Bachmann Message Board

Discussion Boards => Large => Topic started by: bob kaplan on July 21, 2014, 11:44:13 AM



Title: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 21, 2014, 11:44:13 AM
I have a couple of Connie's dating back to the original release.   ( Very long time ago)  They are working great (still think it is one of Bachmann's better engines) on my indoor layout.  But with all the failure of the plastic gear, I have purchased a brass gear and axle for each one of them.  Considering these are of the original run, would it be a sound move to send them to Bachmann and ask them to replace axle/gear (nope.....not going to do it myself) for the $75.00.  A call to Bachmann's service department provided me with the info that they might have been replaced already and might never fail.
   Thanks for the advice.


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Loco Bill Canelos on July 21, 2014, 02:01:13 PM
Bob,

As nice as that would be, I do not see how that is possible unless they were sent in for repair at least once since you bought them.

Did they explain how the gears were replaced without you sending them in??


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 21, 2014, 02:41:50 PM
He stated that he had been there for five years and repaired many that were new and then sent them to dealers....at least that seemed to be the idea behind his statements....left me a bit confused...and that is why I am asking for advice....would it be logical for me to send the early Connie in to have the gear replaced?


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 21, 2014, 03:50:28 PM
Bob:

Where do you live?  There might be someone on this forum who lives nearby who could do the swap, or look over your shoulder and give advice. Especially since you already have the replacement parts.

When the gear on mine broke a few years ago I had Barry Olsen (BARRYS BIG TRAINS, Phoenix, AZ) replace the entire drive train.  Everyone I know of who has Barry's replacement has been very happy with it.

Since you don't want to do the fix yourself, I'd wait until your gear slips and get it repaired then.  Your early engine will probably fail sometime.  Your newer one might not.  How long have you had the newer one?

Chuck


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Kevin Strong on July 21, 2014, 04:08:16 PM
The brass gear just came out a year or two ago, so I'm a little foggy as to how it could have been "repaired" at the factory prior to that.

My suggestion mirrors that above--run it and be happy. If the gear never breaks, consider the brass gears cheap insurance. If it does, then you've got the replacement on hand. It's actually a very simple fix on the "Connie" (much easier than on the 2-6-0/4-4-0), and is documented on the FAQ if I recall. If you're squeamish about doing it yourself, there's very likely someone nearby who would be willing to do the work for a case of their favorite beverage. Unless their favorite is Dom Perignon, you should come out well ahead of packing and sending the loco to Philly.

Later,

K


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 21, 2014, 04:32:13 PM
Thanks for your input all...it is appreciated.   I have the sales slip for the "new" engine....it was purchased in 2006.  The others were purchased at the time the original Connie was released....wow...I bet it has been a while...but they still run fine....when was it first released??....thanks.


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 21, 2014, 08:06:21 PM
I have been buying "G" trains since about 1980.  I just checked my inventory, unfortunately, I don't have a date when I got my Connie.  I started adding dates in 2004, therefore it is at least 10 years old.

You have had remarkable fortune in the longevity of your Connie gears.  I have a couple of questions.

How many cars do you usually pull, is the track level, what is the diameter (radius) of your curves? 

If you are putting minimum stress on the engine that might explain your good fortune.

Chuck


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: armorsmith on July 21, 2014, 10:39:23 PM
Bob,

I will echo what others have said. However, if you feel frisky and wish to tackle it yourself, here is a link to a 'How To'
http://www.the-ashpit.com/mik/gear.html which is originally written to replace the original Bachmann gear with a North West Short Line gear. It does however cover all the necessary steps to remove and replace the original axle with a new one. I can say from experience that I have never before opened one of the Connies up and changed two engines axles in about two hours. I really is easy. Mik has done an excellent job on the how to.

Good luck Bob

Bob C.


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 22, 2014, 08:20:27 AM
Hello Chuck,
    My layout is in the basement with 16000LGB curves and switches.   The length of the train averages approx. 8 cars (Bachmann lg scale and AMS 1.20.3).  i do a lot of switching.  One point in the Connie's favor is that they are not subjected to extremes in temp, there for the coefficient of expansion between the plastic and the metal axle perhaps is less important.  The track is level....well at least the best i was able to do.    ;D


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Loco Bill Canelos on July 22, 2014, 08:52:08 AM
Bob,

The first year the Connie was released was 2001.   I have two I bought when they first came out, one is still going strong, I have replaced the gear on the other.   I agree with the don't fix it until it breaks guys, then send it in.   If you live near St Louis I could walk you through the process of doing the replacement.  Let me know if I can help.

Bill


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 22, 2014, 09:11:49 AM
Bob:

Thanks for the answers.  Your nearly constant temperature environment may be the answer.  I run my Connie all year outdoors.  The temperature when I run ranges from below freezing to 90sF.  It is stored in an unheated garage when not running. 

