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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just returned to the hobby and just found this site.
Here's my problem.
I have a Lenz LH90 and LZV100 set for DCC. I have a Bachmann 56XX Tank with a factory fitted chip which works fine(address 71).
I also have a Bachmann 'N' class which was fitted with a Hornby chip by my local model shop. He also reset the loco address to 44 and showed it working briefly on his set-up, run by a Hornby DCC system.
Back home the 'N' class worked perfectly on it's own, but as soon as I introduced the 56XX and tried to operate together, but on separate parts of the layout,(ie not as a consist) the both locos stopped, the whole system became paralysed and had to be reset by swithching off the mains.
The 56XX still works fine, but the 'N' class won't move. When the 'N' class is placed on the programming track to interrogate or change addresses etc it comes up with 'Error 02' which is specified as problems with the chip.
Back to the local shop. Place 'N' class on test track, no go. Look at loco address and it's switched back to the default, 03.
Reset to 44. Test OK. Back home. 'N' class works OK until the second loco is introduced. The same paralysis happens. Try running the 'N' class on address 03, but nothing and there is a strange dot on the display that is not normally there. Error 02 again on programming track.
Back to the shop. The 'N' class works fine on address 03 and the address is then reset to 44. I haven't had a chance to test it out again but I don't expect to have anything other than the same problem.
I have been advised that there is an incompatibility between Hornby decoders and Lenz controllers. Is this true? If so do I have any solution other than changing the chip in the 'N' class? And does it mean that I would have the same problem with any future purchases of Hornby locos fitted with their chips in the factory? Or is there a problem with the Lenz kit?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

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QUOTE (ChrisNP @ 30 Apr 2008, 18:01) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I have been advised that there is an incompatibility between Hornby decoders and Lenz controllers. Is this true? If so do I have any solution other than changing the chip in the 'N' class? And does it mean that I would have the same problem with any future purchases of Hornby locos fitted with their chips in the factory? Or is there a problem with the Lenz kit?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Hi Chris

The hornby chips still have many code errors and are not just imcompatible with Lenz, they are better described as incompatible with DCC. They do work OK with hornbys system, but exhibit problems on almost all others.

Re the error 02 - that really says "can't read the decoder - which is true, the hornby decoder has no readback ability. you could simply do a reset of Cv1 to the number you want anyway, but it'll keep re-setting itself.

There have been some software improvements but there is still no way to say it nicely - it fails to implement even mandatory CVs properly and has B-all adjustment of any use to modellers so it is just a bad choice of decoder. Current slightly better ones have a red dot on the chip, and I believe another revision is due soon which will have a yellow dot on the chip... but to me its better advice to simply get another brand.

I would ask the shop to replace it with bachmann or any other brand. TCS is a good choice if cost is an issue, as the TCS chips run superbly with hornby and bachmann loco's and are very reasonable. If they won't replace it then take it out and dump it anyway... its not fit to be marketed as a DCC product.

Yes, you will continue to have problems with all basic honby decoders incuding those fitted to their DCC onboard loco's. I would definately avoid them 100% of the time...

Richard Johnson
DCCconcepts
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Richard,
Thank you for that swift and comprehensive reply. I will certainly be back to the shop and get another chip put in.
I think that in future I might have a go at chipping my own locos.
I appreciate also your advice on suitable chips to use.

Thanks

Chris
 

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I can only endorse what Richard has said regarding a major brands "version of DCC".

We have installed a number of Bachmann Decoders recently & have to say that they are excellently spec'ed & perform well at around £11 each. Althouh Bachmann boxed, they are in fact ESU.
 

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QUOTE (ChrisNP @ 30 Apr 2008, 19:53) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Richard,
Thank you for that swift and comprehensive reply. I will certainly be back to the shop and get another chip put in.
I think that in future I might have a go at chipping my own locos.
I appreciate also your advice on suitable chips to use.

Thanks

Chris

***Hi Chris

Yes, have a go - always happy to help if you need advice, and its not hard to do.

Give the TCS range a go. There are four very useful models. All seem to give exceptional performance with no need to tweak the back EMF at all. DO cut any supporession capacitors out of the loco's though, as these do affect slow running on DCC by masking the reality of the motors back EMF to the decoder.

M1-UK - 2 fn, super small but tough - has an 8 pin plug with the wires properly oriented for UK models
Mc2-UK - 2 fn, similar to M1 but slightly larger (a tiny bit) as it has the wires on a harness that can be removed from the decoder too
DP2-UK - no wires at all, 2 function, fits may many UK loco's dead easy
T-1 - 2fn, conventional sized decoder, usually an excellent price for a full sized decoder with huge power handling.

