Spectrum K4 headlamp?

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by thedowneaster, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. thedowneaster

    thedowneaster Brakeman

    Hi, I just bought a new K4 pacific (DCC ready) but the headlamp does not seem to work.
    Is there a switch or plug somewhere?

  2. diburning

    diburning Member

    check the wiring. If the wiring looks ok, then the bulb is probably bad.
  3. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    I had a similar problem with an F3 (FSM) I purchased....It was DCC ready as well, but the lights didn't work until I put a decoder in it....
  4. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

    I'll as my buddy to check his, but I believe the new Spectrum units come with an LED built into the headlight casting.

    The LED leads will extend into the front of the smokebox. If you can gently pull the smokebox face off, you'll see the leads that run back to the connectors in the tender - it's possible one of these isn't attached to the LED leads.

    If you haven't got the 4-pin connector plugged in properly, you won't get the headlight either - but then you probably won't have motor function either.
  5. thedowneaster

    thedowneaster Brakeman

    Thanks guys,
    Still no luck messing around with the plugs. I'll have to pop it apart. I can't imagine the lamp would be dead as it is an LED. Hopefully I will not damage anything...steam is so much more delicate to work with!
  6. thedowneaster

    thedowneaster Brakeman

    Problem Discovered!

    So it turns out...
    The loco has a working LED. Unfortunately the LED is not bright enough (or intense) to illuminate the solid clear plastic inside the headlamp. Not even when the room lights are out! The LED is a crappy yellow color so it must GO anyways!

    I will be using a 1.5v GOR lamp that will solder right to the same leads as the LED.

    So overall...this is a very nice loco with a very disappointing headlamp.
  7. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

    That doesn't sound right. I've done several Spectrum locos with the LED's in the headlamp. They are yellow, but they are bright enough to be seen in daylight, even through the lens.

    I'd say either yours isn't getting enough juice or it hasn't been mounted properly.
  8. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    Don't forget B-man's warranty...as well as returning to your LHS (if it came from there)
  9. thedowneaster

    thedowneaster Brakeman

    I think the LED is getting the proper voltage, it provides as much light as my 44 Tonner.

    The problem is getting the light from the LED to the headlamp.
    The fixture has a clear plastic tab that makes an "S" to transmit the light out of the smokebox and up into the headlamp mounted on top of the smokebox. (prewar Pennsy-style)

    The LED does not even touch the clear tab... To do this effectively I think you would need to ar least surround the LED with the plastic tab.

    Working or not working....the yellow LED will be replaced with an incandescent lamp for better color properties.

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