Jump to content
gavino200

Kato Type 500 Shinkansen Front Cab Function decoder install

Recommended Posts

gavino200

I did this install previously using the Kato FL12. I had to revise it as the wiring rubbed against one of the metal strips causing derailment issues. I repeated the install again using the FL12 but with a different wiring path. No derailment issues but, one cab had a short. So this was my third attempt. I used a wired Digitrax function decoder which was infinitely easier to work with than the Kato FL12. I've gotten to know this model quite well at this stage and was able to find a nice path for the wires that wasn't apparent the first or second times. It's working with no mechanical or electrical problems. Third time's the charm.

 

This image shows the route. I used a tiny amount of adhesive putty to hold the decoder, wires, and copper strips in place. It's very effective and easy to undo with no mess. Three small holes are needed. Two to get the wires from the light board, and one to pass the wires down below to the decoder. 

 

The wires pass through the center of the shell and then through a small redundancy in the hole in the metal weight. The hole in the central weight is already there and ideal for passing these wires. Probably what Kato had in mind for the conversion. 

 

VpyGm3C.jpg?1

 

Floor in place.

 

kZBYVIY.jpg?1

 

 

Soldered and ready for reassembly. The light board has to be modified, by removing the resister, and then using an exacto knife to remove any tracing connecting the two LED circuits. The two negative legs of the LEDs are on the right receiving the white wire (to the white LED) and the yellow wire (to the red LED). I made a small bridge between the two positive LED terminals and attached the blue wire. The yellow and white wires each have a 1000 Ohm SMD resistor.

 

VNsGWBI.jpg?1

 

 

 

Edited by gavino200
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200

Oops. I thought I could reprogram the TF4 to run directional lighting. I can't. It only works with function keys. Guess I'll get a chance to do this a fourth time.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag
4 minutes ago, gavino200 said:

Oops. I thought I could reprogram the TF4 to run directional lighting. I can't. It only works with function keys. Guess I'll get a chance to do this a fourth time.

 

There is no CV on the TF4 that is direction sensitive?

 

What does this mean?  "Standard On/Off Function operation available on green & violet leads"  (from the TF4 description)

 

Maybe this can help?   http://www.digitrax.com/tsd/KB942/cv61-non-directional-headlights-transponding-split/

 

The more I think about it the more I will buy NGDCC and FL12 decoders for directional lighting and use all my sinple function decoders for interior lighting (simple on and off).

Edited by chadbag

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
4 minutes ago, chadbag said:

 

There is no CV on the TF4 that is direction sensitive?

 

The more I think about it the more I will buy NGDCC and FL12 decoders for directional lighting and use all my sinple function decoders for interior lighting (simple on and off).

 

The FL12 is very awkward to deal with when not being used as a drop in for DCC friendly trains. Wires coming off in all directions. Either a high short risk or a mess of liquid tape and wires. 

I'm going to try a TCS FL4 based on Captain Oblivious stickies thread. It looks like a good balance of price and function.

 

I just assumed that the Digitrax function decoders would work the same way as a Kato FL12 as the FL12 is made by Digitrax.

 

 

Edited by gavino200

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag

The FL12 is a bi-polar and the TF4 is not.   However, since you flipped the LED etc (did all the non-bipolar changes to the LED system) you should be able to program it to turn the right things on for the right direction ane make it work.

 

Is the TCS one a bi-polar decoder?

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
1 minute ago, chadbag said:

The FL12 is a bi-polar and the TF4 is not.   However, since you flipped the LED etc (did all the non-bipolar changes to the LED system) you should be able to program it to turn the right things on for the right direction ane make it work.

 

Is the TCS one a bi-polar decoder?

 

You mean program the TF4? No, it can't be done. 

I don't know if the FL12 is bipolar. I had it working with the adjusted board before without any software/CV adjustments. Also, the stickied thread lists it as non-bipolar.

