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Everything Hornby - Everything Hornby. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Wed Jul 18th, 2018 06:58 am
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Passed Driver
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Hi All.   I have fitted some Hornby “ DCC Ready Locos “ in ignorance of the static problem? They seem to run okay?But, since reading about buying Locos DCC Ready versus DCC fitted, and the possible damage to the Decoder , let alone the bodywork of said Loco , I am a bit concerned . As I have a couple of Hornby EMU’s to fit a Decoder into namely a 2Bil and a 2Hal, I believe that static can be caused by walking on fitted carpets? if that is correct? I don’t know, as for the bodywork , I have some suitable plastic cards? Please advise. Kevin



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 Posted: Wed Jul 18th, 2018 07:32 am
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gdaysydney
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Hi Kevin,

I have damaged a few loco bodies over the years but never lost a decoder due to static. I am aware that care has to taken when installing computer parts due to potential for static discharge between the computer body and the component but until your post I had never heard or read anything about the dangers of static when installing a decoder.
If you have installed a number already without any issues I would suggest you are more likely to be be like me and damge loco bodies where the install is difficult - I recall certain Heljan models being a complete PITA.
So my recommendation is to check out a review of a  decoder install  for the loco you are proposing to put a decoder into, that can be found in on-line video(s) - or seek feedback from club members for their install advice for the particular loco - if it sounds or looks too tricky then pay someone else to do it.

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 Posted: Wed Jul 18th, 2018 08:23 am
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SRman
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Static electric discharges can damage any electronic components, so it is wise to take the very simple precaution of grounding yourself on something metal first, before handling the components. In the case of computers, I grab the metal casing frame. In the case of decoders, I choose something convenient, like the locomotive chassis.

It's not rocket science; doing one of the above procedures before handling a decoder should be more than sufficient to preserve all of your decoders intact.



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Jeff Lynn,
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 Posted: Wed Jul 18th, 2018 09:38 am
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Hi Dave. Thank you. That is my problem, I am always looking at YouTube videos, some of which can bemisleading ?And you are correct the two Hornby Locos 2Bil and 2 Hal could be a PITA.  Best wishes. Kevin



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 Posted: Wed Jul 18th, 2018 09:44 am
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Hi Jeff. Thank you. I had better go to a decent supplier ? And select suitable 8 Pin Decoders ( not Hornby ?) otherwise the packer in question may banjax the Decoder before getting to me? Best wishes. Kevin



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 Posted: Thu Jul 19th, 2018 08:17 am
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BCDR
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Hi Kevin,

As said, just touch the nearest large metal object such as the track or chassis. Most decoders come wrapped in heat shrink anyway. Not to keep your pinkies off them, it is there to stop exposed circuits and electronic components from touching metal.

Nigel



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 Posted: Thu Jul 19th, 2018 08:44 am
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Hi Nigel.  Thank you. Being as I only require an eight pin Decoder is there a better one? to go for or are they all much the same? A piece of metal that isn’t grounded, would that be good enough?   Best wishes. Kevin



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 Posted: Thu Jul 19th, 2018 05:59 pm
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Hi Kevin,

Is there a better 8 pin one or a better decoder? 21-pin (I won't get into Plex) decoders are better for wiring speakers, lights, etc., although you will end up doing a lot of wiring just getting the new board in if it's not 21-pin ready.  I often use a 21 to 8 pin adapter and just use an 8-pin decoder. Unless you plan on having a range of working lights an 8-pin one is fine.

Most "own brand" decoders from Hornby, Bachmann, Hattons, Gauge Master, etc., are just rebadged (and often function-depleted) ones from the major suppliers (Bachmann and Soundtraxx for example) It's one of those scenarios where you usually get what you pay for. I stick with ESU (the Select range for sound, normally around $80 US), NCE, Soundtraxx, even Digitrax (OK if you want basic functions and a "send it back if it goes wrong" warranty). I keep a couple of cheap none-sound ones from Digitrax handy for testing before installing an expensive sound one. Zimo are too expensive over here (double taxes/import duty) as the supplier for North America is in Canada. Soundtraxx do a small range of UK sounds, good value for the money, especially over here as they are much cheaper than in the UK.

Nigel




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