DCC-Ready Locomotives

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Dan Micke » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 08:02:33



Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of older,
non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

Dan Mickey

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by JB/N » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 08:27:31




Quote:
> Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of
> older, non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any
> reason to use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

They're not.
I mean, I've seen DCC-*equipped* loco's for not much more than the DCC-
ready versions ...

Looks to me wherever you buy your traisn is ripping you immensely ....

--

Modeling Japanese N Gauge - and loving it!
Visit my layout: http://www.xs4all.nl/~tsunami/yumekaigan/

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Joe Ell » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 08:37:39



Quote:

>Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of older,
>non-DCC-ready locomotives?  

Simple answer: They're not.

More complicated: Those old, cheap locomotives don't run that well anyway
in comparison to today's product. Pancake motors, binding gears, and lack
of detail are only a few of the things about those "older, non-DCC_ready"
locomotives that I suspect few modlers, DCC or non-DCC, would want to go
back to.  Most of the cost difference is in improved running and detail
that has absolutely no relation to dcc/non-dcc use. For a valid
comparison, look at _current_ DCC/non-DCC releases. There, you'll find the
price difference is far less than you stated... on the order of 10 percent
or less of total cost.

Quote:
>Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
>use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

"Most of us" is a rapidly diminishing number. Actually, _non-DCC_ users
are the ones being subsidized, because DCC has been designed to accomodate
non-DCC equipment, making DCC equipment more expensive. With the improved
_capability_ of DCC control, modelers have become more demanding of
superior performance in their locomotives, and _everyone_ has reaped the
benefits.

--
 Joe Ellis

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by George Fernande » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 08:46:11


Sounds like where ever you are buying locos they are marking up for
technology.
Every engine I have bought, DCC ready, older standard loco or DCC equipped
have all been within the  same price range.
Kato's= <$100, Proto 2K = <$100, Athearn Genesis = <$100
all seem to be with-in the normal price range of good quality engines.
Athearn std stuff did go through a price increase about a year ago.
If you are looking at a shop that installs the Decoder for you then, add the
cost of engine, cost of Decoder and labor for install. Then your going pay
more, especially if it is Soundtrax.
Tony's Train exchange is one company that has their prices listed on the
web. Engines with sound through them are $300. Professionally installed
decoders are worth the price.
Factory installed decoders like Atlas are the same price as not decodered
engines, around $100

George Fernandez

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Dan Micke » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 09:16:16


I can see about $15 for improved dies for increased details, but about $50
for the hand-wired circuit-boards for the benefit of the plug-in DCC crowd.
So, Why do we need to pay such a premium for this?  This is a subsidy for
DCC; I would rather have a slab of lead for the weight instead of the
circuit board.

Dan Mickey


Quote:


> >Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of
older,
> >non-DCC-ready locomotives?

> Simple answer: They're not.

> More complicated: Those old, cheap locomotives don't run that well anyway
> in comparison to today's product. Pancake motors, binding gears, and lack
> of detail are only a few of the things about those "older, non-DCC_ready"
> locomotives that I suspect few modlers, DCC or non-DCC, would want to go
> back to.  Most of the cost difference is in improved running and detail
> that has absolutely no relation to dcc/non-dcc use. For a valid
> comparison, look at _current_ DCC/non-DCC releases. There, you'll find the
> price difference is far less than you stated... on the order of 10 percent
> or less of total cost.

> >Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
> >use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

> "Most of us" is a rapidly diminishing number. Actually, _non-DCC_ users
> are the ones being subsidized, because DCC has been designed to accomodate
> non-DCC equipment, making DCC equipment more expensive. With the improved
> _capability_ of DCC control, modelers have become more demanding of
> superior performance in their locomotives, and _everyone_ has reaped the
> benefits.

> --
>  Joe Ellis

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Tom Groszk » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 09:57:53


Please site specific examples, Dates, Prices, specific locos.

