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Operating Your Athearn Sound-Equipped Locomotive Using a Traditional Power Pack

Your new locomotive can be controlled using an ordinary power pack, though its operation will be a bit different than when running locomotives that do not have a decoder installed.

1. With the power pack throttle set to 0 (no voltage on the track), Tsunami will be silent. The throttle must be turned up to about 5 volts before there is enough voltage to power up Tsunami’s internal circuitry. At this point, you will begin to hear the background sounds turn on. The first sounds you will hear from a steam locomotive will be the blower and airpump sounds. The prime mover for each diesel model will come to life and idle quietly.

2. Increase the throttle setting to roughly 7.5 volts. This will set the locomotive in motion, increasing the speed of the engine as the throttle is turned up. You should start to hear additional sounds from the engine at this point. The diesel prime mover will ‘notch up’ as additional voltage is applied. Steam engines will use the voltage to time the exhaust chuff automatically.

When operating in DC:
When operating in DC (analog mode), be careful not to exceed the maximum input voltage of 27 volts. If your track voltage exceeds 21 volts, the sound decoder will shut down and the headlight, backup light, and board-mounted LEDs will flash 10 times to protect the decoder. When you see this condition, shut down the throttle immediately. While the Tsunami has a great many adjustments than can customize the sound and operation to your needs, you will need the use of a NMRA-compliant DCC Command Station for most of these changes. For more information, please see the Tsunami Steam or Diesel User’s Guides.