Model Railway Forum banner
1 - 20 of 62 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have consistently read reports in the model press letters pages about the problems of UK modern models. I would say that the running issues resolve into 3 areas.

Firstly that some modern locos whilst smoother running are not as powerful as those of yesteryear.

Secondly that modern shallow flange depths are much more likely to cause derailments that the coarser wheels of a few years ago

Thirdly that Code 75 rails makes the flange problem worse.

What does the jury here have to say. It it just letter writers are the vociferous complaining minority with poor track work or are there real issues here?

Chris
 

·
DT
Joined
·
4,794 Posts
I'm OK with modern locos. Perhaps some motors are less powerful, but it's fun getting the weight of the train right and then negotiating some difficult terrain on the layout. In the real world, double heading and multiple units are used to increase the power. If our models can't make the grade, we should be calling in some assistance.

I would prefer slightly less power with smoother running thanks to better motors and improved contacts rather than bigger motors with more erratic working.

I can't comment on the flanges and track profile as I only have Code 100. Looking for some Code 75 though...
 

·
DT
Joined
·
4,794 Posts
QUOTE (The Phat Controller @ 9 Mar 2006, 13:35)btw what IS the big fuss about code 100 track? I just don't understand the whole debate!

code 100 works for me!
<{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My Code 100 is fine too, but I think that the Code 75 points will highlight problems associated with out-of-gauge axles and slightly large wheel flanges.

I'm going to get some Code 75 track for the sections that are most visible. Basically the the parts of the layout that will have the most work done on the scenery. I'll leave the Code 100 for staging yards and track at the back of the layout.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,397 Posts
I find different manufacturers vary considerably in running quality. Hornby tend to be the worst as they have weak motors and very little weight to give traction. I find Bachmann a lot better as they have more weight. Continental and American models are a lot better than either as they are far heavier, although the RP25 wheels on American ones generate more derailments. Trix, which are my favourite German trains, derail very rarely. This could be due to their wider flanges on their wheels as well as the fact that they have metal bodies which increases the weight.
Some of the recent Hornby ones such as Duchess and Princess derail almost constantly and I now only really use my Hornby locos as display models as the running quality is so poor on some. Some aren't bad like the Merchant Navy class but I find most Hornby more trouble than they are worth.
The American ones tend to have good traction when they are on the tracks but due to the shallow flanges they tend to derail when they go over points. So you really have to do a lot of test runs to see what they will and wont do.
I forgot to mention Lima, who are far worse than Hornby. The running quality on them is so bad they can only be used as static models. I think this is due to the lack of electrical contacts on the wheels.
I don't think modern models are any worse than older ones, but if you only buy UK models most of whats available is poor. Have a look at the running quality of some of the German locos and you may be surprised at whats available now.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,650 Posts
For home layouts and proprietary models best to stick with code 100 track.

Models no longer have traction tyres. We complain when models do have traction tyres and we complain when they don't. Manufacturers cannot win really.

We have now moved to nickel silver track so the magnadhesion of older locomotives is no longer effective unless you purchase used steel track. Those who do the complaining probably forget how good the effect of magnadhesion was in giving the locomotive "virtual weight".

If anything motors are now effectively more powerful as gearing has been reduced on the latest models. And recent rolling stock is now super friction free so more can be hauled. If you are using modern traction tyre free locomotives and hauling older rolling stock which is not as free rolling as that produced recently, then really you are not in a position to complain. A solution is to replace all your old rolling stock with new.

We demand realism. The manufacturers offer realism. I prefer compromise and I don't mind traction tyres and can put up with a bit of loco wobble if it means my loco can haul 20 coaches.

Of course DCC does not like traction tyres. So we have to put up with locomotives that slip when pulling more than 12 coaches or locomotives that cannot go up inclines.

If you want real pulling power then you will require a loco with traction tyres such as the Hornby Class 9F Loco. Who would like to put money on the new Bachmann Class 9F outhauling an older Hornby Class 9f?

QUOTE Continental and American models are a lot better than either as they are far heavier

Compared to the Hornby and Bachmann offerings, Continental models are a lot more expensive and American models are made in hugely greater numbers so development costs spread across the massive volumes are much lower. I basically am very happy with the current arrangements in the UK and simply don't want continental style prices thank you very much. Lets keep the hobby in the UK mass market and not turn it into a niche hobby for the rich.

Hornby's roots are in offering value products and my view is if a Hornby locomotives runs as poorly as claimed above it is an issue with the track. Hornby have a Princess running for countless hours on their demonstration layout and it never comes off.

And I find Lima products complete with traction tyres OK on my Hornby track with an H & M Duette controller. Maybe I am more tolerant than most however if I am only paying £30 then I feel I am not able to complain!


Happy modelling
Gary
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
QUOTE (Gary @ 9 Mar 2006, 21:41).........Of course DCC does not like traction tyres.........
Happy modelling
Gary
<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Both analogue & DCC control require there to be a good electrical path between the loco & the track so why do you say DCC does not like traction tyres? There is no obvious difference.

