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Author Topic: bachmann ho layout  (Read 1154 times)

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« on: April 15, 2013, 04:26:49 PM »

Howdy, I have just re-done my 4' x 8" HO layout and did some additions to my original.  For some reason, I am having great difficulty keeping the Santa Fe and UP locos with the  trains behind them, and keeping them from derailing.  I have (2) separate tracks set up, as well as (2) power controllers.....Before I changed the layout around, I used the BrightBoy "lightly" on both the wheels and the tracks, just to clean them up.  I had the original layout set up for 2 years, and did not experience these continuous derailments....of course, I now wish I would have just let it alone, but I wanted a different design....I did make sure the 4' x 8' boards were level...hmmm.  Also, on the layout before I changed it, I could run the trains at high power without derailing, just for fun of course, and now, even at 1/2 speed, I run into issues...any suggestions?....thanks in advance...".frustrated in Seattle.."

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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2013, 05:34:54 PM »

What loco's? Are they derailing on the curves, straights or turn out? What radius curves are you using? More info helps with the answers. Joe

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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2013, 05:36:22 PM »


The first thing I'd look at would be whether there is any pattern to the derailments. Do the same cars always derail? Are most of the derailments at the same places? Do the derailments involve the same two cars when they are coupled together? Are your rails still in gauge after monkeying around with them? How about turnouts and crossings? Are turnouts in gauge and functioning smoothly, especially in regards to staying fully thrown? Are there any stray pieces of ballast messing up a turnout or just a rail? Do the derailments occur when going forward or backward? Or both? Does speed play a part? Have you rubbed a finger over every rail joint to ensure that there are no places where a rail is on top of a rail joiner rather than in it?

That's a lot to check, I know. But sometimes that's what it takes. Start with the finger over rail joint test because your having just rearranged track may have left you with a bad spot that is difficult to just notice. And I'd probably focus on other track issues first, since your locos and rolling stock have presumably not been changed but the track has been disturbed.

A fellow in the railroad modeling press, I can't recall who or where, once wrote about the value of keeping a card for each thing which moved over his layout, every turnout and every length of track (not individual physical track sections but lengths of track between turnouts or other demarcation points). That allowed him to quickly spot problems. He'd make a brief notation each time he had a mishap and would pull a car or track area for close inspection when any single item he logged picked up its third demerit. I like the idea and I have instituted it myself. I can generally identify a developing problem before it gets to the point that I have to swear at it.
                                                                                                                  -- D
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