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Topics - railtwister

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Bachmann's new E-Z App HO locomotives became available this past December, and I bought an Alco RS3 to try the system out. I liked it so much that I ordered a second loco a week later (this time an EMD FT). For the month of December, my HO modules were set up at a local library for my club's Holiday display, so I had a limited opportunity to play with them, first using my iPad, and then with my new iPhone 5s. The large screen of the iPad was great for showing the system to others, but I found I liked the iPhone a bit better, since since it was easy to control my trains using just one hand. I really like this system, and I think it has great potential (watch out DCC!). BlueRailTrains, the developer, has partnered with Bachmann to bring this product to fruition, Bachmann will sell train sets and locomotives with E-Z App boards factory installed and ready-to-run, while BlueRailTrains will offer user-installed boards to convert existing locos. Right now, the app for Apple's IOS is available (free on the App Store), with the Android app to be available in early 2016. The first separate boards are also scheduled for release in early 2016, I'm anxiously awaiting those.

Right now, the sound is produced in the control device, but the boards have a port for options like an on-board sound circuit, as well as solder pads for onboard battery power. I think there are many great possibilities with this system for the future, and I'm more exited than when I got my first DCC system way back in 1993.

For more info, see the BlueRailTrains.com website, or check out Bachmann's site to see which RTR locos and road names are available.

Bill in FtL

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DCC And Electronics / NCE PowerCab System Upgraded to v1.65
« on: August 12, 2013, 04:02:08 PM »
I have only recently been able to get access to any info on the recent v1.65 upgrade that NCE has made to their entry-level PowerCab System, and it looks like they have addressed the main reason I had for not recommending the earlier v1.28 over the Zephyr. The new PowerCab system now can accommodate an extra throttle for a total of four, the main PowerCab master throttle plus three secondary throttles (at throttle addresses 3, 4, & 5).

As it turns out, the v1.28 actually was able to handle two extra throttles (addresses 3, & 4), but the use of three throttles was undocumented, since NCE only advertised the PowerCab as being able to handle the master throttle plus one secondary throttle (at address 3).

The power supply has also been bumped up slightly to 3A, which should be OK for small to average size home layouts, especially in N and HOn3, but it may be taxed somewhat if you are running all 4 locos with sound decoders. Remember, however that this is an entry level system.

NCE users are generally enthusiastic about the NCE systems, so the extra power and throttle capability is sure to be welcome. If anyone here is using the new PowerCab v1.65 system on your layout or modules, let us know how you like it.

Bill in FtL

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New Product Announcements / Micro Trains Dropping HOn3?
« on: February 03, 2012, 10:37:19 AM »
I heard from my LHS that Micro-Trains has confirmed the rumor heard at the train show in Springfield last week that they are ceasing production of their HOn3 product line.

Bill in FL

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