It would be interesting if others who limit their Connie's to indoor running would comment.

Chuck


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 22, 2014, 04:33:48 PM
Thanks for the offer Bill....but i live in the great Upstate New York area...i don't even know of another model railroader in the area.   There is a hobby shop in the next town over, but no large scale stuff and no large scale modelers.   A lone wolf of sorts.   That is why I enjoy this form so much!!  I have tried to do a bit of tinkering before, especially with the Annie, but usually have a piece or two left over.  :-[
  It looks like the recommendations are to leave things the way the are...and so be it.  Again thanks to all for the comments.  I appreciate your time.
bob


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 22, 2014, 05:04:44 PM
Bob:

Have you tried visiting any of the more general LargeScale sites, not limited to a specific manufacturer?

I use <mylargescale.com>, but there are others as well.  You can lurk in the background and not register to get an idea of how it works.  If you want to post questions, you need to register.  With a broader site you might be able to make contact with other LARGE SCALERS  in your area.  I know there are some on MLS in the Buffalo/Rochester area.

This is a great site for Bachmann products, but it is limited to Bachmann.

Later, I'll try to post link to a poster on MLS who has an indoor layout in the Albany area.

Chuck


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: edmc on July 22, 2014, 08:17:10 PM
Bob, are you near Rochester, NY...?
Ed


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 22, 2014, 09:09:47 PM
Bob:

Here is a link to a thread on MLS to someone in the Albany area.

http://forums.mylargescale.com/11-public-forum/37714-problem-accucraft-brass-rail.html

He has other posts there.  A search on his user name might be of help.

Chuck


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 22, 2014, 10:20:39 PM
Ed, I am about 3 hrs. from Rochester....
b


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 22, 2014, 10:21:47 PM
Thank you, Chuck.
b


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 22, 2014, 10:52:38 PM
Bob:

Hope you can make contact with fellow LARGE SCALERS in upstate New York.  Take it from me, having local contacts, sure beats going it alone. 

There are too many mistakes out there that we have made.  How will you know if you have an original problem or one most of us have made if you can't communicate with locals?

Chuck


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Kevin Strong on July 23, 2014, 01:37:14 AM
There's a very active group in Rochester (Genesee G Gaugers), and also one in the Syracuse area. There are some folks up towards Albany as well, though I don't know if they've got their own active garden RR society or just piggyback on the Syracuse group. (I moved from the Rochester area 12 years ago, so it's been a while.) Northern NY (Adirondacks, Watertown, etc.) things get a little slimmer, but there are a few folks around. There's a very active group in Vermont as well. If you're on the Southern Tier, there's Lantz's train shop in Horseheads, and a few other folks in that neck of the woods.

Later,

K


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: bob kaplan on July 23, 2014, 10:45:28 AM
Thanks for the info Kevin.   I find the EAST BROADTOP fascinating too.  Just for the heck of it.....my model RR...is called, THE WEST NARROW BOTTOM.  Never been to the EBT but seen lots of pics....thanks to the net..and own most of the videos.  The pictures of the RR associated buildings are usually very haunting.   Too bad they have not been able to run steam for the last couple of years.  Would really like to make it down there some day.


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: scottychaos on July 24, 2014, 03:43:35 PM
Bob,
not sure what part of upstate you are in, but here are the clubs:

Genesee G Gauge Railway Society - Rochester area Garden RR club.
https://sites.google.com/site/1991gggrs/

Central NY Large-Scale Railway Society - Syracuse area Garden RR club.
http://www.cnylsrs.com/

Western NY Garden Railway Society - Buffalo area Garden RR club.
http://wnygrs.com/

Southern Tier Garden Railway Society - Binghamton area Garden RR club.
http://www.ray-taylor.com/stgrs/

Not sure if there is Albany one..there might be.


Im in Rochester..im a member of the GGGRS.
I have three Bachmann engines with the gear concern, One connie and two Spectrum moguls..
Only one of the three has a split gear so far, one of the moguls..but my Connie hasn't run yet!
its been on the workbench being 'bashed..its been cut up heavily, so I cant return it to Bachmann now! ;)

Im planning to buy three gears and do all three locomotives at once..
One Mogul needs a gear, the Connie is already in pieces, so might as well do it while its already apart, rather than waiting for it to fail on its own..
and while im on a roll, I will just do the other Mogul too..these are probably the only three of these particular "gear problem" models I will ever own.

My club is always looking for members to demo or present something at club meetings..
I was considering seeing if other club members need gears too, and making a club activity out of it..
get several people together to do it all at once..share the pain/fun..
If I get that together, you are welcome to come along! :)

Scot


Title: Re: connie advice
Post by: Chuck N on July 24, 2014, 05:18:30 PM
Thanks Scot, that's the kind of response I hoped Bob would get. 

Chuck