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Author Topic: Bachmann Standard Line  (Read 14125 times)
richg
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« Reply #30 on: March 03, 2011, 09:06:02 AM »

Hello there,


Since this is about improving the running characteristics of the Bachmann standard line, I would just like to know if anyone has attempted to install a flywheel(s) on a standard DC, 8 wheel pick and drive Bachmann GP40?

I've had my one for some time now (more than a year), it runs well, but at low speeds it growls and at times stops and tips off my Life-Like power pack.

So I was thinking of adding a flywheel(s). Is it possible? I'm open to other suggestions! Smiley.


Thanks in advance!

Loco722.   

If there is room, not a problem. Try it and let us know how it works out.

Go to the Bachmann diagram page and look at the various loco diagrams.
I have done this with other brands of locos but you have to know what you are doing. It is not plug and play.
NWSL has all kinds of gears and motors, flywheels, geared wheel sets, etc for loco upgrades.

http://www.nwsl.com/

Rich
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bobwrgt

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« Reply #31 on: March 03, 2011, 06:34:46 PM »

If it is shutting down your power pack it probably has a short. A flywheel will not help this. You have to find where the short is.

Bob
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Loco722

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« Reply #32 on: March 04, 2011, 10:59:53 AM »

Quote
If there is room, not a problem. Try it and let us know how it works out.

Go to the Bachmann diagram page and look at the various loco diagrams.
I have done this with other brands of locos but you have to know what you are doing. It is not plug and play.
NWSL has all kinds of gears and motors, flywheels, geared wheel sets, etc for loco upgrades.

http://www.nwsl.com/

Rich


Thanks Rich, that's a nice site You showed me to! Smiley! I did send an E-mail to them asking if there is a flywheel or flywheel kit for such a upgrade.

Quote
If it is shutting down your power pack it probably has a short. A flywheel will not help this. You have to find where the short is.

Bob


Well, it kinda happens by the way to my Flywheel equipped Bachmann B23-7 and Walthers GP-9, but they just jerk abit over that bad spot, while the GP40 sometimes comes to a stop and tips off the power pack. But I should be cleaning those tracks sooner or later. Thanks for the advice anyway Smiley!

Anyway, has anybody here attempted it? Like is there a Bachmann GP40 fitted/upgraded with flywheel(s)?


Thanks again,


Loco722     




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RichStrebendt

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« Reply #33 on: May 18, 2012, 08:35:05 PM »

Should I cut the capacitors on the motor?

YES!

Capacitors in the 70 ton. With no capacitors, the two inductors are a moot point. The inductors look like resistors.

...

Rich

Another thing to watch out for:  The green components on the top of the board near the capacitors were poorly mounted on the PC board of one of my 70-tonners; the too-long leads came in contact with the huge blobs of solder used to attach the capacitors onto the motor, letting the smoke out of the decoder.  I ordered a new PC board ($25) and received one that appears to me to have been a defective return to Bachmann -- the headlight does not work (looks like a blown driver) and the decoder had been re-programmed to a different address when I got it (did not respond to address 3 until I reprogrammed it).  I once swore to never buy another Botchmann diesel engine, but I was tempted by the 70-tonner; never again.
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railandsail

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« Reply #34 on: November 02, 2012, 08:55:40 AM »

First, there are a lot of locos in the standard line, some run better than others, the motors are not the only issue, if there really are any "issues".

As Rich suggested, be more specific.

I have multiple copies of standard line GE70 tonners and 2-8-4's - All run great.

All have had their DCC decoders removed and I run them on Aristo Craft Train Engineer wireless radio throttles.

So without a specific loco to comment on, no one can really help you. It is foolish at best to judge these products by the "brand" or the "group". Each different loco is a different design with its own strengths and weaknesses. Same is true with Spectrum locos or other brands - another reason to be more specific about a problem you are trying to solve.

Personally, replacing motors in Bachmann locos sounds crazy to me. I have about 40 Bachmann locos, Standard and Spectrum, diesel and steam. They all run great. some did need some minor adjustments and I have learned lots of little tricks to make them run their best, but none started out as terible runners.