Quote:
> Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of
older,
> non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
> use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

> Dan Mickey

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Christia » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 10:16:48


| I can see about $15 for improved dies for increased details, but about $50
| for the hand-wired circuit-boards for the benefit of the plug-in DCC
crowd.

Your figures are out of whack with reality.  Those circuit boards are a
common part of most diesels with post Kato engineering.  They cost pennies
and are used because they are cheaper than the labor cost for hard wiring.
(And remember where that labor is located!)  The DCC ready plug added to
those boards /might/ add 3 cents to the cost.  A couple years ago when the
dinosaurs were whooping and hollering here about the cost of the Atlas
decoder equipped locomotives an electronics manufacture posted, right here
on rmr, that the cost of the DCC parts on top of the common circuit board
was a couple bucks /at the point of manufacture./  (Not separately packaged,
run through Customs, distributors and so forth.)

So what are you paying for?
The new way of doing business.
Irv would introduce a new locomotive every few /years./  Now we the
consumers expect Kato, Atlas, Life Like to introduce /several/ new
locomotives each year.  That means that the owners and the banks can't wait
a few years for the model to amortize.  It has to free up the investment on
the basis of one or two runs.

There is your cost.  Not a couple bucks worth of electronic parts.

CTucker
NY

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Todd Muelle » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 10:16:13


Models that come DCC ready are usually of a higher overall quality than
those that don't.


Quote:
> Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of
older,
> non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
> use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

> Dan Mickey

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Dave Mitto » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 10:30:49


Quote:

>Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of older,
>non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
>use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

Since when is Athearn, LifeLike and Kato  the DCC industry?

Dave.

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Bill Nielse » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 06:10:30


Hi Dan,
I can remember when an Athearn diesel ran $15-$22 (the "Hustler" once
was $3.95), then along came the SD40-2,  GP38-2, GP40-2, and GP50 at
$32 and everyone griped. Of course they also had new tooling for the
trucks in addition to accurate hood widths, and DCC wasn't even around.
Now these same locos are $41.50 or more and they still aren't DCC-ready
or DCC-equipped, so you can't blame DCC for higher prices. Sure, a Kato
or an Atlas or even P2K (which is an Athearn clone, even some parts can
be swapped) are higher $, but this isn't new, they've always been more.
Don't blame it on DCC!

Bill in Oakland Park,FL


Quote:

> Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of older,
> non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any reason to
> use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

> Dan Mickey

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Dan Micke » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 11:25:33


But then, there are some locomotives called "Genesis", which are running for
about $115!.  Atlas is also running new locomotives at $89 to $99.  That is
what is mystifying me.  Older locomotives have been running from $35 to $50.

Dan Mickey


Quote:
> Hi Dan,
> I can remember when an Athearn diesel ran $15-$22 (the "Hustler" once
> was $3.95), then along came the SD40-2,  GP38-2, GP40-2, and GP50 at
> $32 and everyone griped. Of course they also had new tooling for the
> trucks in addition to accurate hood widths, and DCC wasn't even around.
> Now these same locos are $41.50 or more and they still aren't DCC-ready
> or DCC-equipped, so you can't blame DCC for higher prices. Sure, a Kato
> or an Atlas or even P2K (which is an Athearn clone, even some parts can
> be swapped) are higher $, but this isn't new, they've always been more.
> Don't blame it on DCC!

> Bill in Oakland Park,FL



> > Why is it that DCC-ready locomotives are running about 3x the cost of
older,
> > non-DCC-ready locomotives?  Most of us do not need nor have any reason
to
> > use DCC, so are we subsidizing the DCC industry?

> > Dan Mickey

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Pac Ma » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 13:36:23



Quote:
> I can see about $15 for improved dies for increased details, but about $50
> for the hand-wired circuit-boards for the benefit of the plug-in DCC
crowd.
> So, Why do we need to pay such a premium for this?  This is a subsidy for
> DCC; I would rather have a slab of lead for the weight instead of the
> circuit board.

