TCS MC1 Decoder Installation for N-Scale Bachmann Spectrum SD45.
This is the Spectrum SD-45 Diesel locomotive from Bachmann. This locomotive comes DCC ready as is and because of this , installing our M1 decoder is fairly difficult. These pictures above are the SD-45 before any modifications are made. The entire installation will be done on this back end of the locomotive. First, the LED wires need to be shortened to make room for the decoder. Be sure to leave some slack in the wires and not shorten them too much. Also remember that LEDs are directional and the wires need to be reattached to the same pads that they came off of.
Using our M1 decoder, secure the decoder underneath the back end of the board between the resistors and the LED at the far end. Run the M1 wires straight out through the LED wires to keep the wires untangled. Then pull the wires up and over the end of the main board to line each wire up with its corresponding pad. Double check the ordering of the wires to install the decoder correctly and make the wires as tight as possible without interfering with any other components.
*Although it isn't necessary, the yellow/orange capacitor on top of the main board can be removed because we have a similar part on the M1 that will do the same job.
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 than a 1/32 of an inch. When the wire gets tinned with solder, the insulation will shrink back more. Try to not expose any more wire than 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