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1  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: My North Star Express Has its' Tender But My Track Powered JS Cars Squeak on: November 10, 2017, 08:48:07 PM
I will firs ask 'Did you lubricate the axle ends with a good quality plastic compatible oil or grease?" I have had far more axles squeak than electrical contacts.

Next, unless you use an oil or grease that is 'electrically compatible', you will add more resistance to the circuit and possibly create more issues. If I used anything I would possibly use a bit of graphite. Keep in mind that oil and grease are both insulators. The transformer outside your home on the pole is insulated with oil.
2  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Idea for a new shay on: September 19, 2017, 04:11:47 PM

Although I agree with Jerry in content, it might have been said a bit more tactfully. That said, I suggest you read my post in this thread,33756.0.html, and it might give a little clarity to Jerry's comment
3  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: What Could Possibly Go Wrong? on: September 14, 2017, 09:18:44 AM

A late comer to the  party, but please let the 'Know nothing busy body' make an observation. Not being knowledgable on the Train Power controller I went to the USA Trains site to get educated. Reading the info one statement jumped out at me and raised a red flag.

The variable control not only limits the output voltage but sets the waveform appropriate to the scale train being run. This feature makes the TRAIN POWER 10 a pack for all gauges."

It has been my experience that a statement like this indicates either DCC control or PWM (Pulse Width Modulation), both can cause issues with Bachmann electronics. I suspect this may be why simple Ten Wheelers with almost no electronics work and the Rail Truck is giving you issues. I don't know how to set the Train Power to Linear DC, but maybe Joe can help you there. I don't know this to be the fix, but this has not been addressed in the conversation so far.

Good luck finding a resolution, I am sure one exists somewhere.

Bob C.
4  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Bachmann Brass Track on: September 08, 2017, 09:40:41 PM

A word of caution on Bachmann curve track. The Brass track comes in two sizes - 4 foot diameter (2 foot radius), and 8 foot diameter (4 foot radius). This is acceptable for small wheelbase steam and diesel locomotives, but not going to work well for larger ones. As an example, I have a Spectrum K27 that will negotiate a 10' diameter circle, but it does not like it. My wifes USAT GP7/9 will do 8 foot, but does not like it. If all you plan to run is short wheelbase locos, then the smaller (and 8 foot diameter is on the smaller spectrum) curves are OK. If your plans include The larger 6 axle diesels, or larger USAT and Aristo steam, the I would look to find the largest diameter curves you can stand.

Happy Railorading

Bob C.
5  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Bachmann Brass Track on: September 06, 2017, 05:44:20 PM
@Greg - I haven't found any secret stashes....just commenting on what 'will' work. I am aware that Hillmans are getting to be scarce as hen's teeth, but they do occasionally show up on Ebay. I simply answered the OP question as accurately as I could.
6  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Bachmann Brass Track on: September 05, 2017, 09:20:16 AM

Generically, yes, all those manufacturers mentioned will play together. That said, they do not all use exactly the same dies for extruding the rail so profile of the rail may not match exactly.  Manufacturers mold their tie strip to provide proper track gauge for their rail profile, that is why one manufacturers tie strip may not fit another's rial. This will also carry through to slip joiners, some will work across brands, others not so much. My recommendation would be to use slip joiners common to the brand where possible. When joining differing brands I suggest using a Hillman or SplitJaw type of clamp.

Bob C.
7  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Problems with PhotoBucket deleting my photos in many of my posts. on: August 20, 2017, 04:30:23 PM
Some day folks will come to the realization that 'Free' ain't free. What Photobucket has done to folks is effectively 'Ransoming' their photos, although if one reads the T's and C's of usage, Photobucket effectively OWNS anything you place in their storage....that is the HOOK to the free storage. Personally I find it difficult to understand why folks continue to look for a 'Free' service when the Photobucket scenario is only one of several services that were free and went pay for in the past and that will follow into the future.

I pay nominally $11.00 per month (a little over $130 per year) for my Godaddy web hosting services, guaranteeing my continued services so long as I pay the bill. I know what, when and where things are going to happen on my service, not to mention it is backed up religiously by Godaddy. I also maintain a multitude of CD/DVD and thumb drive backups of all my important photos and documents.


Bob C.
8  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Any announcements for large scale from NMRA convention? on: August 06, 2017, 11:15:35 PM
Bill, add to your commentary, mine located here,33756.0.html
9  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Release of K-27 on: July 22, 2017, 02:34:08 PM
It has be relayed to me that with the passing of Lee Riley, the 1:20.3 champion in the board room, so has passed the 1:20.3 Spectrum product line. This is NOT a statement directly from Bachmann, but so far has very closely paralleled any responses from Bachmann about 1:20.3 future product.

From a business standpoint, I can understand their point of view. The 1:20.3 line of product is a niche market of a niche market. Model railroading as a whole is a shrinking market, especially in the scale model builder market for vendors. Large scale is a niche market of model railroading in the first place, overshadowed by HO and N scales. The 1:20.3 marked is heavily overshadowed by the 1:29 crowd making 1:20.3 a niche marked of a niche market. From the board room, folks are looking at bottom line, not necessarily the wants and desires of a smaller group of buyers. Combine that with the fact that we as the buyers complain about the high cost of our niche market products, not wanting to pay the cost of the company recovering it's investment to produce a, for a specific product, short run. The shorter the product run, the higher the per piece price .... simple economics.

