Author Topic: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....  (Read 1421 times)

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eja

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LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« on: March 20, 2008, 05:14:51 PM »
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Any recommendations/suggestions/tutorials regarding installing a decoder in a Lifelike SW8 would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance....

ed

wm3798

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Re: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2008, 05:23:31 PM »
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I've done 3 so far, one more to do.  The new DZ125 works well.  It's small enough that you don't have to sacrifice the cab weight.
It is pretty tricky to keep the contacts all working though...  I was also able to work in a light for the cab side...


Lee
Rockin' It Old School

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

Erik W

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My D&RGW layout  . . . and other stuff
http://s178.photobucket.com/albums/w243/drgw55/

ñiao

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Re: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2008, 05:41:03 AM »
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Lee, mind to share how got the light in there?
Looks like a dream come true....

wm3798

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Re: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2008, 08:41:33 AM »
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I'd tell you, but then I'd have to kill you. ;D

Not only is there a light in there, the cab weight is in there, too.  Basically, I milled a channel in the top of the cab weight to hold a 14v grain of rice bulb... I think I pulled it from a Model Power street light.  The channel is also cut into the long hood side of the weight so the wires come down in the middle of the windshield. 
The headlight casting on the back has clear lenses in it, but there's no opening in the cab wall to let light in, so I carefully drilled a hole to allow the light to pass into the casting.  I used some black acrylic paint to seal up the light leaks around the base of the casting from the outside.
After that, it's just a matter of making some rather delicate solder joints and concealing the wires without them interfering with the way the shell nests over the drive.  I milled about 3/32" off the top of the drive below the cab to provide for the chip.
The bad news is that something shifted somewhere, and before I delivered the switcher back to Eric, the light stopped working.  The assembly is so tight, I didn't want to go back in because I finally got it running smoothly, which to me trumps "special effects".

I've got to re-do Bob's Reading switcher, and do his PRR one.  I'll take some pictures along the way.   Oh well, so much for trade secrets!
Lee
Rockin' It Old School

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

ñiao

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Re: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2008, 05:27:55 AM »
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Thank you very much for sharing your secret.

When you come over to shoot me, bring your wife ... she might enjoy a nice vacation in the western Pacific (beer's on me then) ;)

eja

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Re: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2008, 11:34:34 AM »
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Thanks for the comments so far ... looks lke I need a degree in micro machining if I am going to do this project. 

Anyone else with suggestions, pictures, etc please chime in ... I haven't given up quite yet.

wm3798

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Re: LL SW-8 Decoder Help ....
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2008, 07:48:25 AM »
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I may get Bob's under the knife this weekend...  I'll take pictures.
Lee
Rockin' It Old School

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net