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Author Topic: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim  (Read 225 times)

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Offline Lawrence

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Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« on: July 28, 2019, 02:56:03 PM »
Might be one of you guys can help me out before I start ripping them apart!

Bought a couple of slightly older ATlas GP9 TTs from a chap on Trainboard (you may of read my unhappy thread posts about customs and Parcelfarce), they run as sweet as you would expect Atlas models would be but the headlights and number boards are very dim, almost negligible in fact.
Is there anything I can do to improve this? Running DC.

Offline Malc

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2019, 03:28:45 PM »
I find the lights on Atlas locos are very dependent on the speed you are running. Obviously the faster, the higher the voltage. I donít know what wattage the grain of wheat bulbs are, but I would think there would be a series resistor. You could try dabbing another resistor across the one already there to reduce its value.
The years have been good to me, it was the weekends that did the damage.

Offline Lawrence

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2019, 08:24:48 PM »
@Malc I did find an exploded parts diagram for it, you can view it here http://download.atlasrr.com/pdf/PartsPDFs/NGP9TTLoco.pdf but it is difficult to make out anything specific.
I wonder if there is a better way of doing it, maybe fit an LED instead of the bulb? What would be your thoughts on that?
Wont know till I strip it down but I believe some folks have used a combination of diodes and capacitors to keep the lights on when running DC, something I have to investigate more about.

Offline Malc

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2019, 10:19:37 PM »
It looks like they may already be LEDs. If would be worth having a look. Again it looks like some surface mounted components on the circuit board, they could be diodes and resistors to do the current limiting for the LEDs and to do the directional lighting. If you had a rolling road, you could take the top off and just try holding a 2K resistor in parallel with one of the SMD chips to see if the lights get brighter. Going across the diode wonít do anything to the light in the direction of travel. Let me know how you get on and I may have a go at mine.
The years have been good to me, it was the weekends that did the damage.

Offline Bingley Hall

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2019, 03:17:29 PM »
Might be one of you guys can help me out before I start ripping them apart!

Bought a couple of slightly older ATlas GP9 TTs from a chap on Trainboard (you may of read my unhappy thread posts about customs and Parcelfarce), they run as sweet as you would expect Atlas models would be but the headlights and number boards are very dim, almost negligible in fact.
Is there anything I can do to improve this? Running DC.
No idea of a fix, but I gave one of my older Atlas GP9s, that had been sitting dormant for a decade, a spin just the other day and the headlights and marker board light are almost non existent compared to the later versions.

Offline Rich_S

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2019, 01:17:31 PM »

Bought a couple of slightly older ATlas GP9 TTs from a chap on Trainboard, they run as sweet as you would expect Atlas models would be but the headlights and number boards are very dim, almost negligible in fact. Is there anything I can do to improve this?

Hi Lawrence, Unfortunately this is one of the downsides to operating on DC. The lights on my older Kato GP38-2 and SD40 locomotives at slow speeds are barely lit. 

On my Bachmann H16-44, I did as you mentioned, replacing the grain of wheat light bulbs with LED's and resistors and that greatly improved the appearance of the head lights.

I used the Miniatronics Corp Yeloglo White LED. The 5 pack also includes the needed resistors.
https://miniatronics.com/products/5mm-leds-5-pcs-yeloglo-white?_pos=1&_sid=938c306d9&_ss=r

Cheers,
Rich S.

Offline Lawrence

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2019, 03:59:45 PM »

Bought a couple of slightly older ATlas GP9 TTs from a chap on Trainboard, they run as sweet as you would expect Atlas models would be but the headlights and number boards are very dim, almost negligible in fact. Is there anything I can do to improve this?

Hi Lawrence, Unfortunately this is one of the downsides to operating on DC. The lights on my older Kato GP38-2 and SD40 locomotives at slow speeds are barely lit. 

On my Bachmann H16-44, I did as you mentioned, replacing the grain of wheat light bulbs with LED's and resistors and that greatly improved the appearance of the head lights.

I used the Miniatronics Corp Yeloglo White LED. The 5 pack also includes the needed resistors.
https://miniatronics.com/products/5mm-leds-5-pcs-yeloglo-white?_pos=1&_sid=938c306d9&_ss=r

@Rich_S thanks for that, I'll take a look at them, I do have a few LEDs and resistors kicking about so I may have something similar, I also have some SMD LEDs which are nice and bright.  I think I may also have a Bachmann H16-44 kicking about, been so long since I ran any of my US stock.
Anyway will be the weekend before I get on to this but I will report back, eventually!

Offline Rich_S

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2019, 08:48:00 PM »
I'll take a look at them, I do have a few LEDs and resistors kicking about so I may have something similar, I also have some SMD LEDs which are nice and bright. 

Hi Lawrence, I forgot to mention in my last post, Miniatronics also has 2mm and 3mm LED 5 packs.

https://miniatronics.com/collections/yeloglo-white/products/2mm-tower-leds-5-pcs-yeloglo-white
https://miniatronics.com/collections/yeloglo-white/products/3mm-leds-5-pcs-yeloglo-white

I just happened to choose the 5mm LED because the FM H16-44 has a large single lens headlight.
I removed the original light board, when I added the two LED's. Hindsight being 20/20, I probably could have purchased the 3mm LED for this project.  :doh:

Cheers,
Rich S.

Offline themadhippy

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Re: Atlas GP9 TT - Lighting dim
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2019, 10:34:13 PM »
How much  :o you can get 100 leds and 100 resistors on the bay of e  for less than half  of what there charging for 5

 

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