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Hornby 14xx - Traction tyres

5867 Views 11 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  whizzo
I believe the Hornby 14xx is fitted with traction tyres to one set of driving wheels.

Does the set of wheels with tyres also collect current?

If so, could the tyres be removed for better current collection, or would the adhesion be too badly affected.

(I would only want to pull one autocoach with it)
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Yes it is. I imagine that it does not collect current. In my experinece when the tracion tyre is not fitted, the wheel is left with a groove. This catches on the line so that the model does not run properly. My 14xx runs and pulls very well. Upto about 4 coaches.
Even with traction tyres fitted you get some power pickup from the flange


Many years ago, I had 2 Airfix 14xx tanks (still got one) and I fitted the non-tyred driving wheels and axle from one to the other, so I had a loco with no traction tyres. Didn't really work because of the weight distribution - very little tractive effort. I think it's because the centre of gravity is just behind the second driving wheels (on the new Hornby M7 the centre of gravity is between the driving wheels and this works fine without traction tyres).

One day I'll try to get some more weight into the front of the 14xx to get the cg ahead of the rear drivers because the performance has always been very erratic (stalls easily).

My 14xx (and I'm supposing the Hornby 14xx remained the same design as the original Airfix one) has plunger type pickups on the backs of all wheels.

My intention is to fit pick ups to the auto coach I have (I've fitted Bachmann metal coach wheels in place of the old plastic Airfix ones) and connect it to the loco.

Hope this helps, be interested to hear if your 14xx will run better.

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The Hornby 14xx (it was acquired with the retooled chassis from Dapol who did release some themselves) does not use plunger pickups - they were one of the failings of the original Airfix chassis as the springs typically could not cope with the current and failed.
Thanks for that, Butler Henderson. I'll have a look at the pick ups on my vintage Airfix model, perhaps I can fit wire ones instead. Explains a lot about the poor running!


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QUOTE (34030 Watersmeet @ 25 Jan 2009, 00:03) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I'll have a look at the pick ups on my vintage Airfix model, perhaps I can fit wire ones instead.

I did adopt my Airfix 14xx to pick-up off from pick ups on the autocoach - the motor has metal rod attached to the bottom bruch holder which bears onto a metal contact on the plastic chassis retaining plate as part of the original pick-up ararngements. If you turn the motor upside down (may need to swop the brush holders round) that metal rod sticks neatly inside the dome so allowing for wires to be easilly soldered to both brush holders.Suspect it was probably designed as such to suit the old dcc like Airfix MTC system.My 14xx did not last much longer after that as the plastic gear wheel managed to strip its teeth. Some time after that I noted that Branchlines were offering repalcement gear wheels - doubt that they still do however if your run into that problem. As an alterntive the Dapol designed chassis can often be found on ebay and at toy fairs at very low prices.
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Thanks for that. I've just been looking at the service sheet for the current 14xx on the Hornby web site and the design of the chassis is very different. Smaller motor now drives on the second axle rather than the leading axle on the original "GMR" Airfix one (which I have in front of me, partly dismantled. Didn't run at all well just now on the layout). I wonder if the current one has more weight ahead of the second axle and therefore better traction. I can't see how any more weight can be added to original. I think I'll try your advice about pickups on auto coach. The loco has had very little use since I bought it in 1981 (think it was about £5 or £6 then!) so mechanically it might hold out for a while. I'll also try for a replacement chassis if they're cheap.

I've got a 14xx with wiper pick up's. It had tyres when new, but I replaced them with Romford wheels and axles. I pressed the nylon gear off the driving axle and pressed it on to the Romford one, and it works like a dream. It pulls either an autocoach or a few goods wagons and has wipers (original) on all six wheels. It goes through my code 75 electrofrog peco points with no trouble at all.
The real problem I had with the Dapol / Hornby model is keeping the trailing wheels on the track firmly enough to keep picking up power when the 14XX is balance on it's traction tyred wheels 2 of mine were much better when I put a 10 ba bolt up inside the spring boss to stop the wheels moving more than about 1 mm upwards into their slots, I had to drill with a drill in a pin vice and tap the hole, and this stopped the two squatting at the rear and uncoupling which plagued me, but the third, a Dapol was every bit as bad until I cut away the plastic under the axle and fitted a strip of brass to allow an extra 1 or 2 mm downward travel.
Now with revised rear pickups on a subfrme above the wheels which also supports the crew she runs beautifully just on the two unpowered wheels pick up on my code 100 live frog points, ad the wheels go round.
Basically Daapol quality control was poor which is why one mans fix doesn't work on someone elses engine.

The Airfix chassis has the spring loaded plungers which cannot stand dead shorts which go with the way I wire live frog points especially with run round loops.
The Airfx motor is beautiful and ideal for a 42XX but a 14XX, I use tiny motors from CD Rom or car CD players, sleeve the armature to fit the drive shaft with a pen refill, make a bracket and it's better, empty cab as well, then I pack the drive gear with washers to control the front axle end float and stop the crabbing, fit wiper pickups to a piece of pcb down in amongst the brake rigging and remove the traction tyres and she runs sweetly, but needs a banker with a single auto coach up my 1 in 24 hill.

I tried Romfords no better, I haven't tried the 10 ba bolt trick and use traction tyres on the Airfix yet, but as I tried and failed to build a compensated chassis from a brass kit I fancy a simple 0-4-0 chassis pivoted within a chassis which holds the trailing wheels because a Hornby Polly is lighter than a 14XX and has all the performance I need, however when ever I sit down to cut metal (Plastic/PCB ) I chicken out.

How do you post pics on here?
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I retrofitted mine with a Comet chassis.

This was a lot of years ago but I recall it being one of my favourites. It ran very well but as has been noted, didn't have much tractive effort. Then again it only had to pull an autocoach and sometimes a fish van. I sold it some time ago.

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Hi all , i had the same problem a few weeks ago - with the 14xx i have improved this model -by changing the rubber tyered wheels with another pair of smooth rimmed as front ( got them as a spare part ) then i packed the boiler with of cut pieces of sheet flashing lead + cut a piece to fit on top of the chassie weight -got the shape by putting a piece of putty on to of the chassie weight and placing the whole lot back in the body - take it apart again, and you have the shape required in the putty - the loco 100% improved i to, am only going to pull an auto coach .- so when i get the station laided if required may fit pickups to the coach wheels also // a this point a big thank you to all the help i was given on this site without it i was at the point of scrapping the loco ---regards Dave
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