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  • Topic: Aristo-Craft Six Axle derailing issues

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    • April 11, 2018 9:38 AM EDT
      • Pleasanton, California
         
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      Spot on Rooster: Quote, "Yes"  you are correct as those trucks are sprung however only on 2 outside axles not on the 3rd center axle which is kinda important ?  This is why they need to rock" Also, I bumped your Thanks Ratio.

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      Dan DeVoto

      P-Town & West Side R.R.

      Pleasanton, California

      https://www.youtube.com/danstrains

    • April 11, 2018 11:49 AM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      How did we get from the 3 axle motor blocks to the passenger car trucks? I thought it was 5 pages before thread drift?

       

      Greg

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    • April 11, 2018 11:59 AM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      Greg Elmassian said:

      How did we get from the 3 axle motor blocks to the passenger car trucks? I thought it was 5 pages before thread drift?

       

      Greg

      Nope, on the third page you can jack a thread.  It says so, right here.

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      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • April 11, 2018 12:12 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      Thanks Steve! I needed that! 

       

      Anyway, I've not let my SD45 or Dash 9 or E8's read this thread, they may stop working! Seriously I had the derailing issues, and it was all trackwork on my layout. The design of the motor block is such that, without any springing, any grade change will take one axle's wheels out of contact with the rail. You have to get down at track level to see this, but it's what happens.

      Get the wheels high enough off the rail head, and the flange will no longer keep it on track. Heavy pulling, curves, cross level issues all compound the problem.

       

      Greg

      This post was edited by Greg Elmassian at April 11, 2018 12:26 PM EDT
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    • April 11, 2018 1:17 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      Greg Elmassian said:

      Thanks Steve! I needed that! 

       

      Anyway, I've not let my SD45 or Dash 9 or E8's read this thread, they may stop working! Seriously I had the derailing issues, and it was all trackwork on my layout. The design of the motor block is such that, without any springing, any grade change will take one axle's wheels out of contact with the rail. You have to get down at track level to see this, but it's what happens.

      Get the wheels high enough off the rail head, and the flange will no longer keep it on track. Heavy pulling, curves, cross level issues all compound the problem.

       

      Greg

      Yup, almost always, trackwork is the problem, causing derailment.  Rarely, back to back gauge is the problem, but that can be alleviated by checking first.

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      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • April 11, 2018 2:33 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      That's true Steve, as Aristo is chronically under gauge and under back to back for the most part. Since the OP indicated it derailed everywhere, I did not go down that route, since a switch will show up bad back to back in a flash.

       

      I think I'll get some pictures of the wheels lifting from the rail head, and show the same grade transition with a USAT 3 axle motor block. Funny, each "camp" swears by their choice and swears at the other one, i.e. we have people putting USAT motor blocks on Aristo locos, and vice versa.

       

      Greg

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    • April 11, 2018 4:56 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Greg, yea. In my case, I ended up removing from service an LGB truck that had too much flexibility in it. While so many folks are trying to add flexibility to their freight trucks, I run with rigid freight trucks and have no issues. But, as is usually the case, the reason I had issues with the flexible LGB truck was track-work. One section on my upper reverse loop is a bit more over gauge then should be allowed. The flexible LGB truck would sometimes drop a wheel between the rails, and then where the rails come back into gauge, that dropped wheel would climb back up onto the rail. but the other axle would lift a bit and sometimes derail. For me, it was easier to remove one truck from service, then to cut out and replace 4 inches of stainless steel track.

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      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 11, 2018 10:24 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      Yeah, over or under gauge track is an issue.

       

      Greg

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    • April 12, 2018 4:41 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      It is, and by all rights I should have fixed the track. Trying to fix the truck/car/locomotive, when its a track issue, is usually a waste of energy. But in my case it bought me a year till the next rehab of the railroad. Since I knew the problem existed, I used my dual ralbender to run the track straight, and then curve it back to its previous curve, before re-leveling the track. This brought the track back into gauge.

       

      I could have just blamed that one truck, under the tender of my older Mogul, and left it at that. But I investigated the why, and found the track issue. And that is the point you are trying to make in this thread. Find and fix the track issue, whatever it is.

       

      I see it in the HO clubs too, People quit running something because "it doesn't run right, it derails all over the place". No, it derails in certain places, then travels a module or so before it really goes off the rails. With a close visual inspection of the track on that module, where it actually derailed, the reason why becomes obvious......to me, if to no one else.

      This post was edited by David Maynard at April 12, 2018 4:45 PM EDT
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      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 12, 2018 9:46 PM EDT
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      Greg Elmassian said:

      How did we get from the 3 axle motor blocks to the passenger car trucks? I thought it was 5 pages before thread drift?

       

      Greg

      How did we get from 3 axle motor blocks to track gauge issues ?

    • April 12, 2018 10:41 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      Rooster, are you ok? Any memory lapses? Fainting spells?
      The guy wants help on his derailing. He wants to believe it is the loco. Consensus is trackwork.
      Greg
      TJ Weber said:

      Been having some serious issues with Aristo-Craft six axle locomotives derailing.  These are the only units in the fleet with issues.  USA & Aristo four axles run great, along with USA six axles.  Physical plant is not the issue, as railroad sits on 2" concrete subroadbed.  Anyone else have this issue, and have you found a fix to this issue.

