N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

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abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Mon Dec 28, 2015 8:54 pm

I fancy running a Hall, Grange or Manor loco on my N-gauge railway, but I still have a couple of questions after reading the limited specifications on Dapol's web site:

The thought of traction tyres (presumably rubber ones like I had on some of my 00-gauge diesels) puts me off. The spec. for the Hall says it has them, but the other two don't mention them. Do they have them too?

None of the specs. say whether they're loco-drive or tender-drive. My instinct tells me that loco-drive is better, but will I be missing out on some good-uns if I reject any tender-drive model?

Is any one of these three Dapol models head-and-shoulders above the others in reliability and performance, as well as in detailing? Your opinions would be appreciated.

ParkeNd
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Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 5:48 pm

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby ParkeNd » Mon Dec 28, 2015 11:14 pm

I have all three. The Hall is outstanding, the Grange is nearly as good (smooth but not silent like the Hall. The Manor is a nightmare and I believe is Dapol adopting an Ixion design - it chatters its tender wheels on the rails because of lousy bearing design - the harshness of the noise confines it to its box for ever.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Tue Dec 29, 2015 8:18 am

Thanks for your info ParkeNd. So does the Grange use traction tyres, and is it loco-drive?

I'll be running it on DCC, which I've found makes one heck of an improvement to the running of my Dapol 0-6-0 tank.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:05 am

Well, I got the Grange, and all I've got to do now is get it to work nicely :( (Not blaming you ParkeNd :lol: )

It's DCC fitted and first off it just wouldn't run more than about 6" without stopping. I put it in my foam cradle to clean the wheels, and found it was getting no power from one side of the locomotive. On closer inspection I found one of the wires between loco and tender was broken. Might have been my rough handling, but I think it was from the factory; anyway I re-soldered it to its tag and restored power. But the Grange is still not running reliably on a track on which all my other locos run well. The only difference between it and them is they all have Lenz silver mini decoders in them. When I figure how to get the body off the tender I'm going to slip in a Lenz silver and see if it makes a difference.

Bigmet
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Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:19 pm

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby Bigmet » Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:24 am

Having already found one soldered joint broken on the model, I'd suggest that another poor joint is most likely to be the cause of the trouble. My suggestion would be to check every connection in the circuit before going any further: the best decoder in the world cannot overcome a poor connection.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:28 am

Good point Bigmet. I also noticed it ran best in the cradle when both power supplies were attached to the tender's wheels, with the motor sounding very iffy when one of the contacts was on any of the loco's wheels. I don't think I should really poke any further, since it's brand new; if it's anything more than a loose screw on the connecting wires' tags I'll let Hattons sort it out.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Wed Jan 06, 2016 7:54 pm

Checked visually, and connecting wires are both connected, and their screws are tight. There must be something wrong in the connection between loco and tender though, for it still sounds great when running in the cradle with power only to the tender's wheels, but power to the loco wheels instead of, or as well as, the tender wheels makes it run more slowly and noisily, including a sort of mains hum.

Anyway, I'm not competent/confident to go any further with a brand new loco, so it's packed ready to go back to Hattons now :(

ParkeNd
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Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 5:48 pm

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby ParkeNd » Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:20 pm

I know it won't help you now but here is 25 secs of my Grange running tonight. It pulls 5 coaches with ease - all my country platforms will manage.

http://youtu.be/IN5B-6v3x-8

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:34 am

Thanks ParkeNd, that's something for me to look forward to. I hope to be able to emulate your scenery construction some day too :)

Bigmet
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Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:19 pm

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby Bigmet » Thu Jan 07, 2016 9:09 am

abenn wrote:... There must be something wrong in the connection between loco and tender though, for it still sounds great when running in the cradle with power only to the tender's wheels, but power to the loco wheels instead of, or as well as, the tender wheels makes it run more slowly and noisily, including a sort of mains hum...

That's very bad news on a DCC fitted model, because what it suggests to me is that power from one rail is getting directly to the motor when pick up from the loco wheels is used. Surprising that the decoder has not been damaged by this, suggests that whatever the bad connection is, it has enough impedance to limit the current. Quite right to return for inadequate performance, especially as you can see how it should run when only the tender is powered.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:14 pm

Bigmet wrote:That's very bad news on a DCC fitted model, because what it suggests to me is that power from one rail is getting directly to the motor when pick up from the loco wheels is used. Surprising that the decoder has not been damaged by this, suggests that whatever the bad connection is, it has enough impedance to limit the current. Quite right to return for inadequate performance, especially as you can see how it should run when only the tender is powered.
Yes, a direct connection somewhere would explain the hum. Good thing I stopped experimenting when I did for, with the decoder still seemingly working, Hattons should be able to replicate the fault. If I'd continued, and blown the decoder, they might have blamed me for somehow wrecking it, and wouldn't have been able to experience what I'd described :(

ParkeNd
Posts: 1395
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 5:48 pm

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby ParkeNd » Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:33 pm

abenn wrote:
Bigmet wrote:That's very bad news on a DCC fitted model, because what it suggests to me is that power from one rail is getting directly to the motor when pick up from the loco wheels is used. Surprising that the decoder has not been damaged by this, suggests that whatever the bad connection is, it has enough impedance to limit the current. Quite right to return for inadequate performance, especially as you can see how it should run when only the tender is powered.
Yes, a direct connection somewhere would explain the hum. Good thing I stopped experimenting when I did for, with the decoder still seemingly working, Hattons should be able to replicate the fault. If I'd continued, and blown the decoder, they might have blamed me for somehow wrecking it, and wouldn't have been able to experience what I'd described :(


Stick with it - Hattons are very good at sorting out customer problems.

Mind you - I am mighty fond of the Hall too.

Image

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:53 pm

A good result :D

I mailed it last Thursday, and Hattons phoned yesterday to say they were sending a replacement. It arrived this morning, and a quick test showed that it was working correctly. It did a couple of circuits of my track without hesitation, though there is a higher-pitched hum than there was with the first example, which is not present (that I've noticed) on any of my other locos. The Dapol leaflet suggests that the factory greasing is enough for 50 hours of running, but I'll give it a proper go-over tomorrow before running it in for a couple of hours.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Tue Jan 19, 2016 8:33 pm

After 2 hours running-in light-loco at about half speed, and one hour running with a 4-car rake of carriages, I found that some time during the 3 hours one of the two wires between tender and loco had broken at exactly the same place the first one did. There's two spares come with the loco, so I'll install one tomorrow, and I intend to repair the broken one and see if I can install some heatshrink at each end to relive the strain at the connection while doing so.

abenn
Posts: 192
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:03 am

Re: N-gauge loco specs, Hall, Grange & Manor

Postby abenn » Thu Jan 21, 2016 7:51 pm

Today a Lenz silver mini decoder arrived, so I installed it in my Grange. It made it much smoother running, and the whine/hum was less, and the motor seemed quieter than it had been with the stock decoder.

Only one minor problem; the body wouldn't go back on the tender when I first installed the Lenz. Comparing it with the original decoder, I saw that the difference in length was not the PCB, but the black plastic strip that holds the connecting pins together on the Lenz. I gently pried this off, then cut the pins down to by about 6mm, and reinstalled the Lenz. The body went on without any trouble then :D

Another connecting wire broke today, so I replaced them both with the spares that came with the loco. If I can get hold of spares easily at my local model shop, I don't think I'll bother with the repair I envisaged previously -- even though I managed to repair the first one on the original loco, they're much too small to be doing on a regular basis.


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