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Author Topic: Track is driving me crazy  (Read 11918 times)
NarrowMinded


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« Reply #15 on: January 07, 2015, 02:05:38 AM »

So when your running the loco on the bench are you just letting the wheels spin on the track while holding the locomotive in place?

With all you have done and writen here I tend to think its something shorting in the loco as it vibrates.

I would place it on the track in qeustion and simulate what you do on the bench all the way around the track.

If it stops at the same places on the track every time its likely the track, if its stopping at random places every time its likely the loco or the power pack or a combo of both.

Nm-Jeff
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Tony Walsham

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« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2015, 04:59:25 AM »

dzldan
Nowhere have I seen anyone ask what sort of loco it is we are we discussing.
Please let us know. It could be the loco.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2015, 09:10:43 AM by Tony Walsham » Logged

Tony Walsham
Founding member of the battery Mafia.


(Remote Control Systems).
jbrock27

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« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2015, 07:28:15 AM »

Good point TW.  Also, Mother's Metal Polish is also great for cleaning/polishing metal wheels.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2015, 07:37:08 AM by jbrock27 » Logged

Keep Calm and Carry On
Joe Zullo

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« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2015, 09:13:22 AM »

As was stated by Chuck N, my money is on a reversed pilot truck ( assuming this is a Big Hauler 10 wheeler). It has happened to me in my early days in LS and can be very hard to realize. If you keep trying to run it that way long enough, the problem will appear to go away because the really light wires used to hook up the pilot truck will melt and loose contact altogether (don't ask me how I know this  Grin )
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Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


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« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2015, 11:36:22 AM »

Need to know what loco you have, but it is time to take a deep breath and start over focusing on the problem rather than cleaning track.   
Runs pauses, runs again pauses, then just stops. I put the loco on my bench and hook it up with a piece of track and loco runs fine. So you would think it is the front truck pickup causing this.

When the loco is doing this the  loco is tripping the breaker in the power supply,  when the breaker cools down the loco runs again then trips the breaker again and so on and on.  This means the problem is with a short on the loco, and something on the loco is causing the short.

 If the bench test was done without the front truck on the track and the loco runs fine, then the problem is definitely with the front truck, and Not the track.

1. To confirm this bench test the loco with the front truck on the track, if the breaker trips again you will know the problem is with the front truck.

2.  Try reversing the front truck 180 degrees and bench test the loco again, if it runs fine then great.

If not, the most likely cause is the wires connecting the front truck  to the rest of the loco are shorted  somewhere.  The most likely cause is wires have rubbed the insulation off and are touching.

3. You could try removing the wires to the front truck and see if the loco runs fine; if it does you can rewire the front truck keeping the polarity right, or just live without the wiring to the front truck. 

Repeated shorting of the power supply breaker will eventually weaken and damage the breaker causing the power supply to fail.

Try doing the exact steps above and tell us if it works out, if not report the results telling us exactly which loco you have.

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!
dzldan

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« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2015, 09:31:01 PM »

Well, I fixed it. I soldered a wire connecting all the track. The track connections sucked. Train runs fine now.
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Chuck N

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« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2015, 10:53:23 PM »

Congratulations!  Rail connections can suck.  That is why many of us use rail clamps, or screws to secure them.

Chuck
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Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


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« Reply #22 on: January 09, 2015, 12:39:50 AM »

Way to go!!
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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!
dzldan

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« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2015, 01:22:00 PM »

Well, the track connections were an issue for sure. That is fixed, runs much better. But now that it runs, there is black carbon that accumulates from arcing on the track picking up power. Turn the lights off and you can see it. Runs around 20 times, and it will stop because the carbon is resistive. I put my track cleaner on, and has run around about 2 hours now. But the track cleaner is starting to cake up

Anyone else have this issue with their trains. Is something wrong with the locomotive that causing the arcing.
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Chuck N

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« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2015, 02:12:38 PM »

The black is bits of brass from the wheels grinding down the inside of the rail head.  A few years ago I analyzed the powder.  It is zinc, copper and lead.  If your cars have plastic wheels some of the powder could be plastic that the railhead is grinding off the flanges.  What ever is harder will grind away the softer material.

A friend of mine has a loop of track where the curves are LGB R1.  That is 4' diameter.  He has to replace his track every couple of years because he has ground away the inside of his railhead on the outside rail in his curves.  This is an extreme case because when he is home he runs the train all day every day.  He has also ground away the flanges on some of his plastic wheels.

In addition to cleaning the track clean and polish all the power pickup wheels on your engine.  The arcing is from poor contact between the wheels and the rails.

Going to a larger diameter curves for your layout will also help.  What diameter are you using?

Chuck
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dzldan

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« Reply #25 on: January 11, 2015, 03:11:19 PM »

Can't be that. This shows up just one run around the track without the track cleaner. This is very fine carbon.
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Chuck N

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« Reply #26 on: January 11, 2015, 03:33:31 PM »

Why do you think that it is carbon?

The very fine brass will show up very quickly.  Many metals when very finely ground, powdered, look black.

Your engine wheels are harder than the rail, unless you have stainless steel rails.

I think that the arc that you see is hot enough to oxidize any carbon on the rail or wheels to carbon dioxide.

Movie theaters used to use carbon electrodes in their projectors to get enough light to project the pictures to the screen.  They had to frequently replace them because they burned in the arc.

Chuck
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dzldan

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« Reply #27 on: January 11, 2015, 03:36:33 PM »

I am an engineer, and I know what carbon looks like. Brass is conductive anyway. No way can you get brass wear in 25 foot of run.
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Chuck N

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« Reply #28 on: January 11, 2015, 03:42:16 PM »

I guess our micro probe analyses were wrong.

I made the test wipe after cleaning the track and wheels.  I then ran the engine around my loop (87') twice and wiped the track again.  It was the second wipe that was analyzed.

What is the conductivity of lead, copper and zinc oxides?  Just asking, cause I don't know.

Chuck
« Last Edit: January 11, 2015, 03:47:14 PM by Chuck N » Logged
dzldan

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« Reply #29 on: January 11, 2015, 03:45:15 PM »

Don't know what you meant by that one.
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