This installation is for a HO Scale Athearn Genesis SD70M, using a WOW 121 Diesel Decoder, GEN-MB1 motherboard with Keep Aliveā„¢
and UNIV-SH1-C WOWSpeaker.

This was performed by our friends from DCC Xpress installations.
They offer high quality WOWSound installations for a flat rate complete with free return shipping!
You can find them at:

These items are available in the WDK-ATH-3 which was used for this installation.
GEN-MB1 Motherboard with Keep Alive™ WOW121-Diesel Decoder UNIV-SH1-C Speaker Kit
Click here for more information on the WDK-ATH-3 and the rest of the WOWDiesel Kits line.

Important Soldering Tip:
Please do not use any flux either liquid or paste on the mother board. It will damage it. Use only Rosin core solder approved for electronics use.
We recommend to use only Kester "44" rosin core, SN63PB37, .015" diameter, part number 24-6337-0007.
This can be ordered from Techni-Tool under Techni-Tool part number 488SO157

Athearn Genesis SD70M prior to installation.


Begin this installation, remove the screws found on each coupler and the coupler boxes as highlighted above in red.
Grasp the sides and each end of the shell to gently pull outwards and release it from the frame.

Athearn Genesis SD70M with the shell removed. On this locomotive, the cab is a separate part and must also be removed. Very carefully grasp the sides of the cab,
gently squeeze inward and lift it up. Unsolder the wires, taking note of their function, then remove the original lighting board from the frame.

A view of the locomotive with the original lighting board removed.

A view of the locomotive with the shell completely removed. Trim, tin or lengthen the wires as necessary.

Attach the new GEN-MB1 onto the frame and solder the track and motor leads in place.

With the 35 x 16mm speaker inserted into the UNIV-SH1-C enclosure, using hot melt glue, mount this assembly to the frame.
In this installation, we used Kapton tape to secure the track lead wires to minimize movement and prevent shorts.

If your speaker enclosure installation covers the portholes on the enclosure, we recommend adding new port hole(s) similar to the original porting. Be sure that the new portholes are the same size and amount of the original and are vented freely into the locomotive We have found introducing a port of the correct size greatly increases the volume and sound quality of the installation. Too much or too little porting decreases the sound quality.

According to the included wire diagram, solder the lighting leads from the shell as well as cab onto the motherboard.

We have found that LED light output is brightest when shinning directly into the end of the light tube, but in some circumstances they may be placed along the length
of the tube as well with satisfactory results. In doing so, white light LED output would be least affected, while non white LED output will be more affected by placement.

Plug in the WOW121 Diesel decoder to the GEN-MB1 motherboard.

Lastly, in order to keep the wires neat and prevent possible shorts, lace the wires into a bundle using lacing cord, which is a wax impregnated string 
used for wire bundling and making harnesses. There are many choices of lacing cord available from Digikey
We use part number 802534B BK032-ND

Reattach the shell and coupler assemblies and your WOWSound equipped Athearn Genesis SD70M locomotive in ready to roll!

Other solder tips: When stripping wire, only strip a tiny little bit of the insulation. Strip no more then a 1/64 of an inch. When the wire gets tinned with solder the insulation will shrink back more. Try to not expose any more wire then half the length of the solder pad at most. In no case should solder or exposed wire wire ever be outside the boundary of the the solder pad you are attaching a wire to.
Click here for important information on properly Stripping and Tinning wire

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