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Kato "DCC Friendly" models

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Ken Ford

From what I'm reading it sounds like Kato changed the DE10 a few years ago to allow the use of drop-in decoders - is this correct? That the process KenS had to follow in 2010 is now obsolete?

 

http://www.jnsforum.com/community/topic/3417-installing-digitrax-dn163k1d-in-kato-de10/?hl=de10

 

(Edit) Apparently there's a newer Digitrax decoder that is a drop-in? DN163K4a:

 

http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10259401

 

I linked HS because they show that it applies to the DE10.

Edited by Ken Ford

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Ochanomizu

Hello Mr Ken Ford,

 

So sorry the design of Kato's DE10 has not changed.  However, the same light board was used in the more recent Glacier Express, a popular model internationally.  I believe Digitrax released the DN163K4a in 2013, primarily for the Glacier Express.  The fact that it fits a number of other Kato locomotives is a boon.

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Ken Ford

Hello Mr Ken Ford,

 

So sorry the design of Kato's DE10 has not changed.  However, the same light board was used in the more recent Glacier Express, a popular model internationally.  I believe Digitrax released the DN163K4a in 2013, primarily for the Glacier Express.  The fact that it fits a number of other Kato locomotives is a boon.

Thank you for the confirmation!

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Guest keio6000

Hi Guys,

 

Just got my first DCC controller - ECOS 50200.  Also bought some decoders from Nariichi san and, because he did not have some in stock at the moment, elsewhere too.

 

Here is my question: I was going to begin my experiments on my Kato Ginza line 01 set and Marunouhi line 02 sets.  Both have the "DCC->" symbol in the Kato catalog.

The light board decoders went in fine without issue.   I haven't figured out what the address on these is (and the ECOS 50200 doesnt seem to autodetect them), but I am sure i can figure this out.

The bigger question is the EM13 decoder.  It doesn't seem to actually fit into the motor cars.  It comes close, but not quite.

 

Could it be that the "DCC->" sigh means end cars only?  if so, this is quite misleading.  Alternately, maybe i am just putting it in wrong... 

 

any advice much appreciated.  I explicitly didn't move these two sets to the place where i keep most of my collection since I thought for sure that I'd be able to get them going before I move on to more complex installs.  I happened to haev another loco that i bought with DCC already installed frmo ebay and that one works fine, so the basic system works.

 

Thanks!
 

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kvp

The address for the light decoders should be 3, but since they don't have a load (motor or bulbs) they can't signal back. You have to program them blind. The motor decoder should fit, but after you insert it, you must push it into it's place, by sliding it towards the car's end. Also check the polarity, so you insert it good side up, otherwise you could burn it out.

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Martijn Meerts

New decoders are always set to address 3, doesn't matter if they're motor decoders or light decoders, and as far as I know, pretty much every brand sets the address to 3 by default. You can still program them just fine, you just won't get feedback. If you want cab car decoders that do give you feedback, try looking for ones that feature Railcom, the ECoS supports that.. Disadvantage is that you'll have to hardwire the decoders in, since Kato supports transponding rather than Railcom.

 

Also, not all DCC friendly Kato trains are actually DCC friendly. Especially the early models after they started the DCC friendly thing are a bit hit and miss. I have their 151 series set, and it's impossible to get the cab car decoders to work in that thing. The same cab car decoders installed just fine in the E5 and E6 though, but I did have to apply quite a bit of force to get them in.

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Guest keio6000

Well gents, I'm completely confused.  Any help with the attached images apprecaited.

 

image 1 shows the basic problems:

1. the decoder has "wings" on the side that dont seem to fit width-wise into the chassis.  I could file them off, but i dont think pushing this in will do anything but break the decoder.

2. i understand that i have this the correct way.  however, in my experiments the part that's supposed to contact the motor part has become deformed.  maybe i need to fix this piece or buy a new one. at ths point that would be ok - i just want to get this 'plug in' decoder in!

3. if the decoder went in, it would be too long for the piece that covers the motor unit.

4. the copper strip that runs the length of the car does not seem to be 'bent' properly to support the dcc chip - at least where I'm puttnig it.

 

so, either this just isn't plug-in dcc friendly or i'm doing something very very wrong (or both!)

 

 

 

 

02dcc_1.jpg

02dcc_2.jpg

02dcc_3.jpg

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Martijn Meerts

Hmm.. It does look a bit off really.. But the decoder definitely needs to go in further. Those brass clips that you think are deformed are definitely deformed. They should be directly below the little brass round bit (which holds the motor brushes), and act like sort of springs to keep optimal contact to the brass strips.

 

It's a bit hard to explain, and since I'm at work I can't really take any pictures of a train where the clips aren't deformed, but maybe someone else has a picture somewhere.

 

Either way, the decoder should definitely fit in this train.

