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I am ready to lay down the track, but I have not been able to find an answer to my question:

Can you fit ALL of the TRI-ANG and Hornby locos with a DCC module ??
I have loads of 0-4-0's and it would be a shame not to use them.

So can I fit a decoder to all of the locos ?? ( I have about 40 Locos in all )
Or would it just be easier to stay with analouge control ??

P.s. I have a Fleischmann Turntable, so that makes thing a little more complicated......

Ste
 

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Almost any locomotive can be fitted with a decoder.

It is sometimes down to the degree's of diffeculty. Some locos are easy, some are diffecult, some are almost impossible.

Points to consider ;

1) You need some space to fit the decoder - for small OO/HO loco's you can sometimes fit an N-Gauge decoder. Diesels & electrics are usually easier. I have fitted decoders to the underside of the cab roof in small tank loco's.

2) You need to be able to isolate both motor brushes from the chassis - depending on the model, depends on the way you do this. Split frame chassis can be diffecult (but from what you have said you hav'nt got any of those).

The Fleischmann turntable can be used - there is some information about this elseware on the forum.

If you go DCC & have a problem with any particular locomotive just ask here - someone will almost certainly converted one already.

Please let us know how you get on.
 

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QUOTE Can you fit ALL of the TRI-ANG and Hornby locos with a DCC module ??
I have loads of 0-4-0's and it would be a shame not to use them.
As dbclass50 says all locos can be DCC converted. The main criteria is that the loco runs perfectly on DC before trying to convert it. If its hesitant on DC it will be the same or worse on DCC.
Many older, Tri-ang for example locos with XO3 type motors, are ideal to convert if good runners.

3 or 5 pole open framed motor are little time consuming, but isn't beyond the scope of most people.

Extract from my web site......
Having removed the loco's body, view the chassis from above and on most older Hornby/Tri-ang loco's a 'V' shaped spring can be seen along the top of the motor, this retains both motor brushes under tension. One side has a slide on insulated sleeve. Locate and remove the push fit connector that's located between the insulated sleeve and the actual motor brush curved upper part. This is normally a simple pull off fit and has a black wire soldered onto it which runs down to one side of the wheel set. Cut off the black wire where it's soldered onto the connector. Discard the connector. The black wire will be used later.

Strip around 12-15mm of wire insulation (16/02 is ideal) and use the insulation to insulate the opposite side of the 'V' spring where it touches the brushes top. This means now that both sides of the 'V' are insulated from the brushes. Next solder the Orange wire from the decoder onto one motor brushes top section and the Grey wire to the opposite brushes top. Be careful not to damage the insulation - slip a small piece of Paxolin or other heat resisting material between the brushes top and the insulated 'V' to prevent the insulation melting while the soldering iron is heating the brush/wire joint. When both are soldered visually check that the brushes carbon blocks are touching the motors commutator and there is no pull on the brushes from the attached wires.

Now slip a short length of heat shrinkable tubing over the black wire (removed earlier from the insulated side of the brush) and then solder the decoders Black wire to this. When cool, slip the tubing over the joint and apply a little heat to shrink the tube to form a good insulated joint. Finally connect the Red wire to the central screw that holds the 'V' wire in place by undoing the screw a little, stripping approx. 10mm of insulation from the red wire and twisting up the strands to make a solid wire then wrap this stripped end clockwise around the loosened screw. Tighten the screw to grip both the wire and the 'V' spring.

Place the loco onto the Programming track and check that the decoder can be read , normally its factory preset set to 3. If all is ok then programme as needed.

Once programming is completed test the loco on normal DCC operation. In the event of the loco running in the opposite direction to the controllers setting (e.g. reverse when forward selected) unsolder the two wires on the brushes (Orange and Grey) and reverse them.

When reassembling the loco body ensure the area chosen for the decoder's final position is well insulated. Remember that the chassis is live and will cause a short circuit and destroy the decoder it if it's not suitably insulated. This can be carried out by applying insulating tape to the area of the decoder's location and then holding the decoder in place with double sided adhesive pads. Make sure decoders wires are taped clear of any moving parts too.
 

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QUOTE (Brian @ 28 Feb 2007, 10:58) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The main criteria is that the loco runs perfectly on DC before trying to convert it. If its hesitant on DC it will be the same or worse on DCC.
Many older, Tri-ang for example locos with XO3 type motors, are ideal to convert if good runners.

Forgot that bit !
 

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I've yet to find an OO scale loco that cannot be DCC'd, but would you really want to convert all of them...? You can't run 40 locos all at the same time, so i'm assuming most sit in sidings or in storage boxes, and if you have several of the same class why not consider chipping the best chassis and swapping bodies over for when you want to run a particular loco....? There may be some that you no longer want and could be sold on to finance decoders or new locos, or maybe keep them DC, unplug the DCC command station, and have the odd running session...
 

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I agree wholeheartedly on the last poster's message.

Convert your favourite loco, then the next favourite and so on... just until you pull out a loco that when you look at it, you can honestly say "you won't be running anytime soon on my track."
 

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QUOTE (Doug @ 1 Mar 2007, 06:37) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I agree wholeheartedly on the last poster's message.

Convert your favourite loco, then the next favourite and so on... just until you pull out a loco that when you look at it, you can honestly say "you won't be running anytime soon on my track."
Agreed, there are some loco's that get past their sell by date.
 

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QUOTE (neil_s_wood @ 28 Feb 2007, 21:33) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Agreed, there are some loco's that get past their sell by date.

Definatly - the only non-runners left in my fleet are awaiting the time to sort out, the indifferent runners & so on have now gone.

Quite a few of our customers have used changing to DCC as an "excuse" for some housekeeping.
 

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QUOTE QUOTE(Brian @ 28 Feb 2007, 10:58)
The main criteria is that the loco runs perfectly on DC before trying to convert it. If its hesitant on DC it will be the same or worse on DCC.
Many older, Tri-ang for example locos with XO3 type motors, are ideal to convert if good runners.

QUOTE QUOTE (dbclass50 @ 28 Feb 2007, 02:51)
Forgot that bit !

Have I missed something here???

If your loco doesnt run well on DC is won't run well on DCC! That's a fact.

Older locos can be converted to DCC Thats also a fact.

However if they arn't good runners then forget the conversion!
 

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QUOTE (Brian @ 1 Mar 2007, 15:47) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Have I missed something here???

If your loco doesnt run well on DC is won't run well on DCC! That's a fact.


If the pickups are poor then it won't run very well on digital, on DC the motor may run on until it picks up track voltage again causing a brief pause, but if this happens with DCC it'll accelerate from stop at it's preset rate.
 

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Based on the topic title " DCC or not", the answer really depends on what do you want from DCC - lights, sounds, a new way of operating the layout, a change from DC, etc. Considerations about locos that can be decoded or those that cannot not & the cost are some questions to be asked.
If possible get involved with a club or group or another modeller that has DCC & try it & think how you will then use it on your layout. If you are in a group that has DCC & you operate reguklarly on the layout, it may pay for you to use similar equipment becuase then the cost of hand controllers is reduced if the group all uses the same brand.
DCC systems are like motor cars - too many versions & it make decisions hard - which is the best car/DCC is really upto you & your needs - not what other people push.

Ron
 
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