After reading many posts from different people on model rail forums, I approached the DCC installation of the Bachmann A1 class with a little trepidation. I’m happy to report that in practice it was a relative simple task.
Unlike more recently produced models, the DCC chip is fitted in the locomotive body and not in the tender. So naturally the first task (after testing the model works ok in DC operation) is separating the loco body from the chassis. This is done by unscrewing three screws as indicated in the picture above. Note that when separating the body from the chassis the wire indicated in the picture below will stay with the chassis and will require gently pulling out from the cab and body hand rail knob. Keep in mind that the reverse has to be done when reassembling the locomotive later.
The DCC blanking plate is to be found under where the firebox would usually be. It is fair to say that the thing that has stumped most the people who have had trouble fitting a DCC chip have been the wires that sit above the DCC socket, as shown below.
These cables are probably here to make it easier for those who prefer to hard-wire a DCC chip rather than use the socket. But for me and most of you out there, the cables are only a very minor irritation and can be easily gently unwound to allow access and removal of the DCC blanking plate and fitting of the DCC chip, as below.
After fitting the DCC chip, test the chassis on track with a DCC controller to check everything works as it should. Following that, find a spot for the DCC chip in the locomotive body. There is lots of space in the locomotive body for even the largest 8 pin DCC chips on the market. I put the chip in the smokebox, but could also have fitted it into the firebox. Reassemble the body to the chassis, carefully feeding the wire handrail back in place as you do. Your DCC layout will now be ready to be hit by the Tornado! Click here to read the review of this excellent model.