Author Topic: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks  (Read 846 times)

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Kuchler10

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HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« on: June 10, 2016, 03:14:29 PM »
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So my M1 just arrived, and I ran it on its default number for a while. Then, I reprogramed it on the main using my NCE Power Cab to the road number, which it responded to. Then I was moving things around and dropped a metal paintbrush on the rails, causing a short. The system cut out and rebooted. I don't think I was programming when that happened. Now the locomotive won't move. It won't respond to 3 or the road number. I tried typing in other numbers to see if I mistyped, but nothing works. When I try to reprogram it, sometimes the number comes up as 3 and others 6704. The light is on constantly, so I don't think I fried the decoder, but it will not respond. What scares me is that it won't run on DC, either. Any help or troubleshooting tips would be appreciated.
I model the Norfolk Southern in N scale

Dave V

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2016, 03:37:56 PM »
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I've found these M1 decoders are a bit wonky like that.

Here's what I do; place it on the programming track and reassign its road number.  It should wake up.  I don't know why that works, but it seems to.  I had this problem after I changed a bunch of CVs. Both my M1s did the same thing; they had lights but wouldn't respond.  After individually reassigning them their road number addresses they woke up and had actually saved my CV changes.

I'm sure there's someone out there with a more elegant solution, but this brute-force method worked for me.

Good luck!

EDIT:  One thing to check...  If you have a DC track you can test it on and it works fine, then you know the electronics in the dual-mode decoder are still intact.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2016, 03:40:36 PM by Dave Vollmer »
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peteski

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2016, 04:27:01 PM »
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I've found these M1 decoders are a bit wonky like that.

Here's what I do; place it on the programming track and reassign its road number.  It should wake up.  I don't know why that works, but it seems to.  I had this problem after I changed a bunch of CVs. Both my M1s did the same thing; they had lights but wouldn't respond.  After individually reassigning them their road number addresses they woke up and had actually saved my CV changes.

I'm sure there's someone out there with a more elegant solution, but this brute-force method worked for me.

Good luck!

EDIT:  One thing to check...  If you have a DC track you can test it on and it works fine, then you know the electronics in the dual-mode decoder are still intact.

I don't think what you proposed is a brute force thing.  re-writing the address sounds like a vary mild kick in the pants. I would have recommended a full decoder reset to the factory values.  :scared:

He mentioned already that it does not work on DC.

Kuchler10: see if another known-good locomotive still works. Maybe the DCC system went kaput.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2016, 04:29:21 PM by peteski »
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Dave V

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2016, 04:29:54 PM »
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Oh yeah, missed that part.

The factory-configured startup voltage is very high so unless you give it a lot of juice in DC it'll act just as dead.  Before I reconfigured the CVs, it took almost full throttle from a Kato power pack to start up on DC.
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peteski

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2016, 04:34:24 PM »
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Oh yeah, missed that part.

The factory-configured startup voltage is very high so unless you give it a lot of juice in DC it'll act just as dead.  Before I reconfigured the CVs, it took almost full throttle from a Kato power pack to start up on DC.

But shouldn't at least the sound kick in around 6V DC?  He didn't mention sound (either way).
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Dave V

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2016, 04:50:47 PM »
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But shouldn't at least the sound kick in around 6V DC?  He didn't mention sound (either way).

You'd think.  I don't have a lot of experience with these on DC, but like the OP mine made no sound on DC at first either...not 'till I cranked the DC throttle almost to the wall.  Then they roared to life, sound and motion all at once.

For all the guff Bachmann's K4 decoders get over the ones BLI used, the Bachmann K4s seem much less "moody."
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Mike C

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2016, 05:54:09 PM »
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 @Kuchler10 @Dave Vollmer  , which DCC systems are you using .  So far  :scared: I haven't had any problems like this with my 2 on my PowerCab system . I've had a couple of operator error shorts , and haven't seen anything like this . Yea the decoders are a bit weird at times ( maybe because I programmed way to many CV's at once ) But I've never lost the address .

peteski

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2016, 06:18:16 PM »
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Initial post mentions NCE Power Cab.
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Dave V

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2016, 06:46:30 PM »
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@Kuchler10 @Dave Vollmer  , which DCC systems are you using .  So far  :scared: I haven't had any problems like this with my 2 on my PowerCab system . I've had a couple of operator error shorts , and haven't seen anything like this . Yea the decoders are a bit weird at times ( maybe because I programmed way to many CV's at once ) But I've never lost the address .

Digitrax...  A now decade-old, OOP Super Empire Builder.
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jdcolombo

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2016, 07:41:36 PM »
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Do what Peteski said: do a full factory reset.  Put it on a programming track, set CV8 to 8.  Then take it off the programming track and put it on the main, dial up address 03, and see if it works.

If it doesn't, then I think the short scrambled the decoder's programming.  I've had this kind of thing happen with an ESU LokSound once or twice, and ended up having to reprogram the decoder's entire software from scratch using the LokProgrammer.  The decoder's hardware wasn't damaged, but its software (firmware) was scrambled.  You can't do that with the Paragon 2 that's in the M1, however, so if a factory reset doesn't work, you'll need to send it back to the factory for repair.

John C.

Mike C

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2016, 11:37:57 PM »
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Initial post mentions NCE Power Cab.

Yep , occasionally I'm brain dead ..... :o

peteski

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2016, 12:22:04 AM »
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Yep , occasionally I'm brain dead ..... :o

I know that feeling well.  ;)
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Kuchler10

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2016, 12:45:10 AM »
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Thanks for the help guys, but Dave's solution worked like a charm. I feared the worst. Waiting weeks for repairs that may or may not have been covered by the warranty was not a fun thought, but my new toy is back in revenue service. While we are on the subject, though, are there any recommended CV changes for the M1? It seems to be more than solid on default settings, but if there is anything that could help performance in any way, it would be appreciated. I know the Bachmann Berk needed some CV changes to get it rolling smoothly at slow speeds (thanks again @jdcolombo).
I model the Norfolk Southern in N scale

Dave V

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2016, 12:46:58 AM »
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Glad I could help!  The CVs I changed were lower startup voltage and lower master volume.
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Mike C

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Re: HELP: New M1 dead on tracks
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2016, 06:11:19 PM »
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@Kuchler10  , Google for Paragon 2 steam tech guide . There are a bunch of CV's that aren't listed in the little booklet that comes with the loco .   Both of mine run really well and slow , but they still have an abrupt start /stop. Seems like they should coast another 1/2 inch or so before stopping , but I still haven't figured out which CV's need adjusting .