Good Evening Group.

I have several Weaver coaches that have factory installed lighting.  I would like to convert them to DCC so I can control the on/off light function.  I would also like to include a keep alive capacitor.  I am using Loksound decoders for the rest of the layout so would like to stay with that brand.  The Weaver coaches obviously have wheel pick-ups and incandescent bulbs already installed.  I am looking for some direction on how to proceed. 



Original Post

The first thing I would do is measure how many amps the incandescent lights in the coach use. Then look for a decoder that can handle that amount of amperage. I don’t know if Loksound makes a decoder that doesn’t have motor control. These types of decoders are called stationary decoders. Obviously, you won’t need sound. I know other companies other than Loksound make stationary decoders. Also you have to take into account if there will be a place to put the decoder so decoder physical size may be an issue. 

By the way, I like your idea. Good luck with it. 

Last edited by Hudson J1e

As long as you have the car apart. you might as well convert the lights to LEDs. Then there will be no worries about the decoder's capacity.

Last edited by RoyBoy

Hi Stephen,

Soundtraxx makes a Soundcar decoders that supports their plug-in Current Keeper module (just plugs right into the sound car decoder).  These decoders have several lighting function outputs as well as sounds, e.g. clickety-clack, flatwheel, random passenger car generator sounds etc.  The sounds sync up with the speed by being added to consist as if they were just another locomotive (they also have magnet wand feature where you wave a high powered magnet over the outside of the car where the decoder is installed inside to add them in or to remove them from a train).  Of course you need to add your own speaker to get the sounds portion of the decoder.  

As stated above, knowing the lighting current draw is first step and comparing against the rated lighting current load supported by the decoder.  If the current draw is too high, then you may need to replace with lower current LEDs.

Soundcar Decoder

Current Keeper and Magnet Wand Link

Scott K.

Austin, TX

you can use a low amperage relay, switched on and off by a simple function only decoder and power the light bulbs directly from the track rather than thru the decoder.  Just have to make sure the relay doesn't draw more current that the decoder can handle.  What ever is easier and prefered.

I just spec-ed out the parts to do some cabeese and I decided to use the ESU prodcuts. They have LED light bars with the option of a current keeper that goes right on the light. I use tons of ESU Loksound decoders and I love em, Ive also been using the Lokpiolot stuff as well and they are just as great

Dave, according to the book The DCC Guide by Don Fiehman decoders that are used to control lights are called Accesory/Stationary decoders. 5A2BB193-4A50-45CD-842D-C9EFEB4136E4


Images (1)

It is my guess that mobile decoders are called that because they can make something move. A decoder that can’t make something move is stationary even if it is in a moving car. Just my opinion. 

Add Reply

OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
Link copied to your clipboard.