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Author Topic: Bachmann Tender Wiring Harness Thrashed  (Read 225 times)

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« on: May 21, 2020, 08:43:23 PM »

Hi, guys. I went to run my 4-6-0 today. It hasn't been run for a while. I placed it on the rails. It made the usual sounds from the DCC system, so I thought everything was fine.
I hit the power button on the IR remote, and it started backwards. So, i started it forward with the idea of having it gently pushing the 3 passenger cars forward a little ways,since they were on the curve.
Fine. Got that done.
I put in in reverse. It moved backwards a couple of feet. Then it stopped. The chuffing sounds continued. The rear tender light stayed on. It just wouldn't move.
I tried forward again ,and it still wouldn't go.
After a few more minutes of working with it, and not getting anywhere,I decided to pull it off the tracks for inspection. A wire on the 4 prong plug was hanging on by a thread.
I tried to gently unplug the tender from the loco, but 2 wires broke off.
I then tried to fix the first one by pushing the pin holder out of the plug. I got it out, but I had to solder the connection. I then pushed the pin holder back into the plug. I no sooner had it back in, and the wire broke off again.
So I started over. I noticed that the wire I was working on was now shorter than the other 3. So, I decided to try replacing the entire wire with a spare that I have.
Well,that worked out real great, as the pin holder is closed to the point that when I tried to plug it into the locomotive, it pushed the pin down.
I'm at the point  where I thinking seriously about sending this thing to the landfill tomorrow when they pick up the trash.
These plugs and wires are so fragile. And I know that even if I get the thing fixed, it will happen again. And again.
I have to unplug the wires from the tender after running it to put it away. I was not expecting this thing to be so fragile where the wiring is concerned.
Not only that, the whole thing breaks easily.  It derailed a while back, and 2 of the pins that hold the drawbar on the front of the pilot broke, forcing me to remove it in its' entirety.
And Bachmann doesn't even offer the parts needed to fix either the wiring or the drawbar.
Sure, I could spend $70.00 to get a new tender frame with the DCC board installed,but I only paid $80.00 for it when I bought it brand new a few months ago.I can also still get a brand new one for about $90.00, but why bother as I'm already unhappy with this 4-6-0?
And I don't think that Bachmann will honor the warranty in this situation and repair it.
So, what am I left with?
A useless locomotive that will not work at all because it requires connections in the tender ,and a DCC system just to run.
Can I take it apart and rewire the internal wires inside the loco? Or am I stuck with a worthless hunk of garbage ?
What do you guys think?

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« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2020, 12:02:36 AM »

I would replace the connectors with something a.little more durable. Several companies well wired six pin connectors that are much easier to use. As an alternative, when things reopen and Bachmann has their offices back up and running you could call them about a repair.

I dunno what it is about the 4-6-0, but I've had the same problem with mine. Haven't had it with any other tender loco, and I have ten of them now.
Ton N

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« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2020, 05:19:49 AM »

I sympathise with you.
I know these connectors are fragile.
I usually take a locomotive out of the box, connect it to the tender and leave it alone.
What I did in a similar situation was to forget the connectors and soldered the wires directly to the board inside the locomotive.
It's not the most elegant solution but it works.


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« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2020, 03:26:53 AM »

Thanks,guys. I'm going to work with Bachmann. If they will not fix it under the warranty,I will probably just buy the darn tender frame with the board already installed. Or maybe James in service will be able to set me up with a new harness that I can solder into the old board.
I tried to call them early on Friday morning, but they are still closed due to Covid-19.
Which  is fine, as I don't have the money to fix it right now.
When I found that they're still closed, I decided to snag a brand new Bachmann  long caboose (which is painted oxide red,and unlettered) on Ebay. It cost me $94.00, but I felt that it was worth it,considering what people are paying for them used.
There's a red long caboose on Ebay right now that is painted red,and unlettered. It has 1 broken and missing ladder loop on one end, and the other two ladder loops on the other end are bent over. It also has a missing section on one of the platform railings.
Yet it is currently going for $72.00 plus $17.50 for shipping.
So, with tax added , that caboose will cost the auction "winner' as much for that damaged caboose as I paid for a brand new, in a sealed box, identical caboose(except for the color).
Personally, I don't get that. Maybe thos bidding on the other one want it for kitbashing,or because it's red...
Other than that, I have no clue.
Here's a link to that auction:
There's also someone offering 8 brand new Bachmann On cars on Ebay right now. The current bid is $100.00 plus $10.00. And there is a yellow/brown long cabose included in the lot of cars!
Needless to say, I bid on those as well.
I'll have more money come this Thursday.
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