consists.  I'll only ever own a dozen sets of decoders or so.  I plan to swap them around.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

 

Well, I've already said my piece about Transponding—I cannot legally add it. Nor, really, is there space, really! These are TINY!

 

Now a harness—that's negotiable. I'll look into it.

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this seems kinda hijacking of the thread

 

but Ghan I think harness is great at first but after removing the case xx times how much longer is it going to hold properly?

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Dave makes a good point, small plug connectors like this start to get weak after a dozen or two pluggings. With all the vibrations can occur in a loco could effect signal if too loose. I even notice some of the breadboard sockets get a bit twitchy with time.

 

Jeff

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Dave makes a good point, small plug connectors like this start to get weak after a dozen or two pluggings. With all the vibrations can occur in a loco could effect signal if too loose. I even notice some of the breadboard sockets get a bit twitchy with time.

 

Jeff

 

not just the connector Jeff, the actualy model shell being removed on and off is bound to wear quickly.

 

Thats why i only add people in my models when i have lights for it, do all at once to minimalise wear.

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Well, I've already said my piece about Transponding—I cannot legally add it. Nor, really, is there space, really! These are TINY!

 

Now a harness—that's negotiable. I'll look into it.

 

Cap'n,

 

I'd really like to know who keeps telling you these things.  One of the licencees even publishes a document on how to custom program one of their LocoNet devices.  Who keeps telling you that this technology can't be licenced.  Please feel free to email me any corro you've got.

 

From the horses mouth ... Dave, at Digitrax in Panama City, FL ... He just responded to my email minutes ago ...

 

LocoNet and Trainsponding are available for license to commercial developers.  If you are interested in licensing, please send us s synopsis of your project, how and when you plan to sell the items and approximately how many you think you would sell.  Licensing is on a case by case basis depending on the size of the project and which type of product you plan to market.  Digitrax has made licensing affordable.

 

All I did was ask ...  :cool:

 

But if he's only jerking my chain then I'd like to be armed with a negative response from Digitrax to throw back at him.

 

Over the weekend I'll ask him about the space requirements.  But I'm pretty sure it won't add any ... or much ... I've peeled the red plastic off one of my DZ123's ... the board is smaller than yours, so I guess it should fit.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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I've peeled the red plastic off one of my DZ123's ... the board is smaller than yours, so I guess it should fit.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

 

The plastic takes up over 3 mm on the 123?

 

Jeff

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Jeff,

 

I've bought 3x each of: DZ123, DZ125, and DN135.  I took the plastic off one of each.  I'm experimenting with mounting them under the cars instead of inside ... will solve the issue of continually removing the shell.  It looks like I can do this with cab cars, but not motor cars.  You'll find somewhere in this thread (or another) that I've suggested to Cap'n that a decoder with the wires coming off the board perpendicular to the face might be useful for some installation.  This is the reason for that suggestion.

 

Your question led me to the Digitrax website, based on the assumption that you had checked in there.  None of my decoders are 14mm long.  I'm pretty sure the DN135 is actually the smallest.  I remember removing the plastic (and probably voiding warranty) and being amazed at just how much of the wire was being covered, probably so the wired don't detach from the boards.  The opposite end also has tape extending beyond the end of the board by about 2mm.

 

I don't know if the Digitrax website dimensions are with or without the tape.  If it is critical to anyone I'll get exact dimensions using me new digital calipers ...  :grin

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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ghan do you still have the decoder without plastic?

 

If so I wonder how hot it gets

 

1. at the wire solder points

2. on the components.

 

I'd think some lengthy running of a decoder say 30 mins - 1 hr would generate some serious heat?

 

I'm not sure it's intended to hold the wires as after install that decoder ain't moving anywhere nor are the wires.

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.... about Transponding—I cannot legally add it....

 

 

What then, does "I cannot legally add it" mean?

 

So, the terms are unreasonable?  I'll ask about that.

 

Cheers

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