What I've learned about MTH, DCS, DCC

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kbkchooch

"retired" conductor
#21
For what it's worth, I am on my second MTH motor and it does not behave nicely. First off, I have installed and programmed very succesfully many locomotives with digitrax and mostly Tsunami decoders. So this is not a programming or wiring issue. My first SD70M burned out 2 decoders, the first a Tsunami, then a digitrax. Both were installed by removing the board and hardwiring it. I then removed the motor as it was running very hot unitil it actually burned out running on the bench in DC. I did get a new motor, no thanks to the LHS that I purchased it from, installed it and worked fine, for a couple of months. Then it started stalling, jerky movememts again, so I took the motor out, ran it on the bench again, and sure enough, the motor was binding slightly and running very rough. Even stalling at about 30% throttle. I added a small drop of oil to both shafts and it smoothed out, a bit. I added another drop and it ran even smoother. I actually had to add about 4 drops of oil to get it to spin, somehwhat normally without sounding lilke a cheap drill. Could it be that many of the "percieved" decoder and wiring issues are simply dry motor shafts binding the engine???? With my stats it appears to be 2 for 2, or should that be 0 for 2. We'll see what longer term affects this has as I am putting the locomotive back to work.

Steve

Steve
Your story begs the question, what kind of motor did you install the 2nd time. A replacement MTH motor or another brand? :confused: Years ago I suffered the same kind of stuff with Bachmann motors, til I started replacing them with motors from A-Line. Since then, not a problem. :D
 
#22
Hi Karl, it was a replacement from MTH under "warranty". This is why it is so frustrating. I could also put an A-line or NWSL motor in as well, which would get me off this thread but not solve the MTH motor issue or bring it to light for other folks. I paid for the smoothest running unit available, as they say. I will exhaust all opportutnities to get this corrected before I plunk down another 50 bucks or so for a new motor, that I shouldn't have to.

Imagine buying a GM vehicle, first motor blows, your dealer says their sorry but they can't do anything about it, so you better contact GM directly. They replace it, that one blows as well, so you buy a Ford engine to put into it. Different scale of course but the same principle.

Steve
 

kbkchooch

"retired" conductor
#23
Hi Karl, it was a replacement from MTH under "warranty". This is why it is so frustrating. I could also put an A-line or NWSL motor in as well, which would get me off this thread but not solve the MTH motor issue or bring it to light for other folks. I paid for the smoothest running unit available, as they say. I will exhaust all opportutnities to get this corrected before I plunk down another 50 bucks or so for a new motor, that I shouldn't have to.

Imagine buying a GM vehicle, first motor blows, your dealer says their sorry but they can't do anything about it, so you better contact GM directly. They replace it, that one blows as well, so you buy a Ford engine to put into it. Different scale of course but the same principle.

Steve
True, but remember the definition of insanity is performing the same act several times yet expecting different results!:rolleyes:

But then again, MTH has earned a reputation for building Cadillacs with Yugo running gear. So drop a Hemi in that dog and let it eat!
 
#24
MTH Issues

I just got the MTH Alco PA-1 A&B units. The manual differs from my other MTH diesel engines, CV 19 is now allowed, as is about 100 other CVs. DecoderPro does not recognize these new Proto-3 chips yet. You need to program on the main. The manual goes into much detail about consisting, and how to set up other features. Perhaps someone at MTH is listening in on this forum.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
#25
Software Upgrade for MTH

I posted this loco for sale recently as I had read of some challenging problems with making MTH locos run with others....and since I am a novice at this DCC stuff, I just didn't want to get frustrated trying it.

"Bought this recently from a gentleman with no layout, so very little track time.

I took it to the factory (very close by me) and had them do a complete check-up. They also installed the latest software that makes the DCC and DCS system more compatible ($25 upgrade)...receipt available to you for your records."

http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/forum/showpost.php?p=249718&postcount=8

BUT what about this software upgrade that the factory now talks about?
 
#26
So... MTH is charging for software upgrades now? They used to do it for free.

The new software upgrade basically unlocks more functions and CVs on DCC. It's not that they weren't there before, it's just that they locked them to their DCS system so they could pitch it.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
#27
So... MTH is charging for software upgrades now? They used to do it for free.

The new software upgrade basically unlocks more functions and CVs on DCC. It's not that they weren't there before, it's just that they locked them to their DCS system so they could pitch it.
Is that true? So many of us are pawns to this computer geek world.

I resisted DCC for the longest time, hoping it would reach some sort of standard that didn't become obsolete in a years time. While some std level has been reached, it still seems to me that one must know a whole host of 'exceptions' in the programing of these various chips (many manufactures, not just MTH)

Yea I just figured it wasn't worth arguing with them about the charge to upgrade their own chip. I just bit the bullet and figured there were other folks like me who might appreciate getting the loco in an 'already upgraded' condition rather than having to pay the freight to send it to MTH, and wait for months to get it back.

It does have great sound and detail. I just don't want to hassel with it in the future, not being a computer geek myself. I like to run trains, not figure out the minute details of the electronics/programing.
 
#28
Talk about blowing smoke...

Well, most interesting discussion... After reading this, along with some other forums, I found this... MTH v BLI Memorandum and Order. You will never read more about speed commands and smoke puffing anywhere!


