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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good Afternoon,
With out starting a huge argument, (unless you like that sort of thing) I am looking for advice on RC systems. I have a USAT NW2 to convert to RC battery. The track will run around the perimeter of our back yard, 60 x 50. I am interested in having the lights do what they are supposed to do. Sound would also be nice. I want to put the batteries in the cab for running light but will probably wire it with a switch to allow the use of a battery car.
Suggestions? Preferences? Airwire/ QSI vs. RCS
Any input would be appreciated.
Thank you
Phillip
 

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I put the batteries, P-5 and AirWire under the hood. The cab interior was left unchanges. It's a 4.5AH battery pack and runs nicely.
 

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If you have operators that are thick as stumps, you need fewer buttons, not more.
If you run in the rain, kinda hard to put a handpiece in a zip-lock baggie and turn a knob.

I've been doing NW-2's since they came out.
Nothing in the cab, all on-board.

And, I can (and do) have 20 operators with separate trains at once.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Mr. Curmudgeon et all,
 I realize I meant hood not cab of the loco. In regards to the multitude of functions in the Airwire, are they really used? How many different functions dose a real locomotive have?  


I have a quote for an Airwire install, dose anyone have a favorite RCS vender they could point me at so I could get a quote for the parts to compare.
 
Phillip 
 

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Phillip,
For RCS you are already in contact with the best. TOC

For AirWire contact Jonathan at Electric & Steam Model Works
Later
Rick Marty
 

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Hello Phillip.
Welcome to the wonderful World of battery R/C.
What battery R/C equipment you need to get depends on how you want to operate, whether or not you want sound and how much you have to spend.
There is no point in spending any more than you need to.
You have made a good decision to ask questions before you spend any money. I would suggest you wait for more answers to the questions you don't even know you need to ask.

It might prove fruitful to peruse this: http://www.rcs-rc.com/?page=on_board_battery/battery_overview.html to get a general idea of the different ways battery R/C can be implemented.
 
G

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I use RCS and I'm happy. I do my own installs (with Dave on Tele Stand-by) and find it very easy to install and operate. My kids (5 and 3) can easily run trains w/o me watching over them. I have used Sierra (RIP) and Dallee sound with my locomotives. My Kids and I find the simplicity of the RCS Control the key to it's success, not to mention the great range! I do purchase all of my gear (RCS, Batteries, chargers and such) from Dave (TOC). If you have more questions, I'd be happy to address those off forum (to prevent accusations of "Shilling").

It is my firm opnion that one would not go wrong using the RCS brand of control.

Cale
 

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I'm an airwire/phoenix P5 user and i like it. The AW controller functions like a DCC handset. It lets you control speed, lights, all sorts of sounds and if you're into it, it gives you the ability to "tweak" the performance of a loco by changing speed steps, voltage start/stop etc etc etc.... If you're not into that it functions perfectly well in the default mode. I know the phoenix P5 sound board is designed to work in the AW. So it makes set up and installs easy. The range is good, my yard is 200' deep and I can operate standing anywhere in it. I run in rain and snow but nothing like Dave does, so I haven't had to put it in a plastic baggie yet.

I have a friend that uses RCS and loves it. I haven't had a chance to use it or install one so i can't really comment on it.

I think both systems are good or they wouldn't be so popular. Best of luck!

Terry
 

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I started with RCS and Sierra. Seduced by the sounds, I also tried Airwire and Phoenix P5. It turns out that I really don't use all those other sounds like water filling, coupler clank, and brakes. Chuff, whistle, and bell are enough. Blow down is OK, but I seldom use that either. For both systems, I have installed volume control switches.


I did get the software for the Phoenix and it allows you to customize the sounds, but it has a rather awkward interface. I have not yet tried the P5 with RCS, but that's probably next on my list.


For operations, I much prefer RCS. The controller is easy to operate and small enough to put in a shirt pocket. I like that the buttons are labeled with the functions they control. Airwire is customizable so that you can set up the buttons to do whatever you want; but you do have to remember what you set them to.

I have one of the earlier Airwire transmitters, and I'm always forgetting to turn it off. So, I'm always recharging the batteries everytime I want to use it. The 9-volt in the RCS seems to last forever.


I do my own installs and both systems were easy to install. Connections are completed via screw terminals. Somehow I fried my Airwire receiver when I was connecting lights to the CORRECT terminals. After spending $55 for repairs (plus shipping) I decided that I would not buy anything else from Airwire.


I have always installed batteries on-board and will continue that practice. For my last couple of installations I have made the batteries removable so that I can run longer if I want to; however I've never run the batteries down in a single operations session. Admitedly I have never wanted to go any longer than three hours.
 

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I have 4 brands RCS, Airwire, Aristo TE, and LGB MTS.

