Ideas with my new loco

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by Kevinkrey, Dec 29, 2007.

  1. Kevinkrey

    Kevinkrey Member

    Today at a train show I bought an SD-9, I have always wanted one in missabe but those are very hard to find and when you do find one, very expensive. So when I found a table with a half dozen (not Missabe) less then $30 I jumped on them. Realizing I could only afford one, I settled on a BN with with a flashing beacon on top.

    My plans are to paint it into DMIR colors and give it a new low nose. I also want to convert to DCC and want to know how to do that. I have only done locos that have DCC quick plugs.

    It made a burning smell when I ran it. But that was a quick a one lap trip around my DCC layout (I can run one DC loco, but I dont, only this test)and that is probably why.

    Just wanted to show y'all my new loco and ask about DCC for it. Here are some pics.

    Attached Files:

  2. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    Kevin, paint lots of units in that DMIR scheme! I just read an article in the latest issue of TRAINS about how the numbers of proto units in those colors are dwindling fast! You can keep it alive on your layout.
  3. Kevinkrey

    Kevinkrey Member

    INDEED I WILL. THE MISSABE WILL ALWAYS LIVE IN HO! The Canadian National never existed to me. Danm canuck railroad.
    The Missabe might be changing colors and locos but the history of it will always be there. The CN cant take the memories or our models away!
  4. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Kevin, that is an Athearn blue box, probably the easiest locomotives to install dcc on ever. Unsolder the wires from the top clip on the motor. You need to isolate the motor from the frame. If you are going to install an standard dcc decoder without sound, get a t-1 decoder (about $20.00, I think $15.00 for 5 or more at Tony's Trains if I remember correctly). The T-1 comes with complete instruction, a harness with plug and a decoder that plugs into the harness. After you have unsoldered the wires from the top of the motor, remove the motor from the frame. While holding the motor together with one hand, remove the top and bottom clips that hold the end s on being careful not to loose the brushes and springs. Put the top brush and spring in place, and then put the bottom clip on the top. The two little tangs that once made the ground connection to the frame are now on top. Now turn the motor over and install the other brush and spring and put the clip you removed from the top on the bottom.Put a thin bead of silicone or cut a piece of electrical tape to fit between the mounting holes on the chassis where the tabs on the bottom clip used to make the ground connection. Solder the wires that you removed from the top of the motor to the positive power wire for the decoder according to the instructions.

    Now looking at your last picture, the positive wires are coming off the side of the truck towards the bottom of the picture. Solder 2 wires from the top side of the truck to the wire in the harness that is for the negative connection. The reason for swapping the 2 motor clips is to insulate the motor from the frame, solder the wire for the negative side of the motor from the decoder to the bottom motor clip and solder the wire for the positive of the motor to the top clip. Now just reinstall the motor mount and install the moter in the frame hooking up the drive shafts again, and you are ready to go. You can use the "little plastic straws" you get for stirring coffee to run your wires through to keep them out of the works and from rubbing on the flywheels.
  5. Kevinkrey

    Kevinkrey Member

    Thanks Russ, but I read that whole thing and I do not understand a bit.:confused: I run the trains, not fix them. I am learning and this will teach me a lot more. I will buy a decoder one of these days, and if you dont mind, possibly go through it one step at a time with me. I can post pics as I go, but I became confused reading your post. only decoders Ive installed only involve plugging them in. So no, the SD-9 is not the easiest loco to install a decoder on.:p
  6. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Kevin: the basic principle is that the decoder has 2 wires that connect to the track and 2 that connect to the motor. These 2 pairs must mot make contact. The Athearn unit is made so that one side of the DC circuit consists of the trucks, chassis and motor frame. The other side is those wires. The trick is to break the one side of the circuit by insulating the motor from the chassis.
    You'll find all sorts of threads here on doing just that.
  7. Kevinkrey

    Kevinkrey Member

    Do any of you know if the cab comes off of the rest of the body. I want to reconstruct the nose into a DMIR SD-M.​
  8. rogerw

    rogerw Active Member

    Kevin here is another page to help. go to the part on the page that says none of the above about 3/4 down the page.
    Decoder Install Primer
  9. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    I have an old athearn gp-9, and the cab comes off. I cut down the nose on one. The nose/windshield arrangement are gonna have to be a custom job to get everything to look right, because the athearn BB bodies are slightly wider than scale width. In other words, splicing a nose off another shell with a scale width hood wouldn't look right.

  10. Kevinkrey

    Kevinkrey Member

    I did figure out the cab problem, it came off easily. But cuttig down the nose, might be tricky. Correct me if there is a better way, but I would cut it down to height, then cut of the top part of the hood and glue it down to the lowered nose.

  11. Kevinkrey

    Kevinkrey Member

    Well, there is now a half butted maroon paint job on it, not bad for my first paint job. But it will still get a GOOD weathering, and some decals, I never gave it a numberboard becasue I need it finished by a certain date, but it may get one later, although it doesnt look as out of the ordinary as I thought it would. ​

    Attached Files:

  12. Get the Digitrax DH123AT. It's a decoder made specifically as an easy attachment for those older Athearns.

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