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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

First, I am not starting this topic to start a argument. However, this is the place to talk about our favorite rolling stock and I think this fits. I am a 1/29er and prefer USAT equipment to Aristo. That said, I think Aristo still has the edge over USAT if plug n play is a must for you. Aristo makes sound, battery, DCC or RC much easierto install than USAT does but I think that Aristo overall quality is lower than USAT. It can be argued that it is more bang for the buck, but I think if SCALE is your thing then USAT is favorable. Aristo raised their own bar when they released the SD45 and again when they released the Dash 9 and that seems to continue today. I still Aristo has a more toy like, plastic, inexpensive overall aura and I think quality control is more an issue with Aristo than with USA. But depending on what serves your needs or wants the best it can be a toss up.

I think USAT products (especially loco's) have a sturdier look and feel and more detail than Aristo. I wish USAT would introduce plug and play on their stuff it's been a long time coming and a detraction to their stuff. If that ever happens, in my opinion it will be a no brainer for USAT and Aristo will be forced to ratchet up notch or two again. Please don't think I am just bashing Aristo products as I have owned many pieces and occassionally still buy some. Aristo offers several products that USAT does not and that is another big edge for Aristo. But as far as rolling stock and loco's, it's USAT in a not so close tie.

Truthman
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Greg,

Will the USAT plug and play be backwards compatible? Will it be included standard in future products like Aristo currently has? Or will it be an add on type of kit for all existing and future USAT loco's?

Truthman
 
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To offer a counterpoint...

I am done with USAT until they change their motors. The things are current hogs that are rough on motor controllers. If run on track power, they are also rough on their own wheels. I burnt the original set off of a GP9 due to the arcing related to the high current motors.

Aristo pulls as well or better and runs on half to 1/3 of the current.
 

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Greg,
Do you know if the QSI PnP socket for the USAT locos will also accept, for example, the AristoCraft PnP controllers without any modifications?
Or is this going to be QSI specific?

I too would also like to comment on USAT motors.
I have been making and selling a 3 amp battery R/C for many years that has been used extensively in USA 4 axle diesels.
I often get reports that the said 3 amp battery R/C running on 14.4 volts can handle 10 - 20 cars behind a GP-38, Gp-9, GP-30 etc without ever tripping the overload.
 

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For what it's worth.

I'm gradually dropping all my Aristo products. Engines are gone now. Forty foot cars are next. They're all just fine. No complaints at all wrt running properties or reliability. Just not real happy about the products he has chosen to model. Must be the western prairie modeller in me. Anyway, when you have a defined space and a fixed track plan you have to prune your stuff as new items come on line. Aristo's cylindrical hopper would have changed my feelings but he went for something I have no interest in.

USAT items are more finely detailed IMHO but that doesn't make them better - only different. Yes they hog power but I've been running my fleet of GP9's for about 10 years now. No issues that I can see.

In the end, go with what you like.

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Great point. USAT loco do draw more current than Aristo loco's which is tough for me because I really like the new qsi sound boards. I have one in an Aristo RS3 and it's great!

As far as slamming a manufacturer in my first post:

I may not have listed all the pro's and cons of either manufacture. I just listed things that mattered to me. This is a forum to talk about our favorite rolling stock and that's what I am doing. Like I said, i don't want to start an argument as I know there two sides to every coin. Just my opinion. And like I said before I own several Aristo products which have served me well and one set is running under my Christmas tree as we speak.

I just have my reasons to prefer USAT. That's all. And I'm interested in hearing others views.

Truthman
 

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I would like USA better if they got rid of that stupid floppy truck on their 6 axle locomotives.

I agree that USA has finer detail than some Aristo equipment on the other hand, USA's detail is more like to be broken.

I find the USA chassis design easer to install batteries.


I think the biggest issue with the USA motor draw is just the starting current. My SD-45 draws as much starting current with the wheels up in the air as my GP-9 does when running on the track.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Bill,

Sounds like you run battery power. I haven't yet but I eventually want to convert everything to use batteries and r/c. Do you find the USAT loco's have the same duration as the the Aristo loco's on battery power?

Truthman
 

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I own my share of both but I must say that cars like the USAT streamliners are hard to beat. The USAT all metal tank cars are another really nice piece. I also own both types of engines and I prefer the Aristo's for some of the reasons cited earlier (I particularly like the E-8s and Dash-9). The variety they both bring really keeps this hobby intersting and I will continue to buy both as the need (desire) develops.
 

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I agree with the above, I have owned both the Aristo, and the USA streamliners, and I have to say I believe the USA one's are head's and shoulders above the Aristo as far as quality and realism. It's like comparing a Chevy to a Cadillac in my opinion the detail and figures in the USA cars is amazing if comparing the two side by side. The Regal
 

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Posted By Bill Swindell on 12/13/2008 7:51 PM
Bill, this is not apples for apples. SD45 has 4 motors and gp 9 has 2.
The 45 will out pull 2 gp9s.

