Blasted Siderods!

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by Kanawha, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. Kanawha

    Kanawha Member

    Unfortunately, my awesome new Mikado is turning out to be a devil in disguise. It makes a weird clicking sound which I tracked down to a misaligned siderod assembly. :curse: I can't figure out how to fix it. This engine is starting to become a royal pain you know where. Anyone know a good repair shop in Phoenix?
  2. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

    Out of curiosity, what scale and manufacturer is your Mike?
  3. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Sometimes, a bit of judicious bending work with a pair of pliers can correct this problem, but it can also break the offending part, as I did on my Bachmann USRA Light 4-8-2. Luckily, I was able to fabricate a replacement. Other times, you may need to remove some of the side rods and add spacer washers to allow for more clearance between the moving parts. If you run steam, you'll quickly learn some simple repair techniques, or, like the prototype, dieselise. :mrgreen:

  4. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

    Ha! That's the truth.

    Kanawha, pay attention to this man - he knows of what he talks!

    I'd personally stress the "judicious" in his bending comment. It's easy to over correct.
  5. CRed

    CRed Member

    I had a BLI Santa Fe 2-10-2,beautiful engine,but I had problems keeping it on the track.I took the easy way out and changed eras,now I do modern diesel so I wouldn't have to deal with the delicate stuff you do with steam:rolleyes:.I actually prefer modern diesels,but I still find myself wanting a nice steamer.

  6. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    If you look at the rods from underneath, are any bent or otherwise coming into contact with each other? You should be able to remove the rods sequentially, and make sure they are all flat (and/or the right shape). Take lots of pictures as you go to help with reassembly, and only do one side at a time. That helps keep the drivers quartered properly, and also gives you a reference - just in case!

    EDIT - Forgot to mention - sometimes the pins taht hold everything together have some flash on them - be sure to clean theat up. Also, NeoLube is a great graphite lubricant that can help sticky siderods work more smoothly. It also blackens bright metal to give it a bett (in my opinion) appearance. Just be sure not to get it where you don't wnat it, because 1) it is very slippery (does NOT help traction), and 2) it conducts electricity (you can see where this is going...).

    John Pryke has written a few good books about care and feeding of steam engine models. Published by Kalmbach.

  7. Kanawha

    Kanawha Member

    Its a BLI Mikado. Its brand new, I'm gonna send it back to the factory to get repaired.
  8. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Since it is brand new, can you return it to the store for an exchange?

  9. Kanawha

    Kanawha Member

    I bought it from an online dealer. He was willing to exchange it, but he's out of that roadname.
  10. ed acosta

    ed acosta Member

    BLI Quality

    I just read your other thread about the insulated wheel orientation problem and wondered if it was the same loco. Certainly more problems than you would expect to receive when you pay so much for this caliber of equipment.

    I am 'old school' and do not own any DCC equipt or sound equipt locos. My collection - purchased long ago - includes Athearn, IHC (Rivarossi), Spectrum, and some brass steam locos when I could afford them. I paid $30 to $100 for plastic and $100 to $500 for brass. The quality of all of them was excellent and I never had any complaints. Now a new class of electronically complex plastic locos has emerged priced higher than most of my brass locos, all made in China, but I wonder if the new generation of trainmen is getting ripped off?

    What say you?

    -Ed Acosta
  11. CRed

    CRed Member

    I know a lot of stuff is made in China now,but I don't think that automatically denotes it's quality.It's up to the specific company to keep it's QC up where it belongs.I've had/have several BLI products,some made in Korea and some in China and haven't had a problem yet with either except squeaky wheels.Atlas engines are made in China and have an exceptional reputation because they have good QC not because the Chinese are manufacturing them.

    I don't feel I'm being ripped off either.There's always going to be someone that receives a defective product,the problem is that for the most part those are the people you hear from and not the many other people who have had no problems with the same product.I'm 41 and just started back in the hobby and I love the new products,so many quality choices out there now.I mean we could go back to the 70's and 80's when the choices were few and the quality was suspect at best,Athearn and Rivarossi being excoptions.Also you had to buy brass back then if you wanted anything with any sort of detail and to be honest the plastic models of today often rival that of brass unless you have a spare grand or two to spend on an engine.This is all just my humble opinion,but I think the products being offered now are generally very good.

  12. jeffrey-wimberl

    jeffrey-wimberl Active Member

    And people wonder why I stopped running steam. Actually it was more due to my health situation than anything else. It's hard to handle small parts when you can't feel your hands. Try working on your steamer while wearing heavy work gloves and you'll quickly See what I mean.
  13. ed acosta

    ed acosta Member

    I'm glad to hear that the railroad equipment available today is at least as good as it ever was. I am no longer in the market for the current electronically sophisticated locomotives being sold today. I purchased all of the locomotives that I ever care to own at least a decade ago. And, I never allowed myself to pay the $grand or $two that a large brass locomotive cost, so I superdetailed the Athearn, IHC or Bachmans that I owned with Precision Scale and Cal Scale castings, and such.

    I didn't mean to imply that China does not produce quality equipment. Heck, nearly every electronic gadget in my house was made in China. It just appeared to me that it might be the case since so many difficulties with these products have been identified to this forum in the past few months. However, nearly all of our railroad equipment is now manufactured in China so there is no longer any basis for comparison.
    -Ed Acosta

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