How about the exact MTH model number?

There are two boards in the mix, but given that you have light, smoke, etc., I'd assume the boiler board would be the one to look at.  Did you do the usual diagnostic steps, a factory reset, a conventional reset, etc?  Did this ever run?  If so, how did the failure occur?

First step is to make sure the tether is fully seated on the engine side. Many times there is not enough slack in the tether wires and it pulls itself loose from the connector. If it was only partially out you might have lights but not motor power.



GUNRUNNERJOHN.......,,MTH model # 30-1724-1.                                                       4-6-6-4 proto 3   Imperial Challenger               


I think your advice to replace the boiler board AE-1000E32 is the way I'd like to go with this to get the smoke fan working  .  I'm not familiar with a channel to pick one of these boiler boards up. Not being a tech, where would I be able to get one ?                                                                                                                                                                       John,the FAILURE  occured when I replaced the boiler board with a KNOWN bad one that looked like a match for the Challengers board.                                           Interestingly enough , the fan motor FET Q87 on that board matched the one on the original board and when I installed the bad board the smoke fan motor ran steady at idle and when I rotated the flywheel by hand the fan motor noise matched the chuffing sound.  This bad board though was the cause of the loss of motor engagement.  On reinstalling the original boiler board I had working motors again but of course,  no smoke fan motor noise.🀐                   The bad board might be a place I could try practicing detaching an FET 😁 . Any spealized equipment needed? 


NORTON..........The drawbar connections are good and tight.  I reinforce the female housings at both ends on my steamer's drawbars .  Previous posts mentioned the hard to detect cracking that would occur on the female connector housings.  I use MTH plastic tender post securing devices to help keep the tender connection in place also.

The only problem I had with the proto 2 steamers was the connection at the engine where the tether mounted to the rigid pin assembly.  I had to do some soldering on that small board to correct an intermittent issue.  





yes you need a very small tip soldering iron and the traces can be destroyed very easily, most techs just clip off the old fet leads and then clean off the excess pieces with solder iron n brush while heated !then after cleaning pc board install a new fet ic!

o gauge  trains ,music ,computer repair windows 7 and 10!

ASC Tech MTH school completed! 2019 !

Note that there are two different versions of the tender and boiler boards for steam, so any new boards you get will be the EMI compatible versions.  However, these boards also require a certain level of chain file code.  If both boards were the AE-1000E32 boards, loading the same code should have worked.  However, when you replace the boiler board, you MUST reload the chain files for both the boiler and tender.

Boiler Code – boiler-3232.srec or higher

Tender Code – engine-3239.srec or higher

Alan Mancus posted:

yes you need a very small tip soldering iron and the traces can be destroyed very easily, most techs just clip off the old fet leads and then clean off the excess pieces with solder iron n brush while heated !then after cleaning pc board install a new fet ic!

There's a lot more than tip size in play, the most important parameter is the temperature.  I stick to the minimum temperature needed to work on PCB's, as excessive heat will lift the traces.  Also, many parts have a spec of 260C for 10 seconds for soldering.  If you're doing any amount of PCB work, a calibrated temperature controlled iron is a must IMO.

Wow,  John.....did you attend MIT ?                                               I've been learning so much from all these great people on the forum . You have come up with reloading chain files now.      I told my dealer that he could sponsor me for the school but I'm way down the " chain " for this kind of aptitude.                                                                                            OK  John, how do you reload the chain files ?   How do I get this boiler board ?

I'm going to have to go to Amazon for the the temp controlled iron.  Miss my Radio Shack store.

Thanks for your patience.

No, just dreamed about attending MIT!

The chain files are included with the PS/3 sound files in the ZIP file you downloaded.  You'll notice there are two files in the download, one a .MTH file and the other is another .ZIP file.  They are loaded with the loader program you loaded the sound files with, use the FLASH icon.  You don't unpack the ZIP file, just point the loader at it and it processes all of the files.

Here's a typical steam chain file ZIP contents listing.  You'll notice the versions are later than the cutoff I mentioned earlier, so this chain file set is compatible with the EMI boards.

If you're interested in a nice soldering station, I use the Hakko-FX888D, and I highly recommend it.  It's a standard in the industry and is used by countless industrial firms.

You can order the boiler board direct from MTH I believe, or you can also get it through an MTH dealer.


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HEY  John................                                                                            .........Thanks for the info about the soldering station and board info.

As far as the info for the board instructions .............                  ........Judy says " it's  time for a road trip to GUNNERJOHN's  

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