"from the day the complaint was filed this case has resembled nothing so much as a mud-slinging contest between the parties."
(Judge Bredar, pg 38 of the M&O)


Perhaps BLI isn't lily white, but after reading the Memorandum and Order, it's hard to see MTH in a very favorable light... Personally, I have had some excellent customer service from BLI, before I bought any of their products. I emailed BLI with several questions and received straight forward no-nonsense and helpful answers. I hope my new engine I just ordered works out... J1E NYC Hudson... Should be here by Thursday.
 

Selector

Well-Known Member
#29
Reads to me like MTH got their butts summarily kicked. No wonder BLI is pounding out the locomotive models lately, and MTH seems to have gone silent.
 
#30
I read through that judgement in MTH vs BLI, and I must say, MTH should get a refund on their legal fees, because it's quite plain that the arguments their lawyer was making made little sense.

My favorite part of the ruling is this, it shows me that MTH's lawyers didn't seem to know what they were doing:

Plaintiff urges the Court to disregard these statements because
“infringement is a strict-liability offense” and “the ‘intent, culpability or motivation of the
infringer’ is not relevant.”​
Id. (quoting Jurgens v. CBK, Ltd., 80 F.3d 1566, 1570 n.2 (Fed. Cir.
1996)). The Court has no idea what Plaintiff is attempting do with this argument; neither the

quoted statements nor the Court’s previous ruling have anything to do with any party’s intent.
 

Cjcrescent

Master Mechanic
#31
I like the ruling, as I read it all as well. I think that with this loss, mth will not be so fast to sue someone again, esp with the other losses they have incurred on the legal front. mth is still trying to supersede the DCC standard, that has been in place since 1994. mth is using it's so called new patents that have been developed since 1996, and suing anyone it thinks is vulnerable. Doesn't prior art mean something. If I sound like I'm rambling I apologize.

This lawsuit was just an example of one of the reason why I don't like mth. It seems that if they can't win consumers with the merits of their system alone, they have tried to get this "legislated" via the courts by continuous lawsuits against competitors.

edit, FCL, I like this part as well. Maybe mth will realize that their lawyers are greedy or incompetent. Maybe mth will realize that this, (continuous lawsuits), is the wrong way to become more than a very minor player in HO gauge.
 
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#32
They have some nice looking loco's to be sure but I wont be dropping any green on them from the suits...the bad customer service I've read about...and I just don't like bullies and prima donna's. For the price they charge, I'd expect nothing but first class all the way not Summer Vacation (no class).
 
#33
No MTH locos here, they should stick with the 3 rail...

I have been studying their N&W Powatan passenger cars tho, but I'll check others as well first.
I think one of the lawsuits dealt with a korean manufacturer, some designer their may have popped a disc with N&W J drawings over to BLI.

MTH did have a lawsuit with the Union Pacific and may have gotten them to drop the license fees on model equipment using UP names on them, but the court ordered MTH to produce a model with logos of other model manufacturers on it as well....hehe
 

Cjcrescent

Master Mechanic
#34
...
MTH did have a lawsuit with the Union Pacific and may have gotten them to drop the license fees on model equipment using UP names on them, but the court ordered MTH to produce a model with logos of other model manufacturers on it as well....hehe
DW, it wasn't MTH, it was MRIA, (the Model Railroad Industry Association). Most of the work was done by Walthers boss, (IIRC Phil Walthers), and a few of the head guys at MRIA. mike played a very small part, but to hear him tell it, it was his lawsuit and his alone. The guys who really got this thing accomplished, are humble, quiet, guys, and they wouldn't take the credit. Which again, IMHO, shows some of mike's shady ethics, taking full credit for something he played a minor part in.
 
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#36
I have 5 MTH'S & its just cause I love the detail , but that's all im going to own from them
1 MTH BIG BOY
2 MTH 4-12-2
3 MTH SD70Ace rio grande
4 MTH 2-8-2 UNION PACIFIC
5 MTH 2-8-4 NICKEL PLATE

the big boy ate 2 dog bone shafts & had to have replaced with metal ones
the 2-8-2 caught fire !!!! yes fire but still runs like nothing happened
the 2-8-4 goes stupid & the decoder losses code so has to rebooted
the other 2 seem to be ok but who knows for how long
 
#39
After reading all of this techie sruff, I'll stick with my DC. Power on, twist the knob, and it's going. :cool: :p
I can understand your stance montanan. But don't let MTH sway you away from DCC altogether.

I tend to compare DCC technology to what I am used to in the computer world (my trade). It seems solid but does have a long way to go. In my information technology mind, I compare DCC to where computer networking was in 1992 with Ethernet (when it took on ARCNET as the network standard). I do think, as it has been mentioned elsewhere on this forum, it has to do with R&D and the money making potential of the market. Since MRR'ing is a vertical market and the only application for DCC is that market, it will take a long time for it to press forward when compared to computer networking. I do have faith that it will progress but at a snails pace (or slower lol).

I think MTH took a gamble with a dicey business decision and model and is reaping the rewards of that decision, IMHO.
 
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#40
It always sounds like from MTH, "My way is the best way only way I'll take over the world of model trains nyah ha ha..."
they don't get the existing world.

HO needs compatibility, Lenz saw that, get on board MTH.

There's plenty of room for the business and the hobby without trying to jack it around.
 



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