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Dapol N Gauge Class 52 with MX660 and Stay-Alive

Example 1: Dapol N Gauge Class 52 diesel with MX660 sound decoder and stay-alive - keep original motor

Kit: MX660; SugarCurve7; LifeLink with 470uF Tall Tantalum; Cab lights; Crew

Here is a different approach to ditting DCC Sound to Dapol's marvellous Class 52 Western in N gauge, using Zimo's MX660 'PCB' sound decoder, which is very thin, and provides low-level lighting outputs so there is no need to add extra resistors to protect the model's LEDs, and this option also gives us the possibility to add a little stay-alive.

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Pop the body off, and mark the direction, then remove all the wiring, as none of this will be required. We then step through disassembly, because we'll need to grind the chassis in order to get the MX660 sitting along the top.

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Measure up where the MX660 will be, which is basically the entire length between the plastic insultors.

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Mill as far as you dare, so that there is still structure.

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Regrease and reassemble. Note we removed the suppression capacitor across the motor, and added our own orange and grey wires to the motor terminals.

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The decoder sits on a bed of insulation tape, and some thin double-sided sticky tape.

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Begin the wiring up process by adding pickup wires (red and black).

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Next the motor wires (orange and grey)

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Now the SugarCurve7 speaker, which also sits on a bed of insulation tape and double-sided tape. Good to check that motion and sound work correctly at this point too.

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Now onto the lighting. We removed the cabs carefully (watch those lighting ducts that go into the holes as they are incredibly fragile!). We added cab lights, but also put new fresh wires on the factory lighting board (blue for common positive, white for the white LEDs and yellow for the RED tail lights).

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The LifeLink is soldered up to the 470uF Tall Tantalum with a couple of old resistor legs - as neat as possible because height is a premium here!

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Check fitting, insulate from the body, and add the stay-alive wires to the decoder.

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Now solder all the lighting wires to the approach points around the MX660. Our standard approach is:

  • F0Fwd - front whites
  • F0Rev - rear whites
  • FA1 - front reds
  • FA2 - front cab
  • FA3 - rear reds
  • FA4 - rear cab

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Carefully tuck and tape all the wires into the ducts, and the body just about goes back on flush! Sounds great, runs a treat!

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Example 2: Replacement motor and more stay-alive

Kit: Tramfabriek motor; MX660; SugarCurve7; LifeLink + 2x 470uF Tall Tantalums

This one we'll do similar, but replace the Dapol motor with a smaller Tramfabriek motor, which will allow us to grind a little more off the top, so a more comfortable fit for the MX660. We'll also mill down a bit more at the non-speaker end in order to put a pair of Tantalums.

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Disclaimer

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.

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