How many cars can a berkshier pull

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How many cars can a berkshier pull

  • How many cars can a berkshier pull.
    it is a new eng it is part of santa fe super freight set. I put it on a level surface
    and it pulls 5 cars ok but when i add more cars(4) more it starts to slow down
    i am using a cw80 watt transformerthat came with the set

    can anyone help or ans.
    Jack
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  • You may have to get a more powerful transformer to get the most out of your Berkshire.I would suggest the K-line 100 watt transformer or better still the Lionel ZW or MTH Z-4000.
  • If you just add cars with plastic trucks, it can most likely pull more than you can run on anything short of a monstrously huge layout bigger than most peoples' houses and have it still look realistic. Most modern engines are capable of pulling at least 50, if not 100, cars with Delrin plastic trucks, needlepoint axles, and fast angle wheels(like those in the Polar Express).

    Slowing down is normal.
    Ben TCA 09-63474
  • thank for the ans
    I called trainland where i bought it . They said when was the last time you ran it . i told them 1 year ago just to see if it runs then put it away. They said it may need oil. lionel may not have oiled it at the factory or the oil dried out so i brought it to them and they oiled for me now it is good to go.i put on the track with 10 cars and it went fast as it had only 5 cars on it .A zw is in the future[:p]


    thanks again jack
  • Jack, you may want to check the traction tire too, to see if it's slipping. My little Lionel Columbia 4-4-2 pulls 10 cars with die-cast trucks/fast angle wheels no problem. But I re-adhere my traction tires as a regular proceedure.

    The weight of the casting of the Berk should give it some pulling power. I have some Lionel Industrial Switchers from the early 1990's. As is out of the box, they don't pull much at all. Once I got done with them adding more weight, they now pull 10 cars pretty easily. Even my little revamped 8902 2-4-0 with a plastic shell will pull 10 cars. I've actually had these all pulling more, but around 10 cars seems to be good.

    brianel, Agent 027

    "Praise the Lord. I may not have everything I desire, but the Lord has come through for what I need."

  • My Polar Express can pull 15 hopper cars [diecast trucks] with coal loads and one caboose. Has a little trouble getting it started but then carries on. A stronger transformer may be instore. Pictured below is the Polar Express pulling the 15 hopper cars and caboose with a MTH SD80 dummy [very heavy]. That was too much spinning to get it started.

     God bless TCA 05-58541   Benefactor Member of the NRA,  Member of the American Legion,   Boss Hog of Roseyville Laugh,   KC&D QualifiedCowboy       

                  

  • Brianel,

    How often do you re-adhere or change traction tires, and how do you know when you need to? What do you use to adhere them?

    Jim

    See the Scenic Jumijo Railroad in CTT and OGR magazines! 

  • May want to clean the track and traction tires with denatured alcohol. Using smoke can put a layer of oilyness on the track and reduce traction.
  • I clean my track and pickup rollers once a week with 91% iso. alchohol. Since alchohol is an astingent, I'm not sure I'd want to put it on my traction tires. I'd be afraid it would dry out and age prematurely.

    Jim

    See the Scenic Jumijo Railroad in CTT and OGR magazines! 

  • Jim, I haven't had to completely replace too many traction tires. I know I have though on the steamers more than the diesels. The traction tire on the Lionel NYC Flyer style Columbia 4-4-2 steamer though is not as wide as the typical traction tire on a diesel. If you can slide the traction tire around the wheel or cause it to buckle by using your fingers, then it needs to be re-adhered. You can also watch the train carefully when pulling a load. When the train slows and struggles (like at a turnout on a curve) watch the traction tire wheels carefully and you can sometimes see the traction tire buckling a little.

    I use Scotch 3M Carpet Tape to adhere my traction tires. I cut a strip on a clean piece of glass using a metal straight edge and a razor blade. I clean the wheel first with 91% isopropyl alchohol, then put on the carpet tape, remove the backing, and then slip on the traction tire. I find this works like a charm for me and have little problem with slipping.

    I've been occasionally wiping off my traction tires for years with the 91% I.A. and have not had any problems with premature aging or drying out of traction tires. The wear seems to be mostly from just sheer use, especially on locos with only a single traction tire.

    brianel, Agent 027

    "Praise the Lord. I may not have everything I desire, but the Lord has come through for what I need."

  • the motor that kline uses in their diecast steamers is very small. I would be careful of pulling too many engines as the cruise control will make them pull way more than normal and waveform modlulation can cause a motor to get very hot.

    So much so that if the train starts to slow down for no apparent reason, stop it and let it cool off, or the plastic brush assembley in the mabuchi's can melt and then it is shot.
    Dave
  • thank every body for all the ans and info

    trainland oiled it they said sometimes the oil dries out when not used in a long time or lionel didn't use enough oil at the factory. they check it all out at no charge one thing i don't like is they said it will only pull 5to7 cars. but with the new motors i though they can pull more than 10 cars at least 25 or better i just cant belive only 10 or 8.
    i still think their is something wrong with it. i think i will call lionel on monday and ask them what motor and how manny cars it should pull.

    just to let you guys know i am using fastrack a CW 80 trans the lay out is on the floor it is a figure 8 with 4 extra strights. i will run the engne tomarrow a will add more cars to it and see how it runs

    thank again jack
  • Let me add some observations here. I've done some experiementing with single truck-mounted DC can motored diesels and have noticed real inconsistancies.

    The first experiement I did a long time ago just confirmed what I had always noticed with my eye, that Mabuchi DC can motors do not run at the same exact speed even with consistant track voltage. I'm sure the Mabuchi motors are manufactured with quantity in mind more than precise quality. But these operating inconsistancies may be inherient to the type of motor that it is. Lionelsoni could comment on that one more deeply as he seems to have a deep knowledge of electronics that I don't have.

    I've noticed too that some Mabuchi motors (of the same type) warm up much more quickly than do others, under the same identical operating conditions. Of course the same can be said for the open frame AC Lionel motors, but with those, brushes can be replaced and general maintenance performed that will probably improve operation.

    Also according to K-Line's parts llist, the motors used in the S-2, RDC, Alco FA, and MP-15 are identical (as are Lionel's for many of the similar kinds of locos) whereas the motor for the K-Line basic Pacific-style 3000 series steamer has a different part number for that motor, so it may be a slightly bigger motor, I can't recall.

    brianel, Agent 027

    "Praise the Lord. I may not have everything I desire, but the Lord has come through for what I need."

  • how would tell what motor the lionel berkshier has i look in all the papper work it came with and nothing. I will call lionel on monday and see wha they say.
    i will run the train later when i come home
  • I'm sure it is the small mabuchi. That is what i have in my c@nw 10 wheeler. They are mass produced motors and made cheap. Even so they do run fairly well. They do vary in how well they operate, some will run very smooth when laying in your hand at 12 volts and some will vibrate allot. They do not have a balnced armature and that makes a big difference.
    If you would like to know how to balance a armature and true a flywheel. email:
    lickness2002@yahoo.com.