Reverse chuff sound stuck on


Tom Wilson
 

This is my first post in this group.
I have a BLI Paragon series 2-10-2 with a QSI Atsf 3800 class chip. Date is 2006. According to JMRI it is a QSI steam version 6. Firmware build 38, firmware build date 3/11/6.
I have owned this for a number of years, but only now getting it out to run it. Didnt have a layout at all. Now I at least have a semblance of a test running space.

When I run the locomotive in reverse, after the throttle is set to zero, the chuff sound continues on forever until I set the direction to forward.
Also, in reverse, the headlight strobes rapidly.
I reset the decoder to all factory defaults using the jumper method on the circuit board. It made no difference to either the chuff issue or the headlight issue.
I changed the headlight function from directional headlight to headlight. No difference.

I understand QSI may not even be around anymore?

Is this a known bug? Can I get a chip upgrade? Can I reflash the chip somehow? Or does some company flash these? I have no QSI hardware for any programming, just rely on JMRI or programming with my NCE Power Cab.

I am considering just pulling out the electronics and putting in something else if there is not a solution. But I feel like I spent enough on this thing several years ago and if I can get it resolved, would rather leave it in. There are some nice features with this decoder.

Thanks for any advice or help.

Tom Wilson


kelly dorf
 

Hi Tom:

If you wish, I can offer to have a look at it for you.  Yes we are still around.
Please email me at qsindustries224@...

Kelly
QSI


Tom Wilson
 

Problem resolved!

This is an update to a question I posted several months ago. I am sending this to the group for the benefit of all in case you shoulld run into the same problem I had.

My problem:
I have a BLI Paragon HO Atsf 2-10-2. It has a QSI decoder with version 6 firmware. I had the loco a number of years, but had never run it. I have recently gotten where I am making time for my trains so I went to program and run this loco. It ran and sounded fine in the forward direction. When in reverse, the chuffs would start way out of sync with the wheels. It would then settle out while running in reverse, but upon stopping, the chuff sound would continue forever until I changed the direction on the throttle, then it would stop.
I found this annoying and unacceptable. I asked on this forum about it and Kelly offered to have a look. I waited around a few months and reached out to Kelly again and asked about the possibility of a chip upgrade and thinking that might solve my problem.
Kelly was able to secure a new chip with version 7.x something firmware and sent it to me.
I put it in a few weeks ago, and much to my disappointment, the problem was still there. I figured I would wait til I had some time to try to troubleshoot it or get into the bowels of the new software which I know nothing about.
I tried various settings and still no joy.
I decided to take out that decoder and put in some other brand I am more familiar with. I installed that decoder yesterday. I started blowing LED headlights. This is not my first rodeo and I knew I had wired it right and I had put in a 1kohm resistor. So I changed the headlight again, and this time hooked a battery to the headlight leads before attaching the harness up and the headlight worked fine. I hooked up the harness and put it on the track and blew the headlight. Now by this time I was pretty darn frustrated. Changing the headlight on this loco is no small affair.
I decided to pull out my multimeter and checked for continuity on all the pins of my wiring harness. Lo and behold, I had a short from the headlight white lead to the motor leads. I then disassembled the locomotive to get at all the interior wiring. The jumper board where the harness coonnects from the tender metered the same short with the headlight wires disconnected and the tender harness disconnected. So I took my exacto knife and cut through the pc board surface between the solder pads for the white headlight wire and the gray motor wire. I did this on both sides of the board. Still registered a short. I cut between the wire traces on the 6 wire pin header attached to the board. Still had a short. Cut between same traces on back side of 6 wire header. Still had a short. I finally worked the tip of my knife in the tiny slit between the 6 pin header and the surface of the pc board and just sliced between the 2 offending pins. Finally the short was gone.
I changed the bulb a 3rd time (4th bulb) and metered everything again. I then tested with a battery. Then I reassembled the loco and hooked everything up and it all worked as expected.
Now remember, I had changed out the decoder to another brand. By this time it was 1 an this morning. I decided I wanted to try the QSI decoder again. But it had to wait.
So, just about an hour ago, I started reinstalling the QSI decoder. Fortunately, I did not destroy the connections by cutting the wires too short when I switched to the other brand. I was able to solder up a harness to match all my quick connects I use whenever I do an install.
I put everything together and put it on the track.
I am happy to say it all works, the chuff stuck on problem is gone. I am very happy with this decoder and its sound and features.

I dont know if the bulb was already blown from the short before I switched decoders or if the QSI decoder absorbed the load into its circuitry and still kept the bulb lit. I think the headlight was working because that is always one of the first things I deal with programming.
But I am making a new practice of checking for shorts with my meter before I mess with anything.

Now, to spend some time getting to know this QSI software and what I can do with it.


Thank you Kelly for all your help!


Tom Wilson
 

Just a clarification from my previous post yesterday. The short I discovered was on the small pc board under the cab of the locomotive where the harness from the tender connects. My post yesterday was not very clear and could heve been interpreted to mean the board in the tender.

Tom Wilson


kjlovesya
 

Congratulations on the successful troubleshooting Tom!   Glad to hear you got things working properly.

Now for the fun part.   With the chip upgrade, version 7 and above, all have a working variable brake.

Just for fun, give yourself lots of track, and I do mean LOTS of track, and try these settings:


CV 23 = 50
CV 24 = 127

CV 3 = 0 (light or engine only) but varies with number of cars.   I add around 5 points per car.

CV 4 = 150 (light) add 2 points per car.


Get ready with Function button number 7.



The fun part:

Get the loco rolling and shut down the throttle (speed step 0*).  Coast for a bit.



When you are ready to apply a little brake, tap the 7 key, count one second and tap the 7 key again.   You've now done what is called a minimum brake application.

If you want more brake, count longer between taps of the 7 key.





Full brake application is tap once and wait until the train stops (the brake strength will automatically continue to increase to maximum until full braking strength is attained).   After the train stops be sure to tap the 7 key again to 'reset' the brake.


Technically, an increase in the throttle will release the brake.   However, if you've neglected to 'reset' the brake  (by tapping the F7 key a second time) the brake will not activate on the next tap.   It will take yet another tap to activate.


Play around with it an have fun.  It will take some considerable practice to use these settings for operation, but they are pretty close to the real deal.  I've had an actual, experienced locomotive engineer confirm the settings are pretty close to the real deal.


KJ


*  The brake will not activate until the throttle is at speed step 0.


Tom Wilson
 

KJ,
Thanks for that info regarding the brake. I look forward to playing around with it. Probably tomorrow evening. Other responsibilities tonight.

Tom Wilson