Author Topic: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?  (Read 965 times)

Coal Valley BNSF

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Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« on: September 29, 2019, 11:50:55 AM »
Why when I am running MU, two or more Scaletrains tier 4 (first run) engines together, they hesitate and jerk down the track and when they go over switches they stop and shut down, than start up again. The next time they may not stall at the same place? The tracks and the wheels are clean. I Don't have that problem with my Athearn Genesis or Atlas engines.

Alan

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2019, 12:37:22 PM »
Poor wheel pickup connections (wipers) inside the locos.
Alan

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When I was a kid... no wait, I still do that. HO, 28x32, double deck, 1969, RailPro

Coal Valley BNSF

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2019, 01:03:02 PM »
Thanks Alan! That's what I told Scaletrains I thought could be the problem.... I sent them into Scaletrains to be looked at and they told me that there is nothing wrong with them?

KPack

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2019, 01:57:09 PM »
ScaleTrains locomotives have capacitors built into the factory board, but I believe they only work with Loksound DCC decoders plugged in.  They help the locomotive get over dirty spots.  The capacitors as installed in the factory board won't work with Railpro.

I've noticed that my ScaleTrains ET44 is more susceptible to power issues than my other locomotives.  I believe the pickup design that ScaleTrains uses is not as consistent as other brands.  The solution to the problem is to install a keep-alive in each locomotive.  TCS makes some good ones and their newest ones are very small.  The install is not difficult and it will solve all your problems.  I'm putting one in my ET44 tomorrow.

-Kevin

Coal Valley BNSF

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2019, 05:02:45 PM »
Thanks Kevin, Which KA model would you be installing?

KPack

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2019, 05:12:18 PM »
I used the TCS KA-4 in the past because it was the smallest available.  I picked up a KA-1 and KA-2 to test out.  They are much smaller and have half the capacitance vs the KA-4.  I just installed a KA-2 and so far it works great.  It definitely does not last as long as the KA-4 but more than enough to get me over troublesome track and to make up for the shortcomings of the locomotive.

-Kevin

Coal Valley BNSF

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2019, 07:00:37 PM »
This is a great place to get answers on this Railpro User Group Forum! Kevin do you have any trouble with Intermountain Tier 4 engines?

KPack

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2019, 07:43:06 PM »
I don't have any Intermountain locomotives.  The power problem is pretty much ubiquitous however....all locomotives will have power pickup problems at one point or another.  Just install a KA in each locomotive and you'll never have to worry about it again.  It's easier to do with a LM-3S, but can be done with a LM-2S.

So far I have just over half my fleet enhanced with keep-alives.  I'll finish the rest slowly but surely. 

-Kevin

William Brillinger

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2019, 07:28:31 AM »
Clean wheels and track.

Keep Alives are great, but check the wheels first.
We had a loco at lee's that had a keep alive and it was still losing power. Cleaning the wheels solved the problem.

New information published in MRH suggests using alcohol to clean wheels and track is a poor choice - use Mineral spirits instead. A light application of graphite to the rails in trouble spots and the track and wheels will be good to go.
https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/mrhpub.com/2019-05-may/online/index.html?page=9

Once the track and wheels are clean, if you still have the issue, then it's time to look at keep alives.
It's also possible you have a broken or intermittent power lead on one of the trucks.
- Bill Brillinger, RPUG Admin

Modeling the BNML in HO Scale, owner of Precision Design Co., and RailPro Dealer.


MtRR75

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Re: Scaletrains Tier 4 running problems?
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2019, 09:08:04 AM »
When cleaning track, remember that the contact between the wheels and the track is on the inner edge of the top of the rail.  After cleaning the top of the rails, I clean a 2nd time with the applicator tipped slightly downwards (towards the center of the track) to make sure that the inner edges are clean.  When I started doing this, I got fewer problems with locos losing power and stalling.