Bachmann Spectrum consolidation issue

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by iis612, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. iis612

    iis612 Member

    I have one of these little gems. It has seen some rough handling, but before it was put away it was running fine.
    Now when it is placed on clean, powered rail it does not run, the lamp does not light. If I try to push it the lamp will try to come on. Any suggestions as to where I should start looking?
    Anyone have any tips for cleaning wheels that do not turn?

  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    The Bachmann steam engines all use wipers that rub the back side of the wheels for electrical pick up. It is common for the wipers to bend away from the wheels causing this problem. Make sure your wipers are making good contact with the wheels. Also, make sure that both the wipers and the backs of the wheels are clean.
  3. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    how about checking the connection between the tender and the loco?

  4. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Make sure that you have the plugs oriented correctly and that they're fully seated. Also, check to ensure that the tender trucks haven't rotated - the insulated wheels should be on either the left or right side on the front truck, and on the opposite side on the rear truck. Sorry that I can't be more specific on the latter, but these varied from loco to loco, at least on the ones that I have.
    Unless the wheels were especially dirty when you put the loco away, it's unlikely that that will be the problem. My guess is that the smaller plug is inserted improperly. ;):-D

  5. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    I've had several problems with this loco...all involving the wire harness/plugs between loco & tender. A few days back I just plain pulled it off the layout and put it on the to-do pile....I think I'll just hardwire the loco to tender. Won't be the first engine that's hardwired....
  6. iis612

    iis612 Member

    Thanks for the info guys.
    The small plug does not seem to have any indicator marks as to which way it plugs in. Is this bi-directional?
  7. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Definitely not - The small plug feeds power from the loco's drivers back to the circuit board, which then goes to the motor via the large plug. The prongs on the small plug are offset to one side, as are the slots on the female receptacle, so you should be able to orient them correctly if you note the offset.

  8. iis612

    iis612 Member

    Thanks Wayne.
    I cleaned it, made certain it was properly attached and put power to it, using a DC power pack. The power pack showed that there was a short somewhere.
    I took the tender apart to find that the PCB is cracked. I have contacted bachmann via email and am awaiting an answer.

  9. iis612

    iis612 Member

    I also noted that there was no offset in the plug and the tender trucks are omni-directional. They are not able to spin completely around as the draft box stops it.
    This loco has been through h e double hockey sticks and back, so it is not a big shock that it stopped working.
  10. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    From what I've "heard" in the B'mann forum...the best way to get something done is to give them a call (cust. service). Check the B'mann forum for more info....
  11. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Gus is right: give them a 'phone call. It's much easier to explain the problem and you get to talk to a real person,:eek: :p so you'll know right away how they'll correct the situation. I've always found them very helpful.

  12. iis612

    iis612 Member

    I will do that on Monday.
    I have heard that they have outstanding customer service. It is a shame about this little steamer, it is my favorite. Hopefully they will be able to send me the replacement PCB, then I just might add a sound decoder to it and use the docoder that is currently installed in another loco.
  13. iis612

    iis612 Member

    I did call them. They said that my only option is to send it to them, along with $20 and they would repair or replace the damages.
    Rather than part with the money I am going to take the decoder out of it and use it in another loco, weather it rather heavily and use it as a static model as though it were waiting for the scrappers torch, or I will see if I can find the parts that I need through another means and repair it myself.

  14. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Forget about "Service" - call "Parts". You can buy the circuit board separately, although if your loco is one of the older ones, you may have to rewire the plugs. The early models seemed to be wired in various ways, as I discovered when I tried to test one loco using the tender from another, similar, loco. :eek::-D

  15. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    I hope it is an easy fix. I felt a little stupid when yesterday the decoder from my broken goose returned from just needed reset

    I felt intelligent :rolleyes: Now the goose is as good as new.
  16. iis612

    iis612 Member

    That is a good idea. I will try that in the morning. Thanks:thumb:
  17. Trainiac77

    Trainiac77 Member

    Cracked PC boards are easily repairable...Just scratch off the green insulation on both sides of the crack and solder a piece of wire across. It can be tricky if the etches are small, just use smaller wire.
  18. sgtcarl

    sgtcarl Member

    If you are going to be soldering on PC board, don't forget to use heatsinks. Wooden pincer type clothes pins, with the spring, work best.

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