I have the non decoder F7A and would like to convert to DCC power and sound. Anyone try installing the QSI Magnum? I am looking to add a different sound than LGB and was hoping to avoid a separate decoder and sound unit. Thanks!
I was looking for a different sound than the LGB/Massoth. QSI and Loksound make power/sound decoders with American sounds suitable for 2 motors.
QSI looks to have better availability and price right now. Thanks for the input!
The difficulty of conversion of a loco to DCC is often overblown.
Start simple, disconnect everything (lights) from the main board. Now disconnect the wires from the pickups and the motors, and check that there is no connection between ANY wheel and ANY motor lead.
Connect the left wheels together. Connect the right wheels together. If you have multiple motors, connect the motors together, so that when you have 12 volts on the pair of leads, both trucks run the same way.
Now you have 4 wires in the loco, 2 for track pickup, 2 for motor. Connect those to the 4 screw terminals with the same description on the QSI "magnum" board.
Plug in the decoder and see if everything runs right on DC... Then you can hook up the lights with the appropriate dropping resistors, 3 more wires.
It's really not that difficult, just take your time and be SURE you have separated the wheel pickups from the motors.
I have installed digitracks decoderders to the f7a it is possible to install the qsi decoder as well. you do not need to remove the existing circiut board. The QSI board can be adapted to the F&A however you will need 2 items the lgb digital cable 55026 and the adapter from QSI that allows you to instal the qsi board to non plug and play trains. Once you have these parts the rest is fairly simple. there are several good post about wiring the fla to non lgb decoders