CarrollFilms

Power Functions questions

20 posts in this topic

traintech1.jpg

I have a few questions about PF. I've been eye balling the 7938 Passenger train. Since I am a 9V fanatic i'm illiterate when it comes to PF.

Question 1. How long can a rechargeable Battery box last with an XL motor last. If it can't last more than 2 hours I'm not interested in buying it.

Question number 2. are the turning points good, because on the emerald night the turning used a lot of energy to turn.

Finally Question 3. is a power function motor faster than a 9V motor?

Thanks for the replies

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a few questions about PF. I've been eye balling the 7938 Passenger train. Since I am a 9V fanatic i'm illiterate when it comes to PF.

Question 1. How long can a rechargeable Battery box last with an XL motor last. If it can't last more than 2 hours I'm not interested in buying it.

Question number 2. are the turning points good, because on the emerald night the turning used a lot of energy to turn.

Finally Question 3. is a power function motor faster than a 9V motor?

Thanks for the replies

Question 1 is three hours (measured with 6 passenger cars obtained from other lego sets, but I think with fewer cars it'll be the same).

Question 2. I removed the rubber traction bands in the front driving wheels. This makes it easier for the EN to go through curves.

Question 3: The motor from the previous RC train is about the same speed as a 9V motor, perhaps even a little bit faster (but a little less torque). I have two of them, one of them is a tiny bit faster than 9V I think, and one of them is about the same speed The new RC motor (power functions motor), I have not tested it myself but I've read that it is also fast enough to derail a train in the curves, so I assume that it is as fast as a 9V motor as well (the 9V motor is faster than I'd like it to be, I don't like it to be able to derail).

The Emerald Night with power functions XL motor is quite a bit slower than the 9V and RC trains, in my view it's speed is perfect. It does not derail in the highest speed setting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry to bring this thread up but i also have a few questions on PF's of my own:

1. Whats the bare minimum pieces of equipment I would need (I.E battery box etc.)

2. What are the dimensions of the pieces I would need.

Its just an idea, but is it possible to have a pinned topic on "general train questions" rather than having to make new topics over and over again?

many thanks

Harry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This would be a good start:

http://powerfunctions.lego.com/en-US/default.aspx

The bare minimum is a battery box and a motor. For remote control you will also need a controller and a receiver.

There are three battery boxes, two technic motors and a train motor, two controllers... I can't give you all the dimensions here but have a look at the Power Functions pages on the Lego site that I've linked above.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This would be a good start....The bare minimum is a battery box and a motor.......

Thanks "Duq"

when you say motor do you mean THIS or THIS. (as you can see I'm a complete beginner :laugh: )

Thanks in advance :sweet:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. ;-)

You can use either one for a train. The train sets 7938 and 7939 use this one. If you want to motorise the Emerald Night you will need this one.

That's the beauty of the Power Functions system; you can mix and match components.

Edited by Duq

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But it has serious disadvantages for the AFOL as well. It is quite hard to make your own extensions and that is strange since the basics of the system have the potential. 8 different output combinations are just not that great. They should have made another knob or so to give at least 16 options (that would have been more useful than the directionality switches on the remotes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The starter train sets come with everything, except for batteries, that is needed for making the train move. That is, a train motor, a AAA-type battery-box, a speed-adjustable controller, a receiver and any cables that are necessary to connect all of these together.

Also, these new trains are fast. The new motors are proven to be more efficient, and thus faster and more powerful compared to the 9V motors, under identical circumstances (that is, same power sources). They are far superior to their slightly older cousings, the RC-train motor, which, frankly, was useless, so do not confuse the two. They are easy to tell apart by the fixed cable that the PF-train motor has.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But it has serious disadvantages for the AFOL as well. It is quite hard to make your own extensions and that is strange since the basics of the system have the potential. 8 different output combinations are just not that great. They should have made another knob or so to give at least 16 options (that would have been more useful than the directionality switches on the remotes.

Hi JopieK,

I believe that the latest firmware in the newest PF receivers have the extra address bit a enabled (and some more - as far as I am concerned - resasonable changes, here is a discussion. (Just in case here's a link to the v1.20 update from February 2010). Which gives some extra space ... but I am still not convinced that this is enough. Automation of switch points needs quite some address space, even when routing signals to several switch point drives from one group controller. And lights in houses, and and and .. but you know all that.

