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In depth idiot
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
...I find it quite stunning that some manufacturers are repeatedly making the same mistakes that were learned 20-30 years ago. There is no excuse for it!...
It is annoying. My opinion, this is due to the inevitable turn over of design staff, and the newbies wanting to implement their unproven ideas; without reference to what has been tested and failed (or at least found wanting) in the past, and therefore not suitable. (I was around commercial mechanism design long enough early in my career, to have said 'NO!' very forcefully more times than I can recall at design proposal reviews. Typically followed by 'already tried, all the manufacturing cost saving 'eaten' many times over by in-service warranty claims, with all that implies in global deployment of trained field operatives and service locations, spares supply, yada, yada, yada'.)

Top of my list in model railway: always design the mechanism as an assembly that can be removed as a complete running piece from the body, either by undoing a few easily accessible screws, or releasing a few lugs from detents. If this is not achievable, walk away, and leave the subject to someone smarter...

If it is of interest, Dapol appear to have learned lessons, applied on their NBL DE type 2 TOPS 21/29. Adequate gear ratio for a dead slow creep into motion. And the body fits snugly and is both easily removed and well retained; in this respect 'perfect'.
 

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@34C you've summed up the problem well. In my industry, the equivalent would be good designs not being documented and/or properly handed over to new staff and the management not following/mandating the recognised good design practices. It is a management problem.

Totally agree with you on separate bodies and chassis - that's how I have always constructed locos. It was a tried and tested approach way back in the 1960's with K's, Wills, GEM etc. Not saying we should bring these back as by today's standards, they are crude, but the principals apply.

Regarding Dapol fixing the gear ratio on their 21/29, that's all well and good, but what about those of us who purchased class 22's before they took a corporate decision to fix their standard gear ratio ? Do we get an opportunity to have our models fixed properly ? I thought not. So we are stuck with £100+ models which are sub-standard that we can't fix and really don't run very well.

Just out of interest, which company did you work for doing mechanism design ?
 

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In depth idiot
Joined
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7,728 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
...what about those of us who purchased class 22's before they took a corporate decision to fix their standard gear ratio ? Do we get an opportunity to have our models fixed properly ? I thought not. So we are stuck with £100+ models which are sub-standard that we can't fix and really don't run very well...
This is why I am ruthless in the matter of an immediate 'infant mortality' test of my own design on receipt of any model. If it proves 'unfit for purpose' from any cause, back it goes for refund within days of receipt. I realise this a complete PITA when you are 12,000 miles from the vendor, but do recommend it as an approach.
 
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