steamer mtc.

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by Wiredup, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. Wiredup

    Wiredup Member

    I've been playing around with whats been constructed so far with my fleet of steamers. It seems the ones that got regular use on my old layout are not working so well anymore...

    My Athearn Challenger is stalling out quite a bit and requires a lil tap to get going. I've tried cleaning the wheels but it's still stalling out... even when it's right over the feeder tracks. Curious what could be going wrong there.

    My Walthers 0-8-0 switcher has always given me problems and might get retired to ebay sans' decoder if things don't improve. It just stalls out no matter where it is. I pretty much gotta push down her for it get power. I think she needs more weight... anyone got any sites with mods for this loco?

    Other than that my locos' seem to be working great. My Kato mikado is having issues but I know whats wrong there (melt the brushes by accident when installing the decoder).
  2. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    You said you cleaned the wheels. This probably sounds corny, but have you cleaned the track? It sounds like a classic case of dirty track or wheels.

  3. Wiredup

    Wiredup Member

    brand new track. not only filed out any burrs, but also went over them with a briteboy and even sprayed some contact cleaner on them.
  4. Lightbender

    Lightbender Member

    Looks like you have no alternative other than to pop the bodies off and check stuff. The only possibilities are electrical intermittency, gear binding or a bad decoder. If the wheel contact wipers are clean and the wiring to the motor and decoder are all pull proof, it has to be binding brushes, dirty commutator or really badly worn motor bearings. Disconnect the decoder and apply a low voltage to the motor wires to see if it stalls willingly. This is also the way to see if the gears are binding as the backlash should make it obvious. If this all checks out fine all you have left is to swap the decoder.

    If things didn't go wrong things going right wouldn't be as much fun.

  5. TrainGuyRom

    TrainGuyRom Member

    That stufff you applied, it sounds like it is making it impossible for the engines to get grip and/or make contact with the power running through the rails. try getting that stuff off. a brite boy is a good idea. Goo gone is good for cleaning the trach, as long as you wipe it off the rails.
  6. Wiredup

    Wiredup Member

    I've used a brite boy. But you may be right... the cleaner may have messed stuff up.

    I use the same things to clean the wheels of the locos... I soak a paper towel with the contact cleaner and run the loco atop it until the wheels shine like new. I then run them again on dry paper towel until there is no wet marks from the wheels.

    what do you guys use for cleaning the wheels/tracks?

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