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MM 141/181 v 071 slow start and crawl speeds

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Noel
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I have one 071 but a number of 141/181s and have noticed a marked difference in speed range on DCC. The 071 has a higher top speed, but the 141/181s I have are far superior at ultra slow start and crawl speeds. They are also silent whereas the 071 starts at a higher speed with some motor hum. Has anybody else noticed this or could this just be the 071 sample I have. It is quite noisy at startup compared to the totally silent 141/181s.

 

The 071 has LokSound v4 decoder, and the 141/181 have a mix of Lenz Silver and Bachmann 36-557 decoders. All set to 28 step speed. I've tried a few different CV settings on the LokSound including setting CV2 to zero and one, but I cannot seem to get it to start anywhere near as slow as the 141/181s. It could be different gearing. Has anybody noticed similar difference between their 141/181 and 071 locos, or any words of wisdom?

 

Thanks.

Noel

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Noel, have you calibrated the motor of the 071 using CV 54. The Loksound V4 decoder has an automatic calibration process which involves matching the characteristics of the motor with the decoder.

 

Place the loco on a piece of level track, at least 10ft long. Make sure the loco is going to run in the direction of the clear track. Switch off all functions, and set speed at 0. Enter 0 into CV 54, and go back to the throttle. Press F1, and the loco will take off like a scalded cat for a second or two and then stop. The engine noise starts, and your loco is calibrated.

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Noel, have you calibrated the motor of the 071 using CV 54. The Loksound V4 decoder has an automatic calibration process which involves matching the characteristics of the motor with the decoder.

 

Place the loco on a piece of level track, at least 10ft long. Make sure the loco is going to run in the direction of the clear track. Switch off all functions, and set speed at 0. Enter 0 into CV 54, and go back to the throttle. Press F1, and the loco will take off like a scalded cat for a second or two and then stop. The engine noise starts, and your loco is calibrated.

 

Thank DV

When you say press F1 do you mean function 1 button. I tried that but it switches the loco sound on (i.e. engine startup). Also tried setting CV 54 to 0 and then speed step 1.

 

Thanks

Noel

Edited by Noel
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Noel, have you calibrated the motor of the 071 using CV 54. The Loksound V4 decoder has an automatic calibration process which involves matching the characteristics of the motor with the decoder.

 

Place the loco on a piece of level track, at least 10ft long. Make sure the loco is going to run in the direction of the clear track. Switch off all functions, and set speed at 0. Enter 0 into CV 54, and go back to the throttle. Press F1, and the loco will take off like a scalded cat for a second or two and then stop. The engine noise starts, and your loco is calibrated.

 

that's a great tip - thanks for posting!:tumbsup:

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Thank DV

When you say press F1 do you mean function 1 button. I tried that but it switches the loco sound on (i.e. engine startup). Also tried setting CV 54 to 0 and then speed step 1.

 

Thanks

Noel

 

Noel, Yes I did mean Function 1 button, the engine startup button, sorry if I was not clear on that.

 

Once you have set CV 54 to 0, and returned to drive mode, select the loco, ensure throttle is at speed step 0, then pressing the Function 1 button will start the calibration process before the sound starts up. The process does work. I recently fitted a V4 decoder to an O gauge loco which ran fine on DC, but ran like a bucket of bolts with the decoder fitted. After running the calibration process it was a totally different loco.

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Thanks. But after storing 0 in CV54, the sound starts immediately I press F1 and loco does not move.

It's the Murphy 071 sound decoder which I think is a LokSound 4.0.

 

Very strange Noel. It must be something to do with the NCE system. Although I have set up an NCE system for a friend, I am not familiar enough with it to make any suggestions.

 

I have just been checking my 071s, and found one that I had not calibrated. I have now just done it using the instructions mentioned, and it did exactly what it should have done.

 

Anyway, what I would suggest, is either try the calibration using someone else's equipment, not NCE, or put in manual entries. Having checked my locos, I found the calibrated CV values were very similar in all locos, so you could try those. Loco 1, CV51 0, CV52 18, CV53 89, CV54 50, CV55 18. Loco 2, CV51 0, CV52 18, CV53 94, CV54, 57, CV55 18.

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Very strange Noel. It must be something to do with the NCE system. Although I have set up an NCE system for a friend, I am not familiar enough with it to make any suggestions.

 

I have just been checking my 071s, and found one that I had not calibrated. I have now just done it using the instructions mentioned, and it did exactly what it should have done.

 

Anyway, what I would suggest, is either try the calibration using someone else's equipment, not NCE, or put in manual entries. Having checked my locos, I found the calibrated CV values were very similar in all locos, so you could try those. Loco 1, CV51 0, CV52 18, CV53 89, CV54 50, CV55 18. Loco 2, CV51 0, CV52 18, CV53 94, CV54, 57, CV55 18.

 

Thanks DV. I will try those later. Having just re-read the "ESU LokSound v4.0 Murphy Models Class 071/111" manual, the CVs don't seem to match yours and they don't document CV51. The LokSound 4.0 manual on the ESU website coincides with your suggestions and setting.

 

I will post a video later showing a 181 and 071 running side by side one speed step 1 of 28. The 071 motor is noisy with hum and the loco moving at about three times the crawl speed of the 181 which is totally silent. I'm sure I am doing something wrong. I wonder if the MM LokSound chip has been programmed differently in some way. I might try another CV8=8 reset on the programming track. I've had not problems so far programming other aspects of this decoder (e.g. brightness of lights and sound volume).

