Author Topic: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)  (Read 335 times)

akkloes

  • Fireman
  • **
  • Posts: 5
Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« on: April 12, 2022, 09:35:08 AM »
I'm Kent from Grove City, Ohio, USA.

My wife & I have been into G scale trains for about 20 years (multiple houses = multiple layouts)
I am currently wanting to convert a Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax engine to battery power Railpro. (After that I will be converting a Spectrum 20.3 two-truck Shay).

I bought a Railpro RPO LM-4S-G locomotive module as the control module.
When I dropped the ashpan, I found I was looking at a Bachmann G811x-PCB02 board and came to a complete stop.  I assume I need some/all of the resistors on this board, so I didn't start cutting wires.  There is also a second PCB in the bunker which is for a soundboard.

I need some guidance on how to proceed so I don't cause damage.
Experience level is moderate, but I'm not good at reading PCBs.

Video is a couple years old...and prior to the Shay   

JRad

  • Engineer
  • ***
  • Posts: 73
Re: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2022, 06:28:37 PM »
Hello Kent -

I've not had my Climax open, but I'll assume that it is similar to the 2-Truck Shay in that the electronics you find in the ash pan is the driver and LEDs for the Firebox Flicker.

You basically have a choice. Either leave all the factory wiring/electronics in place and spend a lot of time tracing wires and finding places to stuff your module and batteries - OR - cut out all of the factory electronics and wire everything directly.  The second option will give you a bit more room for your battery, speaker and LM, but it will still be tight.

For my Bachmann 2-Truck Shay I gutted all but the flicker board which I retained and wired in.  Trucks were changed to direct wiring, rather than Bachmann's contacts, and all power pick-up removed from the trucks. A 4s LiIon pack was custom built for the job in a split configuration with 3 cells and the PCB in the boiler shell after removing the smoke system and all it's mounting flanges, and one cell in the air tank.  I also modified the tender shell to increase the interior room and added a large speaker and the LM in the tender.

This work was done in two separate projects. The first was years ago when I added battery, R/C and Sound using a different system, and recently when I ripped that system out and replaced 3 components with 1 LM.  Both are documented on LargeScaleCentral.Com - I can find and post links if you wish.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2022, 06:30:10 PM by JRad »

akkloes

  • Fireman
  • **
  • Posts: 5
Re: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2022, 06:28:13 PM »
If not too much trouble, I'd like to see the links.
I've traced/labeled most of the wires & I expect to keep the PCB for the flicker & direct wire the rest.
Right now I'm still collecting info & guidance.

The battery will be in a trailing "coal load" car.

all help appreciated.

gregeusa

  • Engineer
  • ***
  • Posts: 53
    • Greg's web site
Re: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2022, 08:37:22 PM »
There are two very differently wired climaxes... ripping the board out of the newer one will normally give inexperienced users fits, due to the extra complexity of the new circuitry.

Also, are you going to use the chuff "contacts" or the autochuff... that is also a reason not to rip out the electronics, since it needs power for the chuff circuit.

(I thought railpro has chuff trigger input)
Lots of tips and techniques on my site: www.elmassian.com contact me greg@elmassian.com

akkloes

  • Fireman
  • **
  • Posts: 5
Re: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2022, 06:48:12 AM »
Appreciate all the input...I've changed my initial thoughts.
I think I'm going to just go for direct wiring of the trucks and use the circuit board for flicker & lights.
Railpro will give me movement control and the sounds, including the chuff.
Battery will be a trailing car so I can switch it out, speaker in the tender.

Am I overlooking anything ?

JRad

  • Engineer
  • ***
  • Posts: 73
Re: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2022, 09:19:29 AM »
If not too much trouble, I'd like to see the links.


Here ya go -

Original conversion to battery & R/C 2013: https://largescalecentral.com/t/restoring-a-1st-gen-bachman-shay/67959
Note that die to a software change at the site, the photo links in that thread are broken. I have repaired them as of 4/23.

And when that system was replaced with RailPro: https://largescalecentral.com/t/cvsry-shay-5-change-to-railpro/81788
« Last Edit: April 23, 2022, 04:04:00 PM by JRad »

akkloes

  • Fireman
  • **
  • Posts: 5
Re: Bachmann Spectrum 20.3 Climax (akkloes introduction)
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2022, 05:16:21 AM »
Thanks !