It was decided to install a Lasic decoder with stay alive as they are a good cost match to the locomotive. The installation is straightforward as the motor pickup is clearly located on the motor.
Begin by removing all the existing wiring for the motor and lights as these will be upgraded to LED as part of this conversion.
DCC is very sensitive to pick-up and the basic pickup originally supplied with these locomotives has to be improved, this is done in two ways, firstly the front bogie is rewired and upgraded and secondly a stay alive was added.
|Fixing locomotive weight|
|Modification to front bogie consist of hardwiring to the factory pickup|
Lower clip is released and the working face cleaned and tinned, a feeder wire was soldered and a hole drilled to allow it to pass through the bogie frame
Note: ensure that the exit point does not foul on the pickup of the assembly
A hole is drilled through the frame to allow connection to the tab, next the tab was fixed over the pin by pushing it over the pin and then lifting the pin to engage in a groove located on the pin.
|Decoder installation - the grey & orange arranged as shown allowed |
fwd to operate correctly
|Decoder and Stay Alive Installation|
In the image above note the heat shrink, this contains a pin/socket that allows the stay alive to be disconnected for programming - this proved to be an issue with this decoder.
A LED installed replacing the rather clunky headlight original installed. To do this the cover was removed from the chassis and a LED module incorporating the LED and resistors, it was fixed with contact cement to the locomotive cover and once dry the refitted to the chassis.
|Cutout to clear decoder|
With a small amount of adjustment and clean wheels, it moved off with as much grace as these units are capable of.
All items used in the installation are available from the MRRC.