Chapter 96 – 26/04/2015

96-01Time for Jade to hijack Adam’s Corner again with the long awaited DCC installation walkthrough for our 1550 class (as well as our upcoming 2400 class) locomotives.

You can pick any DCC decoder as long as it is 3 or 4 function (to have working marker lights) and where the plug is separate to the decoder itself.


96-02The DCC chip we are using in this guide is the LokSound Select item number 93490 which can be purchased or ordered through us as well as any hobbyshop stocking ESU products.


96-03If purchasing through a retailer, you will also require a speaker and bafflebox, ESU product code 50330, although when purchasing through Wuiske Models directly, we offer this already soldered and included with the 93490 sound chip.


96-04If you want DCC but don’t want the sound, one of the available chips is a LokPilot Standard – ESU Product Code 53611 and available from any retailer stocking ESU products and Wuiske Models directly. The steps for installing a LokPilot Standard are almost identical, sans the steps for the speaker (obviously).


96-05If you purchase your LokSound Select and your speaker and bafflebox separately, you will need to solder the two brown wires from the decoder to the speaker. To do this, you will need to remove the speaker from its baffle box and then replace it after the wires are attached.


96-06To remove the body from our 1550 or upcoming 2400 class locomotives, unscrew the two diagonally opposing screws on either side of the fuel tank from the bottom.


96-07To give you more working space and reduce risk of accidentally knocking out any wiring, disconnect the two white plugs on either side of the PCB gently.


96-08Remember that the higher part of the diecast chassis is on the leading end of the locomotive.


96-09Carefully ease out the dummy plug from the PCB 8 pin socket.


96-10As space is limited within QR locomotives due to their size, it is best to remove one of the mounting points on the bafflebox. Using sidecutters, remove the mounting point on the end without the wires. There is no need to remove the mounting point on the end where the speaker wires come out.


96-11After you have done this, you may wish to paint the sides of the bafflebox black so that you do not have an unsightly white shape coming through the rear grill of the locomotive.


96-36Prepare the area in the locomotive shell where the speaker will be mounted by folding down the two brass tabs that mount the brass mesh over the radiator fan with the aid of a flathead screwdriver. Care must be taken to ensure you do not pop out the brass mesh on the topside.


96-12To mount the speaker and chip, the simplest way is some “Sticky Dots” by Sellotape. Our pack of 64 dots was purchased from the local newsagent for the princely sum of $3.50. You can also use doublesided tape, but you will want to find one that has good stickability (some doublesided tapes are very weak).


96-13The sticky dots come with a white backing paper and a clear fronting paper with perforations that separate each dot, making them very easy to work with.


96-14Apply one to the back of your bafflebox and press down firmly. If using doublesided tape, cut to size and apply firmly.


96-15Peel the fronting paper off carefully – the sticky dots are very sticky on both sides, but they may at times need to be persuaded to leave the security of the fronting paper. Remember they are sensitive little petals so soft, coaxing words might be of assistance here.


96-16With the locomotive shell upside down, insert the speaker to the back of the locomotive shell.


96-17Try to push it in as far as you can against the lights PCB and once happy with the positioning, press the speaker and bafflebox into place firmly. Try to avoid pressing on the actual speaker – this is where that extra mounting tab comes in handy as it gives you something to work with.


96-18The ESU decoders have some extra wires that are not required for our locomotives. Isolate the tips by folding a piece of sticky tape over the end of the wire.


96-19To neaten things up and save space, cut a few milimetres away from the wire.


96-20This will just ensure that the wires definitely can’t touch or short on anything when running your loco.


96-21The majority of wires on the decoder should be on one end. Any wires that are located on the other end of the decoder should be folded over for neatness.


96-22Once folded up, place a sticky dot on the top of the decoder and surplus wires.


96-23You can also place the sticky dot on first, then arrange the spare wires to go around the dot.


96-24Place the decoder butting up tight against the bafflebox. With the LokSound Select decoder you will notice it almost wedges itself between the bafflebox and the chassis screw mounting point. The sticky dot is really only there to prevent it from flapping around.


96-25Once you are happy with the positioning, press down on the decoder to adhere the sticky dot to the locomotive shell.


96-26You will notice on the PCB, there is a white border around the 8 pin socket. One corner is marked a bit heavier – this denotes the positioning of pin 1 on the standard 8 pin plug. Pin 1 is located on the leading end, left hand side of the locomotive.


96-27On the ESU decoders, the orange wire is Pin 1.
Plug in your decoder.


96-28Reconnect your lights plugs.


96-29And now your decoder is installed. Just need to put it all back together. There is a lot of wiring there, and you must take care to not catch any wires in between the shell and the metal chassis, or in the way of the chassis screw mounting points as you may crimp the wires, break the sheathing and cause shorts.


96-30Gently try to tuck the wires in as you replace the locomotive shell.


96-31Fingers, pens, screwdrivers etc may come in handy for this job. As simple as it is, this is the most complex part of the install.


96-32Sometimes turning the locomotive upside down to get gravity to assist might help. At each point check as much as you can that you haven’t crimped any wires. Under no circumstances should fitting the shell back on offer great resistance. It should slide on easily – if it requires pushing you’ve probably got wires wedged where they shouldn’t be.


96-33It should just come together, and you can use the overflow pipe which hangs down from the underframe on the left hand side and the fuel gauge on the fuel tank to line up your positioning of the shell to the chassis. The overflow pipe should sit directly in front of the fuel gauge.


96-34Once you have your body and chassis aligned correctly, just replace the two screws and you’re done.


96-35Now all that is left is to program your locomotive address.
The locomotives are factory assigned an address of “03”.
Marker lights are Function 11 and Dynamic Brakes are Function 7. Check your DCC Control system manual if you’re unsure how to select these.
Enjoy!

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