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Introducing LCS

Your layout has always been more than the sum of its parts. But until now, combining those parts into a complete system could be a challenge. Lionel’s new Layout Control System fulfills the LEGACY promise of integrated locomotive and layout control.

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Run locomotives. Throw track switches. Control lighting and accessories. Track the location of compatible locomotives as they cross key locations on your layout. And do it all from your existing Lionel CAB Remotes Lionel’s LCS App on an Apple iPad® (above), and the iCab app on the iPhone® (below).

LCS doesn’t replace your existing Lionel Legacy Control system. It adds to it! LCS is a modular system, meaning you can start with just the pieces you need today and expand tomorrow. Some of the system’s key building blocks include the LCS WiFi which connects smart devices to your layout, the SensorTrack™ which reads location and other information from compatible locomotives, the ASC2 and BPC2 relay controllers which let you connect traditional trackside accessories, remote operated switches, lighting and track power blocks.

How Does it Work?

As you know, your Lionel Cab remote sends commands to your Legacy Base. In turn, the Base talks to locomotives using a one-way radio signal. LCS control modules work in parallel. Spread across your layout, these LCS modules are cabled one to the next and can operate switches, lighting, accessories and track power blocks. LCS is bidirectional, meaning modules can both send and receive commands. They can also send commands back through your Lionel command base.

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Here’s where it all comes together: LCS can operate your locomotives as well as your layout. For example, a module like SensorTrack™ can make a loco to blow a grade-crossing signal as it passes. And the LCS WiFi module connects devices like an Apple iPad® or iPhone™to your layout so you can easily operate switches, locos and more.

Speaking of WiFi...

The two most common ways to run an LCS system are with Lionel hand-held remotes alone, or a combination of CAB remotes plus WiFi devices such as an Apple iPad™. The LCS WiFi module and Lionel’s free iPad LCS App are not required for LCS—they just make it more fun!

To run LCS using only CAB remotes, you need a Lionel command base. This could be either the Cab/Base-1L, or for full functionality, the LEGACY 990 base with Cab-2 remote. Then, when you’re ready to combine the power of your hand-held remotes with the flexibility of the LCS App, add the LCS WiFi module and download the free LCS App for your iPad™. For one-handed locomotive operation, check the Lionel iCab app for locomotive control on an Apple iPhone or iTouch device. There are also independent LCS Partners hard at work creating their own exciting products for the LCS system.

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Now you’re ready for action. Watch the overview video below. Pick features from the table on What Do I Need? to see which LCS modules are appropriate for your layout. Check out the full-blown LCS example system diagram, but remember—LCS is modular. Start with just the components you need today, knowing you can expand your LCS system as your layout grows.