ONLINE
STORE
"ASK THE BACH MAN"
FORUM
PARTS, SERVICE,
& INFORMATION
CATALOGS AND
BROCHURES

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
October 17, 2019, 12:22:30 PM
Home Help Search Login Register
News: Please read the Forum Code of Conduct   >>Click Here <<
+  Bachmann Message Board
|-+  Discussion Boards
| |-+  Large
| | |-+  Runs Roughly in one direction
« previous next »
Pages: [1] Print
Author Topic: Runs Roughly in one direction  (Read 5731 times)
punkin

View Profile
« on: 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.

Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
Chuck N

View Profile
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2015, 08:29:42 AM »

punkin

I'm a little confused.  When you flip the direction switch (large scale/NMRA switch?) on the front of the engine and run it counterclockwise, is the engine still pointing in the same direction?

If that is the case you are not changing the wear pattern.  To do that you need to pickup the engine and cars and rotate them 180 degrees so that they are pointing in the opposite direction.  Then run counterclockwise.  Only then will you even out the wear.   The inside wheels need to be on the outside and the outside wheels need to be on the inside.  Use the polarity (direction) switch on your power supply.  All this assumed you are using track power, not battery power.  My guess is that your direction switch might be the source of the problem. 

Chuck


Logged
punkin

View Profile
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2015, 09:09:18 AM »

Thank you Chuck N

After reading my message I too see the confusion.

Running the train pointed clockwise it runs very smoothly. I control the train forward and back using the power supply controls and it runs smoothly both forward and back.

Flip the switch on the train and point the train anti-clockwise and it runs roughly and the lights flicker. Again using the power supply to run it forwards and back it's rough in both directions.

I did one additional thing this morning. I reversed the wiring connections on the track.

Again running the train pointed anti-clockwise it runs roughly and lights flicker. Flip the train switch and point the train facing clockwise and it's smooth again.

It appears to be when train is facing anti-clockwise when this little issue happens. I'm convinced it has something to do with the train it'self. But my inspections don't reveal much but again I don't know much of these things yet.

Hope that clears things up a bit. Thanks!
Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
Chuck N

View Profile
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2015, 09:28:35 AM »

In your last post you said this.


"Flip the switch on the train and point the train anti-clockwise and it runs roughly and the lights flicker. Again using the power supply to run it forwards and back it's rough in both directions."

Are you flipping the switch on the train, or on the power supply?

Do not use the switch on the engine.  Set it where it works well and leave it alone.  Just turn the engine around and use the switch on the power supply for direction control.

Chuck
Logged
punkin

View Profile
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2015, 10:55:18 AM »

I've been flipping the switch on the train and then pointing the train in the other direction.

The power supply has a "forward" and "reverse" button and so to keep the power supply showing forward when the train is going forward I've been flipping the switch on the train. I see what you're saying...don't flip the switch on the train (use the position that works best) then simply control by using the powr supply and ignore what the power supply is saying "forward and reverse".

I'll give that a go. Thanks very much Chuck N !
Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


View Profile
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2015, 11:10:34 AM »

Chuck nailed it.  Definitely ignore the direction switch and leave the one on the loco alone?   You will get used to it pretty quick!

Have a good weekend!!


Bill
Logged

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!
Chuck N

View Profile
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2015, 02:30:43 PM »

The forward and reverse labels on the power supply are really meaningless.  It reverses the polarity to the track, which changes direction.  It depends on the direction the train is headed and which wire goes to which rail.  All you need to know is that if you flip the switch the train will change direction.


Be sure to stop the train before you reverse direction a sudden change of direction may damage the gears.

Chuck

« Last Edit: May 23, 2015, 02:33:25 PM by Chuck N » Logged
JerryB

View Profile
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2015, 02:48:52 PM »

I'm assuming you are moving the NMRA / LS switch in the smokebox. That switch is intended to adapt the locomotive for either polarity standard. While it does reverse the direction the locomotive moves under power, it is definitely not intended to be a reversing switch. As others have written above, use the reversing switch on your power supply to set the direction of travel.

As to your noticing some problem when using one setting of the NMRA / LS switch, I would guess there is a loose wire, possibly on the back of that polarity switch. While you could start disassembling the locomotive to troubleshoot and repair this, it really shouldn't be a problem since the locomotive runs fine on the other setting. I would recommend just staying with that setting.

Happy RRing,

Jerry
Logged

Sequoia Pacific RR in 1:20 / 70.6mm
Boonville Light & Power Co. in 1:20 / 45mm
Navarro Engineering & Construction Co. in 1:20 / 32mm
NMRA Life Member #3370
Member: Bay Area Electric Railway Association
Member: Society for the Preservation of Carter Railroad Resources
punkin

View Profile
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2015, 04:04:48 PM »

Let me first say thank you to everyone for putting up with all my beginner questions. Some day I hope to be able to contribute.

