Walthers Mainline GE ES44 GEVo

Scale:
HO Scale


WOWKit used in this installation

WDK-WAL-2

Which includes the following items:

Decoder
Motherboard




This installation documentation is for the Walthers Mainline-series GE ES44 GEVo. This installation uses the WDK-WAL-2 WOWKit and was performed by TCS' very own Dan M.

Note: This installation features a locomotive with ditch lights. The factory setup for these lights are MATCHED PAIRS of wires going to the front and back for F1 through F4. We have matched these criteria for our motherboard design, meaning that F1 through F2 are available on both connectors at each end of the motherboard. See the Wiring Diagram below (wiring diagram is rotated 180 degrees from the orientation shown in this installation documentation):

Image removed.

In this model in particular, F1 and F2 from the connector toward the front are used for the forward ditch lights, allowing for flashing ditch lights, should you so choose. If your model also features rearward-facing ditch lights, these should be connected to F3 and F4 on the connector toward the rear. This will allow you to program them to be directional, and flash.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The locomotive TCS installed had a motor connector which was improperly wired from the factory, with Grey being Positive, and Orange being Negative. To fix this, we re-soldered the connections to the motor. This ensures that the motor direction and directional lighting are all correct when the throttle is set to "forward" and "reverse." Be aware of this possibility - it is suggested to test your model's motor control first before re-assembling it in case this same issue presents itself in your installation.

Walthers Mainline GE GEVo shown with the shell on
Walthers Mainline GE GEVo shown with the shell on
To remove the shell, unscrew and pul out both couplers first. Then, locate the two screws behind and ahead of the ful tank and remove them as well. Once the couplers and these two screws have been removed, the shell will lift off.
To remove the shell, unscrew and pul out both couplers first. Then, locate the two screws behind and ahead of the ful tank and remove them as well. Once the couplers and these two screws have been removed, the shell will lift off.
The factory motherboard needs to be removed. To do this, unplug all of the connectors, as shown here. You can choose to label each one as you remove them to make sure they get plugged back into the correct sockets on the TCS motherboard. In our model, all of the connectors were color-coded properly to NMRA standards.
The factory motherboard needs to be removed. To do this, unplug all of the connectors, as shown here. You can choose to label each one as you remove them to make sure they get plugged back into the correct sockets on the TCS motherboard. In our model, all of the connectors were color-coded properly to NMRA standards.
Next, remove the three screws holding the board to the chassis, and lift it off of the chassis.
Next, remove the three screws holding the board to the chassis, and lift it off of the chassis.
Shown with the factory motherboard removed. At this time, you should also remove the facotry speaker housing, as it will not be used for this installation. There is a single screw which holds the enclosure in place.
Shown with the factory motherboard removed. At this time, you should also remove the facotry speaker housing, as it will not be used for this installation. There is a single screw which holds the enclosure in place.
Installing the new WM-MB1 motherboard is as simply as putting it in place and putting the three screws back in place. Also shown in this step is the installation of the speaker. The speaker was secured to the chassis using VHB double-sided tape on the back side of the enclosure. The speaker driver is facing downward towards the holes in the floor of the chassis. The wires and plug for the speaker are routed upward through a port hole that was created while removing the speaker enclosure.
Installing the new WM-MB1 motherboard is as simply as putting it in place and putting the three screws back in place. Also shown in this step is the installation of the speaker. The speaker was secured to the chassis using VHB double-sided tape on the back side of the enclosure. The speaker driver is facing downward towards the holes in the floor of the chassis. The wires and plug for the speaker are routed upward through a port hole that was created while removing the speaker enclosure.
Install the decoder by plugging it onto the 21-pin connector. The decoder should sit flush against the motherboard. It may require a slight amount of force to fully seat the decoder. Press down on the decoder at the connctor and you will not damage anything. You should feel a click when it is in place. At this time, it is also recommended that you cover the hole above the speaker. We used electrical tape.
Install the decoder by plugging it onto the 21-pin connector. The decoder should sit flush against the motherboard. It may require a slight amount of force to fully seat the decoder. Press down on the decoder at the connctor and you will not damage anything. You should feel a click when it is in place. At this time, it is also recommended that you cover the hole above the speaker. We used electrical tape.
The last step in this installation is to plug your connectors back in. Once that is complete, you are ready to re-assemble the locomotive and get it back on the rails!
The last step in this installation is to plug your connectors back in. Once that is complete, you are ready to re-assemble the locomotive and get it back on the rails!

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