hill climber

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by jimbogibbo, Sep 18, 2007.

  1. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member

    Does anyone know a healthy HO scale locomotive that is a good hill climber preferably with a smoke unit?:confused:
  2. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    How steep a hill?

    I have an old IHC/Mehano pacific that is a reasonable puller. It was made better with the addition of some weight over the drivers. At one point, it pulled about 12 cars up a ~2.5% grade on a 22" radius curve. It also had a (nonfunctioning) smoke unit.

    You should be able to find these types reasonably cheap. I do not recall what I paid, and it was so long ago, it probably doesn't help to know anyway.

  3. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member

    this is my hill.

    Attached Files:

  4. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member

    is their an ho model that can climb my hill.
  5. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    I can't quite tell exactly...but...

    I know for certain that a Mantua 2-6-6-2 can drag 6 passenger cars up a 7% grade...or 20 2-bay hopper cars. I suspect it could take your hill. And that is without adding weight.

    It doesn't have a smoke unit.
  6. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Bit of an understatement to call that a hill, isn't it? ;)
    Maybe if you added enough weight, it'd become its own smoke unit. :-D

  7. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

    The "hill" appears to have Lionel 3 rail track. I'm confused as to what you want to do with an HO loco. (I am very easily confused)
  8. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Look in the middle: there's HO track hanging in mid-air with a small green steamer on it. It appears to be Bachmann EZ-Track, a mix of black and gray roadbed versions.

    At a very rough visual estimate, you have around a 20% grade. I wouldn't expect any engine to climb that on its own, let alone with any cars.
  9. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member


    I remember receiving a a Tyco Rock Island FA as a little kid. It became a smoke unit as it couldn't climb my hills.

    I just ran a test...one of my old mantua mallets was able to climb a 25% grade. When the throttle was closed, it slipped back down the hill, but it went right up without noticeable slipping.

    So, if your grade is 25% or less, a mantua 2-6-6-2t can handle it (% grade = (vert dist/horiz dist)*100% It might be able to handle a little steeper as well.
  10. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member

    should I run a new engine around the flat track awhile before making it tackle the hill or go ahead and send it to what it is i want it to do.?
  11. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    As long as the drivers will slip when it can't climb anymore, it won't become a "smoke unit." If the drivers can't slip, the motor will burn out when it stalls on the hill.

    You really don't want a smoke unit in ho scale, and you don't want to run smoke units in the Lionel if the ho tracks are next to the Lionel tracks. The Lionel trains are heavy enough to move the oil and gunk from the drifting smoke off the rails and allow good conductivity. The ho trains don't have the weight to do that, so you will find that after running the Lionel with smoke for a bit, the ho track will have to be cleaned to get trains to run on it at all.
  12. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member

    thanks for the info .
  13. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member


    what type of power pck are you using?
  14. jimbogibbo

    jimbogibbo Member

    power for hill climber

    what type of power pack is suitable for this mantua ho scale 2-6-6-2 that has been suggested as i have made purchase of one but it is on back order. but i want to have the power available. it will climb from one end 10 % and the other end 25 % grade.

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  15. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    The MRC line is very nice...I'd recommend a Tech 4 power pack...I keep a Tech 4 220 around. But! You don't necessarily need a new power pack...the mantua engine should run off of whatever you have...a better power pack will cause you locomotive to run smoother.

    It should have no problem hauling your train up the 10% grade...you could probably even get a few more cars. It might be able to take a couple cars up the 25%. The engine should come with break in instructions...15-30 mins of running...flat track is a good idea...starting & stopping...to get the smoothest performance.

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