One of the main topics of my quest for Inter-City train is exploring the 12V LEGO Trains system of 1980. I am, however, keeping a door open for implementing train electrics using LEGO Power Functions. In fact, like a laid out in the ground rules, I will probably try that in any case. I think there may be some perspective to be gathered by comparing Power Functions with older LEGO electronics.
Released in 2007, Power Functions started as a successor to the LEGO Technic electronics and eventually went on to combine different LEGO electronics under one technology, for example replacing the previous LEGO Trains RC system in 2010. While the new system has motors, battery boxes and lights much like LEGO already had in the 1980s, there are also a couple of remote controllers and many more types of motors. Combine it with LEGO Mindstorms and there is also a host of sensors and artificial intelligence.
I’ll get back to exploring Power Functions in the future. For now, here is a picture of the PF packs I already bought, “just in case”:
Above (from top left): 8879 Power Functions IR Speed Remote Control, 88002 Power Functions Train Motor, 8884 Power Functions IR Receiver, 88000 Power Functions AAA Battery Box as well as 8293 Power Functions Motor Set (includes 8870 Power Functions Light, 8883 Power Functions M-Motor, 8869 Power Functions Control Switch and different AA-sized 8881 Power Functions Battery Box).
There is also a rechargeable battery I considered, but I couldn’t get the charger yet, so I stuck to the regular battery boxes – at least for now.