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Hornby Flying Scotsman (Railroad R3086) Full-Monty Fitting Guide

This guide will show how to install DCC sound, smoke and full lighting in a Hornby Flying Scotsman R3086 Railroad model. We shall use a Zimo MX648 decoder, sugar-cube speaker, Seuthe smoke generator and a variety of YouChoos lighting products. Normally I would suggest using the larger Zimo MX645 decoder for this model, but as we plan to install a smoke generator, we will be too short on space to get it all in, so we've gone with the small MX648.

So, here's the model - Hornby's entry-level Flying Scotsman. The current Railroad FS does not have tender pickups, but instead employs a large fly-wheel at the back of the motor to help with motion. This makes the install of lighting a little trickier than the old R2875 model, as we need to be particualrly careful not to let any of the wiring interfer with the fly-wheel.

The body is removed by undoing a single screw at the front of the chassis. Our first job is to create as much space as possible for all the equipment, and this means removing the 8pin DCC socket and milling down the screw mounts, as this is where we will place the sugar-cube speaker.

The MX648 is attached to the block using a double-sided sticky pad. Orange and grey go directly to the motor terminals. Red and black go to the pickups. A 12mm high Zimo sugar-cube speaker is placed in the recess where the DCC socket once was, and the decoder's purple wires are soldered to the speaker terminals.

We'll now prepare the buffer beam for YouChoos loco lamps. The plan is to use 2 yellow lamps on the outer-edges (express passenger format) and 1 red lamp in the centre for reverse motion. We drill holes in the appropriate positions on the buffer beam, which can be a little oversized, as the lamps will cover the holes anyway. Underneath, we prepare holes for the centre lamp's wires to go, as we will route these wires along the outside, to avoid them interfering with the chassis later on.

While we have the drill handy, we'll also make holes for the firebox glow light, cab light and a connector which will take wires to the tender for tender lamps and coach lighting.

We'll use a Seuthe #22 smoke generator, with an extra layer of heat-shrink added, because the Seuthe on its own is too small for the chimney aperture. With the extra heat-shrink, it is slightly too big to fit down the chimney, so we file out the aperture so it is just snug to slide the jacketted Seuthe unit in.

Time to add a cab light, which is a flat SMD super-bright white LED, super-glued in place:

Then the firebox glow light, which is another SMD, this time a super-bright orange LED. We've added the firebox LED's resistor directly to the LED, as this makes for a neater installation. Before glueing in the LED, we have used the Dremel to grind a slight recess for it, so that it sits further back, and removes the risk of it interferring with the motor's fly-wheel.

The Seuthe goes in, fixed in place with some high-temperature-rated 2-part epoxy. The epoxy is applied around the join between the smoke generator and the body, but also a trickle right down the barrel over the wire-ends. This will ensure that the unit does not sag over time, which is particularly important as we added the extra layer of heat-shrink. Don't cover the Seuthe though - it needs to breath and dissipate heat!

The YouChoos lamps go in, and we route the wiring along the outside underneath back into the body. There are some convenient slots where the wires can trail into! Super-glue the wires into place. This model isn't too fussy about the wires, but sometimes you may need to route a shallow trench to sit the wires in. Likewise, with other models you need to be especially careful not to let glue go onto sprung buffers, but this model only has fixed buffers, so no worries!

Next, neaten the wires, add resistors to the positive wires of all LEDs, and prepare for connection to the decoder. It is always worth testing all lighting and smoke using a simple 12v DC power supply before connecting the decoder. When you're happy, join up the decoder. I won't go into details here about the wiring colours, but suffice it to say that we've used all 6 of the MX648's function outputs for directional lamps, firebox glow, cab light, smoke generator and coach lighting control! Neat as you can, using thin double-sided tape and electrical tape to tidy everything up.

We haven't shown the work on the tender here, but here is the finished article:


Please note that these guides are provided as useful resources for you, as-is. YouChoos cannot be held responsible for errors in the information, or for any damage caused to your models or equipment if you choose to follow any of the steps detailed here.

A bit of YouChoos poster art for your enjoyment!