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Author Topic: White Christmas Express sound not working  (Read 3310 times)
guysmiley

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« on: December 05, 2011, 08:59:12 PM »

Hi there,

I picked up a White Christmas express on the weekend and set it up around the Christmas tree.  I was disapointed that the headlight didn't work but everything else seemed ok.  I called support today and talked with the guy at extention 334 and he told me to go back to the hobby shop and get a new bulb.  Anything in the 12-14 volts should work.  I did that, wired it in and the light now works.

After putting everything back together I'm now finding the sound isn't working.  I have the batteries in the rigth way, the wire connected between the tender and the engine and the switch on the back of the engine in the correct position.  I also have the dial knob on the bottom of the tender turned on and turned up.

The sound was sort of intermittent (came and went and wasn't in sync with the train speed) and now it is totally silent.  Any thoughts?  Anything else to check?


Thanks,

Garrick.



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Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


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« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2011, 04:48:48 AM »

open up the tender and see if there are any loose connections.  Tighten all the little screws, also while in there make sure the two metal tabs that the battery contacts are up high enough to make good contact with the battery terminals.  some times even new batteries aren't the greatest, try a different brand battery just to be sure

If you get sound but it is erratic it could be the chuff sensor on the locomotive.  Type chuff in the search tab to get the info on the chuff sensor.
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Loco Bill,  Roundhouse Foreman
Colorado & Kansas Railway Missouri Western Railway
Semi Official Historian; Bachmann Large Scale
There are no dumb or stupid questions, just questions!
guysmiley

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« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2011, 11:41:04 AM »

Bill,

Thanks for the reply and advice.  I checked everything over in the Tender and everything appears to be ok.  No loose wires, no obvious damage to the circuit board etc.  Everything is nice and tight.  I have to assume that the problem is now on the engine.  Can you tell me more about the chuff sensor like where it is?
 I fiddled with it a bit last night and wiggline around the switch on the back of the engine seemed to make something make contact as I got some noise from the tender.  When I'm not touching the switch on the engine I still get nothing.    Is there a document that shows how to take apart the engine to inspect the switch and the chuff sensor? 

Thanks,

Garrick.
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Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


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« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2011, 12:33:35 PM »

The way you can be sure the problem is the loco is to take a small thin wire and short out the sound plug  on the tender.  If you hear a chuff each time you do it then the tender is ok and the problem is in the loco. 

George Sheyer's web site has a picture of the chuff sensor in the middle of the page at the following link.  It also show the dis-assembly of the Big Hauler.

http://www.girr.org/girr/tips/tips1/big_hauler_tips.html#assembly

Hope this helps somewhat.
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Loco Bill,  Roundhouse Foreman
Colorado & Kansas Railway Missouri Western Railway
Semi Official Historian; Bachmann Large Scale
There are no dumb or stupid questions, just questions!
guysmiley

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« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2011, 01:51:37 PM »

Again thanks for the quick reply.  I was able to prove that the problem is at the engine by shorting the connector on the Tender.  I'll open up the engine and see if I can find the cause.  Thanks for the link!

Garrick.
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guysmiley

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« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2011, 02:34:24 PM »

Got it open, there is a broken solder on the little circuit board at the back of the engine (this is the switch and connector board).  I'm trying to repair it now.  I can't get the board out, any suggestions?  There are two little screws on it which I have loosened but I can't get them out and the board wiggles but doesn't come out.  It's pretty tight to get a screw driver in there.

Garrick.
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guysmiley

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« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2011, 12:02:19 PM »

Well I was able to get the board out after realizing that there were two more screws at the back behind the board.  I had to take the cab off of the engine to find those. 

After resoldering almost all of the connectors on the board I gave up using the switch and just wired the chuff sensor directly to the connector pins.  This bypassed the switch completely which I believe was faulty.  That circut board is the cheapest looking board I've ever seen.  It appears to be made out of cardboard  Roll Eyes
All of the connections were junk.  The foil "circuits" were mostly all lifting off of the cardboard like backing.

After putting it all back together I now have a functioning train. 

I really like the look of the train but I did expect it to be a little better made.  I hate having to fix brand new things before they work.

I sincerely appreciate the advice to help me resolve this problem.

Thanks again!


Garrick.
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Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


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« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2011, 04:32:18 PM »

Garrick,

Glad it worked out!! There are two White Christmas Express Sets Shocked.  I didn't realize you bought a new 90076 WCE.  I would have recommended you immediately return it to the store for an exchange rather than messing with it.

If your set is the 90023 White Christmas Express it was made from 1994 to 1998 and has been out of production since then.  It was last in the catalog in 1998.  They look  new but at best are "very old" stock, probably sitting in an unheated warehouse for years.  If so I am suprised you had only that problem. Sad

Let me know which set you have and where  you bought it at my email or by private message!  Thanks!

BTW I have six 4-6-0's with the latest drive train, some bought in 2000-2002, and never had a problem with any of them, and two run outside in rain , damp and sometimes plowing snow, and they have still held up!

I am glad to have been of some help.

Enjoy your set!

Bill
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Loco Bill,  Roundhouse Foreman
Colorado & Kansas Railway Missouri Western Railway
Semi Official Historian; Bachmann Large Scale
There are no dumb or stupid questions, just questions!
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