trying to use my MTS3 with mfx locos, need help

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stevedenver

stevedenver

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ok, im trying to learn digital. I bought some old lgb kit, simply to dip my toe. I am planning on buying the massoth dimax system .....but I am having so little luck in accessessing the feature I want to, I am reluctant to do so until I can see some results. I have read the LGB central station instructions and the 55015 instructions several times. I understand what little they say.

I have read the loco pamphlets as to which numbers activate which functions. however, if simply push that number key on the key pad, nadda. same if I enter numbers over "9" in the lighted screen.

I have a 55006, central station type 3 (has dimax plug input on back as well as LGB bus), an 55015 (non parallel) hand control,

I have four mfx locos, the Sachsen mk I, Sachsen MkIV, and, the factory sound equipped version of the Franzburg (set to loco address 5 ) others all factory 3. I have several old version 1 frr diesels and I can run them ok (backwards and forwards is all they can do).

I haven't tried to reprogram anything, everything is factory default setting.

I am not finding things intuitive, but, I am assuming things ought to work. But, I am assuming my 55015 handheld can access functions.

heres what I know how to do and can successfully do.
I can turn the light on and off, and, I can run the locos both directions.

All function keys (1-9) blow the whistle, and, nothing else. with different keys,sometimes the whistles sounds once, sometimes long, sometimes repeats, sometimes it will blow continuously until I hit the 1 button. I am clueless as to why , other than...perhaps the handheld is sending series pulses (repeated commands).

I can change loco addresses between 3 and 5..!!!

question
1 is there a basic incompatibility due to the series commands of my 55015 handheld? ie is this simply worthless with mfx ?
2 if not, can someone walk me through how to ring the bell. (small steps, then ill see if I can do more). very anxtious to get steam sounds and sync smoke on the MkI eventually.

3 if the handheld 55015 is a problem, should I buy the dimax navigator?
4 should I dump the entire lgb lot and bite the massoth starter package bullet-$1500 US) . (seems pricey to access MFX functionality. yet, I really like the slow crawl I can achieve and being able to park a loco). Is massoth viable? I tried to access the german site and it comes up empty or several links are inactive on the site, such as sound files, some products are listed as unavailable, and other signs that make me worry .....

thanks
 
stevedenver

stevedenver

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thanks
how would I change to series?
would it be simpler/ more useful were I to buy a 55015P handheld? (or for that matter a massoth navigator?)
 
Neil Robinson

Neil Robinson

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how would I change to series?
would it be simpler/ more useful were I to buy a 55015P handheld? (or for that matter a massoth navigator?)
I've had a look at the online instructions for LGB's latest 20183 offering which I assume to be similar to your Franzburg.
I looked at the list of CVs but couldn't find a way of selecting serial mode.
I then looked at the instructions and found the following in the functions section near the bottom left of page 10.
"The functions can be activated only in parallel. Serial activation of the functions is not possible"
This would suggest the answer to your second question is yes. However I would suggest a little more research may be advisable before parting with your money.
 
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PhilP

PhilP

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I know little about the 'red' MTS equipment..
But the mantra "All components must be marked with a 'P'" comes to mind. :think:
 
PaulRhB

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There are significantly cheaper options than the Massoth for a G scale Dcc system. Piko do a 2amp 55017 one you can increase in power with Digikeijs DR5033 or the Uhlenbrock Power 4 or 7 boosters. Or the Z21 I use upgradeable with those same boosters.
Certain decoders offer compatibility with LGB serial and 14 speed steps but ironically not LGB’s latest mfx ones it seems!
I ran a serial mts2 for several years with the older LGB 55021’s, original factory decoders and ESU decoders set to LGB mode.
Here’s the topic we talked about adding boosters to smaller amperage Dcc systems like Z21, it’s as simple as putting the wires in the correct inputs and connecting to the track.
 
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idlemarvel

idlemarvel

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With the Maerklin decoders you can set 14 speed steps with CV 29 but you can't select serial mode.
 
Zerogee

Zerogee

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There are significantly cheaper options than the Massoth for a G scale Dcc system. Piko do a 2amp 55017 one you can increase in power with Digikeijs DR5033 or the Uhlenbrock Power 4 or 7 boosters. Or the Z21 I use upgradeable with those same boosters.
Certain decoders offer compatibility with LGB serial and 14 speed steps but ironically not LGB’s latest mfx ones it seems!
I ran a serial mts2 for several years with the older LGB 55021’s, original factory decoders and ESU decoders set to LGB mode.
Here’s the topic we talked about adding boosters to smaller amperage Dcc systems like Z21, it’s as simple as putting the wires in the correct inputs and connecting to the track.

While I have no experience of it, and thus this is a suggestion rather than a recommendation - for a "budget" DCC system would this be worth looking at?


This is some of the text from the listing, run through Googly Translate:

.................

"Description:
Now it gets powerful! The digital booster incl. A Roco multiMAUS with the latest software and power supply. Together, this creates an extremely compact and powerful digital control unit for DCC operation of all gauges!

