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Friend's Bachmann HO 4-8-4 Niagara not working

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  • Member since
    January, 2019
  • 5 posts
Friend's Bachmann HO 4-8-4 Niagara not working
Posted by panzerpete75 on Wednesday, January 30, 2019 7:24 PM

My buddy's HO Bachmann U.P. Niagara #806 recently stopped working, after being resurrected from a life in display. He bought a bunch of used track, and after being given some old rolling stock from me, managed to get it to run, though with stutters. Running on an older DC pack and simple oval of EZ-Track, if that matters. Last night, it stopped working, only the headlight was on without the moter making any noise. I'm guessing that it's dirty track and wheels causing it, and I have a track cleaning block but nothing to clean the wheels with. Any other theories, and as I should do a cleaning on my locos as well, what would be a good idea to clean the wheels with. I used contact cleaner on O-27 Marx engine wheels, but the HO ones look too small for the same technique. Any help is greatly appreciated.

  • Member since
    April, 2011
  • 620 posts
Posted by LensCapOn on Thursday, January 31, 2019 7:27 AM

What vintage Niagara? Bachmann has made these for a looong time with a couple complete mech redesigns. The light on but the motor dead sounds like the motor died but you likely need to open it up and test to be sure.

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    May, 2010
  • 5,426 posts
Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, January 31, 2019 7:50 AM

Just my My 2 Cents worth, along with what Lenscap says, if it's been sitting as a display, before you expect it to run at all, I would think it wopuld need an "overhaul" to make sure everything is ready to go, such has cleaning all electrical contacts, cleaning any gearing and drives, wheels, etc., etc.

Maybe check out HOSeeker for a diagram, if you need it.

https://hoseeker.net/lit.html

Good luck!

Mike.

 

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    December, 2014
  • 121 posts
Posted by Wolf359 on Thursday, January 31, 2019 2:15 PM

I'm inclined to agree with Mike that it's probably in need of an overhaul. Because if it's been sitting for a long time, there's a good chance that the oil and grease is dried out and/or gummy. Which can cause a bind in the gears. That's why the first thing I do when I buy a used locomotive or put one that hasn't run in awhile back into rotation is test it, and then if it performs poorly, go through it, clean it and re-oil and grease everything. There are also some good YouTube tutorials on model loco maintenance. Just type in "HO scale locomotive maintenance". As for wheel cleaning, I use a q-tip dipped in 70% isopropyl alcohol.

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    June, 2005
  • 4,014 posts
Posted by Darth Santa Fe on Tuesday, February 05, 2019 10:04 PM

Bachmann steam engines up through the early 2000's had problems with the axles and gears splitting.  It's possible a bad gear or another part jammed and stalled the motor.  About all you can do is take it apart and try to find the problem.

_________________________________________________________________

  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Western, MA
  • 8,187 posts
Posted by richg1998 on Wednesday, February 06, 2019 11:35 AM

Well, how old? Can motor or pancake motor?

It does sound like dirty wheels and pickups.

Shapeways does make a plastic axle kit. That has been recently discussed here. It was for the Bachmann Plus series of locos. An axle would split and the side rods would not line up.

The OP can check the Bachmann web site for the parts list if the loco is not too old. Forums there also. The web site is a great resource for Bachmann products.

Rich

If you ever fall over in public, pick yourself up and say “sorry it’s been a while since I inhabited a body.” And just walk away.

  • Member since
    January, 2019
  • 5 posts
Posted by panzerpete75 on Saturday, February 09, 2019 3:14 PM
Turns out the track and wheels were dirty, but now he has an issue with derailments. Its a newer but lower end one, with some plastic pieces in the side rods. He says that the cowcatcher is catching on the track, though I've seen talk of the spring for the front truck being too weak. What is a good fix for that?

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