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Free Decoder Fitting Service!

2234 Views 10 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Gary
For those of us who may be hesitant to move to DCC for fear of damaging our new locos when installing decoders I have noted that Ontracks have today started offering a free decoder installation service if the decoder is purchased at the same time as the DCC ready loco. Remember that locos will run on normal DC layouts even with a chip fitted.

This offer seems incredible if you ask me but its there in black and white on their website.

Are there any others who offer this free service or have Ontracks taken a lead here?

I have had a browse around and I am struggling to find a similar service elsewhere.

Happy modelling
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I've seen a few that offer decoder fitting, for £5 when you buy ANY loco from them
The actual costs are included in their profit margin, so are well hidden!

However, OnTracks effort is pretty poor, after all the loco is DCC ready anyway
I don't know what is poor about a free service...

If the decoder is OK, I think the offer is good. They have Hornby (or will have soon), Bachmann and Veismann. If they had a good deal on Lenz decoders then it would be perfect.

I suppose Mr G will be doing the installations...
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They only offer ONE decoder...!
Either you have a Hornby decoder fitted or not
Sorry, but thats pretty limited

However OnTracks main target audience and customers are mostly beginners and families

I would be very surprised if anyone here buys from them, as there are much cheaper and more specialist retailers out there

I'm an affiliate with them, and even after discount I can find cheaper items!
They seem to be doing a good deal on digital and many of the Hornby locos are the same price as other box shifters and they stock an awful lot of accessories and are strong on continental.

I just think that a free decoder fitting service is a good service and I am still struggling with why I should find this a poor service?

If their main customers are Hornby type customers then I guess that they feel that this may help the sale of digital products to these and so it has to be a positive move if the Ontracks family customer DCC user base is to grow.

Happy modelling
They don't specify that it's only the Hornby decoder. Item here. I would imagine that it's any decoder that they stock.;prodID=3200
Well thats the only decoder they offer...

Apologies, I've rummaged round their website and found another two

£40 for a decoder seems a tad expensive, but the photo looks like a pack of three
Enter "decoder" into the Ontracks search box and 5 pages come up full of decoders with plenty on offer.

Then select from the drop down box to list from the cheapest upwards and the Hornby decoder is cheapest followed by the Bachmann decoder and so on.

This seems to be the logical way to search for kit at Ontracks. Its best to always use the search box at any stockist website to get to stuff fast!

What I am not too keen on are long scrolling pages and Rails and Hattons and many others suffer from this because they have static rather than dynamic websites and a long scroll to search for an item is pants!

But we digress from the theme of free decoder fitting.

Happy modelling
QUOTE This offer seems incredible if you ask me but its there in black and white on their website.

Are there any others who offer this free service or have Ontracks taken a lead here?

A lot of shops do this.
The difference here is that with On Tracks you are having to buy a loco too instead of just the decoder.

The shops I have used here only charge for the decoder if the loco is DCC ready. They charge to fit if the loco isn't DCC ready. So where you are being ripped off is buying a loco from On Tracks for a dearer price than you normally would, because lets face it On Tracks aren't cheap. They do seem to be getting plugged an awful lot on this forum recently though.
You don't work for them Gary do you?
I hope you're not the guy fitting the decoders.
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Just a happy customer. I think Ontracks are seen as one of the UK market leaders when it comes to initiatives and they do get a lot of press in the UK paper based magazines and they are main UK distributers for a whole range of continental gear. They also win awards every year for one thing or another. As such they are watched closely by many to see what they come up with next.

I would guess that it would make sense to test that the chipped loco works before repacking it for delivery so customers would have this piece of mind also about their nice new chipped loco.

I am going to place an order later so I will find out.

Happy modelling
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