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The lockout switch on a early protosound engine should be in the OFF position if you want to run them like a normal mechanical or electronic e unit, neutral, reverse, neutral, forward? Putting it in the ON position puts the engine in the last state it was in only?

I bought a MTH PA Alcos A-A with a powered B Alco unit. I do plan on adding another powered B Alco unit in the consist and know the switch needs to be ALL in the same on/off position.

I intend on running them with the neutral, reverse, neutral, forward position.  

Last edited by Ted Bertiger
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Don't see a question in there.

But which Protosound are they, 1, 2, or 3?  None of my Protosound-1 locomotives have a direction lockout switch, it's all handled by the electronics.  I don't own any Protosound-2 so I can't speak to those, and I run all my Protosound-3 mostly in DCC so I haven't looked for a switch.

As for starting direction, look for a little F on the side of the locomotive, make sure they are both on the same end of the train (For the lead A unit and the B unit.) and they should start the same direction.

So when I posted about protosound, these are early protosound.

I will be running them conventional with a TPC and a legacy remote. Does this already with my E-8's which are proto one. Well aware of the F on the engines.

I am guessing to leave the switch in the off position to have the regular sequence of neutral, reverse, neutral, forward??

Last edited by Ted Bertiger

In the original protosound engines that you have, you are correct. One at a time, get the engine running in the direction that you want it to go, and turn off the power. Then change the lockout switch to ON. So on the lead unit, you probably want the cab end running forward. If my memory serves me correctly, the B unit has a cable to connect it to the lead unit (A unit), thus there should not be a separate switch on it, it just does whatever the lead unit tells it to do.

Should you get another powered engine that doesn't have a cable to hook to the lead unit and has its own lockout switch, do the same thing to lock it in whatever direction you want it to run.

If you want to run them in the forward, neutral, reverse mode, make sure all switches are OFF. However, there is no easy way to tell the engine what is FORWARD, it defaults to the cab end in most engines, so if you get two powered A unit and you run them in forward, neutral, reverse mode, both A units will try to run with the cab end going forward and thus won't be in sequence with each other if the trailing unit is trying to run the cab point to the back.

One other very important point, early protosound engines have a battery that is like completely discharged and is bad. If you leave that battery in the engine, sometimes it will cause the engine to get in a "scrambled" state and it takes a special chip to correct that. So replace the battery with a "new" battery or a BCR (battery eliminator). If the engine (like the B unit) is connected by a cable to the lead unit, it will not have a battery in it.

Last edited by DG


I replaced the battery in the A unit with a BCR. Old batteries are now ‘throw away’ batteries.
So, I have a powered A unit, a powered B unit, another powered B unit and a dummy A unit. All of them are connected with cables so having all 3 powered units in the OFF position will do what I intend to do with N,R,N,F sequence. The 2 B units do what the lead unit will do.
Thank you for responding with something I thought was the way it would work, just needed a 2nd opinion. Thanks!

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