Athearn DCC lighting

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Drew Toner, Jun 9, 2002.

  1. Drew Toner

    Drew Toner Member

    Mar 2, 2002
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    From website, I quote;

    [11. Lights- For half-wave operation, cut the contact strip at the back of the light fixture approx. 1/4" long and solder the white/yellow decoder lead at that point.
    Note: If you desire full-wave operation, you will need to devise a different method of mounting the light bulbs, then use the blue decoder wire for light common.]

    OK, now here's the questions! (I'm installing a DH121 into an Athearn SW1200)

    Half-wave operation = one bulb, full-wave = two bulbs?

    Do I solder BOTH yellow and white wires to the contact strip and use the black as (chasis) light common if I'm only using the front (one) bulb?

    I'm a little unsure about this!

    Other wise, the unit is up and running, albeit with no lights!!


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  2. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    May 8, 2001
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    Drew, You could solder both yellow and white if you wish, the decoder comes set for directional lighting, so soldering both leads will turn the lamp on in both directions. Or you could program the decoder for non directional lighting and just solder one lead. The manual for the decoder will show the options available. I remember reading something about half wave lighting having problems when an analog loco is operated on the layout, the "zero stretching" required to run analog either reduces or increases the voltage to half wave lights, depending on polarity. Not so great, so I would use the blue lead and the front light lead (full wave).