OK, now what has happened----

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by jr switch, Feb 3, 2007.

  1. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have probabely used my Spectrum Decopod maybe 4 or 5 times since I got it. It's only about 2 or 3 months old. Sort of my favorite. Thought I'd exercise it a little tonight, put it on the track, checked all the wheels and gave it power--nothing. Checked for dirty wheels, dirty track, checked the cab to tender connections, everything looks ok. Last time I ran it ,it worked fine.
    Put my EMD switch engine on the tracks, works normally. Other engines all work normally. I noticed, with the Decopod on the tracks, the diesel will hardly move at all with the controller turned all the way up. Sound like Iv'e got a major electrical short in the Decopod? Maybe the engine shorted out? Have any of you had this happen before?
    Please give me some ideas, but I'm not sure I'm up to tearing this engine apart. Should I just send it to Bachmann?-------John R
  2. radar

    radar Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    0
    does the light light ,motor hum maybe gears are locked up?
  3. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
    Messages:
    3,877
    Likes Received:
    0
    Check the wheelsets on your tender, one of them may have spun around 180 degrees, creating a dead short. The insulated side should be on the left.
  4. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dave, I didn't check the light, but no motor hum at all. Can't be gears locked up, it's belt drive and I can move the driving wheels back and forth just a little due to the normal amount of play in the system when stopped.
    Another thing is the complete drain of power to the other engine on the same track. The other engine wouldn't even run until I removed the Decopod, then it ran normally. I'm thinking there is a major short inside this engine.-------John
  5. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    0
    Shaygetz--How can I tell? The front and back of the truck sides look the same and the pick-ups are centered and go the the center of the axles. I don't see any side to side differences-----------John
  6. radar

    radar Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    0
    One of the wheels of the axel should have like a plastic insert where the wheel joins the axel the other side won't
  7. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
    Messages:
    3,877
    Likes Received:
    0
    Like Dave said, there should be an insulating barrier of some sort...usually a small plastic or nylon ring around one axle between the wheel and axle.
  8. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    0
    I checked to be sure truck was not turned around. There are small moulded in pins that assure trucks will not reverse. They can't get turned the wrong way. I also checked for broken wires, bent pins in connections, all ok. Wheels on tender were a little dirty, but not excessive.
    Iv'e only had it a few months, but did not send warranty card in yet. Will Bachmann give me a problem or are they somewhat forgiving? Iv'e heard that they are real good about taking care of problems. -----John R
  9. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2001
    Messages:
    787
    Likes Received:
    0
    A fast way to check, for me, is turn it upside down and touch leads to the different wheels. If you can touch the leads to wheels on the same side, the wheels are backward. Just find which wheels to touch to make it run and take it from there.

    Lynn
  10. radar

    radar Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't have any bachman but a buddy does I know he didn't send in the card he's never had any problem.
  11. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
    Messages:
    3,877
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bachmann's a good company about that kind of thing, you shouldn't have any problems.
  12. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,844
    Likes Received:
    0
    On Bachmann Spectrum steam locos, the tender trucks pick up from opposite rails, so one truck should have the insulated wheels on one side, and the other truck the opposite side. I don't know which one should be which way though, as some of my Consolidations are the opposite of others. The loco also picks up from both rails, with the circuit board in the tender sorting things out. Also, make sure that the plugs between the loco and tender are both connected.

    Wayne
  13. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey Wayne, I knew you were still out there somewhere! Iv'e put it back on the rails three times, to no avail. Checked the connections and the connector pins twice, this tender has pins to keep the trucks straight, I tried to reverse them and you can't, checked for a broken wire, all the wiring is intact.
    All the other engines work fine so that eliminates track/controller. Tender wheels have been cleaned. Still won't run. What I did notice, is when this one is on the track, it sucks the juice away from another on the same track. Somehow, it's pulling a lot of amps.
    I have all of the paperwork that came with it, the warr card etc., so I'll give Bachmann a call and get it to them. Thanks all, for the helpful suggestions--
    It will be interesting to hear what they find-----John R
  14. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2002
    Messages:
    1,640
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey John, why don't you check the resistance between the wheels from side to side with the loco off the tracks? Sounds like there is a short circuit across the rails, or a very low resistance. Unplug the tender connection and check again. If the resistance is appreciably higher then you have isolated the short to the tender. If not, then the short is likely in the locomotive. Something as simple as a small piece of metal or wire in the works could cause this, or a small screw adrift inside the shell. (try the shake test) Of course, your motor windings could also be melted! :D :D (probably not)
    You should be able to localize the problem this way. Even if you don't have a meter, remove the tender and see if the other locos will run with this one on the tracks.
  15. sidetracked

    sidetracked Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2006
    Messages:
    103
    Likes Received:
    0
    i bought a bachmann spectrum when I first got back into MRR, I didnt have it for an hour when the belt broke,,, might check it,, you couldnt hear any motor hum or anything on it either,,, when i got it apart the belt seems like it was really brittle, ,,,, I never sent my card in but call bachmann and they didnt have a belt in stock but took one off another loco and sent to me,,,,, ,,,,,,good luck,,,, ,,,, ,,,,,,,,,, ,,,,,,,,,, ,,,,,,,st
  16. jr switch

    jr switch Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    0
    Again , Thanks guys, for the helpful suggestions, but I'm going to have Bachmann make it right. I checked everthing that you all thought of, short of taking it apart, and couldn't find the problem, so I'll let them fix it. I will post what was wrong so that we all have one more bit of HO steam engine know how ----thanks ------John R---