Loco spring contacts

Discussion of N gauge model railway specific products and related model railway topics (problems and solutions). (Graham Farish, Dapol, Peco)
Bramshot
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Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 6:55 pm

Loco spring contacts

Postby Bramshot » Fri Nov 10, 2017 10:21 am

I have had to buy a Farish Stannier 5MT due to the limited availability of other LMS liveried locos ( I do not like Dapol ones). Normally I prefer the locos with electrical contact via the bearings. The contacts in this loco do not seem to maintain contact with the wheels very well, especially as the wheels can move side to side quite a lot.
So I took them out to re-set them and found that they are very flexible, not stiff at all, to the extent that they easily get bent back out of shape while re-installing them.
Is this normal? My recollection of this type of contact is that they should be very springy, surprisingly stiff and in fact relatively difficult to bend to a new shape at all.
Could a heat treatment step or something have been misssed from the manufacturing process?

mahoganydog
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Re: Loco spring contacts

Postby mahoganydog » Fri Nov 10, 2017 10:30 am

Hi Bramshot,

A picture tells a thousand words because there are so many versions of the model made both at Poole and in China. If it is the Poole chassis with bright plated pickups that are very short then it is a very early one with a three pole motor. Later versions had coppery pickups that were long and worked very well as long as they were clean.

Let us know which version you have.

Jim
In a world of fences and doors who needs windows and gates?

Bramshot
Posts: 205
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 6:55 pm

Re: Loco spring contacts

Postby Bramshot » Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:23 pm

mahoganydog wrote:Hi Bramshot,


Let us know which version you have.

Jim


Brand new one Jim, so I guess from China. They are long pickups as shown on the Farish Data sheet for the loco. But not very stiff as described before, so tend to bend away from the wheels quite easily.

mahoganydog
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Joined: Fri Apr 19, 2013 4:25 pm
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Re: Loco spring contacts

Postby mahoganydog » Fri Nov 10, 2017 9:06 pm

Hi Bramshot,

In that case i would consider the model faulty. Either they have cut a cost and used the wrong material or someone has substituted something cheaper. You are right to say thay should be hard.

Jim
In a world of fences and doors who needs windows and gates?

Bramshot
Posts: 205
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 6:55 pm

Re: Loco spring contacts

Postby Bramshot » Sat Nov 11, 2017 11:29 am

I guess if that’s the case there will be a whole batch of ‘faulty’ locos out there.
The material looks brassy maybe brass shim has been used instead of beryllium copper or phosphor bronze.
It’s working ok at the moment but does stop in some strange places, maybe as the wheels drift over to one side or the other and contact may be lost. When testing the continuity between wheels, I realised that all the wheels are most likely electrically connected via the motion rods, so that test is probably worthless.

Bramshot
Posts: 205
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 6:55 pm

Re: Loco spring contacts

Postby Bramshot » Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:24 pm

Update:

Bachmann kindly sent me a new set of contacts free of charge. I think these were a bit stiffer. After much fiddling, the loco is now working well.

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Bufferstop
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Re: Loco spring contacts

Postby Bufferstop » Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:42 pm

A sensible response from Bachmann, which cost them very little and kept you a happy customer. In the past I've had similar sensible responses from Peco and Hornby, just wish they would all do it all of the time.
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