With the multiMAUS, the booster can be transformed into a powerful control center with XpressNet® support. The 1st multiMAUS (master) must be connected to the corresponding input. If you would like to use several handheld controllers (eg multi-mouse) or other XpressNet® devices, please use an XpressNet® distributor.

1.The digital booster
The Digital Booster is a powerful booster. It can be charged up to 10A. It is possible to use all protocols (DCC, Selectrix, Märklin-Motorola also mixed operation).

NOTE: Only with the multiMAUS can the booster be converted into a full-fledged central unit (14 - 128 speed steps, CV programming, 2048 points switchable, 9999 locos controllable) !!
Plug the Multimaus into the "Master" connector of the booster. It may then be occupied no further connections.

It can then be connected to other components (XpressNet devices (eg Navigator with XpressNet converter, Lenz® USB / LAN interface for PC and handset control, other mice, etc.) via an XpressNet distributor!"
.................

Jon.
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
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Navigator with XpressNet
Does anyone know if this is just a difference in wiring conventions between the two, or if more 'electronics' is involved?
 
stevedenver

stevedenver

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Thanks to all, i feel a bit less incompetant.
Still stymied, but ready to press onward, through the fog, lol.

The starter piko digital set id $1000, the massoth version, 1500.
Seems somewhat close, given the features, and, the more extensive massoth offerings.

While likely irrational, as i know piko is made by massoth, i just perceive piko as cutting quality.

All i really want to do is get to see the sync smoke on my sachsen mkI, and, to hear the franzburg.

Only $700 per loco to access the mfx features i paid more for.....go marklin.....seems like the old lgb “retro” compatibilty has gone the way of the dodo.
 
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stevedenver

stevedenver

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I've had a look at the online instructions for LGB's latest 20183 offering which I assume to be similar to your Franzburg.
I looked at the list of CVs but couldn't find a way of selecting serial mode.
I then looked at the instructions and found the following in the functions section near the bottom left of page 10.
"The functions can be activated only in parallel. Serial activation of the functions is not possible"
This would suggest the answer to your second question is yes. However I would suggest a little more research may be advisable before parting with your money.
Thank you for your special effort. Fwiw, my pamphlet with my loco is German only, with a handwritten function chart. I actually try to read this stuff, but, i think it often assumes a cumulative history , knowledge, and experience with earlier digital. Illget there, but its , indeed a foreign language at this point.

Wish i could find a denver tutor.

I think the next step may be a parallel handheld......needs to fink, i does...
 
wandgrudd

wandgrudd

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24 Oct 2009
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ok, im trying to learn digital. I bought some old lgb kit, simply to dip my toe. I am planning on buying the massoth dimax system .....but I am having so little luck in accessessing the feature I want to, I am reluctant to do so until I can see some results. I have read the LGB central station instructions and the 55015 instructions several times. I understand what little they say.

I have read the loco pamphlets as to which numbers activate which functions. however, if simply push that number key on the key pad, nadda. same if I enter numbers over "9" in the lighted screen.

I have a 55006, central station type 3 (has dimax plug input on back as well as LGB bus), an 55015 (non parallel) hand control,

I have four mfx locos, the Sachsen mk I, Sachsen MkIV, and, the factory sound equipped version of the Franzburg (set to loco address 5 ) others all factory 3. I have several old version 1 frr diesels and I can run them ok (backwards and forwards is all they can do).

I haven't tried to reprogram anything, everything is factory default setting.

I am not finding things intuitive, but, I am assuming things ought to work. But, I am assuming my 55015 handheld can access functions.

heres what I know how to do and can successfully do.
I can turn the light on and off, and, I can run the locos both directions.

All function keys (1-9) blow the whistle, and, nothing else. with different keys,sometimes the whistles sounds once, sometimes long, sometimes repeats, sometimes it will blow continuously until I hit the 1 button. I am clueless as to why , other than...perhaps the handheld is sending series pulses (repeated commands).

I can change loco addresses between 3 and 5..!!!

question
1 is there a basic incompatibility due to the series commands of my 55015 handheld? ie is this simply worthless with mfx ?
2 if not, can someone walk me through how to ring the bell. (small steps, then ill see if I can do more). very anxtious to get steam sounds and sync smoke on the MkI eventually.

3 if the handheld 55015 is a problem, should I buy the dimax navigator?
4 should I dump the entire lgb lot and bite the massoth starter package bullet-$1500 US) . (seems pricey to access MFX functionality. yet, I really like the slow crawl I can achieve and being able to park a loco). Is massoth viable? I tried to access the german site and it comes up empty or several links are inactive on the site, such as sound files, some products are listed as unavailable, and other signs that make me worry .....

thanks
Go with option 3 its a cheaper way of using the existing lgb mts base unit and gives you the control you need. a wired Massoth DiMAX Wired Navigator is what $250 (quick google not sure on USA pricing) Works fine for me.
 
