Problem binding Train Engineer 5475 RX

maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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A conundrum for all you Train Engineer operators out there. The core of this post was pitched elsewhere earlier on a related subject I started but I think has become lost in the subject under discussion there. So I've reposted here.

I have recently aquired a 2nd hand Crest/Aristocraft 5475 accessory contoller. It was advertised as unused and tested. It arrived well packed and protected complete with user instructions and power lead. On initial inspection all seemed in order. So I put it aside, where I keep my other TE "bits", till I had time or need to use it.

A couple of days ago I plugged it into my Crest 20 amp power supply, set at 13.8v. There is no device at the output end to create a load but that is not a requirement in the instructions when carrying out the binding process. Power light came on so that's a good sign. I then followed the binding instructions in the manual, having referred to George Schrayer's pages on the subject. So I ensured my Crest TX was set on frequency 1 and I selected channel 1. Pressed "A" button, for individual switch operation, on TX and the 5475's bind button together.....nothing, no flashing green signal light to show TX & RX are bound. Or any green light for that matter. Repeated the process on channels 2-10, still nothing. Got out my spare TX, again just bought, still nothing.

Now I know both my TX' are happily able to bind, and rebind, to my two 5471 speed controllers. And yes, the 5471 has a scanning ability where the 5475 apparently does not. So I ask myself what is going on here ? The ariel is firmly attached to the 5475's circuit board and there is no apparent damage to it inside its housing. Have I overlooked something when carrying out the binding process that is causing this issue ? I used to have 3 x 5475 accessory controllers on my line before I switched to pneumatic operation of points and signals but it has been some 14 years since I attempted a binding operation on one. Help ! Max
 
PhilP

PhilP

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This is off the cuff, with no reference to back it up:

Has the Crest equipment (like many others) gone from 27MHz, to 49 or 75MHz, and finally to 2.4GHz?
What I am asking, is are both Tx and Rx in the same bit of radio bandwidth?

Could be a total red-herring.. :think:
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
As far as I am aware these, 5471, 5473, 5474 & 5475 were all manufactured as 27 mhz units only. The transmitters I have are both the later 5473 type, 10 frequency/10 channel TX. But a good point to raise for clarification. It is my understanding that the RX's - 5475, like the 5474 accessory controller and 5471 speed controllers were all 27 mhz. However, the accessory controllers, 5475/5474 could only operate on frequency #1 with the TX as they did not have the scanning capability of the 5471. Max
 
JimmyB

JimmyB

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Max last week after wiring LGB point motors, I bound an unused ART 5475 to my transmitter. You can only bind 5475 on frequency band 1 (band 0 I have been told will also bind), so first check the frequency band. I used Track #3, press A on the transmitter, and code set button on the 5475, when green light flashes release both buttons. This worked for me :)
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
Thanks Jimmy. Done that already (see above) no flashing green light or even a steady one. Tried holding "A" key (5473) and code set button (5475) together for upto 30 secs on one attempt. Binding is usually instantaneous with all these devices. Max

Update - Tried to bind the 5475 again this evening. Both 5473's were used, still no luck. Why am I posting this update ? I noted that on both 5473 TX's the LED's only lit up to #5 when cycling through the frequency settings (not channels, all 10 are shown available) then jumps back to #1. So I was not able to test your idea Jimmy of being able to use frequency #10 (#0 on keypad).

If these units have 10 frequency settings why do I only seem to be able to see/access 5 ? These TX's were bought at different times - mine looks well used, the other I acquired on Monday, with a 5471, look like new (obviously they aren't). So is this a standard feature and not due to degradation through age and/or use. What am I missing here ?
 
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Gavin Sowry

Gavin Sowry

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Check that the batteries in the Tx are in firmly (and not flat). I had problems with buttons not responding, and finally found loose power connection as the fault.
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
4,620
181
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
All buttons on both the TX's responding fine Gavin - batteries tested and adequate, If batteries' charge is low in 7543, LED on channel/frequency selected and pressed will flash continuously on TX as warning. Duracell non-rechargeable batteries used.

