Tender drives. . I never ever thought

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peterws
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Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2024 7:31 am

Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by peterws »

I'd like 'em!
Hornby 4F. Turned out to be a Mainline. Little difference except for one thing.
Age.
Got it cheap enough, serviced it to a degree, cleaned out the motor, oiled the shaft sparingly and she's a good 'un.
A tad noisy, but I like the sound, and motion.
So I bought a 2P to match. Paid more for it. It had bogie pick ups which helped on my new 3-way turnout and no doubt, elsewhere.
Same motor as the 4F. It was already clean, and little used by the look of things since it was the latest model tender drive available, with those bogie pickups.
But it's much quieter, as in new.
To be sure, she's the star of my show and I love her beautiful lines!
The most noticeable difference between the two however, is the speed of the "driving" wheels. They, not being drivers, are pushed around. When they do drive, as in other models, they appear to be spinning far too fast, and I suspect with heavier loads they're slipping in controlled fashion.
Locos with rubber tyres on their driving wheels don't exhibit this annoying feature.
Just an observation on these things which I'd never had before. What d'ya think?
aleopardstail
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by aleopardstail »

never really cared where the motor sits, so long as it works. given how detailed locomotives are getting these days tender drive has a bit going for it when it comes to accessibility without breaking stuff.

though a decent, preferably plug & socket, connection is needed to allow a decoder install, lighting and preferably any speaker to be nearer the smoke box for example

larger locomotives can get more mass into the loco body, though a larger motor and flywheel in the tender can make more sense


so long as its serviced reasonably well it shouldn't really make a difference with the exception of when travelling in reverse when the tender visibly sets off before the loco its dragging
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Bufferstop
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by Bufferstop »

Tender drive doesn't bother me except the fact that perhaps we ought to "get it right". Wanting a model of Furness Railway number 20 (open cab 0-4-0 with 4 wheel tender) I had no hesitation in building the tender on top of a motor bogie. Giving it some thought a six wheel tender is pretty similar in wheel base and size to a bogie from a Co-Co and they are pretty easy to make work. I have more objection to rubber tyres, they are horrible for laying down and spreading black gunge along the railheads, even the Airfix/Dapol/Hornby 14xx tank can move four coaches autocoach and trailer front and back, with just a slight bit of prototype wheel slip on starting after having the traction tyred wheels replaced by plain ones from a deceased class mate. If you are feeling picky the balance weights are wrong, but you have to pick it up to see.
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Bigmet
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by Bigmet »

We have never had sophisticated tender drive in RTR OO. Hornby got closest by using Fleischman's 3 axle drive design in their 'Silver Seal' releases of 1971; and then engaged in a death spiral competition with Lima, steadily degrading the design in a race to the bottom. Much better tender drive is demonstrated in HO.

However, there's a huge shortcoming with tender drive which matters in UK model railway: it's useless for tank engines, which were the majority of locos in the UK operating in C20th: a third of the railway company stock overall (and a 2:1 majority on GWR) and practically all industrial locos, which were in much the same numbers as the railway company loco stock. So since loco drive is essential, best to practice providing it in my opinion.

Quality has leapt up in the 28 years since Bachmann briskly upped the standard of RTR OO and effectively killed off Hornby's tender drive fixation. Effectively weighted locos, some having metal loco bodies, and with good mechanisms inside, are now available and very good too. Delightful models of 'difficult' subjects demonstrate the point of practice makes perfect: such as the Stirling single from Rapido, Hornby's D16/3 4-4-0, Bach's Ivatt C1 Atlantic and G5 0-4-4-T, which have good traction and run beautifully; with no risk of a tender loco skidding along with the driving wheels locked as it is pushed along by the 'mighty tender'.
aleopardstail
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by aleopardstail »

Traction tires can burn in the circle of hell created specifically for them

last time I had an OO layout the trackwork loved traction tires, the somewhat sharp switch blades ripped them apart.

benefit of DCC running was when I was far too lazy to go and rescue the Hornby Cl66 that was spinning both its driven axles and crying I could send out a small 0-4-0 shunter to couple up and "help" the poor sod get home again

I do miss the 25' long loft layout.. I don't miss the constant ducking under stuff
Bigmet
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by Bigmet »

aleopardstail wrote: Tue May 21, 2024 11:09 pm ...Traction tires can burn in the circle of hell created specifically for them...
There are good traction tyres - in HO. It was some years after my purchase of the Rivarossi Big Boy from 'Victors' fifty three years ago, that I realised it had two translucent traction tyres (one on each powered loco chassis). It still has them unchanged apart from slight yellowing, and they both work and cause no track dirt. (Hornby now own the Rivarossi brand...)

The miserable UK traction tyres can indeed burn.
aleopardstail
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by aleopardstail »

have a pair of N gauge Lima class 86 (ish). clear traction tyres what have zero grip, the poor things can just about manage three coaches on level track

main issue with such things, other than the dirt they leave, and the lack of electrical pick up on those wheels, and the look, apart from them is the short life span they have and how it can be awkward and expensive to source replacements
peterws
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by peterws »

Funny thing is some years ago I'd bought an Airfix 4F, and got rid of it. Couldn't get a decent showing. Using F?B controllers probably didn't help. I didn't realise how easy it was to take the motor out and fix it. I acquired a Dean Goods, which I duly converted to loco drive. Anneasy job with the Hornby square motor found in the Terrior and loads more products of the day. Direct drive, it gave an excellent performance. I moved that on.
Should've kept the b*ggers, but I was looking to pack in/downsize the hobby 10 years ago (other interests). Glad I didn't.
The steam locomotves available now are beyond beautiful!
Bigmet
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by Bigmet »

peterws wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 9:20 am ...The steam locomotves available now are beyond beautiful!
Generally the case in RTR OO, though there are a selection that are less than wonderful; that will doubtless either get a new tooling from the 'current owner,' or be 'picked off' by competitors building up their range coverage.