"Hand-wired circuit boards"?  It's all machine made these days, ain't it?  I
mean, you can crank these things out by the thousands with little trouble at
all in a modern electronics plant.  And these can be used on more than one
model.

Dies, on the other hand, are hideously expensive (I've heard $50,000 thrown
around for a number, but that's a guess).  But if you make 5000 units, it
only costs $10 per.  However, in this day of limited run, the costs go up as
you make fewer and fewer.

Right now, you are seeing vastly improved models with tons of detail and can
motors in prototypically correct paint schemes with prototypically correct
add on details.  Did you not expect the price to go up?  DCC capability is
mere pennies compared all these other improvements...

Paul A. Cutler III

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Pac Ma » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 13:51:59



Quote:
> But then, there are some locomotives called "Genesis", which are running
for
> about $115!.  Atlas is also running new locomotives at $89 to $99.  That
is
> what is mystifying me.  Older locomotives have been running from $35 to

$50.

Genesis engines are probably some of the finest HO model products on the
market today.  The Genesis F-7A is reputed to be the best plastic F-7A,
ever.  They in no way can compare to the old Globe Athearn shell they have
been making for the past 40+ years.

Look at what you get with Atlas and Genesis: Seperate grabirons, see-through
grills, superior motors and drive train, great paint quality, etc., etc.,
etc.  Only a small insignificant part of this has anything to do with DCC.
All these improvements, however, makes the model more expensive to make than
the old days.  This entails a greater financial risk on the manufacturers,
who try to limit their exposure by making fewer models (which raises the
prices even more), as after all, if they can make 1000 units, and sell them
right away for big $, why should they make 2000 units for half the cost and
that might only sell 1001?

Paul A Cutler III

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Fred Dabne » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 16:55:57


Quote:
> Dies, on the other hand, are hideously expensive (I've heard
$50,000 thrown
> around for a number, but that's a guess).  But if you make 5000
units, it
> only costs $10 per.  However, in this day of limited run, the
costs go up as
> you make fewer and fewer.

> Right now, you are seeing vastly improved models with tons of
detail and can
> motors in prototypically correct paint schemes with

prototypically correct

Quote:
> add on details.  Did you not expect the price to go up?  DCC
capability is
> mere pennies compared all these other improvements...

With the possible exception of the recently announced
SD80/90 from Kato, which is being announced with
a probable retail price of U$150, and new Atlas models
at 140.

Freight cars are also skyrocketing.  New models are
showing up at over twenty with thirty being forecast for
some still in the pipeline.

And I haven't seen a lot of DCC ready covered
hoppers or boxcars.

One thing to keep in mind is that all the good things
one can expect from the next locomotive releases
may well not be on those new Kato.  No one really
knows yet, but the speculation is rampant that, based
on past performance it will probably run well but have
railings sized about right for an 0 scale model, lousy
paint, and a frame one needs to take a milling machine
to if you want to do any detailing.

Fred D.

 
 
 

DCC-Ready Locomotives

Post by Charles Pezeshk » Sun, 24 Mar 2002 12:40:10


Hi All,

FWIW, a Bachmann doodlebug from Trainworld is $19.99.  And it is (basically)
DCC-ready.  A Proto-2000 SD-7 is $50.  Whaddya, whaddya, how cheap do you
want?

DCC is simply amazing.  Stunning, actually.  Makes trains work like you
think they ought-- especially on small layouts.

What I find so interesting is that most folks haven't been exposed to model
trains.  When I show them my modest DCC layout and try to explain to them
that trains didn't use to work independently, they look at me funny, and
then say something like "well, why would anyone ever play with them if they
didn't do what you can do right here?"

Most of us can't have a roomful of trains-- and DCC really makes it possible
for multiple folks to have fun on a small layout.

Chuck



Quote:
> Models that come DCC ready are usually of a higher overall quality than
> those that don't.