       

      Thanks

      TJ Weber

       

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    • April 16, 2018 10:08 AM EDT

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      Paul Burch, nice profile picture ! Love that engine !   

    • April 16, 2018 12:13 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      Back to the problem at hand, Shane asked before about weight, and it's my recommendation that ALL Aristo 6 axle locos have the maximum weight added. This is because with the unsprung truck, the wheels come off the railhead with regularity.

       

      The only thing that keeps these locos from derailing is the flange keeps the wheels centered when they leave the railhead. As they come back in contact, they have a tendency to try to "ride up" and derail just because they are turning, and you may be on a curve. The additional weight keeps the flanges from trying to "ride up" Not sure everyone will understand this, but the bottom line is add weight. Over the years Aristo stopped shipping the weights for free and stopped including them with the loco. (That whole thing is another story).

       

      My friend Ted took some pictures that show how even a small grade transition will lift an axle from the rails.

      I have a complete explanation here, and it is worth reading if I say so myself: https://elmassian.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=215:prime-mover-basics&catid=14&Itemid=248

       

      It's long, and the first half of the page is concerned with power pickup problems, but later you see pictures of a grade transition and how even a minor one will lift the wheels from the rails. This is got to be the OP's problem, I would say 98% of the people I have pointed this out to have never really "seen" this even  though it was happening, and they "saw" it when pointed out.

       

      Here's one picture, but it does not tell the story, only the punch line!

       

       

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    • April 16, 2018 1:21 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      I have one spot on my layout where the rail joiners are on a grade change.  I've tried numerous times to level it out, but it only lasts until the next rain.  It's where a curve begins, so im kind of stuck.  Its never caused a derailment, because it's where a 2% downgrade meets level.  I've noticed the middle axle of three lifting slightly, but so far, I'm good.

      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • April 16, 2018 2:04 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      Thanks Steve, I really have not addressed the "dip" problem, only the "hump" problem.

       

      In my experience it's less of an issue, since the "dip" tends to lift the center axle, and with the "end" axles still on the rails, the center one tends to come back down in the right place, since it is still in the "center" between the 2 axles in good shape.

       

      Conversely, on the "hump" problem, you "lose" the leading or trailing axle, and you are on a curve, that axle tends to be no longer centered because it is at the "end" of what is now effectively a 2 axle truck with an "extension".

       

      When Ted and I experimented with making stainless wheels for the Aristo motor blocks, I got derailments galore with the shallower flanges we specified. I really learned a lot about easing grade transitions.

       

      Greg

      ____________________________________

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    • April 16, 2018 2:07 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      It's not much of a vertical curve, but you can notice it from a galloping horse.  The fact that it leads into a 20 ft diameter curve helps, some.

      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • April 16, 2018 2:10 PM EDT
      • Deer Park, Washington
         
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      Does the USAT 3 axle truck allow for some vertical "wiggle room," at their trailing (or is it leading) pivoting axle? 

      ____________________________________

      Not only does my mind wander, sometimes it walks off completely.

       

      Some people try to turn back their odometers.  Not me.  I want people to know why I look this way.  I've traveled a long way, and some of the roads weren't paved.  Will Rogers.

    • April 16, 2018 2:54 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      A whole different ballgame... the 3 axle USAT is really a 2 axle unit with a single axle separately pivoted and sprung, very much like a pilot truck on a loco.

      They are WAY more forgiving of track imperfections, but there are a few tips on them too that if not observed can lead to problems. Luckily the tip is a simple lubrication point.

       

      That said you can find entire "camps" where they replace USAT trucks with Aristo, but I believe that is more based on residual amounts of Kool Aid, not fact. There are likewise people who give up on Aristo blocks and swap to USAT or try funny stuff with the wheels.

       

      Greg

      ____________________________________

      Be sure­ to visit ­my site, l­ots of tec­hnical tip­s and modi­fications,­ and you c­an search ­for topics­ and key w­ords.


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    • April 16, 2018 6:52 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Steve, would it be possible to put a piece of rail where that dip is? You know, custom bend (in both axis) a replacement piece of track, so there is no joint to flex?

       

      Greg, I only have 1 6 axle Aristo diesel, and its an E8. I didn't get the extra weights for it, and so far its preformed like a champ, even with my grade and curves. But, for the benefit of those playing along at home, how much weight should one add to the various Aristo Diesels? I know too much weight is a bad thing, so there should be a target "curb weight" we are shooting for, for good performance without being destructive to the locomotive.

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      Shannon car Shops
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      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 16, 2018 7:05 PM EDT
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      David, I have 3 E8's, and they seemed to track well out of the box.

      Various diesels came with various weights, and standard and optional changed over the years.

       

      I would suggest you read my site on the E8 and other locos you are interested in. The gearboxes will handle the extra weight.

       

      Here's the motive power "entry page" for Aristo...  https://elmassian.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=61&Itemid=88

       

      There all kinds of information on my site, and Ted has vignettes showing weights.... I worked hard to make the site so I would not answer the same questions and have the answers get lost in a forum. 

       

      I added weight for pulling power, but I noticed they tracked better with weight.

       

      Greg

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      Be sure­ to visit ­my site, l­ots of tec­hnical tip­s and modi­fications,­ and you c­an search ­for topics­ and key w­ords.


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