Heljan Class 23 Baby Deltic decoder cab lighting fit.

Discussion in 'Heljan RTR' started by Keith M, May 13, 2016.

  1. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    I got tempted by Heljans Class 23 today, especially as it's much reduced in price at certain Liverpool and Sheffield retailers. Got it home, onto the rolling road, half an hour back'ards, half an hour forr'ards on DC to run it in at a moderate speed, then off with the body for a DCC decoder fit. Here it is, straight out of the box and on the rolling road.

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  2. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    It's quite a nicely detailed model,- ok, so I don't think this class of diesel saw Southern metals, but I quite like them anyway, at £59, it's a steal for the usual Heljan 'built-like-a-tank' build quality, certainly quite weighty, and it comes with full and half disc codes, so maybe they DID run on the Southern!

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  3. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    Anyway, the body comes off quite easily, easing the sides apart to clear two lugs each side, then the chassis drops out. Best to do this over the bench or risk doing the loco (and maybe yourself!) an injury. In this pic, I've already removed the DC plug and plugged in a Lenz standard decoder, as there's plenty of room in this model. It's quite likely that when funds allow, I'll fit a sound decoder, which is why I happen to normally have spare non-sound ones to hand, as I update.

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  4. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    The "cab" mouldings come out fairly easily with a bit of judicious 'spragging' with a screwdriver, and I usually file a suitable groove on the back wall of the cab to allow the wires from LED cab lighting to pass through. These are normally an easy (if sometimes very fiddly) job which you may as well do while the loco body is off, as it adds to the realism, especially running in a darkened room. I start by glueing a suitably sized piece of card into the cab area roof, which helps to (A) reflect the LED's light downwards, and (B)helps stop any light showing through the models roof, as some loco bodies are quite thin and semi-transparent.

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  5. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    I tend to use the SMD type of LED, as they're a much lower profile than the normal types, and being flat, fit in quite unobtrusively, although you need to be careful with the soldering iron, as it's very easy to 'frazzle' them with too much heat. I always have a roll of these SMD LED's to hand, as I use them for carriage lighting, so I usually just cut off individual LED's from the roll, but not until after I've soldered wire and resistor to the (very small) connections on each side. Once you've done that, you can cut each individual LED off the roll, peel off the sticky back protector and fix it into the cab roof, much easier than chasing a tiny LED around the bench, trying to solder a wire on without frying the LED.......Oh what fun!!! Don't of course, forget that using this method, you are cutting each LED off the roll and it will then have no resistor in circuit, so you MUST include one in the +ve leg or it'll go 'pop' the moment you switch on!

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  6. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    I normally do these as in the previous pic, which shows one LED done, resistor attached and heat shrink sleeving over, the second LED with resistor attached, ready for heat shrink and cutting into individual ones. Here are both LED's done, cut into individuals and ready to stick in place.

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  7. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    If you want to include a driver figure, now's the time to attach these in place, let the glue set and refix the "Cab" mouldings back in place, ensuring the wires feeding the LED's clear the back wall of the cab mouldings. I also tend to secure the LED wires to the roof with PVC tape to keep them reasonably tidy, at least until you get the body back on! This pic shows before adding tape.

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  8. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    Last but not least, solder the cab lighting wires to the appropriate connections on the decoder plug. The two wires with resistors in them go onto the Blue plug connection, Forward cab lights negative wire goes to the white plug connection, reverse cab light negative wire to the yellow plug connection. Really, any soldering on a job like this needs a maximum of a 15 watt iron with no more than a 2mm diameter bit (I use an Antex, other brands are available!), using the poker from the fireplace, heated up on the gas ring is a No-No!!!
    It's really quite an easy job to do, not one to be afraid of, and you can always practice on electronics odds and ends first to get the hang of it, though I'm lucky as I've been messing about with electronics since the days of valves and the first easily available transistors in the early 60's. Anyway, if all is well, this is what it should end up looking something like......
    Back'ards....

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  9. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    ......and t'other way!
    Jobs a gud'un.
    Have fun,
    Keith.

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  10. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    I don't bother attempting to set up the decoder properly until I've run the loco with something like it's intended pulled load, then adjust the CV's for things like start volts, acceleration and maximum speed to something like it's 'real world' counterpart. If/when I decide to upgrade to sound, I'll post up on how that goes.
    keith.
     
  11. Toto

    Toto I'm best ignored Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Hi Keith,

    looks good. plenty detail there and I like your choice of livery. You didn't waste any time in getting it powered up.

    have fun putting it through its paces.

    cheers

    toto
     
  12. SRman

    SRman Full Member

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    I like your method of soldering the wires to the SMD LEDs. I'll ahve to give that a try for a couple of projects I have in mind.

    Depending on the chosen decoder, it would be possible to solder the wires to green and purple auxilliary outputs from the decoder to allow independent activation of the cab lights at each end, leaving the yellow and white wires purely for the headcode/disc/marker lights and tail lights. That would require a four function decoder, but there are a few good quality ones around that are suitable.
     
  13. SMR CHRIS

    SMR CHRIS Staff Member Moderator

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    Keith M wrote:
    It's one fine looking loco Keith thanks for posting.
    Plus nice description of your mods and DCC install.
     
  14. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    SRman wrote:
     
  15. ed

    ed Full Member

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    Thanks Keith [​IMG]

    Interesting info filed away for future reference.

    Ed
     

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