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I recently bought a DCS explorer to run a MTH GG1 with on my layout. I got it working, However, when the power is applied to the GG1, the horn just goes off non-stop. It is very, very loud so i do not wish to try testing it further.

It is a railking 4916 Pennsylvania 5-stripe 0-27/o gauge GG1 in that reddish brown color.

The box says it "accepts plug-in protosound systems" and when i opened up the engine, it did appear to have circuit boards for protosound.

I can send pictures, just ask.

If anyone could help me, that would be great! This is my first post here and i really don't know what to do with this problem.

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That GG1 is an older model with a an electronic reversing unit and horn. The DCS Explorer is only compatible with Protosound 2 & 3 engines that were manufactured 2000 or later. This GG1 came out in 1998.

The reason you only hear the horn is because the you are using a DC power supply to operate the explorer. When the engine sees power from the DC supply, it sees the DC offset caused by a horn button on a transformer and continuously blows the horn.

Last edited by H1000
@John m 43 posted:

Hi H1000 - thanks for your reply. Does the PS1 do anything besides have an obnoxiously loud horn, or can it do sounds?

How can i make it work better?

Well what you have isn't exactly PS1. It only has and electronic horn.

Protosound 1 has a whole plethora of functions from Passenger & Freight announcements, squeaking brakes, electrocouplers and more.

To operate this engine you'll need a traditional AC transformer with a whistle button.

Last edited by H1000
@H1000 posted:

Well what you have isn't exactly PS1. It only has and electronic horn.

Protosound 1 has a whole plethora of functions from Passenger & Freight announcements, squeaking brakes, electrocouplers and more.

To operate this engine you'll need a traditional AC transformer with a whistle button.

I take that back, after reading the manual for your engine it may just have Protosound 1.  To operate the features of the engine, check out the operators manual:  https://mthtrains.com/sites/de...ction/30dl16675i.pdf

Last edited by H1000
@H1000 posted:

I take that back, after reading the manual for your engine it may just have Protosound 1.  To operate the features of the engine, check out the operators manual:  https://mthtrains.com/sites/de...ction/30dl16675i.pdf

Looking at that manual H1000, I'm guessing by the battery type reqired, that this engine has the 5 volt boards !?! 

John , make sure you have a new battery or at least a fully charged one when running this engine.

If it's PS1 they run on the same 9V style battery as the early 5V PS2 boards. Make no mistake, it's made in 1998 which is easily 2 years before any PS2 equipment hit the market.

A simple battery test for a PS1 is to power it up but leave it in "reset" mode (don't hit the direction button to move it). let it idle like this for a few minutes at 12 or more volts and then shut off the power. If the engine completes the 7 to 10 engine shutdown sound cycle and you hear the faint "popping" noises afterwards, the battery is charged and the engine is ready to run.

@H1000 posted:

If it's PS1 they run on the same 9V style battery as the early 5V PS2 boards. Make no mistake, it's made in 1998 which is easily 2 years before any PS2 equipment hit the market.

A simple battery test for a PS1 is to power it up but leave it in "reset" mode (don't hit the direction button to move it). let it idle like this for a few minutes at 12 or more volts and then shut off the power. If the engine completes the 7 to 10 engine shutdown sound cycle and you hear the faint "popping" noises afterwards, the battery is charged and the engine is ready to run.

ok, I will try this. Also, I bought this engine off some guy on Facebook marketplace who didn't mention anything about a 9V battery. Would i have to put one in? I've heard of people putting large capacitors in the PS1 engines to stop the circutboard from being fried.

@Danr posted:

The manual for this locomotive is confusing since it states that it could be an LCRU OR Protosound.  If you don’t have the box telling you what it is the next best option is to open it and post a picture as John m 43 suggested.

Thanks for that Catch Dan. I suspect that this is the model with Protosound because the Horn immediately blows when DC power is applied.  PS1 engine startup in "Reset" mode and the horn won't function until you leave reset mode.

John,

From what I can see your loco does not have Protosound (PS1).  Here's what the Protosound PC board assembly looks like, with it's (original, white) battery -- as you can see there is only one PC assembly, and it's made up of two interconnected PC boards:

MHM-43141-SX200-02-IMG_6108_cr:

In your photo it appears that you have two separate PC assemblies, Electronic E-Unit (left), and electronic horn (middle).

You probably have two options:

1.) Check your transformer setup -- It may be inadvertently sending out the horn signal continuously, as though someone is holding down the horn button.  Try another conventional engine and see if you get the same result.  Also H1000's earlier comment about using a DC power pack to run this engine applies.  Make sure your supplying AC to the track, not DC.  If you use DC you will get a continuous horn.

2.) If the transformer setup checks out ok -- Now that you have the loco opened up you could disconnect the power lead to the horn PC board and stop the horn.  With this choice you obviously won't have any sound until you get the board fixed.

Mike

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  • MHM-43141-SX200-02-IMG_6108_cr

In addition to what's already been suggested, if anyone has an MTH Owner's Manual for the anticipated 'type' of sound system the OP has, perhaps they could look at the back of it under Trouble Shooting (and advise) because I recall that in their early years MTH used to include Charts at the back of the manual showing the correct lock-on hookups for various Lionel transformers.

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