I went back to my original set up. Switch on train set to normal train pointed clockwise and all is wonderfull and smooth. I run the train forwards and backwards by control of the  power pack.

When I pick up the train and put it on the track facing anti clockwise the train runs roughly regardless of direction as determined by the power pack. I also see the lights flicker when the train is facing anti clockwise.

Pick up the train face it again clockwise and all is right with my mini round the chair train track.

I thank you one and all for your support.
Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
Chuck N

View Profile
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2015, 10:29:05 PM »

Punkin

It appears that the switch in the engine is OK.  The next thing to test is the electrical pickups on the engine and tender.  I don't have that specific engine, so I can only make general suggestions.  Will the engine run without the tender coupled to it?  Some do and some don't.  Put the engine by itself on the track pointing clockwise and see how it runs, then point it counter clockwise and see how it runs.  If it still doesn't run well counter clockwise the problem is most likely in the pickups on the engine.  If it does, move on to test two.

If it runs equally well, then the next step is to couple the tender, but don't plug the engine to the tender  and repeat the process.

If everything is OK, then plug the tender into the engine and go for it again.  With any luck these tests might help locate where the problem lies.

Chuck
Logged
punkin

View Profile
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2015, 10:57:27 PM »

Thanks very much Chuck N,

Without the tender it runs "better" in the anti-clockwise direction. If I run it more quickly it does better yet but still at slow speeds not as smoothly when going clockwise. When I add the coal car the issue becomes more noticable and then when I add the caboose, worse yet. I can over-come this to some degree by making the train run more quickly (almost at full speed) but, in all cases and at all speeds works perfectly when moving clockwise. With the coal car and the caboose, if I run it at half speed or slower in anti-clockwise direction it will get quite "jerky" and every now and then stop momentarily.

I ran it for a good long time today at a high rate of speed going anti-clockwise. It's quite fast and seems to run without lights flickering and stuttering. I was thinking perhaps the wheels needed to get worn in a bit to match with the tracks but after about an hour of that I slowed it down and it still behaves the same.

Again, thank you very much for taking the time to read and offer recommendations.
Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
Chuck N

View Profile
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2015, 08:43:06 AM »

It seems that the problem may be in the tender.  Can you hook up the train to the engine and run it in both directions?  Try that and see what happens.

Chuck
Logged
Joe Satnik


View Profile WWW
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2015, 10:06:33 AM »

Dear Punkin,

Assuming this is a Big Hauler 4-6-0 or an Annie, there are no power pick-ups in the tender. 

Engine pick-ups are on the outer 4 driver wheels (IIRC - center blind drivers have no pick-ups) and the 4 pony truck wheels in the front.

My guess is that the pony truck pick-up wires are intermittent (flexed and broken inside the wire's plastic insulation),

but make contact swung to the far right (running clock-wise),

and lose contact swung to the far left (running counter-clockwise).

You can check your wheels with an Ohm-meter.

Most that you can buy these days are built into a Digital Multi-Meter (DMM),

which you can buy for a reasonable price at Harbor Freight.  

One probe touching one wheel, the other probe touching another wheel.

Same side pick-up wheels should read near-zero Ohms (less than 2 Ohms),

Opposite side pick-up wheels should show the combined resistance of the motor, light, and smoke unit if turned on, perhaps about 8 to 10 Ohms. 

Wheels without any connection should over-range, or show "infinity" ohms on the meter.

Make sure all pick-up wheels keep their connection over the entire range of their left to right travel, including driver "slop".

Hope this helps.

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik

Logged

If your loco is too heavy to lift, you'd better be able to ride in, on or behind it.
punkin

View Profile
« Reply #13 on: May 25, 2015, 11:15:35 AM »

This is very helpful information Joe,

I put the train on one side and measured resistance between all the pickup wheels on the left side of the train and they all look to be very very close to zero Ohms. I gave the front wheels a little wiggle and it all stayed at zero.

I then laid the train down on the other side and did the same, all measuring at about zero. However, when I gave the front wheels a wiggle, the resistance jumped all around.

The front wheel assembly hangs from a very flexible arm. When I move that larger assembly around the resistance isn't affected. When I move the individual wheel on the carrier assembly below that where things get interesting. There is quite a bit of movement in the wheel axles up front, not just side to side but all around in the axle tube/carrier. Not sure if that's normal or not.

I think we may be on to something here.
Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
punkin

View Profile
« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2015, 02:52:13 PM »

At last my train is 100%. The train runs equally well in either the clockwise or the anticlockwise direction and life is good  Grin

A special thank you to Laura Harris and James at Bachmann. A couple quick questions and parts were on the way. They sent me the bottom half of the train which had the front wheels and a couple big long copper springy strips. 6 screws voila!

I would also like to thank everyone on this forum that offered advice in helping me to identify what that problem might be. It all turned out well.


Have a great day everyone!
Logged

I can type my handle with one hand.
Pages: [1] Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  
Powered by SMF | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!