American Flyer Sound Installation



Published by Chuck Eral "Valley of the Sun S-Gaugers" member.

Adding Williams by Bachmann True Blast II Whistle & Bell to American Flyer 4-8-4


These are both American Flyer / Lionel #800 4-8-4 Northern' from 2006. The one steamer on the outside is all original with RailSound 5.0, less smoke with crew talk. The steamer on the inside, the RailSound "fried" after about 6 months. Without being able to get replacement parts for the sound unit.
I went ahead and changed out the "squeaky smoke unit" to original American Flyer smoke unit, which gave me lots of smoke with cho-choo and no squeak. I also converted the front truck to knuckle coupler (the steamer on the inside) for double-heading the two 4-8-4 steamers. 

Bachmann Sound Board # 00246 True Blast II Whistle & Bell (Steam)
Lionel Speaker # 003-01, 8 Ohm, 2 Watt, X75

All I needed now was to add a little sound, and it wound sound better then new. I ran across this forum were this guy was installing a Williams - Bachmann sound into an American Flyer Box Car for very little cost. The Williams sound card and speaker is made for 0 scale. The speaker was large for the AF tender, but I already had a speaker in tender. You can see by the picture how much larger the O scale speaker is from the Flyer/Lionel speaker. The sound card fit just perfect between the tender body with the double sided mounting foam tape that was provided that I cut (see photo) into two pieces.


Side and top views of speakers on tender
  • horn and ringing bell, cost between $30.00-$40.00 dollars.
  • installation instructions included with speaker and sound board.
  • board dimensions: L = 1 1/2 ", W = 1 3/16", H = 1 1/8"
  • speaker with sound enhancer dimensions: D = 2", H = 1 1/8" (not installed)


I added a video so you see the difference between the two 4-8-4 steams.
The True Blast II bell I did not care for, but I did like the whistle.
Which do you like the Lionel RailSound 
or the Williams True Blast II Whistle better?



Notice the difference in sound quality with tender body on,
than with it off!

 Diesel Sound & Bell inside the American Flyer 
660 Combination Car



True Blast  II Sound Video 
I used the DHB28-Box Speaker that is an 8 ohm, self-enclosed speakers from Train Master Hobbies.  It measures 28 mm x 28 mm square. The speaker is only 13 mm deep and its self-enclosed. This would be a great fit for an S-Scale installation. You can go larger or smaller depending on the scale your working in. Just stick with the 8 ohm 2 watt speaker when using the True Blast II sound board. 




Links that deal with adding sound (Steam & Diesel) to American Flyer model Trains:
  1. Installing True Blast Sound into a AF box car.
  2. Installing Sound into American Flyer Steam.
  3. Installing Sound into American Flyer Talking Station.

** The World of Model Trains **