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    • October 7, 2019 9:02 PM EDT
    • The Hob-E-Lube line is good, get the powdered graphite/moly... do not get the powdered teflon, it does not "work into" the metal or plastic.

      Aero-lube makes good stuff too, a bit more expensive. Virtually any powdered graphite should do.

       

      Greg

    • October 7, 2019 8:32 PM EDT
    • Oh crap ...wrong forum .....sorry !

    • October 7, 2019 8:26 PM EDT
    • Steve said:
      Greg Elmassian said:

      I find that the skates can be a bit more problematic if you bend them up, sometimes the up and down motion is hampered by applying the force of the rails unequally, and the skate can jam.

       

      So I suggest some lubrication, and I would use powdered graphite to make sure the skates move up and down very freely.

       

      Greg

      Greg, what is a good brand of powdered graphite?  Only the best for my engines.  I want to try that before the bend...

       

      Thanks

      Blackhorn or Goex  don't modify the skates if you decide to lubricate with them. They lubricate well though and will clearly tell you if you have a short!

    • October 7, 2019 8:16 PM EDT
    • Greg Elmassian said:

      I find that the skates can be a bit more problematic if you bend them up, sometimes the up and down motion is hampered by applying the force of the rails unequally, and the skate can jam.

       

      So I suggest some lubrication, and I would use powdered graphite to make sure the skates move up and down very freely.

       

      Greg

      Greg, what is a good brand of powdered graphite?  Only the best for my engines.  I want to try that before the bend...

       

      Thanks

    • October 7, 2019 6:47 PM EDT
    • Use 3 jaw pliers and bend the inner part of the bottom plate up.

       

      Image result for triple jaw metal bending pliers

    • October 7, 2019 5:14 PM EDT
    • Not at all implying the bend in the vertical part.... when you bend the bottom up, the intent is to move the contact patch a bit (to avoid shorts), and it was clear to me it was the contact area, and at the 90 degree bend that already exists.

      Doing that does indeed change forces a bit (slightly!!), you are shifting the skate from being "flat" on the railhead to slightly biased towards the inner side of the rail...

       

      but the important point is:

      I have experienced some jamming, whether it is dirt, grit, unbalanced forces, or aliens, does not matter, my recommendation was to lube them up to ensure they slide up and down freely.

       

      Greg

    • October 7, 2019 2:44 PM EDT
    • Greg, that is why I said slightly. Also when you bend them, the bend must be where they are already bent at 90 degrees. If a curve, or bend, is put in the vertical part of the shoe, it will hamper its up and down movement and cause it to bind or stick.

       

      Ideally, you just want to increase the 90 degree bend just enough, so the shoe doesn't contact the other rail in the frog. Too much bend will case issues. On my USA F3, I bent mine just a bit. Then when the one shorted out on something like the 10th lap, I bent it up just a smidge more. It was a trial and error thing, until the issue went away. More is not always better. Just enough is the goal on this one.

    • October 7, 2019 1:02 PM EDT
    • I find that the skates can be a bit more problematic if you bend them up, sometimes the up and down motion is hampered by applying the force of the rails unequally, and the skate can jam.

       

      So I suggest some lubrication, and I would use powdered graphite to make sure the skates move up and down very freely.

       

      Greg

    • October 7, 2019 10:15 AM EDT
    • ...sorry if it seemed a bit harsh...not meant that way...

       Fred

    • October 7, 2019 9:19 AM EDT
    • David Maynard said:

      The pick up shoes can, and sometimes do, touch both rails that terminate in the frog. I solved the issue with my USA F3 by bending the pick up shoes so they angle upward a bit from the inside to the outside. That way the shoe cannot contact both rails that terminate in the frog.

       

      On my LGB Porters and similar sized locomotives, I removed the shoes entirely.

      If you want to keep the shoes (skates), David's suggestion is spot on. Bend the shoes upward a bit from inside to outside. Your video pretty clearly shows what is happening.

    • October 7, 2019 5:47 AM EDT
    • Fred Mills. said:

      …...NOT a fault of the track....probably a short caused by a poor understanding of electricity, and how it applies to two rail, track powered model trains...DC, or DCC...

       You need to learn more about ELECTRICITY, and "How to wire a model railroad".

