locomotive current draw

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by eric halpin, Mar 16, 2007.

  1. eric halpin

    eric halpin Eric Halpin

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    I am setting up my layout and am running a Spectrum 2-8-0. What I am wondering is, if I am straining the locomotive motor by running up to 18 mixed freight cars! At an average weight of at least 3.5 oz/car x 18 = almost 4 lbs. dead weight to drag. The loco seems to run just fine even up a short 2% grade, but I don't want to burn out the motor! Comments?
    Thanks
    Eric.
  2. Thoroughbreed

    Thoroughbreed Member

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    The driveline should slip before burning out the motor, unless you have traction tires on it, but it would still slip.:thumb:
  3. baldwinjl

    baldwinjl Member

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    If it is not stalling I don't think you can be hurting it.
  4. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    Before traction tires, we had the rule that if you held the back coupler and turned the power up the wheels should spin. If the wheels spin or the train moves, you won't burn the motor out. It's when you turn the power up and the wheels don't turn that the motor's in danger.
  5. e-paw

    e-paw Member

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    the motor should draw no more than an amp. touch it every so often to see if it is hot. if its to hot, drop a few cars. you can cook it if it stays cool
  6. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    This is good advice, and a simple test that anyone can perform. The Bachmann 2-8-0s are strong pullers, but even the Athearn 2-8-2, a notoriously poor puller, has a robust motor. While trying to determine the best way to improve its performance, I added a weight made from sheet lead, which I draped over the boiler like a saddle: it's too bad that there's insufficient room inside the boiler for this amount of weight, as the pulling power was increased tremendously, yet the loco was still able to slip the drivers when physically restrained from moving. The lead saddle weighed 22 ounces!:thumb: :thumb:

    Wayne
  7. eric halpin

    eric halpin Eric Halpin

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    Thanks to all of you for your comments. I can breath a lot easier now.
  8. GN.2-6-8-0

    GN.2-6-8-0 Member

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    Make that 1/2 amp. any locomotive drawing over 3/4 amp has a problem somewhere.
  9. toptrain1

    toptrain1 Member

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    That 1/2 amp is good for a loco not working to hard. A fully loaded loco even with the best of can motors will pull a amp.