On 26 Jul,
Stefan Gerris wrote:
>> Has anyone yet investigated in detail to see what the components are?
> I didn't investigate, but I suspected it to be nothing more than a capacitator, resistor (to regulate the charging current) and a diode (to bypass the resistor when drawing current from the capacitator). The Lenz representative couldn't deny that that was all. What I don't know are the specific values and ratings...
As has been mentioned here before... Bearnd indicated at the NMRA national that in addition to the capacitor, there are a couple of power inverters (one to change the capacitor input voltage to about 2.7V and one to change the capacitor output voltage to about 7V) and there is some kind of circuit that controls when the capacitor is in the circuit.
From what Bearnd said, the capacitor is out of the circuit if the locomotive is on the programming track, so you don't have the programming issues people experience with some sound decoders.
> Has anyone
yet investigated in detail to see what the components are?
I didn't investigate, but I suspected it to be nothing more than a capacitator, resistor (to regulate the charging current) and a diode (to bypass the resistor when drawing current from the capacitator). The Lenz representative couldn't deny that that was all. What I don't know are the specific values and ratings...
> Did you see yet the Zimo webside
> on page 20
Yes, I was aware of that, but thank you for making the link available to the group! It's always good to have a graphical representation of what you're talking about. What I'm wondering about is whether or not the Lenz Gold decoders are dsigned the same way internally. The internals of the decoder determine the maximum current the SUSI interface can provide for charging the condenser, hence the value of the charging resistor. So until someone rips one of these "new" "Lenz USP for Gold decoders" apart, we won't know exactly...
I had two of
these units from Mackay's in the UK delivered on Thursday and fitted them to
two 16mm scale NG locos on Friday night. Fitting is fairly difficult as trying
to solder the connections to the decoder is not for the faint hearted. You need
an iron with a small bit and a steady hand.
The performance is pretty impressive though. The Gold decoder has always been smooth, but I covered the track with lengths of masking tape and drove the loco up and down. This is a 4 wheel loco with a wheel base of about 45mm. Running over a 4 inch length of tape and even reversing the loco off the tape was described by one of my non-DCC enabled friends as 'just not natural'.
The GBP price is £28, which seems a lot for what the unit it. But bearing in mind that I have a layout which involves the movement of loose sand I think they will be a good investment.
Ø I spoke with Debbie Ames at the National Train
Show Saturday and I got the
> impression it would still be a few weeks before they are available in the
> US. The bad news is that the price will be high, somewhere around US$30 to
> US$45 according to Debbie.
I too talked with the Lenz crew at the national train show, and got the same basic information. Not having an expectation on cost, the US $30-40 did not seem so bad to me. Considing the other options...Adding wipers, weight, etc to locos which may not have room....the price tag seems reasonable to me.
> That is in addition to the decoder. Also, they
> would offer 8 seconds of power per charge (it's a capacitor), not very much
> if your track is very dirty although it should get you across those sticky
> frogs. I have to say I was somewhat unimpressed after all the hype.
8 seconds seems like a long time to me. Should get most of my locmotives through frogs, points or not so clean track, or rough tracks which causes the wheels to lift off ever so slightly. Like Trevor, I model the
Debbie had a sample of the USP power module. It was not as flat as the decoders, more of a ball/tube, shinkwrapped with three wires coming out of it. Trevor, I think there is plenty of room in my Sn2 locos for both decoder and power module.
I also got the demo of the USP. Some of you may already know this, but I did not. In order for the USP decoder to receive signals, the decoder/locomotive must have access to one rail. Their demo had a "G" scale loco running on 6" of plastic rail (one rail only). The loco can stop, reverse, etc...
It seems Lenz or Lenz
Today I installed the POWER1 in my HAG
Re4/4III (new generation HAG) and it worked perfect and if you have a small
soldering iron there is realy no problem in attaching
the leads to the Gold decoder.
Since Hag has one motor truck (with 4 rubbers, and no fly wheel) the POWER1 gives much much better driving characteristics over switch points etc. it even runs over a sheet of paper (loco length).
----- Original Message -----
From: Nigel Emery
Subject: [DigitalPlusbyLenz] Re: Lenz USP power storage modules
Nigel Emery wrote:
> I think I'd go further than fairly difficult! I'd say I'm about average
> in the soldering stakes with access to small bits plus an optivisor etc.
> and I can't get close to doing the soldering successfully. I suspect
> this is going to be a problem for a large proportion of the potential
Following up my own post I've now invested in a smaller soldering iron
(Antex M12) and have managed to do the soldering. I still consider it to
be a poor design as I think it's way too difficult.
Performance on my test loco (Roco - OBB class 1016) is good although not
as spectacular as some have reported. I'm getting between 2 and 3
seconds of power, more than enough for a bit of dirty track but not long
enough to be able the loco onto a masked rail and drive it off again!
At the current price I wouldn't equip every loco in the fleet but it's
certainly worth it for short wheelbase shunting locos. If in the future
decoders become available with USP built in then I'd be interested
provided the price delta was no more than say £10.