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Doug - you have already covered 2 of the locos I need to 'chip' - many thanks for your excellent guides. The detail you offer together with photos and diagrams gives me the confidence to get started - thank you for sharing your knowledge with us.

Graham
 

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I only fell over this review by accident, as Doug compared it to the Bachmann Class 20 in the 'Ugly Stakes' elsewhere.

Well, ugly it always was and ugly it steadfastly remains, but with enough weirdness 'character' to become almost attractive in spite of that! Strange how one characteristic can produce its opposite characteristic in its emotional effect on us.

Apart from what one might think of the prototype's looks, again I am favourably impressed by Hornby's success in reproducing it, so effectively and at a very reasonable price. Very impressed by electrical pickup from all six tender wheels in addition to all six loco wheels - THAT's the way to do it! This model should run as well as any diesel or electric loco and that's fairly unusual for a British steam loco - well done.


It's good that Doug noted the loco's difficulty with tighter radius curves, more worryingly a difficulty in negotiating turnouts, and in then identifying the need for just a little more lateral play in the centre axle. I don't know if there is any play in this one's front and rear axles, but the usual continental practice is to spread the lateral play over all axles, so that no single one has to handle it all by itself. This, of course, results in the same amount of slack needing to be provided for the connecting rods, which then detracts a little from the charateristic 'tight' visual appearance of their bearings. The poor old manufacturer just can't win if the user demands that all his locos must negotiate minimum radius curves!

Apart from that almost insurmountable compromise area, this is a very fine effort by Hornby, though this could be one loco that would benefit from a filthy, weathered paint job as standard - the chances of ever seeing a pristine version would have been very unlikely, apart from on delivery day, and even then perhaps not, given its historical period and role in life! A good coating of grime on the outer edge of the wheel treads would be a must.
 

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Just put a TCS M1 in a Merchant Navy - it fits in the end of the motor mount held in place by cut up sticky pads keeping all clear from the end of the motor spindle. Keeps all the wiring at the cab end apart from Hornbys existing pick up wires and means that the body can be detached without any decoder wiring to worry about.
 

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Doug, the crews used the Q1's with great enthusiasm, discovering among other things that despite being a freight type they would bowl along up to 80mph, and were equally quick in forward and reverse, the tender cab making this a realistic proposition. That's a legacy of Bulleid having been Gresley's right hand man when he was designing his quick engines: (the Merchant Navy class is basically Bulleid's pacific development of the Gresley 2-8-2 P2, a loco which Bulleid took to France for testing on the Vitry rolling road). A slightly higher setting in CV5 maybe? Don't know the characteristic of the Arnold decoder, so you may well already have an appropriate value set.
(Rail-Rider @ 30 May 2006, 16:18) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>It's good that Doug noted the loco's difficulty with tighter radius curves, more worryingly a difficulty in negotiating turnouts, and in then identifying the need for just a little more lateral play in the centre axle. I don't know if there is any play in this one's front and rear axles, but the usual continental practice is to spread the lateral play over all axles, so that no single one has to handle it all by itself. This, of course, results in the same amount of slack needing to be provided for the connecting rods, which then detracts a little from the charateristic 'tight' visual appearance of their bearings. The poor old manufacturer just can't win if the user demands that all his locos must negotiate minimum radius curves!
Both front and rear axles of the Q1 have side play. I think Hornby pushed the chassis width to the limit on this model so it will just manage the specified 2nd radius minimum; this to enable the best possible rendition of the end on appearance from the front. That's a consequence of the infamous OO compromise!
Apart from what one might think of the prototype's looks, again I am favourably impressed by Hornby's success in reproducing it, so effectively and at a very reasonable price. Very impressed by electrical pickup from all six tender wheels in addition to all six loco wheels - THAT's the way to do it! This model should run as well as any diesel or electric loco and that's fairly unusual for a British steam loco ..
Note that Doug also spotted the relatively poor load hauling capacity, well below the size of real train these machines could haul around. I wanted the space in the loco for more ballast to improve haulage, so put the decoder in the tender. This requires a four wire connection, so I eliminated the very obtrusive Hornby loco to tender coupler, and put in a simple drawbar, through the modelled drawbar slots in the dragbox faces under the cab and the tender front. Hornby have represented the 'airy' open structure under the cab very well indeed, and this modification shows it off to great advantage.
 

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Excellent Doug and as said before very useful, it should help me a lot as I have a weathered Q1, 33006 and 34067 Tangmere to chip shortly.

Keep up the good work.

Regards
 

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There review threads should get "bumped" more often


David
 

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QUOTE (BRITHO @ 12 Aug 2008, 17:00) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Excellent Doug and as said before very useful, it should help me a lot as I have a weathered Q1, 33006 and 34067 Tangmere to chip shortly.

Keep up the good work.

Regards

I wonder who will really get that job ??
 