On the question I originally posed there does seem to be a feeling, if I am reading this correctly, that model development has not been a win win situation.

Chris
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,650 Posts
QUOTE why do you say DCC does not like traction tyres? There is no obvious difference.

Analogue powered locos and equipment is more forgiving of power fluctuation spikes. No electronics to damage. I am not a DCC expert but this is how I interprete the discussion in the DCC section. Am I right or wrong?

Agreed that traction tyres don't help pick up but are they normally fitted to wheels that pick power up? They definitely help locos to haul more except when the rubber has perished. Traction tyres do require a change every so often.

As manufacturers have done away with traction tyres they have at the same time increased the number of wheels that pick power up. This helps when crossing dead spots on the track which again is to the benefit of DCC (and analogue pick up too of course).

Happy modelling
Gary
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
487 Posts
I am not a Hornby enthusiast, but have one gauge 00 locomotive that I count as being one of my best runners and most trouble free - the Hornby c35 Hymek.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26 Posts

I have a reasonable size collection of all the major rtr manufacturers. Whilst I cannot say that all there offerings run without any problems, the vast majority of them do. When there are problems they are mainly track based e.g frogs on points. I have had to make minor modifications to 3 of my 40 steam locos to rectify the problem. I have had no running problems with any diesel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Gary,

I don't think that we are fundamentally disagreeing here. The important thing is a nice steady stream of electricity to the motor & electronics. A traction tyre effectively removes one wheel from those available to collect that flow & thus can make a pick up problem more likely.

Dave,

My very very limited experience (so far) of new models is all diesel & they all work OK. reading the posts above it does seem that the problem is steam. It has always been the bogies of steam locos that are the most prone to derailing & it seems nothing has changed. I remember as a kid experimenting to see if I could put a bit of load on a front bogie to hold it onto the track. Having worked with 15" gauge they have the same problems!

Chris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
763 Posts
I have to say that most of my adhesion issues are related to steam loco's. A sad fact is that most are of the newer loco drive type as well. I have a pair of spam cans, one will haul anything you put behind it whilst the other one plods around at around one third of the actual wheel speed. My new A4 from the Northumbrian set went on strike when i coupled my entire crimson/cream gresley rake of 11 carriages behind it. I daren't try the A1 and A3 with that many on. The A1 and 3 occasionally trip up on points, usually the terrible setrack curved points in the direction where the points are facing. The new LNER pacific leading truck weighs bog all and is even more floppy than its predecessor.As far as motors are concerned I find it odd that the state of the art loco motor is little more than has been propelling scalectrix cars for donkeys years and indeed is essentially the same as is used for menial tasks in the motor trand such as driver adjustable headlights!
State of the art more state of the ark
Reviewers and modellers alike spent years moaning about tender drives and the unrealistic nature of them yet isn't it typical that they can outhaul their loco drive counterparts partly due to their traction tyres and non nickel silver wheels.
If you want to improve adhesion you could always try putting sand on the track!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
111 Posts
I started railway modelling (playing trains to be more precise) in 1972. I used HO Lima, Roco Fleischmann, Liliput, Trix, Kleinbahn,... For some years I tried Märklin.
But now I have my best working layout.
I tried to standardize on one track system- Hornby and run Hornby rolling stock. Hornby tension lock couplers are not the most beautiful ones and the code 100 track is for from finescale. But all my steam (no diesel at the moment) locos run without derailments and without stalling I can shunt my trains over insulfrog points (OK-there is no pug on my layout). The couplings are to large but make hands free shunting possible as the Hornby uncoupler tracks and ramps work fine. I finished tracklaying on christmas eve and never cleaned track since - still no stalling as my Hornby locos have excellent power pick up. Unfortunately my layout is not really big and with only 5-6 coaches to tow it is difficult to get the wheels to slip when starting a heavy train (as did the prototype) so the locos are rather to string for my purpose. What could be improved? The back to back measurement of Hornby wagons is inconstant and could cause derailments before adjusted. This is done in matters of second but could be a problem for the novice without experience (first trainset....) More a problem are Bachmann wheelsets that seem not to run round and I cannot fix them, just replace at my expanse. While I have experienced quality issues with Hornby locos statistically they have been better then Roco and Märklin and after sales and repair service is where Hornby positively shines. I think Hornby customer care to be the best in the trade - important for me with no local trade supplying OO model trains. You can see I am a big Hornby fan now as I think I get best value for money from them. Last year I abandoned continental HO and wholeheartedly switched to modelling British 00 (being able to buy models of the worlds most beautiful steam locos of course helped...)


