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Date: 08/17/20 18:01
Motorola MCS 2000 problem
Author: bodkin6071

Out driving around yesterday, I decided to turn on the VHF radio in my truck, a Motorola MCS 2000 (that I bought off Ebay about 7-8 years back, with all 97 AAR channels programmed in) and listen in on possible rail traffic. Turned it on, it did the usual self-test at startup, emitted a single beep, and then nothing. When this happened The display then showed "FAIL 01/82". Unplugged the radio and plugged it back in, still nothing. Don't know much about this radio, so I'm at a loss.



Date: 08/17/20 18:51
Re: Motorola MCS 2000 problem
Author: baltimore

Well I did a google search of power up display codes for the Motorola MCS 2000.

Fail 01/82 is classified as a fatal error. Fatal to the extent that it will inhibit user operation

It is an external EEPROM ckecksum error.

Possible sources are: Bad external code plug data or Defective external EEPROM.

That's all I know. I'll let the experts explain it.

Baltimore



Date: 08/17/20 20:29
Re: Motorola MCS 2000 problem
Author: TCnR

There's a shop listed in this post that sounds like they may be able to help:

https://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?9,4934449,4934647#msg-4934647
 



Date: 08/18/20 07:43
Re: Motorola MCS 2000 problem
Author: bodkin6071

Hmm. Sounds like something well out of my hands and more trouble than it's worth. Probably for the cost of getting it fixed I could by a ICOM handheld for just as much....

It did its job.

baltimore Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Well I did a google search of power up display
> codes for the Motorola MCS 2000.
>
> Fail 01/82 is classified as a fatal error. Fatal
> to the extent that it will inhibit user operation
>
> It is an external EEPROM ckecksum error.
>
> Possible sources are: Bad external code plug data
> or Defective external EEPROM.
>
> That's all I know. I'll let the experts explain
> it.
>
> Baltimore



Date: 08/18/20 16:39
Re: Motorola MCS 2000 problem
Author: WW

While I can't supply a specific answer to the OP's question, I'll talk a bit in general about Motorola radios.  Yes, Motorolas used to be the gold standard in two-way radios.  The old Motorola "brick" portables, for example, were real tanks and could take a tremendous amount of physical abuse.  In my opinion, that is not so much true for the last few years.  Motorola also was pretty proprietary about a lot of their stuff, so getting radios serviced could be expensive.  Today, Motorola's big radio business is with government agencies.  They "sold" P25 digital as the be-all-end-all solution to government agencies, despite the fact that P25 isn't necessarily as robust or feature-laden as other digital platforms even though it could be much more expensive.  As related to me be people in the know in the railroad communication end of things, that is a main reason that the AAR recommended NXDN (not P25) as the "standard" for future railroad digital radio--better performance and less expensive equipment being the perceived advantages.

For railfans, buying a Motorola radio, used or new, these days offers little advantage.  The Motorolas often won't perform any better than many other analog radio models, and won't do NXDN digital.  Going back to the OP's dilemma, if the radio has suffered a major failure, usually trying to repair it isn't worth the cost.  Buying used is also always somewhat risky.   The buyer doesn't often know if the radio has been physially abused, been repaired in the past, is totally functional, or potentially "hot" (stolen).  One Class 1 railroad radio tech told me the every one his railroad's radios has the railroad "initials" engraved on the radio, and that, if those initials are on a used radio being sold on the secondary market, it is almost certainly a stolen one.

One final issue--across all makes of two-way radios, much of the local dealer sales/repair network is rapidly disappearing.  In my particular region, probably 2/3's of the radio shops have disappeared in the last 10-15 years.  In many cases, the remaining shops can only perform minor repairs, with radios with any more significant problems having to be sent to the manufacturer for repair.  One such radio manufacturer that I know about charges a minimum $125 fee for any non-warranty radio work.  The whole system is increasingly geared to "throw away and replace" rather than repair these days--pretty much like all other electronic stuff.  Because of this a lot of bigger radio customers (i.e., government, the railroads, etc.) simply put their radios on a fixed interval replacement cycle--say, 7 years.  Good, not good, and junk radios are disposed of at the end of that cycle.  Moreso with government users, those can be the radios that wind up being sold/auctioned that wind up on used equipment sites like Ebay, etc.

This is probably not what the OP (or others) wish to hear, but that is today's reality in the 2-way radio world.



Date: 10/06/20 20:30
Re: Motorola MCS 2000 problem
Author: MP683

So just saw this thread...

A fail 1/82 can usually be corrected by programming in the programming file for it “aka codeplug”.

Chances are you do not have it, but some motorola shops may still have the means for it or a generic file.

However IIRC, the MCS/MTS line was one of the first that tied files to the radio serial/model numbers together.

In other words, you do not just create a file and dump it into the radio.

A shop with the cables and software should be able to read it and then program back in - unless the internal codeplug is courpted.

MCS2000’s with wary firmware were finicky but the later firmware revisions were pretty good. The advanced control heads were nice for the day.

Outside of that, as mentioned, there are some companies out there that have tools (they they are not suppose to have but Moto doesn’t care for discontinued products much) that could recover it - usually around $100 give or take.



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