7545 powered directly from Crest DC supply and no interruptions noted on its red power LED at any time. It's just the green signal LED won't flash to confirm binding or light when the originally selected channel at (non)binding is engaged and an alpha key on the TX is pressed. It seems the 5745 cannot "see" either TX, although both my 5471's can. I do not have access to another 5475 to verify. Very frustrating. Keep the ideas coming. Max
 
Gavin Sowry

Gavin Sowry

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27 Oct 2009
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Last time I had to bind, I had trouble...... ended up getting a link using Ch 3. Don't know how or why, but it worked, and still does.
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
As I understand it Gavin a 5475 accessory controller will only recognize frequency #1 outputted by the TX. You should then be free use any of the 10 channels assigned to that frequency (as you would with the other 9 frequencies available) to communicate with it and other devices on that frequency. I.E. You could , as I used to many years ago, use frequency #1 only, with channels 1,2&3 assigned to 3 x 5475 accessory controllers, using alpha keys A-E to control their individual momentary outputs and channel 4 to communicate with a 5471 speed controller using the speed and reversing controls on the TX. I have tried binding each of the 10 channels available on frequency #1 in turn to this 5475, none will bind. Max
 
beavercreek

beavercreek

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Hi Max
If I remember correctly the 5475 is a bit 'picky' with the frequency of the TX.
The handsets' frequency (the overriding frequency that is then divided into 10 channels) can be a little 'off' and although the RX will scan and bind to them quite happily, the 5475 cannot scan and will not be able to find the TX frequency.
These pages from the George Schreyer files might help:
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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I have fine tuned the receivers myself, and got units that did not work to start working BUT!!! You can easily screw them up so that you never get them right again. If you are used to tuning receivers this will be a snap, if not you will probably convert the unit to a paperweight.

Greg
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
4,620
181
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
Mike I have already referred to the pages in George Schrayer's site you posted, but thanks anyway. I cannot find anything to reference there that goes beyond what I have tried so far.

So let me test my understanding, Mike/Greg, are you saying that as factory supplied a 5473 TX's set of 10 frequency outputs can be a bit "off" the spec' as published in their manuals or degenerate to go out of spec over the life of the product ? Or. are we saying the 5475's receiver's ability to "see" the only frequency it is set for transmitted by a 5473, frequency #1, is in some way off and needs retuning to get it to see what either of my 5473 TX's is outputting on frequency #1 ? And could each TX be different outputting frequencies from spec or should they be the same ?

The vendor of the 5475 I have bought has stated in the listing that it has never been used and is fully working and has subsequently added that it was tested prior to sale.

Mike are you saying that just because a 5475 will work with one 5473 TX it does not mean it will work with another ? Seems strange for a product of this type. Under what circumstances can this happen ? An awful lot of 5475's must have been returned DOA to Crest if this is the case.

This is the text from the vendor in answer to a query as to why I am experiencing the problems described - "I can confirm that it was tested before it was listed, and it was fully working. It was tested against a spare TE unit – so no risk of any pairing history, each contact was connected to an LGB point motor and each worked. I can’t comment on if anything has happened to it since it left me, or if you’re operating it correctly or your TE is fully working (I too have a TE unit that the last time it was used it was fine, but now won’t pair) but I do know that it was fully working – as I would not expect to buy something that didn’t work myself"

I have highlighted what appears to be salient points in the vendors reply to my request for an explanation, refund or replacement. This seems to allude to the problem Mike that you have pointed me to and Greg has suggested could be tackled by an expert but is not for the faint hearted or inexperienced like me. So it looks a though I may have to return it as I cannot make any use of it and I cannot sell it on as either tested or guaranteeing it is fully working. Max

