Model trains: How to convert analog 4-4-0 Southern Pacific loco to DCC??

Question by almintaka: Model trains: How to convert analog 4-4-0 Southern Pacific loco to DCC??
Hi everyone,
I have an HO scale analog 4-4-0 Southern Pacific locomotive that I would like to convert to DCC. I understand the basic electronics required for an encoder car behind the engine, but I keep hearing horror stories about people who build the encoder “by the book” but then have major vibration problems with the engine running at slow speeds or stopped. Has anyone out there come up with a good way to build an encoder that reduces or eliminates engine vibration?

Thanks to all for taking the time to read this. Have a good day !!!
Big Al Mintaka

Best answer:

Answer by btw667
Al, I’m not pretty sure you don’t need to house the decoder in a separate car. I model N scale, and though I don’t use DCC, many of my friends do. I’ve seen the sizes of decoders available today and a Digitrax DN140 will fit in almost anything. If I remember correctly, it’s about the size of a dime or smaller! That will hide away very easily inside your tender.

As for you vibration question, I’ve never heard of a decoder causing this. As model railroaders, we all know how delicate steam locomotives are. Even with careful handling, sometimes things happen. When taking one of these apart for any reason it is extremely important to take extra care with extreme attention to detail in order to have a smooth running steamer when finished. I can only conclude that during the “up-fit” process, some minor detail has been rearranged slightly causing a vibration.

Hope this helps…my email is yahoo verified if you wish to contact me…good luck

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