Help my N Scale Bachmann EMD F9A!

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by Chevilleboy, Sep 10, 2006.

  1. Chevilleboy

    Chevilleboy New Member

    My N scale set used to be set up in my basement about 7-8 years ago, until I decided to flip back to Lionel, and it got put away. I got an itch this summer to take my trains back with me to college, and I decided to put a small N-scale layout inside my coffee table. It's not much, but it's a ton of fun, and all the guys on the hall love to come and see it and watch it change (I'm still finishing little details).

    Anyway, I have three engines, and the crown jewel of my collection is my Bachmann. I know that it's not a Kato or Atlas or anything amazing, but it's been pretty much bulletproof, and works great since I'm a poor college student on a small budget. Recently, however, I have had problems with it. It started chugging and generally slowing down until now it won't move at all, no matter how much power is supplied. The track is clean, the wheel contacts are clean, and when I took apart the engine, it didn't look dirty. The confusing part is that the headlight still lights up, but the engine doesn't move, meaning that it gets power.

    Can anyone help me figure out if it's a general lubrication issue or if it's just shot? This has happened before, and I just cleaned a connector in the motor and it ran fine. Its a week later and I'm having the problem again, although that's not the cause this time. Can anyone help or at least point me to a thread describing maintenance techniques for N scale engines? Thanks for your help!

  2. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    Welcome to the Gauge.
    Sounds like something might of bound up the drive gears. Try rotating the motor by hand, see if the wheels move. If you haven't run it in awhile, could be that the motor bushings might have also be bound up, with either dirt or corrosion.
  3. Chevilleboy

    Chevilleboy New Member

    So, I finally got the time to look at it again, and it seems like the actual motor is being skiddish. It's getting power, however it's only spinning when it wants to. Would lubricating it help or should I send it to Bachmann? If it would help, what do I use and how do I do it? Thanks!
  4. Ray Marinaccio

    Ray Marinaccio Active Member

    Have you removed the brushes from the motor?
    It is possible that one of the brush springs has lost it's tension. I have found this in a few Bachmann locos.
    The brush is intended to pass current to the brass brush holder. If they gets dirt and oil build up between them the current passes through the brush spring, overheating it causing it to loose it's tension. one possibility.
    Look at the armature windings also to see if they look burnt.
    If the motor is toast, contact Bachmann and send it back for a replacement.
    If you talk to them nice it will only cost you $20 for a new loco.
    For lubrication I use Dextron II transmition fluid (sparingly) on all bearing surfaces and Labelle grease on the gears.

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