A non-bipolar is what I need. The sticky has the TCS FL4 as non-bipolar. Unfortunately MB Klein only has it as a 4-pack.

 

BTW are you putting a decoder in every passenger car for interior light control? That's going to be a lot of work.

 

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200

This is the decoder. I think I'll hold off buying until I can tell for sure if it'll work.

 

http://tcsdcc.com/1004

 

Oddly, the Digitrax tech support said they didn't have anything that would work. Seems odd. I asked if I could use a motor decoder but they said it wouldn't work without a "load" for the motor wires. I wonder if a resistor would work as a "load".

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag

I believe the FL12 is bi-polar, which is why it works with the DC light boards.  If it was not bi-polar, you would need to do the surgery to the light board to flip the reverse light around etc.

 

Yes, I will (eventually) put a decoder in every wagon that has interior lighting.  That is obviously a long-term goal and not something I am worrying about now.

 

I have enough FR11 I bought last year in Japan to do one or two trains worth and I have KATO lighting sets for a train or two worth and also a train worth of Tomix interior light boards and I also have a bunch of D&H 4 function decoders that I can put one per train for interior lihghting instead that uses an EM13 so that I still get Railcom transponding on that train.  I also have a few random 2 function decoders I can use on interior lighting someday.  Interior lighting is a long term goal for me.

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag

I don't know off hand if the D&H FH05 function decoder would work the way you want it to (directionally dependent on/off) but here is the manual:  https://doehler-haass.de/cms/media/pdf/DH05C_DH10C_DH16A_en.pdf

 

I mention this because they are a lot cheaper than the TCS ones based on the TCS link you gave (I suspect the TCS ones can be got discounted elsewhere).

 

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
2 minutes ago, chadbag said:

I believe the FL12 is bi-polar, which is why it works with the DC light boards.  If it was not bi-polar, you would need to do the surgery to the light board to flip the reverse light around etc.

 

 

 

Interesting. Perhaps when the FL12 is installed in DCC friendly trains only one pair of pads is in contact. You turn the decoder around for the opposite cab.

 

When you use it with a doctored light board you wire all four pads - two for each LED. Perhaps both circuits are bipolar, and only lighting in one direction because of the LED polarity. 

 

Other than that, I have no clue or guess. I have zero electronic expertise. 

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
2 minutes ago, chadbag said:

I don't know off hand if the D&H FH05 function decoder would work the way you want it to (directionally dependent on/off) but here is the manual:  https://doehler-haass.de/cms/media/pdf/DH05C_DH10C_DH16A_en.pdf

 

I mention this because they are a lot cheaper than the TCS ones based on the TCS link you gave (I suspect the TCS ones can be got discounted elsewhere).

 

 

Interesting. The TCS FL4 is $21.55. How much for the D&H?

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
2 minutes ago, gavino200 said:

Perhaps when the FL12 is installed in DCC friendly trains only one pair of pads is in contact. You turn the decoder around for the opposite cab.

 

When you use it with a doctored light board you wire all four pads - two for each LED. Perhaps both circuits are bipolar, and only lighting in one direction because of the LED polarity. 

 

Other than that, I have no clue or guess. I have zero electronic expertise. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag
2 minutes ago, gavino200 said:

 

Interesting. The TCS FL4 is $21.55. How much for the D&H?

 

At Lippe they are currently Euro 15,88 for the version with wires attached.   That is about $18.26 plus shipping.  Obviously you would want to get a lot of stuff at once or go in with someone if getting a lot of them to lower the per-unit shipping cost. 

 

2 minutes ago, gavino200 said:

Perhaps when the FL12 is installed in DCC friendly trains only one pair of pads is in contact. You turn the decoder around for the opposite cab.

 

When you use it with a doctored light board you wire all four pads - two for each LED. Perhaps both circuits are bipolar, and only lighting in one direction because of the LED polarity. 

 

Other than that, I have no clue or guess. I have zero electronic expertise. 

