I think I have 5 “can someone help me posts” to one “may I suggest post;” tonight I will add another to my “someone help me” column.
After a good weekend of dickering on the Triple O (structures, cribbing, planting, roadway work, etc.), I sat back to relax, eat dinner, and sip an adult beverage. Naturally, this is when a crew member announced “North Star is making a funny noise!” Sure enough, the loco was making a high pitched whine like her motor was turning but the gears were not meshing (I recently had an older LGB loco, our 0-6-2T “Gustav” eat his idler gears. Totally different noise, I can now confirm!).
This loco get several hours of run time a month, pulling 2-3 4x axle coaches over a short railroad with no grades. It is from a Christmas themed starter set less than 10 years old that I bought from a friend, and it only saw seasonal service about the tree before joining the roster of the Triple O. I understand from ghosting around the forums the 4-6-0s from Bachmann starter sets had issues with their gear trains, but is this sort of failure normal for the breed? Is it worth dropping a new motor block in this thing? Or should I make “North Star” the first contribution to my non-existent spare parts box?
With my two heavy locos - “Gustav” and “North Star” - now down for the count, the Triple O lacks for motive power that doesn’t look overly ridiculous pulling my larger rolling stock.
As ever, thanks for your suggestions, have a great week, and Happy Thanksgiving!