The installation is for Z-Scale AZL GP7 locomotive. It uses Z2 decoder and was performed by TCS

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Finished

Here is what your installation will look like in the end, but please follow all of the steps below to avoid potentially burning out a decoder.

First remove the shell.

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Shell Off

 

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Motor Tabs

Next remove the copper clips from the lighting board.

 

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Motor Tabs Off

 

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation No Lighting Board

Next slip out the lighting board.

The following steps are necessary to prevent a possible short circuit which would damage the decoder. In this locomotive there is an extra pad on the supplied AZL lighting board. The motor tab will short the motor drive to the track power and burn out the decoder if this pad is left in place. Please follow the next few steps very carefully to prevent losing your decoder to this.

Please locate the pad highlighted below on the underside of the lighting board and remove it with a hobby knife or Dremel tool as demonstrated below.

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Bottom Pad

The pad circled in red needs to be removed.

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Bottom pad scraping

It can be scraped off with a hobby knife as shown above, or ground off with a Dremel tool.

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation bottom pad scrapped clean

Now the pad is removed and it cannot short out the decoder.

NOTE: While there will still be a spot in the center from the via as long as it is flush, or slightly below the surface of the board you should be safe from shorts. Removing this pad is crucial to prevent your decoder from shorting the motor tab to the track power. Cut the blue wire off.

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Decoder Wiring

Now solder the wires to the board (as shown above) and fit the decoder snuggly beneath the long lead LED.

NOTE: When soldering, do not put the wires through the holes in the board because they can short against the frame. Just solder them to the pads and you will be good to go. The following solder method is recommended: First tin each pad on the board, next cut the wires to an adequate length, now strip 1/64" of insulation off each wire, next tin each wire (carefully so as not to shrink back the insulation), and finally solder each tinned wire to the pad shown above.

Red is Pin 3
Orange is Pin 1
Yellow is Pin 6
White is Pin 5
Grey is Pin 2
Black is Pin 4  
Blue wire is not used, cut it off.

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation flashing exposed

While you have the board out please check for metal flashing (as shown highlighted in red above) that can short against the motor tabs. While this is not in every locomotive, if it is there it must be removed to prevent the motor from shorting to the frame and consequently damaging the decoder. If it is there you will need to split the frame and remove the flashing with a small file.

 

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Decoder Installed

Finally, slide the lighting board back in while keeping the Z2 decoder underneath the LED.

 

AZL GP7 Z-Scale Decoder Installation Fits Well

As you can see the Z2 decoder fits well inside the AZL Z scale locomotive, making it a true Z-Scale decoder.

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