 

Even if it just in one end, the fact that it turns on the lights correctly for the direction without splitting out the light wiring tells me they are bi-polar.  (Also I think I read that they are).  Otherwise they would not work the way they do.

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
1 minute ago, chadbag said:

 

Even if it just in one end, the fact that it turns on the lights correctly for the direction without splitting out the light wiring tells me they are bi-polar.  (Also I think I read that they are).  Otherwise they would not work the way they do.

 

I've never tinkered with a DCC friendly model as there's generally no need. But what you say makes sense to me. 

 

Price wise I'm not going to sweat two bucks.

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200

I redid this today using  the exact same method and a TCS FL4 decoder. It took a while to work out how to reprogram the decoder for directional lighting, but it works well now. 

 

Interestingly the lights on this end are much brighter now than on the other end which I did with a Kato FL12 decoder. I wonder if I had included a resistor on the circuit where non was needed. I may go back and work on the other cab at some stage. Right now it's far from being my biggest fish to fry.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag
On 1/21/2019 at 4:22 PM, chadbag said:

 

 

Even if it just in one end, the fact that it turns on the lights correctly for the direction without splitting out the light wiring tells me they are bi-polar.  (Also I think I read that they are).  Otherwise they would not work the way they do.

 

FL-12 is not bipolar

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200

I think the Kitty 500 will be up next. This is my plan.

 

LaiDCC motor decoders as Bipolar function decoders for each cab.

Whatever smallish motor decoder I have find in my decoder box for the motor car

I'll paint the decoders to match the interior so they aren't so obvious.

Dani method without capacitors for the interior lights.

Edited by gavino200
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag
58 minutes ago, gavino200 said:

I think the Kitty 500 will be up next. This is my plan.

 

LaiDCC motor decoders as Bipolar function decoders for each cab.

Whatever smallish motor decoder I have find in my decoder box for the motor car

I'll paint the decoders to match the interior so they aren't so obvious.

Dani method without capacitors for the interior lights.

 

You should be able to position the decoders in the cabs so that they are not visible.  At least I was able to.

 

Why aren't you putting caps on the interior lights?

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
2 minutes ago, chadbag said:

 

You should be able to position the decoders in the cabs so that they are not visible.  At least I was able to.

 

Motor car too?

 

2 minutes ago, chadbag said:

 

Why aren't you putting caps on the interior lights?

 

 Not necessary as it has whole train pickup. Also, the method is a PITA until I get my hands on smaller caps.

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag
1 minute ago, gavino200 said:

 

Motor car too?

 

Yeah the motor car has dead space at one end IIRC and I kept the decoder tight to the end without a lot of slack.

 

1 minute ago, gavino200 said:

 

 

 Not necessary as it has whole train pickup. Also, the method is a PITA until I get my hands on smaller caps.

 

Not sure whole train pickup is the savior.  I noticed when driving my kitty train around some flicker in the cab lights (I don't have any lights installed yet).

 

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
1 minute ago, chadbag said:

 

Not sure whole train pickup is the savior.  I noticed when driving my kitty train around some flicker in the cab lights (I don't have any lights installed yet).

 

 

Interesting. This is my first one. I assumed it was solid as I've heard a lot of people rave about it.

Share this post


Link to post
chadbag
3 minutes ago, gavino200 said:

 

Interesting. This is my first one. I assumed it was solid as I've heard a lot of people rave about it.

 

Now, I did not trace what was causing it so YMMV.  It should be easy enough to add caps if you want them.

Share this post


Link to post
gavino200
1 minute ago, chadbag said:

 

Now, I did not trace what was causing it so YMMV.  It should be easy enough to add caps if you want them.

 

I have a much easier method in mind for the caps. But first I need to get smaller 100uF caps. Basically I'm going to connect the rectifier/resistor to the end solder pad and use the other end and middle solder pads for caps. That would be a whole lot quicker.

 

If the full train pickup isn't fully reliable, I may wait on the Kitty. Thanks for the tip.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×