My SD-45 draws as much starting current with the wheels up in the air as my GP-9 does when running on the track.




Place an Aristo engine with USAT pass cars and now you have a very nice train. BUT it takes large curves and many folks don't have it. Thus the AC pass come in.
 

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Blueregal is at the crux of the matter, its a Caddie-Chevy thing... Generally speaking, all the USA rolling stock
is "nicer" than the Aristo counterparts... Hey, U get what U pay for, an Aristo 40ft boxcar has an MSRP of $75
for example, a USA 40ft boxcar has an MSRP of $120 !!!! Looks to me like it should be a nicer piece, about $45
worth of nicer!!!
Paul R...
 

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Hey to me it is like a Caddy and a Chevy pickup. Who doesn't like to drive both! Aristo's rolling stock seems more robust and can take a beating. The USA cars are full of fine details and look great but things can break without trying. The new Aristo two bay hopper has some of the fine details but also seems very robust. I like both USA and Aristo about the same. The USA streamliners are tops and so are the Aristo heavy weights.As far as you get what you pay for the Aristo box car plus buying the metal wheels is about the same as buying a USA box car that comes with metal wheels.
You drive the Caddy because it looks good. You drive the pickup because you need to haul some firewood. They both drive nice and do what they were made to do.

Tom Thornton
 

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I have not run my SD-45 long enough to find out if it's battery lasts longer than the GP-9.

I understand the simplicity of PNP but the 3 amp limit is a negative for the QSI controller. At 14.4 volts, the AirWire receiver is rated at 7.5 amps. On a USA engine, 14.4 is just fine. It's just OK on the Aristo engines.
 

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I have a lot of comments here.

1. Larry, first post or 100th, everyone gets an opinion. The thread starter did NOT SLAM Aristo, re-read the post and he makes very balanced statements. I think your use of the word "slam" is over the top. Yes, there has been a lot of Aristo bashing lately, but this is not one of those cases.


2. There seems to be continuing confusion on the QSI plug and play for USAT.
  1. There is no change coming to USAT locos
  2. There will be no socket in USAT locos
  3. The QSI plug and play is a REPLACEMENT board for the main board in the USAT locos. This is the one with the switches.
  4. The board has a BUNCH of connectors on it, will will let it "ADAPT" to all the different connectors and lamp voltages used over the years in USAT locos.
  5. The main QSI board has all the connectors and voltage "stuff" for the USAT locos. There is a small daughter card (not the same as the Aristo QSI unit) that has the decoder "brains".
  6. I have had 4 of these units, 3 are owned by Charles Ro. I have 3 units at my house right now.
  7. There is a big software update coming that should finalize the BEMF handling of the USAT motors which have radically different current draw over Aristo.
  8. I will see if I can post a picture of the board, since this seems to continually confuse everyone.
  9. I expect production in 1-2 months, but that is not confirmed yet. The manufacturer is definitely going ahead.
3. I violently agree with Dave Winter's post... read it again.

4. The floppy truck on USAT locos: yes, goofy looking from underneath, but from above, not a real appearance issue. Mine work fine, but MANY people do not lubricate the plate above it that causes the floppy part to NOT slide side to side easily. I have NO derailing problems and I have tight curves and steep grades. Before I lubricated the plates with grease, the truck was VERY hard to move side to side. I think this is a source of the "problem".

5. One other source of complaints about the 6 axle trucks is probably because people do not know how the "diamond shaped" bearings go back into the motor block housings, and they ARE very difficult to reinstall properly until you figure out the "trick". When improperly reassembled, you destroy the gears, because they are not meshed properly. Again, I think this is another source of problems that could be easily avoided.

6.My USAT streamliners work just fine on 10' diameter curves. I pull them with Aristo E8 AA, USAT PA ABBA, USAT F3 AABBBA. No problems. I love the detail, the Aristo "shorty" streamliners look like toys to me, like my old Lionel.

7. The QSI output drive for the USAT version seems to be fine. Don't know what the spec is, but I have one in a GP7, which George will tell you, is the all time "superstar current hog". It was George's measurements of stall current that made DCC manufacturers wake up on stall current requirements.


Whew.... that was a lot of typing....


Greg




Regards, Greg
 

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I have almost all Aristo. The USA cars are nicer detailed and more expensive. Some Bachmann equipment is less detailed and less expensive. For the money I have available, the Aristo just seems a nice balance of detail and price.

The Chicago Botanic owns lots of USA diesel locos. They seem to be work horses and just run without complaining.
 

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I do try to watch my comments because some of my closest friends runs and likes those "toy" pass cars. We all buy what we like .
And if I could and had the space I'd have one of each USAT pass sets.
 
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