ALL have a no questions asked goof proof warranty too. I know John Russell at Bromsgrove models stocks them and has a good price / gives good service - not sure who else has them in UK though.

regards

Richard
DCCconcepts
 

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Just to add to what everyone else has said- i use Bachmann and TCS MC2s where a smaller decoder is needed. Cant praise them enough actually. Ive installed them all myself in Hornby and Bachy locos and all run excellently well- consist fine when I want and slow run superbly. Luckily I picked up on the threads that drove me away from Hornby decoders early on and so didnt waste any money.

By the way, I run Dynamis as the operating system and get along great with it.

I get my TCS chips from Bromsgrove and the service is efficient and quick.

Enjoy!
 

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All my Hornby decoders - I think that I bought 6 of them - have found their way to other homes. You will see many posts here about the problems with the Hornby decoder. They seem to work fine with Hornby systems and that suits Hornby so either get a Hornby system or get other decoders.

I'm using Lenz ESU and Bachmann decoders these days. Bachmann are basically re branded ESU decoders anyway.
 

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Hi

I had the same problems as you, but solved it many moons ago by moving away from Hornby decoders and moving to TCS decoders. You know you have a good product when they offer a goof proof warrenty. I have being using them for about 9-10 months now and still ave never used the goof proof warrenty. Excellent B-emf control and just an all round good decoder.

I think your problems will be solved when you move away from the Hornby decoders.

Good luck

m
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 30 Apr 2008, 11:59) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hi Chris

The hornby chips still have many code errors and are not just imcompatible with Lenz, they are better described as incompatible with DCC. They do work OK with hornbys system, but exhibit problems on almost all others.

Re the error 02 - that really says "can't read the decoder - which is true, the hornby decoder has no readback ability. you could simply do a reset of Cv1 to the number you want anyway, but it'll keep re-setting itself.

There have been some software improvements but there is still no way to say it nicely - it fails to implement even mandatory CVs properly and has B-all adjustment of any use to modellers so it is just a bad choice of decoder. Current slightly better ones have a red dot on the chip, and I believe another revision is due soon which will have a yellow dot on the chip... but to me its better advice to simply get another brand.

I would ask the shop to replace it with bachmann or any other brand. TCS is a good choice if cost is an issue, as the TCS chips run superbly with hornby and bachmann loco's and are very reasonable. If they won't replace it then take it out and dump it anyway... its not fit to be marketed as a DCC product.

Yes, you will continue to have problems with all basic honby decoders incuding those fitted to their DCC onboard loco's. I would definately avoid them 100% of the time...

Richard Johnson
DCCconcepts
I AGREE 100% WHAT RICHARD SAYS, GO FOR TCS, OR ZIMO IF YOU CAN AFFORD IT. TCS WILL SOON HAVE A DIRECT PLUG IN DECODER UK CONFIGURED. NO WIRES.REGARDS.
 

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QUOTE (KINGS6 @ 3 May 2008, 20:42) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I AGREE 100% WHAT RICHARD SAYS, GO FOR TCS, OR ZIMO IF YOU CAN AFFORD IT. TCS WILL SOON HAVE A DIRECT PLUG IN DECODER UK CONFIGURED. NO WIRES.REGARDS.

The new DP2X-UK decoder from TCS is already available - we had our first delivery last week but have already sold out as they are so popular. Should have more W/B 5 May.

Regards

John R
Bromsgrove Models
 

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The latest (red spot) version of the Hornby decoder is much improved and CV values can now be read using a Lenz system. The problem of address resetting to 3 seems to be fully resolved. The Hornby decoder does represent good value for money in terms of compact size where it has a clear advantage over the Bachmann offereings. I doubt that a Bachmann decoder will fit into a King Arthur.

However, there are better compact decoders available from Zimo, Lenz and TCS.

Norman Clymer
 

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QUOTE (Doug @ 4 May 2008, 08:56) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Does the latest Hornby decoder have the same reference number as the old one? What is the 'red spot'?
The red spot is a small mark visible on the actual chip which presumably is a mark of the version being sold. I'm glad to hear that the red dot one works better as that is the one I have been getting. I have not set them up yet. I also have the hornby Select controller but as yet have not had a chance to set it up (busy home and worklife). Seems to be not a great choice and maybe I'll sell them off and change to the Bachmann ones.

Got to go and play monopoly with the little one

Have fun

Basil
 

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I haven't tried either Hornby or Bachmann but from what I've read in the press I wouldn't trust them to be NMRA compliant.
 

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QUOTE (Brossard @ 9 May 2008, 04:03) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I haven't tried either Hornby or Bachmann but from what I've read in the press I wouldn't trust them to be NMRA compliant.
The last Bachmann decoders that I fitted for a customer were in fact ESU so I don't think that there will be any problems with them.
 
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