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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm interested in lighting control via DCC options. And more specifically the typical practice of lighting at work on and within the locomotive, i.e. what is the sequence of events lights are toggled on or off? Which lights if any are on all the time, night time only or during specific tasks?


My interest is specifically aimed at Southern Pacific practices, but I’m interested in hearing about others as well.


Seems many G-scale decoders offer motor control and FWD and REV headlight functions, while some offer AUX functions and sound too. So I’m left with hacking lighting boards and such together with AUX function features to control lighting and or other options. Aux Sound decoders will be in play; QSI's on-board w/decoder and others.


Common lighting items are listed below, dependent on the degree of effort I’m willing to endure or number of channels needed to support the prototype railroad/engine in question I’ll have to look at decoders that support same. I’m pondering using small HO decoders for AUX lighting controllers together with QSI, NCE and other G-scale decoders, there cheap NCE’s 13SRJ is about $20.00. There are four AUX channels and a motor controller for smoke systems. Any suggestions why this would not be a viable alternative for a lighting controller? RC via Airwire and or G-Wire control would be desirable too.


I didn’t look to hard but only found one dedicated function only decoder from Lenz, #LF101XF 6-channel about $27.00, 200mA per channel. NCE offers four, six and eight function plus motor decoders for $20.00-$30.00.


Ditch lights


Cab interior lighting


Porch and or step lighting


Number boards


Marker lights


Rotary beacons


Headlights fwd and rev
Regards,
Michael
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Bill,

Was the MARS light feature you utilized comprised of multiple LED's, I'm looking at these for future projects on F units too.


Bob

Thanks the operating info, good stuff, a few clarifications please?

Are the crossing lights you note, ditch lights? Do you know what SP practice is in regard to flashing and or alternating the ditch lights when horn is active? What about when approaching crossings, alternating ditch lights or?

Diesels don’t have any marker or class lights, that’s news to me but then I have no knowledge of same. Seems all my diesels I have marker lights with varying degrees of operation.

Seems odd porch and steps lights are always on!

So if the number boards are lit up that means the loco is part of train, and would this be the lead engine only or?

Can you offer any ideas on rotary beacons atop the cab of some locos? Would this be a yard switcher thing or maybe a local branch line consideration for work in town on or around populated areas?


George,

Yes I noted that most of the decoders currently offered have the ability to be programmed for various lighting effects, this is a great feature.

I found Massoth offers a function only decoder too.

Thanks again for your insight
Kind regards,
Michael
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Bob,

Thanks again for all the great info.

Bill,

I have noted that many of the current breed of decoders offer a MARS light feature (pulsing the light on/off), I assume its similar to what you used. I'm going to tinker with a Massoth board I have to see what it looks like. thanks again for sharing.

Regards,
Michael
 
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