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QUOTE (Brian Considine @ 12 Aug 2008, 22:31) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I wonder who will really get that job ??

Ishould be able to manage the Q1 and D5013 when it arrives - as for the Spam.........

Regards
 

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QUOTE (butler-henderson @ 11 Aug 2008, 21:53) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Just put a TCS M1 in a Merchant Navy - it fits in the end of the motor mount held in place by cut up sticky pads keeping all clear from the end of the motor spindle. Keeps all the wiring at the cab end apart from Hornbys existing pick up wires and means that the body can be detached without any decoder wiring to worry about.
 

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First class review and installation guide for fitting a decoder. One small point that I have only just discovered as a collector of Hornby Merchant Navy Class and may be of interest to others, is that if swapping tenders between loco's, be careful if you get an "error" message come up on your controller (mine's a Hornby Elite), the wiring polarity on some tenders is different to that on the loco. My particular loco was Clan Line, which I had owned for many years but never used. I have now renamed and re numbered it as Channel Packet 35001 and fitted it with a 5100 gallon tender rather than the 6000 gallon one it came with - it threw up the error message as soon as the loco was programmed. It was a very quick job to reverse the soldered contacts in the tender - all now is ok.
 

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QUOTE (Bulleidboy100 @ 31 Jan 2020, 20:34) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>First class review and installation guide for fitting a decoder. One small point that I have only just discovered as a collector of Hornby Merchant Navy Class and may be of interest to others, is that if swapping tenders between loco's, be careful if you get an "error" message come up on your controller (mine's a Hornby Elite), the wiring polarity on some tenders is different to that on the loco. My particular loco was Clan Line, which I had owned for many years but never used. I have now renamed and re numbered it as Channel Packet 35001 and fitted it with a 5100 gallon tender rather than the 6000 gallon one it came with - it threw up the error message as soon as the loco was programmed. It was a very quick job to reverse the soldered contacts in the tender - all now is ok.

Yes: I would like to add that the same warning also applies to the Bulleid Light Pacifics from Hornby (at least, the air-smoothed ones). I'm not sure if the later rebuilt Light Pacifics or air-smoothed MNs have the problem, but even with the 4-pin connection it is possible for Hornby's factories to apply different standards.

As Bulleidboy said, it is easy enough to reverse the polarity of the tender connections, but don't assume that you can swap any Bulleid tender with another: always test first. With straight DC you will get an obvious short-circuit indication, but use the programming track on DCC to avoid blowing up your decoders.
 

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QUOTE (Doug @ 20 Apr 2005, 10:54) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I've put up 3 of my recent reviews that have DCC chip installation procedures and programming information.

Hornby R2343, Q1 Class 0-6-0 locomotive Southern Livery, C8

Hornby R2338 A4 Class 4-6-2 locomotive NE, Charles H Newton

Hornby R2204 BR 4-6-2 Merchant Navy Class 'Bibby Line', 35020

Hi Doug,
I am half way through trying to convert my clan line.. thank you for the guide is was very helpful
are you able to help me identify which wire is the left pick up and which is the right?
is the left pick up wire the one which goes down to the wheels? and the right the wire which is connected to the small tab on the chassis held in with a small screw?
i have been told one may need to be isolated? can you offer any assistance?
 

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Doug was last active on this site in about 2013 judging by his posting history, so unlikely to respond!

Need a little starting information. Does this model have a decoder socket or not, and do you have the catalogue R number and the
corresponding assembly diagram download from Hornby's site?

General information. Many of Hornby's steam models newly tooled in China have a pick up wiring arrangement which makes the
chassis block live to one rail. This is OK for DC operation, but something of a disadvantage in DCC, and that's where the 'isolation'
comes in: adding a soldered on wired connection to the pick up strip that doesn't have one, and cutting off a peg on the underside
of the chassis block that made the whole chassis live to one rail. Then you can just cut away the wire from the screw attached tab
you have seen as it is redundant. I would advise not being 'all neat and tidy' and undoing the screw to remove the tab, that screw
holds the front of the motor down, and it is very easy to strip the thread in the block, best left alone!

This design applies to loco drive steam models first released between about 2000 and 2006, after that Hornby used a much
superior arrangement with the chassis block isolated and a better motor mounting, on the subsequent newly tooled introductions.
First saw this on their loco drive Britannia which is fine 'as is'. Some of the earlier introductions have since had revisions to these
arrangements, but you have to be a complete Hornby maven to know which! Thus the suggestion to obtain the correct assembly
diagram for your model, so you are sure of what you are looking at.

HTH.
 

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Many thanks for the reply, The locomotive in question is R2169 BR 4-6-2 CLAN LINE MERCHANT NAVY CLASS and no unfortunately no pre-installed dcc pin board.
The only service sheet i can find is for the newer version.
 
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