Author Topic: ESU LokSound Select Micro Install in Kato N-Scale E8A -- with marker lights!  (Read 2118 times)

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RBrodzinsky

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I just completed an install ESU decoders into a Kato N-scale E8 A-B-A consist; LokSound Select Micros in the A unit, and a LokPilot v4.0 Micro into the B. The consist is ATSF #84, #84B and #86. Here's a short video showing off the lighting and sound (if you don't want to read through the rest)


There isn't anything really remarkable about this install, except for the small modification I did to the shells of the A units. In looking at older photos of these units, I realized that the small plastic bumps one sees on the shells are really marker lights (maybe some of you knew this, but I didn't). For example

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I also like this photo (from the mid 50's) since it shows that the E8As didn't always have the plethora of grab irons and other details added (so I've declared that my units are also mid-50's).  I did add the nose door grab irons, wipers and side mirrors. (I really wish I could do a clean install of cut levers, but my attempts always end in disaster)

This photo shows my two A unit shells, with the marker holes for #86 drilled. I first used a #80 bit, to try to get the cleanest hole I could through the nub. Then I expanded it with a #73 (about 4 scale inches).

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From the interior of the shell, I widen the hole just a bit (and not all the way through), to allow an 0402 LED to sit into it. To do this I use a #61 bit.

To access all of this, one must, of course, remove the cab detail insert. This just pops off, after the coupler is removed.

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Here are the red 0402 LEDs bonded in place (I used Bondic - a UV cure adhesive, for quick setting).

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Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

RBrodzinsky

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After the LEDs are installed, I use a bit more Bondic to provide strain relief for the magnet wires, and then paint with flat black craft acrylic as a light block

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The upper housing gets two 0402 LEDs, one red and one warm white, for the bi-color Gyralights
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And here we see the two chassis with decoders, speakers (Soberton 1208, with Keystone Details enclosure) and 3 150uF 20V Ta caps for keep alive. My small light board, with resistors can be seen.

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All that is left is connecting the shell and lighting wires to the board.

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Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

RBrodzinsky

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The red marker lights

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the headlamp

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White Gyralight
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Red Gyralight
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Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

RBrodzinsky

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The consist got out of the shops, and headed to the JACALAR.  I was able to catch up with it as it was heading through the underground station

Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

jdcolombo

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Very impressive, Rick.  God, I’m glad I don’t have any of these, or else I’d have to try to copy your work!

John C.

RBrodzinsky

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LOL— that is how I feel when seeing your fleet.
Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
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peteski

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Nice install Rick!
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Ike the BN Freak

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Makes me almost want to do these with my 2 F-7s I'll be modding to F-9s for BN-1 & 2. Just not sure how much room I'll have inside for all the lighting and speakers

RBrodzinsky

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I’ve done basically the same install in F3/7s https://www.therailwire.net/forum/index.php?topic=41190.0
I included the red and white Mars lights, but not the markers. There is plenty of room for them, though.
Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

AKNscale

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Looks like a good install, I have 4 E9s to do and this now gives me motivation! Did the decoder fit under the shell without milling?

RBrodzinsky

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I milled out the back for the speaker. The decoder JUST fits. You need to nestle it down over the drive shaft and fly wheel — in fact I have to reseat one of the A units just a bit. The shell is popping off.

You can see I created a dummy board to protect the motor and give me a platform for my lighting connections, out of 0.02” styrene. All I need to do is trim the back a bit, to allow that decoder to settle down more. Mount with the flat side of the decoder facing upwards, and the “tall” components in the well above the shaft. Plenty of room, there.
Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

AKNscale

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Sweet, thank you for the tips.

woodone

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I milled out the back for the speaker. The decoder JUST fits. You need to nestle it down over the drive shaft and fly wheel — in fact I have to reseat one of the A units just a bit. The shell is popping off.

You can see I created a dummy board to protect the motor and give me a platform for my lighting connections, out of 0.02” styrene. All I need to do is trim the back a bit, to allow that decoder to settle down more. Mount with the flat side of the decoder facing upwards, and the “tall” components in the well above the shaft. Plenty of room, there.
Rick, if you turn the board over you can get that tall cap to set into the depression just to the rear of the flywheel if I remember right?

RBrodzinsky

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Hmm, never tried it that way.   Of course, all the wires are cut now, will see on next install. 
Rick Brodzinsky
Chief Engineer - JACALAR Railroad
Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

Lemosteam

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WOW!  Those marker lights are fantasmic!  You could fit an 0201 in there without drilling...  :trollface: :trollface: :trollface:

And thank you (and John) for always mentioning the speaker enclosures!  I am so glad they work for you and John.