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Topics - punkin

Large / Pull String for 4-6-0 Bell
August 08, 2015, 07:42:00 PM
Hello everyone,

I was thinking of adding a little detail to my 4-6-0 anniversary bumble bee. I see from old photos that there was rope from the bell to the driver's compartment. The photos look like the rope would come from the bell handle/arm back to the work station but when I lay out a string to simulate that, there's a large stack thing (I do not know what this is) that is in the way.

I also see that on top of this large stack there is what looks like a whistle I was also thinking about adding a little detail by adding the control for this as well.

Has anyone tried this? I wonder if some parts because of scale are larger and maybe this can't be done. Just tinkering, nothing lost if this is a bad idea.

Thank you!
Large / Adding light to Anniversary 4-6-0
August 02, 2015, 07:24:53 PM
Hello all,

I've recently added a nice little 5 volt regulator and LED lighting to my side marker lamps and the inside of my large caboose. It looks a little odd running at night in the dark. I was wondering if in the real world is there a light in the driver's compartment of the engine? If this is something that is in the real train, has anyone found a nice clean way to add a light to the model? I'm quite handy with electronics that's not the issue, I was wonder if there's a simple and clean path between the pickups in the bottom of the train leading up to the driver's compartment.

Thanks very much and have a great evening :-)
Large / Track Switches
July 12, 2015, 07:55:49 PM
Hello everyone,

I'm considering expanding my setup just a little. It was suggested to me to consider a second engine and I'm looking into this. I'm looking at a smaller porter type locomotive. I would like to expand my track just a little to have a place to park the train(s) when not in use. I'm looking at a track plan as shown below.

The question I have is how to have two trains on the track without both of them moving when power is applied. I would like to have one running the circle while the other is parked off on the side. I don't have the DCC set's just analog DC. I don't know exactly how the track switches work and if they also switch power. If they do switch power, could I apply my power from the transformer in the main circle and then when the switches for the particular turn out is applied then would power also be routed in that direction as well?

As a little side project, I've ordered a computer controlled relay interface module. I plan to connect it up to my PC and remotely control the switches :-) wish me luck and thanks very much for any comments or advice.

Hello all,

I recently noticed that on the front of my 4-6-0 engine and on the back of the coal car there are these angular bars that span the width of the train. They flip up and down but I can't for the life of me figure out what purpose they serve. Any idea what these were used for in the days when these trains were in service?

Large / Big Boy 4004
July 08, 2015, 10:30:23 PM
Hello all,

Pardon me but I'm still very new to trains. Initially I only wanted a little something to go round and round but I find myself more and more interested in the history. I recently had cause to go up into Wyoming and stopped at a local park. They had a train on display.

This thing was entirely enormous. I initially thought it was a more modern train simply because of the size. This would dwarf the real scale 4-6-0 that I like. They call it a Big-Boy which was made for Union Pacific. It is a steam train but the proportions are simply rediculous. There was a plaque that told a lot of it's history. Only a few were made and only a couple left in existence. I seriously do believe the tender would be much larger than a 4-6-0 engine. I look at the photos and still cannot believe how big it is.

The train number is #4004 and if you ever get to Wyoming I would encourage you to have a look. It's located in a local park in the town of Cheyenne.
Large / Ticking Scratching Sound
June 14, 2015, 04:27:40 PM
Hello all,

After recently replacing the front trucks on my 4-6-0 Anniversary all was going very very well. Train ran so smooth and quiet but suddenly very recently I started hearing a ticking/scratching sound. The frequency/rate increases as the train goes faster. It still runs strong and smooth but the sound causes me a little concern. Now that I'm comfortable with taking the bottom off the train I thought to do a visual inspection. I found one thing that makes me a little concerned.

The forward set of large wheels sits up into the chassis. The wheel/axle assembly has what looks like brass hubs or bearings with a patterned or sintered edge that gets captured up into "U" shaped cut-outs in the chassis. It appears as this should be a bit of an interference fit. I say this because all but one of the axles fit snugly into the chassis. I have one that appears as though the brass part has been turning inside of the "U" shaped saddle section of the chassis and has started to wear at the plastic. It's also very loose in the chassis as compared to the other axle bearing assemblies.

I apologize for the poor description but I don't know what these parts are called. I've attached the parts breakdown and I've attempted to post a photo. Any advice you have would be appreciated. Thank you!

Large / Lighting for Caboose
June 11, 2015, 10:43:39 PM
Hello all,

I'm sure the first thought that comes to one and all is to "Google It". I have and likely I don't know the correct or best terminology to search by for the best results.

I recently purchase a big caboose for my train. It doesn't have any lights and has plastic wheels. I have a DC set up and would like to set the caboose up with interior lighting and would very much like to have the little lanterns on the sides light up to.

I have read about battery power but don't really care for that solution. I would much rather get the power from the tracks. I do know this will take some special wheels but even after extensive searching I can't positively identify what I would need. Until recently I thought metal wheels was the solution but I now understand that some sort of contacts are also required to pull power from the track, through the wheels and to some wiring.

I have searched these forums but so many of the exchanges seem to talk about the digital systems or battery power. I believe I can handle this modification if I could identify the parts to pick up power from the track (wheels and other parts). I'm quite handy with a soldering iron but the train lingo is where I seem to get lost.

