• ProtoThrottle




The ProtoThrottle™ Realistic Control Stand Throttle mimics a standard EMD control stand including full detent throttle and reverser handles, a spring-loaded horn handle, a push-on/push-off bell button, and fully programmable front and rear headlights with a setting for ditch lights. In addition, the ProtoThrottle comes with a robust faceplate machined from aluminum, including prototype bezels, and anodized to give the look and feel of a real control stand.

"That’s one impressive piece of hardware."Tony Koester

"I'm having more fun with trains now than I have in years."Pete Mulvany

"Overall, this is truly a game changer for me... that’s an investment worth making."James McNab

"...the only description I can think of is WOW!!!! What a cool addition to any layout, it was so easy to use and realistic to operate you guys have hit a real home-run here."Lionel Strang

The ProtoThrottle is being developed in tandem with Scott Thornton of Designgrid LLC. Scott is responsible for the throttle’s aesthetics, faceplate mechanical production, and marketing.

Frequently Asked Questions


  • Fully wireless throttle
  • Eight detent throttle handle
  • Reverser handle with centered position
  • Brake handle
  • Spring-loaded horn handle
  • Push-on/push-off bell button
  • Front and rear headlight knobs with dim and ditch light settings
  • Auxiliary buttons that can be assigned to any DCC function
  • Works with any standard DCC decoder
  • Interfaces to any* DCC system
  • Highly configurable to suit your operating style
  • NEW! Securely store your throttle with the ProtoThrottle Pocket
  • Laser cut holder also available from Precision Design Company

*Note: Requires purchase of a separate receiver specific to your DCC system.

Due to regulatory requirements, the ProtoThrottle can only be shipped to the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.  Orders placed with a shipping address to any other country will be cancelled and refunded.


Click here for a video Product Review by Model Railroader Magazine.

Another excellent review by Shane Mason:

Watch the ProtoThrottle in action on professional locomotive engineer Tim Garland’s Seaboard Central...

Watch the ProtoThrottle in action during an operating session on Thomas Klimoski's Georgia Northeastern Model Railroad...

Two short videos produced by Joe Atkinson explaining how the ProtoThrottle has made his layout operations more realistic...


Approximate Dimensions: 7.6"(L) x 3.2"(W) x 3.0"(H)

Powered by 2x AA batteries (not included).


The complete gEDA design files are available on GitHub.

User Manual | Menu Map (Legal Size)

Previous User Manuals: v1.0

Schematic: Main | LCD Board


v1.1.0 (Rev A73AE5) | Release Notes (10/21/2018)

v1.0.0 (Rev A4A983) | Release Notes (06/29/2018)

Update Instructions
  • $482.00

  • 9 in stock

Don't forget to also order a receiver for your DCC system!

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News & Application Notes

ProtoThrottle Auction for Cancer – It’s Done!

Auction3To every one who bid or helped us spread the word, we would like to say a big thanks. The two charity throttles brought in over $2300 for the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation! We can’t say thanks enough!


ProtoThrottle Auction for Cancer

We will be auctioning off two ProtoThrottles and receivers with full proceeds donated to the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre in Toronto, Canada, in honor of Lionel Strang, host of A Modeler’s Life podcast. Lionel received treatment for Stage 4 melanoma and he raises funds each year to help other cancer patients cope with the emotional burden that cancer brings.


Thank You Spring Creek!

We are back home from our weekend in Deshler, NE, at the Spring Creek Model Trains train show and open house. A big thank you to Dave and Deb (and the whole Spring Creek crew) for hosting a wonderful event and allowing us to be part of it. If you are ever in the Deshler area, be sure to stop in and take a look around. You won’t be disappointed!

Train Show This Weekend!

We will be at the Spring Creek Model Trains train show this coming weekend, June 29th and 30th, in Deshler, NE. Please stop by and say hi! We will have the ProtoThrottle available to try, along with our new line of Grain Belt Models culvert pipes and grain bins.  We hope to see you there!

ProtoThrottle in Action: Cheyenne, WY

Spring Creek Model Trains will be at the Sherman Hill Model Railroad Show in Cheyenne, WY, this coming weekend, May 18-19, 2019. Stop by their booth for a chance to try out the ProtoThrottle, Realistic Control Stand Throttle!

Spring Creek will be on the road throughout the year, providing you an opportunity to try the ProtoThrottle for yourself. For the latest show schedule, please check the Spring Creek Model Trains calendar.

Introducing the ProtoThrottle Pocket

Announcing the latest holder for your ProtoThrottle… the ProtoThrottle Pocket!

Store and protect your ProtoThrottle with the ProtoThrottle Pocket. Made from strong and durable black PETG plastic, this holder will cradle your throttle securely and out of the way when not in use, while still providing access to the controls if needed. Three mounting holes in the back make for easy attachment to a wall or the layout fascia.  Click here to purchase.

Tsunami2 True Idle

The Tsunami2 True Idle feature can improve the operating realism of your locomotives when used with the ProtoThrottle.  Take a look at this video below from SoundTraxx for more information.

Tsunami2 (V1.2) True Idle lets you run your Model Trains YOUR WAY!

With all of the hype around the new Proto Throttle we have had a lot of questions about our True Idle feature. In this video, our product expert explains the feature, shows examples of how it works, and explains how real locomotives operate in these scenarios.To accurately simulate how a real locomotive runs, original Tsunami2 decoders did not change the prime mover notch when going from speed step 0 to speed step 1. We found that it is a common customer perception that the prime mover should notch up when this happens. So in Tsunami2 software version 1.2 we added this in for you!CVs used in this video:CV 112: Enable the E-Stop Idle, Alarm Bell, HEP Generator and True-Idle Modes.

Posted by SoundTraxx on Friday, April 5, 2019

Readers Choice Winner!

We are pleased to announce that the ProtoThrottle is Model Railroader’s 2019 Readers Choice Award Winner for the “Most Innovative Model Railroad Product”!  Thank you to all who voted!

Dead Rail Interface for the ProtoThrottle

We’ve been asked a few times if there would ever be a dead rail interface for the ProtoThrottle.  While this is not something we would likely embark on ourselves (Nathan and I are both N-scale modelers), the open source nature of the design has allowed others to do so.  Over the last few months, Martin Sant has been busy building a dead rail interface for the ProtoThrottle to run his G-scale trains.  Check out the progress on Martin’s blog.

Decoding the ProtoThrottle Notch Settings

One of the key distinguishing characteristics of the ProtoThrottle Realistic Control Stand Throttle is its throttle handle with eight notches plus idle.  With those characteristics detents, you can operate your locomotives like the prototype and have the prime mover sounds respond accordingly.  Setting this up on the ProtoThrottle is simple and takes just a few minutes, with the help of the ProtoThrottle, to find where your particular DCC decoder transitions between notches.  Those transitions can then be used to pick the optimal speed steps to assign to each notch.



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