P.S. Since receiving the item 3 weeks ago all I have done is unpack and make a cursory inspection, store in a drawer in the house with other similar electrical equipment and after 2 weeks attach it to a clean 13.8v DC power supply (Crest 55465) and then made successive attempts to bind it (as per manual) with 2 different 5473 TX's. At no time have any devises for it to operate been attached to it, under power or otherwise. I did open the case to make sure the ariel is attached to the board inside due the the difficulties experienced. I have not gone anywhere near that little cube on the board that I understand to be the receiver's "adjuster" and i do not, yet, own any solenoids :)
 
beavercreek

beavercreek

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Hi Max
The 5475 unit will probably be fine.
The TX's frequency may have drifted somewhat... OR as the TX can have 10 frequencies and then 10 channels in each 'frequency' perhaps they have been changed somewhere down the line... the RX's will 'always' scan and bind but now the 5475 cannot 'see' the TXs.
You said that you only see 5 of the channel leds...you should always be able to see all 10 as you scan through them one by one.... maybe something has happened to the TXs.
Sometimes one of the TX leds will fail (one of my TE TXs did this on the '0' led did so) but 5 of them does signify a bit of a problem.

If you have not already tried this; try taking out the batteries leave for 30 minutes insert new ones and see what occurs... you never know.....
 
Neil Robinson

Neil Robinson

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24 Oct 2009
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I fully endorse Greg's post.
My local GSS group and several mates use multiple 27Mhz Train Engineers.
Some TXs simply won't link to some Rxs but will link to other Rxs. Lacking Greg's skills, experience and test equipment their solution is to dedicate pairing of Txs and Rxs.
In short it is indeed possible for the unit in question to work with the vendors TE but not yours. :(
 
JimmyB

JimmyB

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I have to be honest, when I had problems with my TE, I was advised to contact Navin, so emailed with details, sent reminder and had no response at all.
 
Greg Elmassian

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It's hard to get hold of Navin, and to be fair, he gets his share of looney calls, so his time is limited... and processing emails is most likely secondary (emails are quiet, the phone makes noise)

if you need him, the best way is to call and keep calling.

Yes I know you are not in the USA. I've known Navin for a long time. When I call, he says hello Greg before I can say anything, i.e. he watches caller ID.

In any case, if the transmitters are working, I tend to adjust the receiver, and if I remember correctly there was more than one "can" to adjust.

One thing that can be done if you have the equipment, normally a frequency counter or oscilloscope is to set the center frequency of the transmitter IF you have several, so you get them all the same.

Tuning the receiver was a process of getting it linked and working, normally at some close range, then moving them further apart and tuning for the best operation at that range, and then moving further apart. There are techniques to do this, and if you don't know them, you really should no try them. If you know them, then you would know the use of a tape "flag" on the tweaking tool.... if that does not bring an image to mind, you should not touch them.

Greg
 
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maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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181
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
I'll try what you suggest Mike. But 2 TX's with the same problem ? LED's as noted all OK when using channel buttons, L&R. When I press The FRQ button repeatedly the LED's light in sequence till it gets to #5 then, next press of the FRQ button, it immediately jumps back to #1. Not a case of unlit/failed LED's. This situation is replicated on both TX's, bought from different sources at different times -What are the probabilities of that
 
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

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Did you find the "rules" of frequencies and channels that can be used in reference to tx model? I think some might be on my site, but probably more on George schreyers site.

BTW, clearly if both TX's exhibit the same symptoms, it's not them, your logic is correct.

Greg
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
4,620
181
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
Looks like I will have to try Mike's idea this weekend and I will try to contact Navin too. I will also try to clear both 5471 speed controllers off frequency #1 and rebind to another frequency on each TX and leave that frequency clear for binding the 5471 to alone and see if tthat helps.

Otherwise I will have to look at other remedies. Anybody got a spare 5475 will to provide on a "try before you buy basis" ? Having started the "can a 5475 be made to operate a solenoid" thing I feel bit embarrassed now. Pity I didn't know about this possible glitching point on TE 5473 TX's with 5475 accessory controllers before buying. Caveat emptor as they say. Keep the ideas coming. Max