 

Anyway video to follow as soon as I get to upload it at my jurassic Eircom broadband speeds.

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After a bit of investigation, and a look at the MM Sound Decoder Manual, there does not appear to be any reference to calibrating the motor in it, even though it is produced by ESU, who produce the Loksound V4 decoder.

 

The Loksound V4 decoder Manual as downloaded from ESU, gives comprehensive instructions on calibration, both manual and automatic. It could be that there is a slight difference in the standard V4 decoder from the MM V4 decoder, or the auto calibration is somehow switched off in the MM version. The decoders I use are standard V4s, with the sound programme downloaded from ESU and loaded with a Lokprogrammer. CVs 51 to 55 have the same purpose in both versions.

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Success! Thanks DV.

 

Auto calibration, CV54 needed to be set to 0 on the program track rather POM, then lift loco onto the main, press F1 and off she set like a march hare. It won't work if CF54 is set to 0 on the main track! Could be an NCE thing.

 

The auto tuning seemed to set CVs51-55 to similar values to yours. Minor adjustment to CV2 after as she was a little too slow, and now she is creeping as slowly the as the 141s and 181a. However the motor is still noisy at crawl speeds which is probably because ESU handle BEMF differently to the Lenz silver decoders in the 141/181s. When I get some spare time I will try a Lenz silver in the 071 to see if that makes a difference to the motor noise when crawling. I wonder of the ESU decoder is using aggressive PWM pulsing at low speed steps.

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Must be an NCE thing. My Lenz works fine on POM. I have just been checking one of my 071s against a 181. My 141/181s are fitted with Loksound V3.5 decoders, and at crawl speed, with sound off, the 181 produced a faint sound similar to the 071 like you described. The 071 actually crawls slower than the 181, but is slightly noisier. Must just be the motor type, after all, the locos are made by different manufacturers for MM. Anyway, since all my locos are sound fitted, and I don't run my locos with the sound off, it is not such an issue for me.

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Must be an NCE thing. My Lenz works fine on POM. I have just been checking one of my 071s against a 181. My 141/181s are fitted with Loksound V3.5 decoders, and at crawl speed, with sound off, the 181 produced a faint sound similar to the 071 like you described. The 071 actually crawls slower than the 181, but is slightly noisier. Must just be the motor type, after all, the locos are made by different manufacturers for MM. Anyway, since all my locos are sound fitted, and I don't run my locos with the sound off, it is not such an issue for me.

 

Thanks DV, that was very helpful. As you say it could have been a LokSound/NCE thing re the need to use program track. Other CVs can be POM fine with the LokSound, just CV54 refused so far. I've never had an issue with the Lenz either. I am astonished how slow and utterly silent the 141s and 181s are with both Lenz Silver and Bachmann 36-557 decoders. I've never owned locos so smooth at crawl before and so smooth over peco code 100 insulfrog points.

 

Comparison BEFORE recalibration - the hum is coming from the 071, the 181 is silent

Both speed step 1 of 28

[video=youtube_share;Unu499Iy4d4]

 

I consider myself relatively new to DCC so I learn something new every time I try something different with it. Being an IT bod, I find the whole DCC decoder thing fascinating, with no real standards between decoder manufacturers other than the API and track DCC messaging standards despite NMRA.

 

Ideally it would be easier to standardise on one brand of decoder and learn their programming, BEMF, speed curves and motor tuning CVs. But not all decoders fit or suit all locos, especially older non-DCC steam locos where TCS and DCC Concepts Zen seem to have the edge for fit and driving older spec models with limited wheel pickups and compact keep-alive features for running slowly over points.

 

PS: What sound chips do you use in your MM 141/181s - Zimo or ESU or other?

Edited by Noel
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Noel, that loco is noisy, much more so than mine.

 

My small GMs use Loksound V3.5 decoders, 2 with Mr Soundguy sounds. He used to do sound for DCC Supplies, but now does it for Belfast Model Shop on Zimo decoders. I used to have one loco fitted with a Zimo from BMS, but I could not get it to match with the Loksounds for multiple running, so I sold it on. I also have 2 locos fitted with V3.5 decoders with modified downloads from ESU. Although not correct in terms of original loco type, in my opinion, they capture the sound of small GMs brilliantly. Irishthump got the same loco sound blown for him on a V4 decoder some time ago, and posted a video of it on this site.

I also had an 071 and a 201 fitted with Zimo decoders from BMS, but, although the sounds were good, I just could not get the sounds to synchronise with the loco movement, unlike the Loksounds. They too were sold on and replaced with V4s.

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Noel, that loco is noisy, much more so than mine.

 

My small GMs use Loksound V3.5 decoders, 2 with Mr Soundguy sounds. He used to do sound for DCC Supplies, but now does it for Belfast Model Shop on Zimo decoders. I used to have one loco fitted with a Zimo from BMS, but I could not get it to match with the Loksounds for multiple running, so I sold it on. I also have 2 locos fitted with V3.5 decoders with modified downloads from ESU. Although not correct in terms of original loco type, in my opinion, they capture the sound of small GMs brilliantly. Irishthump got the same loco sound blown for him on a V4 decoder some time ago, and posted a video of it on this site.

I also had an 071 and a 201 fitted with Zimo decoders from BMS, but, although the sounds were good, I just could not get the sounds to synchronise with the loco movement, unlike the Loksounds. They too were sold on and replaced with V4s.

 

After CV54 auto calibration. Speed much better but still noisy.

 

[video=youtube_share;2wQnYVfwYVM]

 

Will try it on DC later to see if its quieter at low speed.

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