30 year old Bachmann now on DCC

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by jeffrey-wimberl, Jan 20, 2007.

  1. jeffrey-wimberl

    jeffrey-wimberl Active Member

    I've got my antique Bachmann GP40 converted to DCC and running like a dream. I didn't know if I'd be able to, being that it's what I call an 'old school' locomotive, with the motor grounded directly to the frame. It was easier than I thought it would be. The piece that the motor grounded to was just a thin metal tab that stuck up from the frame. All I had to do was break it off. From there it was a simple matter of just soldering a ground wire to the motor and soldering the other end to the decoder. From there, everything else was a snap. After about 20 minutes, I had the decoder wired. I put the locomotive on the programming track, sent a command to it and it responded. From there, it was to the main line, where it performed flawlessy. Before the conversion, it had no crawl capability and ran like a scalded ape. Now it'll crawl with the best of them and runs at a believable speed. My oldest locomotive (30 years old) is now a DCC runner. I also swapped out the old GP40 shell for a GP40-2P shell that I had laying around, just to update it a bit. Maybe some day, I'll get around to putting a can motor in it and get rid of the old open frame motor that's in it now. But as long as it works, it'll stay in there.
  2. Gil Finn

    Gil Finn Active Member

    I have no understanding of DCC. I will have to go to club meetings and ask questions.

    I would like to have my engines with sound and remore operation.

    I have 2 engines that are DCC ready what ever that means.
  3. "DCC ready" means that you don't have to install anything into the locomotives yourself, they already have a decoder installed.

    I believe that the "ready" part means that the locomotives will run on either DC or DCC layouts, but I'm not sure.

    All you have to do to make them run as DCC is wire your layout according to DCC lines instead of DC lines.
  4. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    Congrats. It's always nice when you do something your unsure about, and it turns out better than you thought.:D

  5. jeffrey-wimberl

    jeffrey-wimberl Active Member

    DCC ready means that the locomotive has everything in place to accept a decoder, when you get ready to put one in. Most have a dummy plug where the plug for the decoder goes in. Some others have a board you must remove or modify to put the decoder in, and some locomotives that are labeled DCC ready are anything but that!

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