The following are a number of small improvements I have developed, in some cases with the help of others, for many of the current and recent Bachmann HO locomotives, mostly those in their Spectrum line.

Here is a repost of some of my Bachmann loco tips:

After mentioning some of these items in another post, John requested I elaberate. Much of this info I have posted before, either here or on the Bachmann board, but for those who missed those - here goes:

But first a disclaimer - I run DC, using Aristo Craft Train Engineer wireless throttles. Some of my performance related changes are directly related to the use these throttles or in some cases, you may see an improvement with any DC throttle, but maybe not to the same degree as the Train Engineer which has a pulse width modulated output.

Tip #1 - remove the motor circuit RF suppression capacitors. They are generally located on the circuit board often right near were the motor leads are attached. Sometimes they are disc type, on most newer models they are PC board type. Removing them will lower the starting speed and lower the slowest operational speed. It will also correct problems with some brands of aftermarket decoders.

This mod is especially effective on the 2-8-0, but does improve EVERY loco, and I have now removed ALL such capacitors.

I do this to all brands of products that have such RF filters in place. In addition to Bachmann, I have found them on some Intermountain and Proto2000 DC versions.

Tip #2 - add weight to the tenders - if you run long trains or do lots of backing, or back whole trains into staging, this will vertually eliminate tender derailments while backing. Additionally it greatly improves electrical pickup and is one key step in eliminating problems with the tender to loco wires.

Some other brands also need weight, but this is mainly a Bachmann issue. I add about 2 oz to most all Bachmann tenders. It seems to have no negative effect on pulling power as it is less than the weight of one freight car.

Tip #3 - OK, now we get loco specific - Spectrum USRA Heavy 4-8-2 - I modify the drawbar by bending a "dip" into it as close to the loco end as possible - about 1/8" in length and depth. This provides better clearance for the wires, which plug in directly above the drawbar on this model, and shortens the drawbar slightly, which improves the locos appearance. I run all my locos close coupled as I have large curves, but this mod does not seem to effect the use of either position or decrease useable minimum radius.

Tip #4 - replacing Bachmann couplers with Kadee couplers - generally the coupler pockets are too shallow to allow Kadee's to drop in. To solve this I gently file down th shank of Kadee #148's until they fit - I never use generic couplers on anything.

Tip #5 - the previously Spectrum, now regular line 2-8-0 - I add a small amount of additional weight in the domes. Not sure it really helps much, but I feel better about it. I also remove the metal spring from the pilot truck. This does seem to show a measurable increase in pulling power, if only by a few cars.

Tip #6 - the new regular line 2-8-4 - it is very easy to add about 5 oz of weight to these and greatly improve their pulling power - I will try to get a picture up showing the boiler off and the weight added. Mine will pull 35 cars on level track after the added weight.

Tip #7 - tender swaps - the following is a copy of a post from some years ago on the Bachmann board regarding tender swaps. It contains most everything you need to know about Spectrum tender swaps and how to do them without major rewiring or moving/replacing circuit boards:

Tender Swap – Bachmann medium Vanderbilt oil tender (Item #89905) with 63” driver 10 wheeler (Item #82307)

 

Initial test using jumpers provided with the tender – dead short, no operation.

 

Original plan – move 10 wheeler circuit board into new tender. This proved unworkable for several reasons, 10 wheeler circuit board too large and wires too short to fit into Vanderbilt tender without major modifications to both the tender and the circuit board.

 

New plan – can existing circuit board from Vanderbilt tender be rewired to work with 10 wheeler. A simple examination of both circuit boards revealed that while different, they both have the same basic connections, so the problem must lie in pin assignments in the connectors.

 

Tracing wires and a few simple checks revealed that the two wire connector simply brings the loco pickups to the circuit board. Reversing the wires on one end of the two wire jumper corrected this. Now the loco runs but in the wrong direction.

 

Two of the wires on the four wire plug are the motor leads. Reversing them gave us correct operational direction.

