Decoder Installation

We will be pleased to quote for the installation of any decoder that we supply or that is forwarded to us with a locomotive or other rolling stock.  Please contact us before despatch and note that:

  • We cannot guarantee to fit any decoder into every vehicle;  it is sometimes impossible.
  • Decoder installation invalidates warranties except for plug in types for 'DCC ready' locos.
  • Decoder fitted stock can no longer be described as 'mint' or as 'in original condition'.
  • Creating space for decoders often involves modifications such as cutting and grinding.
  • Many old locos give disappointing results after conversion and we will not waste your money on poor performance.
  • Time is not of the essence of any agreement to install.


As a guide the labour charge for fitting decoders in N or OO gauge averages:

  • Hardwire for Motor control only £22.50 inc VAT
  • Farish N all types hardwire £22.50 inc VAT
  • Sound decoder fitting including test and set up for DCC ready types £30.00 inc VAT
  • Plug & Play decoders £10.00 inc VAT


Please note that labour charges are subject to VAT at the current rate.

For other work or if particular problems are encountered we charge at an hourly rate of £30.00 for labour; please note that we do not undertake any repair or maintenance work and locomotives with poor running or known faults should not be sent.

If examination of the job does reveal the need for additional work such as motor servicing or running gear maintenance you will be contacted before more work is undertaken which, if agreed, will be charged at the hourly rate; usually the loco will be returned, as received, if the fault is obvious before commencement of work.

We do not fit decoders into locomotives that do not run satisfactorily under normal DC;  DCC cannot cure poor locomotive performance.  We reserve the right to refuse any installation; typical reasons are:                

  • When loco stall current exceeds decoder rating
  • There is insufficient space to fit the selected decoder.
  • Where the amount of work involved renders installation impractical.
  • Where the locomotive is not in a fit condition and could damage the decoder.

New services in association with DCC Custom Lighting by Jason Edmunds - For those who want that little bit extra.

Digitrains Ltd have undertaken decoder installations for several years but we do not undertake further work such as fitting additional lighting or smoke units.  We recommend that these services are sourced through Jason who specialises in fitting bespoke lighting. 

Just a brief summary of what he does regularly in his own words:

" Manufacture & installation of custom made lighting sets for diesel & electric locos configured to customer specification. These can be 'standard' dcc directional lighting, or 4 function lighting which enables independent tail light control or independent cab light control.  I also produce my own interior cab lighting.

My light sets include all headcode variants for most diesel & electric locos. These include sealed beam marker lights, illuminated headcode displays for 'domino' or 4-character alpha numeric displays. Also where required high intensity headlights.

Variants of the class 20's include:
Disc headocde
Box headocde domino or headcode display
Limited edition 'Hunslet' or 'DRS' types which are disc headcode with high intensity headlight.

I also undertake steam loco fittings including sound, smoke, working lamps ( dcc concepts) & firebox flicker ( also which I produce).
All this is carried out to the highest standards. To achieve great results with dcc concepts lamps I undercoat in matt black to block unwanted light bleed, then finish them in white.   All functions can be mapped to customer specification.

The list of locomotives I produce light sets for is:

Hornby & Bachmann class 08 / 09
Bachmann class 20 all types
Bachmann class 24
Bachmann class 25
Heljan class 28
Lima class 31
Bachmann & Lima class 37 all types
Bachmann & Lima class 40 all types
Bachmann & Mainline class 42
Bachmann class 44
Bachmann class 45 / 46 all types
Hornby & Lima class 47
Bachmann class 55 all types
Heljan class 58
Hornby & Lima class 59 all types
Hornby & Lima class 66
Hornby & Lima class 67
Hornby & Lima class 73
Hornby class 86
Hornby & Lima class 87
Hornby class 90
Hornby Eurostar
Hornby APT
Hornby & Lima class 101
Lima class 117
Hornby & Lima class 121
Hornby & Lima class 156.

Here's a link to my Photobucket site showing some of the work I have carried out."

Jason works mainly in OO and does not undertake N gauge work.

We can advise as to how to get work done by him. We normally supply the parts such as decoders and speakers and let Jason do the whole fitting job as we feel there's no point fitting a decoder and speaker to a model only to have it immediately dismantled again to fit extra lighting or smoke components. 

Call us now on 01522 527731

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