Hornby 'black 5' problem

Discuss Hornby Model Railway products and related topics here. This includes (Lima, Rivarossi, Jouef, Electrotren).
GWR_fan
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Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby GWR_fan » Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:26 am

Well I am certainly getting a lot of troubleshooting experience with Hornby (and Bachmann) locomotives of late. My new Hornby super-detail loco drive LMS black 5 arrived this morning. I serviced it and put it on the track to give it a running in period. A short while later I noticed that the rods on one side were adrift and trailing the loco. Fortunately nothing was bent. The retaining screw had 'gone to God', not to be found.

I had a spare mount screw and proceeded to reassemble (thank God that I purchased a tool to fit the tiny hex headed screws). I 'tuned' the crank location but was getting a clicking sound causing the loco to lurch in the forward direction (fine in reverse). Years of troubleshooting aircraft problems lead me to start removing the obvious causes to track down the binding. I removed the motor and centre 'idler' gear. The bind was still present. Next off came the rods on one side to test for binding. Still evident, the opposite side rods were removed. Now we were down to just the chassis and drive wheels. I noticed that the driven (centre) axle was binding in one direction only.

It turned out that the brass power collector strip down one side had a slight kink in it and was standing proud of the lower cover. The kink was catching on the wheel spokes causing the bind. This was not the power collector 'finger' pickup, but the actual body of the power strip itself. I cleaned the area and superglued the strip to the case allowing the pickup 'finger' to be free to spring out and contact the drive wheel.

Once reassembled the loco now runs as it should have.


Tim

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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby GWR_fan » Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:53 am

More 'fun'!!!!!!!! After running for some time I decided to increase power to full voltage. After a few circuits of my R3 test track the loco made a sudden deceleration and then started to limp. The left hand drive rod had caught up in the motion and had bent inboard of the connecting rod causing interference. Fortunately, the Hornby rods are very malleable and the rod was reshaped to give as much clearance as possible. Does it ever end????????


Tim

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Bigglesof266
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bigglesof266 » Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:47 am

If it's any consolation Tim, I have two of the current, and most detailed mould available AFAIK, "Black 5s" in Hornby R2686A & R2686B. I too have discovered several QC issues with their motion. As they originate from an earlier production period than the current (this pair released 2008, unsure of this mould's originating date), it would seem to me to possibly have been a part of the the previous decade's (early) PRC manufacturing learning curve.

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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby GWR_fan » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:49 am

Keiron,
the black 5 is a very recent production from around 2010/2011. I had intended a couple of BR examples, though not quite sure now.


Tim

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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bigmet » Wed Jul 02, 2014 9:23 am

Hornby's LMS design locos mostly originate from or still have roots in Margate era tooling, and it shows. Duchess, Princess, Black 5, 8F, 4P, 2P, Fowler 4MTT, 4F, 3FT. Many have seen revisions since the move to China, but I don't think any have had complete renewal, and there's no readily accessible trail of what revisions have occurred on what model.

I simply had to have a Duchess in BR red (bought about 2004) and have modified the running gear to improve that aspect of the model; eliminating the undersize centre driver which looked awful and beefing up the rods, a remounted bogie with a coil spring loading it. The body has been improved with a fall plate and various other small details, it's got a new correct spacing loco to tender link, and the tender has been corrrected with frames of a Mainline tender, a better model than Hornby's.

The other essential was an 8F. That's one of the better items, and has an old kit pony truck to replace the huge two pivot lumpentruck that Hornby provide. It too has a replacement tender, this time a Bachmann. I cannot bring myself to buy the Black 5. Somehow it doesn't 'get it' well enough to tempt me, even in latest guise. Put it alongside their Thompson B1, and it looks down market. Same applies to the others listed above, but happily there are some alternatives from elsewhere.

The current taper boiler Scot/Patriot and Stanier 4MTT are new toolings for the loco body (the tender on the 4-6-0s still has the old inaccurate valance on the frames), but these date from before the Chinese design production entered the 'golden period' standard that we first saw with the Britannia. All in all, Hornby's collection from Crewe isn't to their best standard...

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Bigglesof266
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bigglesof266 » Wed Jul 02, 2014 9:35 am

Copy that Tim. Manufacture might be recent, but the actual mould/mechanisim & tooling is not so recent. The current loco drive version was introduced in 2002, so over a decade old now. It definitely shows its similar "detailed" spec to the BoB and Duchess releases of around the same time albeit neither the rodding or valve mechanism is as robustly designed IME.