My fav is Airwire.

Have you ever thought of installing yourself?

How are you ever going to be able to trouble shoot if you don't do the installs yourself?

If you take your time AND remember to NEVER reverse the positive and negative from battery going to the Airwire board it's not that hard...doing so will fry the motors out....the speed of the sound system will increase, but the engine will not speed up.

Sides the money you spend paying for the install could pay for another board.

MHO

Bubba
 

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I have to admit I have not done all the reading of the RCS site. Tony, would you mind telling us/me what functions can be controlled by the various RCS systems, in terms of sounds, for example with a 2k2 or P5 how many can you control from the remote?

Regards, Greg
 

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I use the RCS system, just purchased from Don Sweet the RCS conversion and a sound system for my NW-2, waiting on a friend of mine to install it since he did such a fine job on the RS-3 and FA. Been using RCS over 5 years now, completely satisfied.
 

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Posted By Greg Elmassian on 11/13/2008 2:26 PM
I have to admit I have not done all the reading of the RCS site. Tony, would you mind telling us/me what functions can be controlled by the various RCS systems, in terms of sounds, for example with a 2k2 or P5 how many can you control from the remote?

Regards, Greg

Hi Greg.

Thanks for the question.

The whole philosophy of RCS is to keep it simple for my target market to comprehend and operate.
I will leave the Hi Tech stuff to AirWire, QSI, Locolinc and TE onboard.

The TX-4 is called that because it has four functions. One of which can be used as a sound trigger.

The TX-24 is called that because it has 24 function capability and will be as complicated as any RCS TX handpiece will ever get.

The 24 functions are divided up into three groups of eight functions controlled by six of the TX-24 buttons.
Two buttons, the Star & Hexagon, are actually only shift keys and change the output codes when pressed and held.
Each group of 8 functions run by six buttons has four functions to run the train and four functions for accessories. Three are for sound triggers.
Operation is very simple as the top row of buttons are always speed control when used singly. (When the Up and Down buttons are pressed simultaneously they give a third accessory function).
The Whistle/Horn has its own dedicated button, as does the Bell.
This keeps the appearance of the TX handpiece uncluttered and easy to figure out.




The three groups of 8 functions can be used to either run three trains from the one TX-24 with three sound functions each.
Or: One train with 16 sound triggers depending on what you set it up as.
Or: Any combination of the three groups.

The next version of the RCS website will hopefully have an interactive TX-24 handpiece image that will "operate" in the sense a Phoenix sound system will "respond" to whatever buttons will be pressed on the TX-24 image on the computer screen.
We are working on it right now.
 

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I have no idea why that post came out the way it did.
Oh for a return to the old forum code. That worked just fine.
 

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Super Modulator
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Tony, you can go in and edit out the stupid html stuff... it does this when quoting... you can see the code is all over the place in html mode.

Anyway, thank you for explaining this, so your system has the capability to do many different functions without a complex interface.

It would be nice if some of the sound decoders out there had more trigger inputs, but who knows...

Also, some time, I would be interested in the possibilities of interfacing switch machines to your receivers.

Regards, Greg
 

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Phil,
If your going to run loco's MUed in the future that don't run together on DC, the advantage of the Airwire is that you can program the receiver
to speed match your loco's. This is one of the reasons I use Airwire over RCS. The Phoenix P 5 is designed for DCC, which Airwire is also.
The main draw back of Airwire on a large layout is only able to use 8 throttles. One of my next conversions might be RCS from Dave Goodsen,
Curmudgeon on the forum. He is one of the best RCS dealer in the USA.

Rodney
 

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Posted By Rods UP 9000 on 11/14/2008 12:59 AM
Phil,
If your going to run loco's MUed in the future that don't run together on DC, the advantage of the Airwire is that you can program the receiver
to speed match your loco's. This is one of the reasons I use Airwire over RCS. The Phoenix P 5 is designed for DCC, which Airwire is also.
The main draw back of Airwire on a large layout is only able to use 8 throttles. One of my next conversions might be RCS from Dave Goodsen,
Curmudgeon on the forum. He is one of the best RCS dealer in the USA.

Rodney

Yes Rodney,
You are correct about speed matching. I don't claim RCS can do that.
However, from my 20+ years experience doing this I have found that only a small number of battery R/C'ers want to do that compared to those that just want good control of single locos, or similar locos that are already speed matched on DC. I will concentrate my efforts on catering for that group with equipment that is subsequently less expensive for a given situation.
 

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I have only used RCS and that is what I will stay with. I have two locomotives with RCS with a third on the way (which will also be RCS). Very easy to use and it has never let me down. Another fun thing you can do with RCS is hide the controller in your pocket and run your train.......kids love it cause to them the train has a mind of its own (it also throws the parents off as well =P).
 
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