Thanks all
Large / Runs Roughly in one direction
May 23, 2015, 12:51:02 AM
Hello all,

Having a great time with my new train. I have a very simple track. A circle of about 5' diameter. I have been running my train clock-wise for a few days now and read somewhere that it's a good idea to alternate directions so as to get an even wearing of the wheels. So, I flipped the little direction switch on the front of the train and ran it the other way (anti-clockwise). When I do this the train lamp flickers from time to time and the train sort of hesitates from time to time. After cleaning the wheels and the track I tried again but no change. I then reverted to the original set up (clock-wise) and it runs smooth as butter. I drove it backwards and still very smooth. It only runs roughly when I flip the direction switch and run it anti-clockwise. Also when in this reverse direction mode, I drove the train backwards and still very rough running.

Any thoughts what this could be?

So far I have cleaned the tracks, cleaned the wheels, disassembled the tracks and reconnected the power connectors to the track. I also did do a very light lubrication of the moving parts and I used just a couple drops of the conductive oil on the wheels but nothing seems to change the way it behaves. Smooth as glass when clockwise.

Thank you for any advice.

Large / Caboose On The Way
May 17, 2015, 04:46:43 PM
Hello all,

I ordered a caboose for my train this weekend from ebay. It's the brand that starts with "L". It's supposed to be very nice but I just noticed when looking at the pictures it has different train connectors than what are on my Bachmann. The connectors on the caboose has a hoop and hook like connection but my Bachmann train has a completely different looking set up. Is it possible to get different connectors so that they can all be connected together?

This is the caboose that I bought, it's a model #4175;

Hello everyone,

My apologies for possibly asking what may be a very entry level questions. I really have tried to research and learn this for myself by googling the web. I suppose it's possible I'm being caught up in the terms and lingo. I'm very new to this and in fact, my very first train is in the mail on it's way.

I have purchased what I hope to be a fairly complete set up and have a bit left in my budget to possibly purchase a passenger car. The train I ordered is a Bachmann #91602 4-6-0 Anniversary Edition D&RGW #178. I would like to get a matching passenger car for it.

Here is my dilemma. I see so many terms being used to describe the sizes (1:22, 1:20, Large Scale, G scale, Spectrum, Big-Haulers, etc.). I believe that I've come to the understanding that within the G-scale there are different sizes as I've read in places where some people have trouble finding cars that match up in size with their trains.

Any pointers on how to know what to look for in locating a matching passenger car for my new train would be very welcome.

I thank you all for considering a reply to my little newbie problem.  ;)
Hello everyone,

I am still trying to assemble my equipment list for my first train set. I won't be doing anything large or fancy...I plan to run a single 4-4-0 or 4-6-0 engine with a tender and maybe a couple cars. This will be indoors and on the floor in my living area. I estimate an 8' diameter circle or possibly an oval but that's about it. There seems to be a big jump between the starter set power supplies and the larger systems with very little in between. I have found a nicely priced product but I'm not sure if this is suitable for my application. Anyone with experience using the MRC Tech 3 Power Command Model 9500?

Thank you for your consideration.
Large / New to Trains
April 30, 2015, 09:42:09 PM
Hello all,  :)

I'm new to trains...never had one, always wanted one and now getting ready to jump in. I'm very much looking forward to finally having a set. My dad had one when I was very very young and only recall this from old photos. I'm an old man now myself and something keeps telling me that I would like to give this a try.

I am looking at something very simple to start. I am torn between the Bachmann G scale 81395 4-4-0 or the 91602 4-6-0 "anniversary". I would very much like some opinions on which to get. They both look really great to me but based on the info below and keeping in mind I would like the better, most robust train...which would you choose? I do not intend to have a big set...maybe an engine, the tender, a passenger car or two and a caboose. Nothing more. Just enough to keep myself and the cat amused :)

I would like to say, please consider that I'm not looking to develop a grand scale anything. Just a little track in the middle of the room . I just want to get a nice quality train and explore where this might take me. I don't have a yard (I live in an appartment) and don't plan for anything grand.

I've read that these things need about 8' diameter to function properly and I think I may (just maybe) have a spot where I could make this fit. I would like to start with the smallest foot print possible. I don't yet have a grasp on all the lingo for tracks and curves and such so if someone could offer up what I might need for tracks that would be great. I do plan to put this down on my floor which has a really short closed loop and very dense carpet. Seriously this stuff feels like indoor/outdoor carpet with almost nothing for pad underneath so I really don't thing stability should be a problem. I do worry a little about some of the things I've heard where the trains and or tracks could wear and leave residue on the carpet but everything I've read on these concerns seem to relate to smaller scales.

I'll also need a power unit as I plan to avoid batteries. Again if you have an opinion or recommendation I welcome it.

I know I've asked for a lot here and being my first post probably not the best way to introduce myself but as I mentioned previously, something is drawing me to want to do this and I'm trying not to over think and eventually talk myself out of it. I am very inclinded to go the route of a G scale as small fiddly things are for younger folks, I'm on the fence regarding the two trains mentioned earlier and could really use some help figuring out a simple simple track layout and a power pack.

I thank each of you very VERY much for taking the time to read and consider a response to my lengthy post.