Posted By bobgrosh on 09/05/2008 1:25 PM
TOC, I think you are being too hard on Stanly. I actually liked the idea of a standard socket. Stanly tried to introduce a standard that expanded on an existing proprietary socket. He assigned the purpose that each pin was to be used for, including several pins that had been unused in the proprietary socket.
You have no idea, and I am by NO MEANS being "too hard" on poor old Stanly (sic)
Stan has said, several times, he is not an electronics engineer. It was Bachmann's responsibility to implement the standard.
And, Stanly (sic) advised them......
Bachmann did not seem to understand the basic concept of DCC plug and play sockets.
Most manufacturers seem to adhere to a simple concept.
The purpose ..... is to connect the motor and lights to the track using the standard pins on the interface. A lighting board may also have electronics to provide directional, constant or special lighting effects like mars lights.
Remove either the dummy board, or the lighting board, and you expose the rails, motor and all the lights so that you can install a decoder.
There is a small dummy plug. Remove it and all the wiring in the loco is exposed on the pins of the interface. The motor and lights are no longer connected to the rails, or anything else for that matter.
Now compare this concept that nearly all other manufacturers do to what Bachmann did.
Bachmann started with a very ambitious DC lighting board. They included flashers for the firebox. current regulators for LED lighting, Optical chuff, etc on their lighting board. The tried to incorporate a set of standard pins for a decoder (generic) interface. Unfortunately, the pins are not in the right place. (electronically the right place) Instead of being between the DC lighting circuits and all the hardware, they are inputs to more circuitry they added as an additional interface to external decoders. When you remove the dummy plug, you are not disconnecting all the DC lighting circuits like the small scales or LGB. Instead, you are removing just the bridge rectifier that provides raw DC to the DC lighting circuits. The fact that you removed the bridge is testimony to just how badly Bachmann failed to understand the basic concept. As soon as you remove the dummy plug, you expose the INPUTS to their hardware interface, ( NOT THE REQUIRED HARDWARE)
Of course the interface will no longer work because it no longer has a power source. You now have to replace the bridge rectifier you just removed to power the interface which sits between you and the hardware you need to control.
It gets worse...
The DC lighting part of this mess is designed for a fixed set of devices. It will only drive the provided LED's or electrically identical LEDs. Want a brighter LED? You can't have it. Want a five volt or 24 volt bulb, Sorry! Don't want a rock convert light show in your firebox. sorry but you are stuck with it. Most modern decoders have realistic lighting effects. They are designed for incandescent light bulbs. You can drive an LED, but it will not look anywhere near as realistic as a bulb. A bulb will average the pulses sent by these effects and GLOW at whatever the brightness the effect requires. LED's are either on of off. They do it so fast they SORT OF fool the eye into thinking they are dim, but the effect is not the same. Look a bulbs driven by a rotary beacon effect from a Digitrax decoder and it looks like the bulbs are actually rotating. Connect LED's instead, and it looks like one of those cheep lighters from the quick mart. Worse still, the pulsing patterns on LED's, while too fast for the human eye simply can not be video taped. Take several photos with a digital SLR using a fast shutter speed and that "Dim" LED headlight will show up at full brightness in some shots and totally off in others.
Show the picture to a friend and he'll say" what happened to the headlight, it's not working. Now, Stan and others CLAIM this mess works, but you have photographic evidence that it does NOT.
****, I know.
I was gutting them before you ever got one!
OK, so I am too particular. I expect too much.
Yep, I admit it. I want a simple interface that exposes the hardware to a set of pins. I do not want a super fancy DC lighting effects board with a do everything battery, RC, Air-wire, DCS, Analog DC, anything but DCC interface.
And Yes, It pisses me of that those who don't want all that electronic car call it a DCC interface, It is everything BUT a DCC interface.
I am a DCC user and I do not like being forced to pay for expensive stuff that adds cost, I can't use, doesn't provide any benefit, has to be ripped out and thrown away.
I'm really lusting over that mallet. Someone talk me out of it.
Gee, Bob, I can't wait for you to tell us what you REALLY think!
If you only knew the extent of Stanley's involvement in all of this......and the latest falderdash......