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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby GWR_fan » Wed Jul 02, 2014 10:06 am

The model came with the sanding pipes fitted, even though included instructions refer to fitting them. After the loco had been running for around two hours it started to make a clicking sound (not like the previously reported sound) only when the loco negotiated straight sections of track. On curves it was silent. Finally traced the recent clicking sound to those stupid sanding pipes that hang so low that they hit the rail. Really, super detail is fine but this was overdoing it. I bent the pipes up so that they cleared the rail and now the sound has gone. I can see the pipes being shown the garbage bin.

The loco body did have its tooling altered as stated by 'bigmet' when the first loco drive was released (2002?), unlike the earlier tender driven design which still exists as the Railroad version. Thus the design is quite old. I feel that the detailed black 5 is a nice locomotive and for a Midland or Western fan an essential locomotive to have.

The loco while relatively quiet does have a 'gear' sound. It is not objectionable but is noticable.


Tim

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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bigmet » Wed Jul 02, 2014 10:27 am

The Black 5 was everywhere - like a bad rash - on lines which could take them in the UK during the BR steam period. If ever there was a model in their range that Hornby should prioritise for a 'knockout standard' all new production, this is the one. The resulting accurate 4,000 gallon Stanier tender could enhance all the other locos in their line up that need it.

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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby GWR_fan » Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:19 am

Just to add to my previous loose rods issue with the LMS black 5, I acquired a further train pack to get a further three LMS Stannier coaches to match the livery of the earlier purchase. Surprisingly, the same rod mount screw that was loose on the first loco (and came adrift in operation) was also loose on the new loco. Fortunately, prewarned by the troubles with the first loco, I tightened all mount screws prior testing. If I had not I would have had the same issues as the first posting in this thread.

This loco ran fine straight out of the box (after tightening the rod retaining screws).


Tim

davidlunson
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby davidlunson » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:08 pm

Suddenly ceased to operate. Plays a declining scale as you move through the first 6 acceleration notches. No change of note after 6 notches but no movement either!! Anyone got any idea of what's going on - suspect chip failure - D

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stuartp
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby stuartp » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:45 pm

The Black Fives do seem prone to bendy con-rod issues, two of mine have bent inwards and caught on the connecting rods. If you're lucky it jams and stops, if not it mangles the slide bars as well.

The next one I have issues with will get a bit of NS or hard brass wire soldered along the inside bottom edge to see if that cures it.
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Bigmet
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bigmet » Wed Dec 19, 2018 7:00 pm

davidlunson wrote:Suddenly ceased to operate. Plays a declining scale as you move through the first 6 acceleration notches. No change of note after 6 notches but no movement either!! Anyone got any idea of what's going on - suspect chip failure - D

Possibly, but it is always worth trying a decoder reset in case the software has got corrupted. You will know when the reset has succeeded - it may need more than one attempt - as the decoder will be back on factory default address 3. If it doesn't work once you have a successful reset, then probably failed terminally. The decoder may show evidence by sight or smell of damaged components if this is the case.

stuartp wrote:The Black Fives do seem prone to bendy con-rod issues, two of mine have bent inwards and caught on the connecting rods. If you're lucky it jams and stops, if not it mangles the slide bars as well.

The next one I have issues with will get a bit of NS or hard brass wire soldered along the inside bottom edge to see if that cures it.

Your better bet in my opinion is to gently bend a slight outward curve in these rods so they definitely miss the leading crankpins. (I do this on all outside cylinder models before running them.) if you stiffen the rod, and especially if you increase its depth on the inside, you will have more chance of it catching, and causing more damage when it does if the loco is running fast.

Where the clearance to the crankpin is unavoidably small, because the other components like the radius rod come awfully close I round off the top and bottom of the crankpin head so that the rod is less likely to catch as it goes past.

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Bufferstop
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bufferstop » Wed Dec 19, 2018 7:16 pm

Although they were horribly unprototypical the old slotted screws with a domed head were far less likely to catch. It's yet another trade off of looks/reliability.
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davidlunson
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby davidlunson » Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:46 am

Thanks - I shall try that

Bigmet
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Re: Hornby 'black 5' problem

Postby Bigmet » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:44 am

Bufferstop wrote:Although they were horribly unprototypical the old slotted screws with a domed head were far less likely to catch. It's yet another trade off of looks/reliability.

That trade off is really looks/robustness in terms of RTR OO. However for someone like myself coming from kit and scratchbuilt 4mm models it is overall trade up by my assessment. The RTR OO model is typically overall both more robust and more reliable than the hand made equivalent, and when it comes to appearance and finish, streets ahead of what most of us can achieve.

All the skills learned when DIY was the only way to have good 4mm models, now pay off big time with the current RTR product. Care in handling to avoid damage, a regular lube and clean routine, a few small adjustments and alterations based on experience to get the best from the mechanism, add detail touches and weathering to taste when you have some time, it's so easy!


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