 

This only left the front headlight. The circuit board in the Vanderbilt tender is for the 2-8-0 which has 12 volt lamps for lighting. The 10 wheeler uses LED’s, this is the main reason the circuit board is different. Rather than trying to modify the circuit, I simply replaced the loco headlight LED with a 12 volt lamp.

 

Additionally I added weight to the Vanderbilt tender bringing it weight to about 5 oz. and replaced all couplers with genuine Kadee #148 on both the loco front and tender.

 

Result – loco now converted, runs well with original 10 wheeler draw bar and looks great.  

 

 This issue seems to be tied to what tender cam with what loco in the first place. I do not have all of the Bachmann spectrum locos, but from what I have seen, read and experienced, the following may be a good beginning of a compatibility chart:

 

Light Mountain & Consolidation will work with all of the "medium" tenders.

 

Heavy Mountain and 2-6-6-2 will work with the long coal tender, hicken tender and long vandy tender

 

Russian shares same tender with some 10 wheelers, so I am guessing they share the same circuit board.

 

The 10 wheeler is really a wild card here because it comes with three different tenders, depending on roadname. Some have the low, small "pre 1900" looking tender, some have the small tender from the Russian and one has the same tender as the consolidation, but obviously with a different circuit board.

 

But again, I think most of these differences are just the pin assignments and the type of headlight.

If anyone has other Bachmann tender swap questions, I can likely help, just ask. I have used Spectrum tenders behind a number of other brands of locos with good results as well.

This is quite long now, so I will leave it at this. Feel free to offer your thoughts or ask questions.

Sheldon

WOW,this is just the information I was looking for.I will return here soon, but first I must finish with other related posting I was preparing. Brian
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railandsail

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« Reply #35 on: November 02, 2012, 01:11:33 PM »

[
Tip #7 - tender swaps - the following is a copy of a post from some years ago on the Bachmann board regarding tender swaps. It contains most everything you need to know about Spectrum tender swaps and how to do them without major rewiring or moving/replacing circuit boards:

 
If anyone has other Bachmann tender swap questions, I can likely help, just ask. I have used Spectrum tenders behind a number of other brands of locos with good results as well.

This is quite long now, so I will leave it at this. Feel free to offer your thoughts or ask questions.

Sheldon

So here is my project:
http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=27672

Adapt Bachmann Vandy Tenders to Run Behind Other Engines
This idea has surfaced as I attempt to kit bash a Proto2K Heritage 2-8-8-2 loco to look like a C&O H7 loco with the vandy tender option.

I have 2 tenders I would consider using with this loco,...a VC-16 and a VC-12, both of them those very nice ones made by Bachmann. I have already modified one of my VC-16 tenders to mate up with the Proto2K loco;......I carved out a slot in the front of the tender so that it accepts the stock draw-bar of the Proto2K loco.

Here is my basic thought process on the tender and sound situation. I thought I could take one of my Bachmann VC-16 tenders and one of the VC-12 tenders and put the sound decoder and the speakers in each. (I have in mind a dual hi-bass speaker installation in each one). I could then run either of these tenders behind the 'H-7 Proto2K loco, AND behind the various Mountain locos I have ( I have several Bachmann ones and several IHC ones).

I simply need to equip these two tenders with speaker(s) and a Tsunami decoder. I just need to make everything compatible with electrical mini-connection plugs between loco and tenders. I believe I could just utilize the Bachmann style mini-connection plugs since all my Bachmannn tenders have this style, and two of my Bachmann mountain locos have this style already existing ??

The tenders are equipped with 2 different mini-connectors that make connection to their engines, .....one 4-pin plug, and one 2-pin plug, both orange in color. I assume the 2-pin plug brings the loco's wheel pick-up current back to the electrical board in the tender, and then the DCC power and lights get transmitted back to the loco via the 4-pin plug?? Does that sound correct??

If we stayed with the 'Bachmann connector types' then we would have to provide 2 Bachmann male connectors on the Proto2K H-7. My Bachmann mountain locos already have their male connectors. If I wanted to run these 'sound tenders' behind my IHC locos I would have to provide Bachmann male plugs for them also.

Is this doable, and a correct explaination??

Can I get these mini-connectors from Backmann??

Brian
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