Over the last week I’ve been trying to solve the issue of sporadic electrical performance on my Athearn RDG SW1500 switcher, I’ve been looking at fixes that will bypass the weak points in the wheel to truck, truck to decoder electrical path.
When looking at possible solutions one stood out to me as the most direct route from wheel/axle to the decoder. By soldering on thin/flexible decoder wire directly to the brass square bush, I now have a direct connection from the axle to the decoder, this means I have bypassed the four weak points in the Athearn design. These being the brass square bearing to bronze side frame, side frame through the rivet, rivet to brass/metal tabs & finally the plastic caps for wire to decoder.
It also means that the test SW1500 is now also “all” wheel pickup too, that’s eight wheels, grouped into pairs and directly connected to each of the four LokSound - Select decoder tabs. I’m still testing the new truck combination and what level of track/wheel cleaning is required to get the best performance.
Videos to come when I’m happy with the setup & performance...