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I'm not sure what the durability of most mobile decoders are but I have ten (mostly Digitrax) of them that work flawlessly. I was in the process of putting together a GTW GP38-2 (Bicentennial loco). I had installed the new engine, and wired in the new Digitrax DH123D decoder. Well the directional lighting did not work, the front light was always on. Then I pulled another DH123D from a working loco plugged it in to the GP38-2 and had the same problem :confused: After emailing/talking to Digitrax they told me the decoders were broke. I took them back to my awesome LHS and traded them in for new ones. New ones work great.

I just can't believe that I had two bad decoders, I'm sure it was something that I must have done.

By the way for LED's Digitrax recommended 1K Ohm 1/4 watt resistors one in the yellow wire and one in the white wire.
 

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Yard Master & Research
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Remember the IC"S are prone to destruction by static charge. Synthetic fabrics without a softner, through a dryer, is enough.

The Resistor makes sense. 18 volts - 3v for an LED is 15 volts / .02 amps = 750 ohms. 1000 ohms is well in the safety margin. That's without the drop in voltage from the track.
 
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