Future Projects for 2015/16......July Update


Bachmann Colas Class 37

Now released, complete & running!

Class 57/3 impulse buy.... now complete & running

Olivias/R3 Sprays re-liveried Colas Class 70

.... now complete & running

Dapol DRS Class 68

Due for release by end-2016

Hornby Scotsman

Due for release September 2016


Bachmann's new East Midlands 158

Sometime.....maybe never?


The Colas 37 arrived on schedule. It is now complete and running well.

The new logo DRS 57 was an impulse buy to update the Navy nuclear flask train. (Complete & running.)

Decided not to wait for Bachmann to launch their RTR Colas 70 & ordered a re-spray from Olivia's to replace their now discontinued DRS new livery 37..... now complete & running.

The Dapol DRS 68 is now due towards the end of 2016 & 2 are now on order.

Having finally succeeded in getting my P2 running smoothly, I've decided to add Flying Scotsman in final early 60s BR livery, to the fleet... a bit of nostalgia: Gresley A3s on the East Coast main line just South of Doncaster. Also correct livery for the newly restored NRM loco on the main line in 2016:


Flying Scotsman being cleaned before entry to the NRM in York (2nd Mar 2016).


Still no sign from Bachmann of progress on the 158. I'm wondering if its been discontinued :-(


Likely configurations:

The Colas 37 is equipped with a Beta version of Paul's Protodrive Zimo solution. It runs very well and the sound project is excellent! Lights were modified to use correct white markers and switchable headlights.

The DRS 57/3 is fitted with comprehensive lighting control and the a Bif LokSound sound project, transferred from its 57/0 predecessor.

Bif's 70 is a good solution, with dynamic braking fans and the skipfire idle option well covered. The lights are updated to provide fully comprehensive operation including night headlights.

Bif is also doing the official sound solution for the 68 and it maybe the only game in town.

The Scotsman decoder choice will depend on how smooth the motor and running gear operate. (LokSound V4 can suppress very slow speed judder rather better than Zimo.) South West Digital have a LokSound V4 solution, while Paul Chetter has a Zimo solution that I have ready to try, in Protodrive form.

Bryan's Howes 158 is still my favorite for the DMU because of its prototypical increase in sound volume when the engine powers up from idle to move away from the platform. Bif's sounds maybe more accurate at speed, but lack that volume punch at power-up..... although I understand he has a new version....

As time moves on and I get a few spare moments, I'll add provisional circuit diagrams and any other potentially useful ideas for the planned updates.....


Colas Class 37:

The Bachmann unit has arrived!  It is now the subject of a dedicated webpage elsewhere on the site, so I have moved the initial thoughts to the new page..........click here!

DRS 57 with the new logo:

The missing lower marker lights and night headlights are added with full DCC control. The original 57/0 Bif sound project was transferred in, using a new speaker installed in the fuel tanks.

Click here for detailed DRS 57/3 web page

Colas liveried Class 70:

The new logo DRS 37 from Olivias has been withdrawn due to difficulties with satisfactory application of the large side transfers, so instead I've transferred my order to the next run of Olivia's Colas Class 70. Delivery was quicker than expected, providing a Colas 70 for the fleet well in advance of Bachmann.

A Bif LokSound V4 decoder is fitted, driving a speaker in the fuel tank. The lighting update sorts out Bachmann's intensity imbalance between front markers and day headlights. Night headlights are added and all the headlights are made independently switchable, so they can be disabled for yard operations, where only all three markers are illuminated. A super-shunter alternate flashing rearlights and front marker lights facility is also added.

Click here for detailed Colas 70 web page


Dapol's DRS Class 68:

Bif's Sound Project on LokSound V4 is the most likely decoder solution. The real class 68 lighting includes some unusual behaviour of the lower lighting modules, which seem to use pulse modulation to control their intensity. Video sequences often show flashing effects which are not apparently normally seen by the naked eye, although there are reports of occasional flashing sequences seen by eye. I really need more information before planning any detailed lighting mods.


Flying Scotsman 60103:

Lighting fit will be a pair of white LNER oil lamps mounted on the buffer beam brackets, plus a dual red glow / orange flicker firebox LED assembly.  I'll try the Zimo unit I have ready first, to see how smoothly the motor and drive system start & stop, before choosing the final decoder type.

On the turntable at NRM York 3rd March 2016


The New Bachmann Class 158:

East Midland Trains Class 158 at Ely Station (showing the forward lights, with only the marker on the opposite side to the active headlamp, on).


The updated Class 158 is expected to appear with a less visible motor drive system, similar to the newer Class 150, allowing a full lighting and passenger fit in both cars.

The EMT 158s have their lighting modules updated to use new LED technology combined white marker and rear lights. However, unlike the 150, the 158 only activates the marker on the opposite side to the headlamp, the lighting requirements are otherwise, similar, with the same decoder function output (FO) requirements in both DMU types.

Unless Bif is able to update his otherwise excellent 158 sound project, by significantly boosting the engine sound levels at departure, I'll be using Bryan's Howes LokSound V4s in both projects. (In which case no detonator flash LEDs will be needed). Unless of course, a good Zimo solution materialises.

So in the front car, that's 3 FOs for front running lights, 1 for a driver cab light, 1 for door hazard lights and one for passenger compartment lighting = 6

In the rear car: 3 FOs for front running lights, 1 for door hazard lights and one for passenger compartment lighting = 5

The speaker location remains to be seen.  Either a 22x58x9.3mm base reflex or an ESU 50334 22x42x11mm (with or without enclosure) are the contenders. If this has to go in the rear car, inter-car connectors will be required. Extra wheel contacts in the rear car, coupled to those of the front car are always a good idea, but the interconnect may be able to use a conductive link between cars if Bachmann continue to use the technique.  I'll need to find space to hide anti-flicker capacitors for the internal lighting.

Current thoughts are:  LokSound V4 in the front car,  LokPilot FX V4 in the rear car and an additional TCS 2 way connector interface between cars if the speaker works better in the rear car (or 4 way if Bachmann don't already provide twin conductors in the coupler.)

Possible Class 158 Circuit Diagram


Passenger compartment lighting (per car)




........stay tuned for more on the other locos.            

Supplier website links:
ESU (English website)    Manufacturer of LokSound V4 sound decoders and LokPilot FX V4 function decoders, with user manual downloads on this site
Digitrains    Primary source for pre-wired chip LEDs required to improve the lighting & possible source for Zimo sound decoders.
DC Kits etc    Probable source of Bif  LokSound V4 based sound systems.


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