Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

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swiftbeam
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Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby swiftbeam » Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:19 pm

Hi Guys,

I've had my new Heljan Class 14 today, this is the 2018 bach.
Can anybody tell me if this bach is different from the previous batches in the way the body comes off and how the decoder is fitted. I've been told that the body was a real pig to get off and lots of parts can get broken. This does not 'seem' to be the case according to the instructions I have with my loco.

Can anybody confirm?

Thanks.

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swiftbeam
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby swiftbeam » Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:16 pm

Hi Guys,

Don't bother to reply to my question.
I've just test run the model up and down my 3 foot test track, It's awful, so it's going back for a refund and I'll not buy another.

Running backwards, it's actually quite good, running forwards thought is a different matter! it waggles all over the place (not a normal simple side to side) and clicks like the jack shaft is catching the con rods. It probably is because there is SO much end float in the middle axles.

Looks nice, runs bad.
Game over.

Pennine MC
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby Pennine MC » Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:53 pm

I went through five of these (first batch) before I got two that were acceptable (for me and a mate). The side play is minimisable by placing washers between the wheel and frames, but the clicking/hesitancy sounds familiar. Hattons were good about swapping them but if you can't face the hassle, I wouldn't blame you

Bigmet
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby Bigmet » Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:17 am

'Interesting'. My first experience of a rod coupled Heljan was with their Garratt (specimens owned by friends) and the O2 steam models. I have to say that their notion of steam loco mechanism construction is about as far distant from their strong, simple and easily worked on centre motor drive, as it is possible to imagine. You wouldn't think it was from the same business.

I am expecting the 47xx to be a disaster if the mechanism construction is similar to that of the Garratts and O2. The Swindonites having been well supplied with RTR 'forever' have no idea how to tackle a less than ideal mechanism. All the ones that get operated will be broken within a week.

Paul-H
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby Paul-H » Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:27 am

Only ever owned one Heljan model and that was their Class 27 and although it was a good runner, the body clips didn't line up with the location points on the chassis so it had a distinctive bulge at each end, shame as it spoilt an otherwise excellent model and is the sole reason I have never bought another one of their models, reading these forums is another reason I have not tried another one as well :D

Paul

Bigmet
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby Bigmet » Tue Feb 27, 2018 10:42 am

It took Heljan 'forever' to get around to models that interested me, after my initial rejection of their class 47 due to its overwidth shape which made the model so ill proportioned I wouldn't consider a purchase.

Between classes 15, 16, 23 and 26/0, they have now impressed me. These all rate 'very good' by the assessment system I use: they measure and look right, carry all the practical detail and are well finished, are of simple, robust and easily serviced construction, run and pull exceedingly well. Up to par with the other 'very good' RTR diesel types I have which are Bachmann's DP1, 03, 40, 47, 105 and Hornby's 08.

Pennine MC
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby Pennine MC » Wed Feb 28, 2018 12:15 pm

Paul-H wrote:Only ever owned one Heljan model and that was their Class 27 and although it was a good runner, the body clips didn't line up with the location points on the chassis so it had a distinctive bulge at each end, shame as it spoilt an otherwise excellent model and is the sole reason I have never bought another one of their models, reading these forums is another reason I have not tried another one as well :D


Between myself and a couple of mates, we must have had a dozen to 15 examples of 26/27s; this fault is untypical.

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D605Eagle
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby D605Eagle » Thu Mar 01, 2018 1:17 am

I have 3x 26s and 1x 27. Mine are all fine too. As these clips/lugs are part of the tooling and cast into the parts I'm failing to understand how this could have happened. Not a Lima 27 body on a Heljan chassis? Only thing I could think of LOL!

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SRman
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby SRman » Thu Mar 01, 2018 6:44 am

I have nine class 33s (all but identical to the 26/27 as far as chassis and body fixings go), plus one class 26, and just one class 33 had a similar problem to that described by Paul, and that was caused by the body being particularly tight on the chassis. A little extra brute force got it to sit down properly and the clips to engage properly.

GWR_fan
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby GWR_fan » Fri Mar 02, 2018 9:29 pm

swiftbeam wrote:............................................... it waggles all over the place (not a normal simple side to side) and clicks like the jack shaft is catching the con rods. It probably is because there is SO much end float in the middle axles.

Looks nice, runs bad.
Game over.


I seem to recall this was one of the issues with the original release, but fixable but then why should we have to? When are manufacturers going to stop corrupting scale models by making them run on R2 curves? They destroy the enthusiast model market for the sake of trainset followers. R1 and R2 should have been shown the door when Margate production closed down.

Bigmet
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby Bigmet » Fri Mar 02, 2018 10:56 pm

The problem - and it is fundamental - is that retailers I have spoken to estimate that of those customers who actually operate their OO models, 80%+ will use set track. So other than small (and expensive) batch productions like those of Golden Age, that's what we are stuck with simply so that the product is acceptable to the majority of potential customers to win sufficient sales.

I'll take the present large choice of compromised but generally good RTR OO; and improve it in both appearance and operation, by modifications to the model permitted by using much larger radii. (Other than a few items where unskilled or unimaginative design has resulted in uncorrectable or nearly so consequences.) There are DIY options from kits, adaptions of other items and scratchbuilding in desperate cases.

GWR_fan
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Re: Heljan Class 14 today, the 2018 bach.

Postby GWR_fan » Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:20 pm

Bachmann (USA) realised a long time ago in largescale that not every one was happy running compromised locomotives designed to run down to R1 (four-foot diameter) curves. They gradually upped the minimum operating diameter so that eventually 8' became the minimum standard if you wanted detailed locomotives. Other "American" manufacturers followed suit. One loco needs around a 20' minimum curve to run.

If approximately 80% of OO buyers are using set track (I assume R1 and R2) then either they accept the compromises with poor running quality or they are so ingrained with poorly designed locomotives they do not know any better. We are not talking finescale here but simply a well designed loco not compromised to run R1 and R2 curves. I would accept R3 as a minimum standard. Time to move on from the little kiddies' trainsets and play with big boy's trains.


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