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Zerogee

Zerogee

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25 Oct 2009
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Go with option 3 its a cheaper way of using the existing lgb mts base unit and gives you the control you need. a wired Massoth DiMAX Wired Navigator is what $250 (quick google not sure on USA pricing) Works fine for me.
Yes, I would agree - given that you have the MTSIII CS already, adding a Navigator would be the most cost-effective option at this point - then you've already got your hand controller should you decide to go "full Massoth" at some point in the future.

Jon.
 
MTheStrong

MTheStrong

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I have followed this thread with interest. Here is my take:

The main issue appears to be getting old technology, no one would disagree that the MTSIII is old technology - it was introduced in 2006, to run equipment for which it was never designed for. Surely the best advice would be to recommend current equipment that uses the latest technology but which , as far as possible can run older technologies. I faced the same dilemma couple of years ago. My solution was to purchase a Maerklin CS2, shortly to be upgraded to the CS3+ along with the new Massoth designed wireless hand controller. The CS2 or newer CS3+ offers additional methods of control including via a pc or smartphone. Plus levels of automation, should you wish them, beyond the traditional hand held controller.
 
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wandgrudd

wandgrudd

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I have followed this thread with interest. Here is my take:

The main issue appears to be getting old technology, no one would disagree that the MTSIII is old technology - it was introduced in 2006, to run equipment for which it was never designed for. Surely the best advice would be to recommend current equipment that uses the latest technology but which , as far as possible can run older technologies. I faced the same dilemma couple of years ago. My solution was to purchase a Maerklin CS2, shortly to be upgraded to the CS3+ along with the new Massoth designed wireless hand controller. The CS2 or newer CS3+ offers additional methods of control including via a pc or smartphone. Plus levels of automation, should you wish them, beyond the traditional hand held controller.
We seem all to eager to spend ones money on items that aren’t required, lets go back to the first post all that was asked for is the ability to change address and use the sound and smoke functions nothing to fancy. MTSIII is already being used yet with an older controller upgrade to the Massoth nav for a modest $250 (and can be reused later if more power is need with the full Massoth system) and you are ready to go and can match any other system for play-ability and functions.

I am yet to see any reason to change from my MTSIII system, I can’t see any one on here doing anything with the Massoth or CS2/3 system that can’t be done with the MTSIII other than 128 speed steps which I cant see being needed. Yes, power may be a limiting factor but how many of us actually get near the 5 map limit I takes a good 4 locos running for me to be pushing circa 4 amps which isn’t a relaxed running session as I have to be constantly watching what’s going on, from what’s posted on the forum I don’t see any body else pushing the system hard, we all seem to limit our play to about 2 or 3 trains at any one time.
 
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MTheStrong

MTheStrong

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We seem all to eager to spend ones money on items that aren’t required, lets go back to the first post all that was asked for is the ability to change address and use the sound and smoke functions nothing to fancy. MTSIII is already being used yet with an older controller upgrade to the Massoth nav for a modest $250 (and can be reused later if more power is need with the full Massoth system) and you are ready to go and can match any other system for play-ability and functions.

I am yet to see any reason to change from my MTSIII system, I can’t see any one on here doing anything with the Massoth or CS2/3 system that can’t be done with the MTSIII other than 128 speed steps which I cant see being needed. Yes, power may be a limiting factor but how many of us actually get near the 5 map limit I takes a good 4 locos running for me to be pushing circa 4 amps which isn’t a relaxed running session as I have to be constantly watching what’s going on, from what’s posted on the forum I don’t see any body else pushing the system hard, we all seem to limit our play to about 2 or 3 trains at any one time.
I respect your views on the MTSIII, and if you are happy to continue to use it so be it, likewise with the original poster. I was only trying to point out, obviously badly, is that technology has moved on in the last 13 years and that it is worth while looking at what is currently available in order to make a balanced decision.
 
wandgrudd

wandgrudd

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I respect your views on the MTSIII, and if you are happy to continue to use it so be it, likewise with the original poster. I was only trying to point out, obviously badly, is that technology has moved on in the last 13 years and that it is worth while looking at what is currently available in order to make a balanced decision.


Thats my problem i just dont see how the tech has moved on, i can run the same brand new MFX loco on the old MTSIII system just the same as i can on the brand new CS3 system with no differences that would be noticeable, unless i am missing some features the the CS3 brings to the table?
 
stevedenver

stevedenver

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Actually, i asked to learn to ring the bell so i could have a simple learning post, ie one thing i could understand. Then, more. I sought very simple instruction, on one thing, so i might understand, and extrapolate to other functions. And, i can change loco addresses between locos, but dont know how to assign them.

I really want to access all the sounds. All functions. Eventually, cv’s.

I have been skeptical of the maerklin cs3, only after attending a factory seminar that seemed like even the techs had problems utilizing it. Put the mfx loco on the track, and it’s recognized.Otoh, it would solve all my problems. And, its pretty affordable. I am not enamored of the etch a sketch pad versus handset, but.....im not sure. I am , at this point, unlikely to digitize points, etc. but, never say never.

I am also, as of late, less than happy with maerklins customer support. Few parts for very pricey locos, and, a seemingly short term perspective on folks investing in their products. Very different from old LGB.

It seems massoth , at least, does this electronics thing full time, long term.
 
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