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Mehano .... any knowledge of them ?

8455 Views 10 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  upnick
Hi All,

I have bought a Mehano HO DCC fitted PRR GG1 loco the retailer tells me Howes fitted the DCC .... have any of you experience of their performance and reliability please ?

Many thanks

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Mehano are part of Bachmann & the sound decoder would probably be a SWD or Digitrax chip.
QUOTE (alberta @ 8 Feb 2009, 00:21) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Mehano are part of Bachmann & the sound decoder would probably be a SWD or Digitrax chip.

Hi Alberta,

Thanks for the infomation,

As makred on the box i presume the loco is made in Slovenia under the Bachmann banner then
... after testing it the decoder manufacturer reads back as 99 Lenz if my memory serves me correctly (the NMRA site was down to check) still a nice loco for £35 ........... if it had sound for that price would have been over the moon
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Hello there

Mehano and Bachmann are not the same company. (at least not this week!) Bachmann UK are the official UK importers of mehano but the involvement stops there. Its worth noting though that many retailers found it cheaper to continue to import direct from eastern europe rather than use bachmann simply because it was cheaper.

I find that if you get a cood mehano chassis it will work like a dream for many years as long as you dont try and tweak it. just let it be and it will do its job. get a bad one or try and mess with it and your stuffed!

They have been making the GG1 since the dawn of time but its always been a reasonable model. I wasnt aware that it had ever been available DCC fitted. If its a second hand model then I susect its probably been fitted at a later date.

QUOTE (alberta @ 8 Feb 2009, 00:21) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Mehano are part of Bachmann & the sound decoder would probably be a SWD or Digitrax chip.

As Peter says Bachmann are the UK importers of Mehano, or at least were up to this week - unless you know different.

Otherwise does anybody else know the state of play with Mehano at the moment please ?

I would take a guess that if anyone takes over Mehano it will be Roco.
i never really thought they pulled their weight. their products were good but never as available as they should have been. and they always took several years to produce the extra coaches for the TGV's.

i would love to see them to well as an independant and be a real thorn in the side of the big boys.

Hi Peter,

So I'm not the only one up & about this morning then !

We have a couple of Mehano locomotives on SL - a 66(HGK) & a 77(SNCB). Both perform very well & a far cry from the 70's Mehano (a little like the difference between 70's Piko & current production Piko).

Yes, it would be nice to see them survive.
I've had [still got AFAIK] several mehano products.....US prototypes.

Apart from the ALco S1 swicher [shunter].....all had central can-like motor [of cheapo persuasion] with shaft/uj drive to each bogie tower, and 4, 5 or6 wheel drive.......[when Hornby/lima were into motor bogies].................the S1 still had a central motor, but only drove one truck.......this in late 1980's..when the much-vaunted HORNBY...have emulated the same drive layout on their re-vamped [lima] class 20!!!

They were priced cheap as chips, even over here.

In the US -side of things...they well pre-dated the arrival of KAto, etc, so for competition, they had the old Athearn [with their industrial motors that cold blow a 13 amp fuse on start-up]....Atlas, early Bachymann,etc......

in model terms they were very basic [don't like 'crude']

they were noted for [on their diesels] having huge openins where the pilot [buffer-less leam] should have been,for the coupler swing.....very thick plastic handrails, but excellent body mouldings.

More IMPORTANTLY...their range covered all the less-common prototypes seen in the US and elsewhere...Athearn et al covered the popular EMD and GM types, Mehano did the famous ALCO diesels....C415, C428, C420, S1.......etc.

At that point, most of these were only available in expensive-but-exquisite brass from Japan.

[they have now since been modelled in equally exquisite plastic by later makers]

So for the broke modeller seeking different, Mehano was a good bet......plastikard to infill the pilots, make up wire handrails, remove moulded grabs and replace with ubiquitous bambi staples....and hey ho.

Personally, would eventually replace the motors with Sagami or Mabuchi [sorry, Mashima...showing my age] we do today.....and add loads of depleted uranium ballast.

They were cheap enough for me to convert the C628 into a UP C630, ie hacksaw and plasticard.....the C415 got converted to the Hi-cab version.....the S1 was a little high on its trucks, later years at NMRA meets, it would cheekily switch on my modules and be assumed to be a Kato model......[would be a more suitable candidate for cross-scaling into a 4mm Alco from British Steel]

Mehano's steamers were a cheap alternative to the few plastic steamers out there [US -proto]...competitors being the likes of Rivarossi, MDC Roundhouse, Varney [I think]and a make I cannot think the name of, which produced very Hornby-dublo-like steamers.......I had [have] a 4-6-4, and a 4-6-2.

Until the arrival of Bachmann's Spectrum USRA models...a breath of fresh was these, or brass.

I had several 0-4-0 ex-pennsy switchers...these never had full valve gear...the rivarossi alternative was nice in a Hornby-Dublo sort of way.....but had a horrendously huge- in- every- respect motor...nicely sprung tender though.

Most Mehano stuff could/can be found in the bargain bucket ads fro the general box stackers..teh ''Happy Shoppers'' of the railway retail trade.

Question...the GG1 is very much a electric loco....why sound? It already has it.
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Ok, time for confession.

My first ever HO loco was a Mehano Br216. Errrr... actually bought it for my son, a startset, for him to play...but dad took over, and this incident triggered of what I am today. I still keep it. Beautiful runner for its time. Here she is:

Mind you the rails were terrible. The set came in with 4 passenger coaches and was good practice for my weathering experiments at that time.

This coach was orange in colour. My son still plays with it.

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Hi Baykal

That's vaguely a lolo

Many thanks for everyones input on the GG1 i cant wait to run it (soon hopefully) i fitted it out with Kadee couplers yesterday ........ yes Peter the loco is secondhand but in mint condition the decoder is very responsive and needs to have the CV's sorted for a realistic running speed.
A friend has a layout i'm hoping to go and give it a run later on
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