        Show a track plan, and the wiring plan you are using...it might help those that may have answers to your problems.

      Fred, that's a pretty harsh response. You could have said the same thing a bit less abrasively. An incorrect wiring of the layout would not be my first guess, because the trains do run.

    • October 7, 2019 3:09 AM EDT
    • Last week I spent a bit of time playing around with one of the old track power loco's.  The attendant power issues - dirty track and wheels - reminded me why I went to battery.  

    • October 7, 2019 12:04 AM EDT
    • Greg Elmassian said:

      You can try some nail polish on the frogs, insulating the tracks back a bit, so the shoes cannot contact the wrong rail.

       

      The nail polish won't last forever, but will help you prove what the problem is.

       

      I hate skates, but on short wheelbase steamers, especially 0-4-0's you really need them for good power pickup.

       

      Let us know what you find.

       

      Greg

      That's an idea, I'll test that out tomorrow.  Thanks..

    • October 6, 2019 10:26 PM EDT
    • You can try some nail polish on the frogs, insulating the tracks back a bit, so the shoes cannot contact the wrong rail.

       

      The nail polish won't last forever, but will help you prove what the problem is.

       

      I hate skates, but on short wheelbase steamers, especially 0-4-0's you really need them for good power pickup.

       

      Let us know what you find.

       

      Greg

    • October 6, 2019 10:06 PM EDT
    • Steve said:

      ok, so I need some help.  I've been testing the layout and I'm having a problem over switches and my two crossovers.  What happens, is on occasion once the engines pickup shoes crossover the plastic frog and starts to come in contact with the rail, I get a huge spark and the it triggers my dcc system and shuts down.  I have to turn my remote of and then back on...  it happens with both locos I have tested.  Doesn't do it all the time.  Also, sometimes it's not as bad as in the first few minutes of this video.  It'll stop and the continue on its way, other times it'll just stop..

       

      Help, and thanks

       

      Ps, all new track, so it's not dirty.

       

    • October 6, 2019 9:37 PM EDT
    • David Maynard said:

      The pick up shoes can, and sometimes do, touch both rails that terminate in the frog. I solved the issue with my USA F3 by bending the pick up shoes so they angle upward a bit from the inside to the outside. That way the shoe cannot contact both rails that terminate in the frog.

       

      On my LGB Porters and similar sized locomotives, I removed the shoes entirely.

       

      I was thinking the same thing, I'll have to watch closer because it does seem to come close to the other rail.  I wonder why they need pickup shoes.  Just curious since my understanding on how to hookup 2 simple wires to the track is to difficult for me to understand.. <jk>

      I may just bend them back a little.

       

      Thanks

       

    • October 6, 2019 9:32 PM EDT
    • Fred Mills. said:

      …...NOT a fault of the track....probably a short caused by a poor understanding of electricity, and how it applies to two rail, track powered model trains...DC, or DCC...

       You need to learn more about ELECTRICITY, and "How to wire a model railroad".

        Show a track plan, and the wiring plan you are using...it might help those that may have answers to your problems.

       

       

      OMG, are you really that stupid.  lmao, seriously, it's basically two ovals with one power connector to track.  I'm not brain dead, I've been around models for over 50 years, and I think I can handle hooking up two wires..   that means 1 wire goes to one rail and the other wire to the one that doesn't have one.  Gawd, that's hard to understand..

       

      Layout was posted on first page of this thread.  Read much?

    • October 6, 2019 8:09 PM EDT
    • Fred Mills. said:

      …...NOT a fault of the track....probably a short caused by a poor understanding of electricity, and how it applies to two rail, track powered model trains...DC, or DCC...

       You need to learn more about ELECTRICITY, and "How to wire a model railroad".

        Show a track plan, and the wiring plan you are using...it might help those that may have answers to your problems.

      Never mind

    • October 6, 2019 8:08 PM EDT
    • Well, the FA was my first diesel loco I got.  The Rock isn’t really a favorite line, I was a big UP fan as a kid, and still am. I do like the red/black scheme and since it is a midwestern line, I feel like I can run any railroad livery behind as a connection in Chicago  


      Ted Doskaris
      said:

      Bill,

      I like your layout and Rock Island trains running on it.  How did you happen to take an interest in Rock Island?

      Thank you,

      -Ted