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I recently purchased an F40PH that has been upgraded to Protosound 3, and has strobes. Is there a way to change the strobe rate, perhaps to match the Protosound 3 F40PH I already own?

these are my pictures...

Protosound 3 upgraded unit, #301:


factory Protosound 3 unit, #251.67E00CAD-E32D-43DE-A0EC-008EAA7E0093




Images (2)
  • 209CA714-650F-482B-B933-5A602C9D7599
  • 67E00CAD-E32D-43DE-A0EC-008EAA7E0093
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Did you load the sound files AND the chain files?  Hard to believe the strobe didn't change to the desired rate with all the files loaded from the engine you're trying to match.  Also, it's possible that the files shown on the page for your engines don't match what was loaded into them to start.  You could also load the sound and chain files into the other engine to match the upgraded one.

If that fails, have you thought if perhaps interposing a little circuitry and creating your own strobe drive?  Since there is a signal you can tap off, I can think of a fairly simple method of sensing when the strobe is active and just driving your own strobe generator.

This is what happened after about a minute of the new sound file...

No sound, no movement. It would move in conventional only, but the fan would still pulse. So I opened her up and started with pulling the connector for the fans, also to no avail.

Then I went deeper... and now it’s truly dead. Only thing I get is track power to the lights. All the lights, at the same time.

So... I’ve called in a professional.


Videos (1)
@GGG posted:

To close the loop, this was not a true PS-3.  It was  a PS-2 engine repaired with a PS-32 board.  So the strobes would be different.  Remember with PS-32 you can't change the flash code, it must remain PS-32 flash to work bulbs.  You can use a PS-3 Sound file only.  Unfortunately the board is dead.  G

Thank you for everything you’ve done so far. It has been a great help and I emailed you back, I have some questions before we proceed.


- Mario

Well, you make it sound silly, when you put it that way.
I can try and make a long story, shorter.

First the earth cooled, then the rains came. Then I purchased an PS3 F40PH that had been upgraded to PS3 and tried swapping the sound files, and there was a short that ended up frying the board (when I messed with it) and yes, I’m back to a PS3 upgraded locomotive that now has the sound file I wanted (Lake Shore) but the stock strobe rate.



Videos (1)
Last edited by CentralFan1976

It doesn't sound silly cause at least you got back to where you started.

I opened up my Williams Amtrak engine because it seemed to be running terribly slow.  While getting it open one side frame on one power truck crumbled.   I went ahead and took out any grease in the truck and repacked it.  While putting it back together the other side frame crumbled and the coupler broke.

Although the problem and objectives were a little different, I thought your outcome was much better than mine.


I think I found an appropriate add on to help with the strobe rate.  I have purchased a few Circuitron PS-3 power supplies and FLA Amtrak flasher kits. 

From my research, I can use the PS-3 to convert the AC track voltage to the DC power needed for the FLA circuits, of which you can see a short video here (video not my own)...

I apologize for the video, but it is the only one that I could find of the kit installed.  The bulbs are small enough that they should fit inside the MTH strobe housing.

Stay tuned!


- Mario

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