Bachmann Europe PLC has recently released two Class 66 OO scale locomotives which are fitted with the latest European 21 pin decoder sockets. One of these Class 66 locomotives was the first British outline ready to run locomotive with factory fitted sound (32-725DS) which is fitted with a 21 pin sound decoder, whilst the other non-sound locomotive (32-731) has a 21 pin decoder socket. To achieve top quality sound it has been necessary to fit the 21 pin decoders to these locomotives and to modify the chassis of the Class 66 locomotives to accommodate them because the locomotives with sound require more connections than the 8 pin sockets allowed. The new 21 pin sockets fit directly to the locomotive's printed circuit board which has reduced the volume of wiring harness fitted. 21 pin decoders will become standard in future all Bachmann Branchline locomotives with factory fitted sound and the non sound variants of the same locomotives.
Some of the major European manufacturers are now adopting 21 pin sockets as standard and our sister company Liliput, introduced them earlier this year.
For purchasers of the non sound Class 66 locomotive (and the future Bachmann locomotives that use the 21 pin sockets) who wish to use 8 pin decoders it will be necessary to purchase an adapter (36-559 or L38004) to fit the 21 pin socket. This retails at £3.40 and can be obtained from your Bachmann dealer.