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Guest keio6000

HI martin,

thanks for the feedback.  ignoring the issue of the clips for a moment, as far as i can tell there is simply nowhere for the decoder to go further in.  it cannot slide 'under' the flywheel weight. there just isnt enough room.  maybe they intend us to remove one flywheel weight.  the best position that i can figure out means that the decoder is slightly bent and it is impossible to re-mount the bogie.

 

maybe something has to be done involving serious re-working of the copper pick up strips, but this kind of defeats the point of "plug in" dcc.  in actuality i think maybe the catalog is just wrong and it's not "plug in DCC" compatible.  I can probalbly do some soldering and hide the decoder somewhere though.

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Martijn Meerts

Hmm.. Looking at it on a somewhat bigger screen (laptops are nice, but not always ;)) it does seem like the motor car might not be dcc friendly after all. Usually there's a little pocket where the decode will fit in so that the flywheel doesn't hit the decoder. I thought I saw that pocket on the pictures, but looking at it again, it seems to not be there.

 

Pretty sure they don't intend on you removing the flywheel though, they're really, REALLY difficult to get off without proper tools ;)

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Guest keio6000

so i'm more than a bit annoyed at kato.  it says "DCC->" in their catalog, and excusing this by claiming that "well the cab end lighting is dcc" would be poor.

Grr.

 

Thanks for the help!  i guess i'll get into decoder soldering quicker than i thought i might!  should i put a resistor in series if i do?  any idea which rating?

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Guest keio6000

i was playing with the marunouchi 02 because i thought it was more or less the only dcc friendly emu i had here where i am now (my main collection is elsewehre).

 

well, i checked and seems that i have a 388 wide view shinano that is also.  took the decoder, put it in there - took about 2 seconds.  simple.

 

so yes, the 02 and 01 subway trains are not dcc-> compatible plug and play, at least not with the decoder they should theoretically be compatible with.

 

ok i am getting the hang of this dcc stuff.  programmed the wide view shinano to be address 383.   now need to buy more decoders... hello, nariichi-san!

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Martijn Meerts

a resistor is only required if you want to control LED lighting from the decoder, not for the motor.

 

And yes, DCC can be a bit addictive too once you get into it :)

Edited by Martijn Meerts

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kvp

Imho it's a good strategy if a train is not dcc ready to add a wired socket and then install a decoder with a plug. It makes finding problems easier and it's harder to damage decoders when the wire connections could be tested with a multimeter before adding the decoder. Also this was it's not possible to burn a decoder with the soldering iron. Also the decoder could be replaced with a dummy plug so the train could be changed back to analog without soldering.

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changkh

may i know if KATO's starter set trains are DCC friendly? 

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troll patrol

can you put a lighting set in the Kato n500 shinkansen motorcar? 

 

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westfalen

may i know if KATO's starter set trains are DCC friendly? 

Depends on which one, some are, some aren't.

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sktym

Can anyone point me to any information about how to DCC the Kato "[Limited Edition] Shinkansen Series 0-2000 `Tokaido Shinkansen 50th Anniversary"(10-1132?)?  Tried google and found many other shinkansens but not this particular one.  I assume it is not DCC friendly, even though it is the latest edition(re-stock?).  Just want to dcc the motor unit,  lights are lower priority.

 

Thanks

 

SK

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katoftw

No it is not DCC friendly.  A how to would be the same or very similar to whatever you have found on google.

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Vato

Hi everyone 

 

is kato ef15 dcc compatible?

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railsquid

The only EF15 I can see in the current Kato catalogue (model number 3062-1) is not marked as DCC-friendly. (Actually a quick glance through the locomotive section doesn't show any marked as DCC-friendly...)

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Ewan.in.gz

Kato's Japanese locomotives aren't marked as being DCC friendly in their catalogue, but many of them can be converted by replacing the PCB light boards with special drop-in decoders from Digitrax. I am not sure if other DCC suppliers also make compatible decoders....

 

I have a question about DCC: if I chip a KATO EMU, can I have the 3 or more decoders all running from the same address?

 

Even though I am not looking at converting to DCC yet, it is a question that has been bugging me.... And I couldn't find a simple straight answer anywhere!

 

Ewan

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katoftw

Hi everyone 

 

is kato ef15 dcc compatible?

 

 

The only EF15 I can see in the current Kato catalogue (model number 3062-1) is not marked as DCC-friendly. (Actually a quick glance through the locomotive section doesn't show any marked as DCC-friendly...)

check the assy list.  it uses the most common light board made by kato 3066-2EG.

 

So:- http://www.jnsforum.com/community/topic/9588-kato-ef57-dcc/

 

haha vatato, you might find you already have one of these decoders in your household.

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railsquid

Interesting, I didn't realise about the lightboards. Kato don't exactly go out of their way to make people aware of that option...

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utrainia

I have a question about DCC: if I chip a KATO EMU, can I have the 3 or more decoders all running from the same address?

Yup you can certainly do that. Usual scenario would be to have a lighting decoder for each end and a motor decoder in the middle, all running off the same address.

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