Attention to mechanisms is definitely required on some of the less than wonderful models. Hornby with the largest collection of older tooling origin models still have a fair amount of work to do, and have made some rather puzzling choices in new tooling. I am very grateful for their LNER group B1 and B12/3 4-6-0's and O1 2-8-0, all of them very fine: but would have thought the Stanier Black 5 and 8F might have better taken priority as guaranteed earners compared to the B12/3 and O1.

The old and not (so) good Hornby list that immediately comes to mind, for which at present no competitor is available or announced:
Stanier 8F: large chunk of intrusive mechanism on view, and too light for heavy freight traction.
Gresley N2: motor on view near filling the cab, detail fit very poor.
Fowler 2P, Gresley D49 4-4-0: ancient tooling and looks it.
Neilson/CR/NBR Y9 'pug': not really a model at all.
LBSCR E2 0-6-0: ancient tooling and looks it, awful mechanism.

Bachmann have some current models with dated exterior toolings, for which at present no competitor is available or announced:
Collett 2251 0-6-0: not quite right in appearance, poor traction.
Gresley V1/V3: old body tooling not quite right in appearance, mechanism fine.
aleopardstail
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by aleopardstail »

to put above tender drives into the circles of hell

split chassis without being easy to DCC convert
Bigmet
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by Bigmet »

aleopardstail wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 4:16 pm ...split chassis without being easy to DCC convert...
Background: the split chassis scheme originated in low cost product for North America long prior to DCC, when most of the products either had wiper pick up one side only and live chassis the other side commoned to a motor terminal, or two separate live chassis, one commoned to a motor terminal. The 'Mainline' OO split chassis product was actually a cinch for DCC conversion as the motor brushes were fully isolated from the chassis, with metal straps making the power connection, but the least said about the motors the better. Unfortunately Bachmann made their initial OO market probe from 1991 largely based on modidfied Mainline toolings using a superior Mabuchi can motor, but with direct concealed connections to the chassis halves: this was just before 'NMRA DCC' launched in earnest in North America in 1992, Unfortunate timing!

That said DCC conversion is simple enough in principle, just a bit messy to accomplish; and the can motors Bach used function exceedingly well on DCC. (I still have my 'best ever' Bach split chassis mechanism from an A4 inside a Hornby A3 body, just coming up 30 years old and very sweet running.) Bachmann quickly saw the light, and switched to all wiper pick up and fully isolated motor brushes with introductions from 1997 onwards, and 'killed off' the split chassis product line: some folks still remain unhappy about that.
aleopardstail
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by aleopardstail »

oh it can be done, have done a few N gauge models, just way harder than it needs to be - all it requires is the motor isolated fully then a small brass linking strip (that can be replaced to convert, job done - its the ones done on the cheap that are needlessly difficult I go outside and rant at the clouds about

ones where the chassis is a pickup then transferred to a motor by some sort of removable or modifiable link are fine

well except when they also use split axles, which is another rant
LesW
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by LesW »

On the subject of tender drives, these loco's have been sat in a box since 2004. Last week I thought I would take the plunge and rather than have them sat on isolated track in a shed, I converted them all to DCC. They all run really well, so if I want a rest from all of my sound fitted steamers, I can use them.
20240512_172221.jpg
aleopardstail
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by aleopardstail »

LesW wrote: Sun May 26, 2024 2:30 pm On the subject of tender drives, these loco's have been sat in a box since 2004. Last week I thought I would take the plunge and rather than have them sat on isolated track in a shed, I converted them all to DCC. They all run really well, so if I want a rest from all of my sound fitted steamers, I can use them.
20240512_172221.jpg
Just had a Hornby D49 open, tender drive, looking to DCC it, well looking at how. looks nicely isolated but lacks decoder space. how have you been doing them? decoders into the locomotives?
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Mountain
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Re: Tender drives. . I never ever thought

Post by Mountain »

You may already know this, but with Hornby ringfield tender drives you need to check with a test meter to check there is no direct means of current from the wheels to the motor as on some of them (Not all) they have current feeding through one of the screws. (Trying to remember where) which needs a plastic replacement screw fitted which are available from Peters Spares. Do not rely on just removing the little wire as I found some of them had this screw connection (Which therefore didn't need the wire if used on DC which they were designed for) and also had the little link wire as well. Usually it is either/or but on a few they had both so beware and do an electrical check just incase!
The rest of the conversion is simple, but one may need to run a cable and put the decoder in the loco. The old Hornby Zero 1 decoders (Which were half wave so only needed one side of the motor to be isolated. DCC needs both wires to be isolated though years ago in the early days of DCC Lenz did come out with a half wave decoder for hardwiring certain difficult locos though not sure what became of them. Saw them in the year 2000 catalogue price list if I recall correctly. But for nearly all DCC both sides need isolating, hence why with these ringfield style motors one needs to doubly check as some of them (Not many) had the hidden screw to chassis/wheel electrical connection whils most d idnot,and the two look outwardly identical so it is best to do a check so you don't damage your decoder).
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