Dapol imperfections or am I expecting too much?

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abenn
Posts: 181
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: Dapol imperfections or am I expecting too much?

Postby abenn » Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:54 pm

I started an N-gauge layout about a year ago, after modelling 00-gauge. I've now got four Dapol N-gauge locos, all brand new, and I was quite happy with them until today.

My first two were an 0-6-0 tank engine, and an HST. They both ran well straight out of the box.

My next one was a Grange, and it had one of its wires joining the tender to the loco broken. I replaced it with a spare, breaking the other one in the process. Replaced the second one and the engine has performed well since then, though I noticed the other day that one of the traction tyres had split.

Today I received a Britannia. Initially one of the connecting wires between tender and loco was broken, so I replaced it with a spare. Then, when I ran it, it sounded like a bag of loose bolts. Close inspection showed one traction tyre not seated properly, and rubbing against the dummy brake shoe. When I though I'd got it seated properly, it then flew off when I ran the loco again. Delving into the spares bag I got a replacement for the traction tyre and noted that the original was much larger than the spare -- presumably the rubber had degraded in some way. Started undoing the bolt holding the connecting rod (correct term?) but it wouldn't come out. After a while I realised the bush which is presumably pressed into the wheel, and into which the bolt screws, was simply turning with the bolt, and eventually fell out. So at least I could then get the new traction tyre on :) I then gripped the bush in a pair of long-nose pliers and removed the bolt from it, and then epoxied the bush back into place, and reinstalled the bolt holding the connecting rod. Final (hopefully) problem was then one of the connecting rods near the front end kept fouling on a protruding crank pin and jamming everything when going round a bend. A bit of careful bending of the rod seems to have cured this problem, so now I can start running-in.

So I'm now less impressed with Dapol's quality than I was about a year ago. And, yes, I know, the sensible course of action would have been to send the Britannia straight back. But who wants to faff around with going to the post office and then waiting a week or so for it to be returned, when it looks like a simple repair using parts that were supplied?

Update: Last week the other traction tyre started to come off, so I gave up and returned it to Hattons without even trying to remove the connecting rod bolt to change it. Today they've refunded my money because they have no more of that loco in stock and, presumably, can't effect a proper repair.

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markS&D
Posts: 180
Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2011 9:16 pm

Re: Dapol imperfections or am I expecting too much?

Postby markS&D » Sun Aug 27, 2017 7:32 pm

My father has had some issues with N scale dapol steam locos. He decided some time ago, that due to lack of space in his house he would go for N scale. Having looked at all the available models from Dapol and Graham Farrish.

Anyway, to get to the point, he ordered 2 models, from Dapol.

A Hall class, 'Cranmore Hall' in late BR livery & a Grange class 'Forhampton Grange' in BR green with small tender.

The Hall class had cylinder slide bars that sloped downwards on one side of the model, and on the other side, the lower slide bar was bent outwards at a right angle to the loco!

The Grange class, had a tender top, that was not seated fully down on the chassis, and when the loco is running, it makes a loud grating sound from the motor, although it does run OK otherwise.

This is not good enough in my opinion, especially when you consider that these models are the same price, or sometimes more expensive than the equivalent model in 00 scale.

He bought a J39 model from Graham Farish, this loco runs extremely well, is quiet, and looks great, So it does go to show that a good model can be made in this scale.

It does raise questions about Dapol's QC.


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