This installation of TCS T1 Decoder is for HO Scale Life Like Proto 1000 RS11 and was performed by Jim Crane of East Granby, CT.
This photo shows the top surface of the factory light board before modifications. There are 4 spots where 'X' indicates traces which need to be cut and 7 decoder wiring through-holes labeled P1..P8. Once the jumpers are cut, the large resistors limit decoder current to the lamps so the factory lamps need not be replaced.
This second photo shows board after using a Dremel with a small cutting bit to cut through the traces at the 'X's. I tried a utility knife, but the Dremel was fast, accurate, and easy. Don't forget to do all 4 spots (one is near the top left of the board). After cutting, I carefully blew out any debris with compressed air and verified a complete cut by measuring across each cut with an Ohmmeter.
This photo shows the left end of the light board with a layer of black electrical tape applied to ensure the decoder is insulated from the circuitry. The decoder is shrink-wrapped in plastic, but just to be sure... There will be room under the shell for the TCS M1 decoder after wiring it.
The final photo shows the decoder wired to the board, with the wires connected so that the default CV's resulted in the engine going forward (to the right) with the forward lamp on. (No, I didn't get it right on the first try :-) ) I used a couple more narrow strips of electrical tape just to hold the decoder in place. Each decoder wire was cut to length, carefully stripped, fluxed, and tinned with solder. The through-holes were also fluxed and the wires soldered into the holes. Care must be taken not to overheat the wires as the insulation can easily be damaged. Good wire strippers would be very helpful - I think the wires are 30 gauge and it's easy to damage the metal strands.
This picture shows the T1 (rather than the M1) in its final installation position. As you will note the wires must be just the right length so that the decoder can sit upside-down without resting on top of the black diodes above.
Important Soldering Tip
Please do not use any flux either liquid or paste on the mother board. Over time, the acidic properties of liquid or paste flux will begin eating away at the fiberglass PCB and will damage it. Use only Rosin-core solder or no-clean flux approved for electronics use.
TCS recommends the use of Kester "44" Sn63 Pb37, .015" diameter Rosin-core solder. Kester part number 24-6337-0007.
You can order this solder from the following retailers:
Digikey - PN:KE1110-ND
Techni-Tool - PN:488SO6775
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