Personally, I believe the 1:20.3 market is going to regress to the scratch builder / basher, taking what is available in old stock and available parts and make what it is you desire. This may be the case for large scale as a whole, not just 1:20.3, due to the very soft market for hobby products. The cost effective availability of 3D printers and 3D printing services like Shapeways, and free or very inexpensive software like Sketchup have very significantly changed the landscape for the remaining manufacturers in large scale.

Along these lines, I would suggest that Bachmann Industries offer the most common needed spare parts, and keep them in stock. Bahcmann has re-introduces the popular ex-Aristo Craft Egg Liners. Their motor blocks will sell well as replacements for existing product in the field and for folks looking for a motor block for a unique build of their own. Having spent 40+ years in the mechanical design field, I understand that not every design is a winner out of the box. A second suggestion to Bachmann is, when a design flaw is brought to your attention by customers, it would be wise to either a) quickly find a long term fix for the issue, or b) maintain stock of parts to repair the issue. I can't speak for anyone but myself, but available parts to keep my equipment running would go a long way to keeping my loyalty.

My largest complaint with all the manufacturers is their unwillingness to tell the truth to the customers. Short quips like above from Bachmann Industries, to me, is far more damaging to customer loyalty than stating the real truth. Yes, the quip is truth, but leaves a tremendous amount to be desired and can be interpreted in many ways. Some good, some not so good. I believe it would be better if Bachmann chose to direct that interpretation.
10  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: couplers on: March 30, 2017, 01:56:05 PM

If you can't find the Spectrum couplers on the Bachmann parts site, you can substitute Kadee 'G' couplers. The 830 box should mount directly where the Bachmann box mounted. And an FYI, the Kadee coupler will mount directly in the Bachmann coupler box.

Hope this helps.

Bob C.
11  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: D&RGW Tank cars on: February 22, 2017, 11:11:00 PM

I am not for sure that such a list exists per se, but I gather you have done the usual 'Google Search' already. My next suggestion would be to become a member of the Narrow Gauge Discussion Forum ( if you are not already a member, and post the question there. Another source, which helped me gather up the numbers for the 'Gramps' cars in the 11XXX number series was on the  Friends site ( Hope this will aid in your search, and good luck.

Bob C.
12  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Large Scale Forney coupler height problem on: January 07, 2017, 08:22:13 PM

Welcome to Large Scale. The issue you are experiencing is relative to scale, and methodology. The Forney you purchased is a 1:20.3 model of a finely detailed model. As such, in keeping with prototype practices, the couplers are 'body mounted' height. That means that in scale, the center line of the coupler is approximately 1 1/8 inches high, and relatively stable.

By your description, I believe you are running 'Big Hauler' rolling stock with truck mounted couplers. These models are roughly 1:22 to 1:24 in scale. The couplers are also smaller in size. The couplers mounted on the trucks are supposed to be at 1 1/16 inches center line which one would think will work. However the truck mounted couplers tend to 'sag' a bit in the first place and any undulations in the track will make them come uncoupled when mating with a 1:20.3 coupler. I did the same thing when I first entered into Large Scale.

If you are running on tight radius track (less than an 8 foot diameter circle) I recommend purchasing a spare truck for one of your cars. Modify the 'tang' the coupler is mounted to, to raise it up to better match the coupler on the Forney. Althought different, the couplers will play nice together when set at the same height. By altering an additional truck, you maintain the originality of the car. I wish I had taken pictures of what I had done to share.

An alternate method, assuming larger than 8 foot diameter circles, would be to choose one car and modify it by body mounting a coupler on one end of the car to mate the Forney. Again, this only alters one car.

Good luck, and Happy Railroading.

Bob C.
13  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Big Hauler 'Gramps' tank cars on: December 17, 2016, 11:11:32 PM
OK Bill ... here goes.....

This list of numbers is based on prototype pictures I have either found on the internet (and I look for fraud-o-graphs), and a document I found on the Friends of the Cumbres and Toltec Schenic RR web site. And please also note that the prototype cars are all framless  cars.

11041 thru 11045
11048 thru 11050

Hope this will assist folks in doing, as I am, building an 'oil can' train of Gramps cars.

Bob C.

14  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Big Hauler 'Gramps' tank cars on: December 17, 2016, 12:51:55 AM
To the best of my search, they are all UTLX numbers. And all the cars were in the framless number sequence. I could post the list if interested.

Bob C.
15  Discussion Boards / Large / Re: Big Hauler 'Gramps' tank cars on: December 16, 2016, 08:36:25 PM

I have done a bunch of research and found 14 numbers associated with the Granps tank cars. Somewhere I read that that was the number Lafayette Hughes leased and painted so his grandchildren would know which ones were his. I am having a full set of all the numbers made by Stan Cedarleaf, and will most likely give him permission to print for whomever wants to pay the price of the set. They are scaled for the 1:22.5ish Bachmann Big Hauler series of cars.

Bob C.
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