Regards,

Thorsten

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, tests at LEGOWorld in Zwolle showed that the IR beam is so directed that we very often don't even need to select different slave devices. We can just point to a signal house and then that one will work. I only hate that trains also react to non-PWM messages (at least with my receivers). My own train with Arduino IR handling only listens to the PF train controller and ignores the small remotes' messages.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, tests at LEGOWorld in Zwolle showed that the IR beam is so directed that we very often don't even need to select different slave devices. We can just point to a signal house and then that one will work. I only hate that trains also react to non-PWM messages (at least with my receivers). My own train with Arduino IR handling only listens to the PF train controller and ignores the small remotes' messages.

But without line of sight you may get into trouble ... my BR23 just jump off the track at full fwd (and then 1 foot down = a lot of BR23 fragments) because it did not see the remote ...

And yes, a smart IR receiver as your Arduino may actually not react to "bang-bang" commands at all. I don't see any benefit in the on/off "small IR" remote command as well ... "set to 7 full fwd/bwd" is good enough. Guess this has to do with on-going LEGO development - these folks may be tripped off by their own progress ...

Rock on,

Thorsten

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi JopieK,

I believe that the latest firmware in the newest PF receivers have the extra address bit a enabled (and some more - as far as I am concerned - resasonable changes, here is a discussion. (Just in case here's a link to the v1.20 update from February 2010). Which gives some extra space ... but I am still not convinced that this is enough. Automation of switch points needs quite some address space, even when routing signals to several switch point drives from one group controller. And lights in houses, and and and .. but you know all that.

Regards,

Thorsten

Is there any way to update the firmware on a PF receiver that I already own?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is there any way to update the firmware on a PF receiver that I already own?

To be honest, I don't have the faintest idea. But I doubt it; it would need to be flashed via the IR port - sounds not very favorable to me. But maybe others have more info?

Regards,

Thorsten

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I need to know whether it's normal for the first charge to take more than 12 hours for the rechargeable battery box.

I bought one new from S@H, and plugged it in last night. This morning it is still flashing like it's charging, and it's been more than 12 hours! Is this normal for the first charge? Should I not believe that it's charged and unplug and use it to see? I'm worried because the instructions indicated that the first charge is the most important.

I'll leave it plugged in until I hear from someone here, or I'll report back if it stops flashing.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I need to know whether it's normal for the first charge to take more than 12 hours for the rechargeable battery box.

I bought one new from S@H, and plugged it in last night. This morning it is still flashing like it's charging, and it's been more than 12 hours! Is this normal for the first charge? Should I not believe that it's charged and unplug and use it to see? I'm worried because the instructions indicated that the first charge is the most important.

I'll leave it plugged in until I hear from someone here, or I'll report back if it stops flashing.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

Was exactly the same with my LEGO LiPo. As far as I remember I left it charging for about 24h (@10V that is) - I did not stop flashing. Then I just used it, charged it and everything was ok. My LiPo survived a lot of nasty things, so I guess you should just go and use it. You can't do anything wrong here - even after 12 h the battery should be charged to the extent that everything is on the safe side.

Are you using the 10V LEGO charger?

Regards,

Thorsten

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Was exactly the same with my LEGO LiPo. As far as I remember I left it charging for about 24h (@10V that is) - I did not stop flashing. Then I just used it, charged it and everything was ok. My LiPo survived a lot of nasty things, so I guess you should just go and use it. You can't do anything wrong here - even after 12 h the battery should be charged to the extent that everything is on the safe side.

Are you using the 10V LEGO charger?

Regards,

Thorsten

Hi Thorsten,

Yes, I am using the (bad word) expensive Lego charger. I thought I'd stay on the safe side and be all official with it.

I unplugged it and started my Emerald Night. It's been running for about an hour and it appears to be slowing down now. I guess that may be normal given that the EN isn't perfectly frictionless. I only have the basic EN site (one tender, one car).

Thanks for your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When i buy the set for motorize my emerald,i try to use,because i want to see that train running alone,and the battery run for something like four hoursdefault_huh.gif next time i try to use again and i made my first charge,because some day ago the train still run fast like a bullet,and i think don't need to be charged?

TLC sell ready charged battery??

My motorized Emerald Night

Edited by Gioppa

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

... next time i try to use again and i made my first charge,because some day ago the train still run fast like a bullet,and i think don't need to be charged?

TLC sell ready charged battery??

Hi Gioppa,

yes, that may very well be the case (I never checked, just started charging :sceptic: ). LiPo's have a very low leak-rate, so once they are charged, they more or less stay charged. Maybe others have experienced pre-charged LiPo's as well? I would not be surprised.

Now four hours or just one hour run time simply depends very much on the model. Friction forces may dramatically impact on run time since fully loaded motors draw much more current than free running motors - see Philo's measurements.

Regards,

Thorsten

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.