Thomas
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26 Posts
Chris E you are correct the problems I have suffered with steam trains, are all with regard to the front pony trucks the manufacturers do not put enough weight into them and as soon as they hit points they derail. I have cured the problems with them, by listening to advice given by other modellers on this site and MRE.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,275 Posts
QUOTE (Gary @ 10 Mar 2006, 07:41)Of course DCC does not like traction tyres. Happy modelling
Gary
<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well no. have a look at the new Broadway Limited offerings. They come with traction tires as an option that the owner can fit and it causes no problems. Rivarossi fitted traction tires to many of their models as did Lima, Jouef and many other continental manufacturers. With plastic bodies and insufficient weight in many models, including some very expensive brass models, it's either add weight or put up with a light load behind coupler. Or you could build a DJH kit that has plenty of weight and will pull a fair load given a good motor and gearbox.

Ozzie21
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,275 Posts
QUOTE (ChrisE @ 9 Mar 2006, 21:13)Secondly that modern shallow flange depths are much more likely to cause derailments that the coarser wheels of a few years ago

Thirdly that Code 75 rails makes the flange problem worse.

Chris
<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Sorry have to disagree completely with the above. The flanges provided on most UK made RTR stock are big enough to cut cookies with. RP 25 profile wheels are designed to work on Code 100 rail down to code 70 rail with the US standard being Code 83. RP 25 wheels do have much smaller flange but the tyre face is 0.098" wide to run on code 100 rail. RP 88 wheels that I use have much smaller flange again and have a tyre face 0.086" wide. Scale wheels have a tyre face something in region of 0.061" wide. With most RTR run models the the guage of the wheels is usually out, I think you use back to back measurment. I use an NMRA standards guage which allows you to adjust the wheels by aligning the flanges in two slots in the guage. This allows you to have a little leeway in seeting the wheels. On Hornby and Bachmann models as well as many American models, which are mainly made in China as well, the "back to back" I guess is to narrow allowing the wheels to ride up in point frogs and strike point rails. So I adjust them all and they all run fine on my code 75. If after you check and reguage your wheels they still derail I'd start checking my trackwork.

Ozzie21
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,650 Posts
To be honest OZ the typical railway modeller in the UK won't have a clue what all this stuff about wheelgauging is about. I don't!

I like to open a box, stick an item on the track, and watch it go. I prefer to use track that permits this and if that means I use track that offends pure scale modellers then tough. I do run new and old models and find Hornby track copes well with nearly all rolling stock produced over the 50 years that Hornby have been producing trains (I won't say models as we live in a PC world!
)

Hornby and Bachmann know their typical customers and I suspect a very high number think like me and like things to be very simple.

What this has to do with poor running I don't know but if Hornby and Bachmann, by pandering to the whims of those that demand perfection and finescale, are starting to produce locomotives that run poorly and won't pull the skin off a rice pudding and won't go up gradients, then is this progress?

A 1967 Triang Hornby Hymec with Magnadhesion on steel track could pull 11 coaches according to press reviews of that year. On nickel silver track it struggles to pull 5 coaches! It can only pull 2 Hornby Dublo tinplate coaches on nickel silver track. As for any steep incline on nickel silver track forget it.

A Hornby Dublo diecast loco can easily pull 6 tinplate coaches without magnadhesion.

It seems that locomotives now have to be heavy to pull any weight.

The truth is you simply cannot put heavy weight into a steam locomotive. Diesels yes you can and tenders yes you can and possibly this is why tender drive became fashionable.

I wonder how many of todays UK steam train modellers actaully haul more then 4-5 coaches? Even todays high detail locos can cope with that. If 95% of modellers who buy Hornby and Bachmann models haul 5 coaches or less then they are going to be very satisfied with running performance.

The other thing is of course is that you cannot compare UK outline OO with the rest of the worlds HO. UK steam tenders are generally much smaller due to shorter distances travelled so less space for weight in there even with tender drive. USA HO steam locos are much bigger even in HO scale so can be heavier. There is plenty of double and triple heading in the USA and elsewhere in the world so modellers can model this and pull long consists. If UK outine locos tend to be lighter then this is the very nature of the animal as they are smaller.

Happy modelling
Gary
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
487 Posts
Personally I thing that the "rivet counters" have demanded so many changes to be made by the manufacturers, that decline in models running qualities was to be expected.
I will agree that better and stronger electric motors was a must to increase an engine pulling power and the ability to power pickup from all traction wheels.
Why change a proved and accepted method of traction, just for the sake of changes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
QUOTE (Ozzie21 @ 12 Mar 2006, 07:33)With most RTR run models the the guage of the wheels is usually out, I think you use back to back measurment. ......... On Hornby and Bachmann models as well as many American models, which are mainly made in China as well, the "back to back" I guess is to narrow allowing the wheels to ride up in point frogs and strike point rails. So I adjust them all and they all run fine on my code 75. If after you check and reguage your wheels they still derail I'd start checking my trackwork.

Ozzie21
<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think what you are saying is that as supplied they don't run properly on the track as supplied but perhaps a little worn. This is not a good basis for a consumer item. I agree with Gary. Yes rivets are important but to many users good running matters more than the last 1% or even 5% of accuracy.

Chris
 
1 - 20 of 62 Posts
Top