The saga of the Trainorama 44 class split wheel-sets

 
  Captain Underpants Train Controller

Hi, just quickly can someone in simple terms tell me how to include pictures in the post. Want to share some pics, I tried but couldn't figure it out. Thanks

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  bjviper Chief Commissioner

Location: Brisvegas
Hi, just quickly can someone in simple terms tell me how to include pictures in the post. Want to share some pics, I tried but couldn't figure it out. Thanks
"Captain Underpants"


Have a read of this thread http://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11345417.htm
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
Can the thin idler gear be packed with washers to reduce that 1mm sideways slop Geoff? Wayne
"hosk1956"


Yes Wayne, it is certainly possible, but it would be a fair buggar to dissassemble the bogies in order to do it. I don't think it would be easy to find a washer to do the job off the shelf, but it could be done by etching a suitable sized washer in nickel silver.

I also took a look at some older style Chinese made bogies that were supplied with a kit I have from Lloyd's Model Railways of a NSW 49 Class. The bogies are listed as Austrains bogies. The construction is extremely similar to the TOR 44 class except that the older Austrains bogies have slightly wider gears that are also larger in diameter and do not have as much sideways slop. This is probably why they have lasted longer.
  Roachie Chief Commissioner

Location: Kadina SA (formerly NSW)
Okay, I wonder whether it would possible (or worth the effort) to make some shims out of suitably thick styrene? I'm thinking of a piece of flat styrene which would fit between the axles' horn blocks and have slots cut out of it which would allow it to slide over the idler cogs. You'd need four of these pieces per bogie and they'd need to be held in situ with a drop of glue on the inside to prevent them jumping around. It would be a case of drilling holes in the right spot and then making vertical cuts from the bottom up to the sides of the holes, so the new piece can slide down into the bogie.

Roachie
  Captain Underpants Train Controller

Hi, just quickly can someone in simple terms tell me how to include pictures in the post. Want to share some pics, I tried but couldn't figure it out. Thanks
"Captain Underpants"


Have a read of this thread http://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11345417.htm
"bjviper"


Thanks Very Happy
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
Okay, I wonder whether it would possible (or worth the effort) to make some shims out of suitably thick styrene? I'm thinking of a piece of flat styrene which would fit between the axles' horn blocks and have slots cut out of it which would allow it to slide over the idler cogs. You'd need four of these pieces per bogie and they'd need to be held in situ with a drop of glue on the inside to prevent them jumping around. It would be a case of drilling holes in the right spot and then making vertical cuts from the bottom up to the sides of the holes, so the new piece can slide down into the bogie.

Roachie
"Roachie"


My first thought would be that styrene would not last, you would need a tougher material than that. But unfortunately, the gears do not line up on one side evenly, you would have to shim each one individually.

I finally managed to get a reasonably clear shot of the bogie:



You can see at the tip of the arrow, that the two gears are barely meshing, and after they had slipped a few times, the edges of the teeth would wear off and this would become a regular occurence. Now I did nothing to set this up other than push the two gears to opposite ends of their shafts with the tip of a small screwdriver.

You can also see on the gears either side that the metal of the shaft is clearly showing, this is the amount the gears can slide sideways. You can also see the thick bosss on the side of the gear that could have been used to increase the width of the gear, thus avoiding this problem.

This is, design wise, a real POS.
  Roachie Chief Commissioner

Location: Kadina SA (formerly NSW)
Thanks Geoff,

So, in other words, it will not be worth TOR's time or effort to simply get the Chinese manufacturer to knock up a batch of several thousand new muffs!

NO!!! They need to supply the modellers with whole new bogies with NO time limit/warranty period as, clearly, this is a defective design right from the start.

Thanks again for taking the time (at no benefit to yourself) to dissect the bogie and analyse the cause of our problems.

I hope that Good Little Ray ( a member on here under a different name) might be able to share the contents of this thread with BBB (or whoever it is that makes the executive decisions at TOR). It really is a huge problem and one which has not been fully felt by many modellers thus far I would say.

Those of you who have sweet-running TOR 44's, I suggest you treat them with kid-gloves. If you don't ask them to haul biggish loads, especially up gradients, you shouldn't have any issues for a while to come. However, if you are like me and like to see your fleet earning its keep, then be prepared to either hound TOR for new bogies (of a new design preferably) or be prepared to seek out a new replacement mechanism at some considerable cost....more than your initial outlay for the loco I suspect.

I am willing to do the latter because I feel as though even if I spend up to $300- for a complete new mechanism, the body is of such high quality that I will end up with a bloody good model (better than brass loco detail etc) for under $500-. That doesn't mean to say I'm not VERY disappointed with the TOR bogies.....but it's not the end of the earth.

Roachie 
  LaidlayM Chief Commissioner

Location: Research

............
This is, design wise, a real POS.
"TheBlacksmith"


BS,

more importantly than all this ALCO stuff, what about the S class mech, same factory probably equals same problem.

But then most Austrains locos (X, C, T and maybe some other stuff) came from the same factory as well.

Mark
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
It is interesting Mark, because I had the Austrains bogie from the 73 Class handy and was able to open it up. The Austrains bogie had slightly wider gears and not near as much sideways travel, so it would not be prone to the same type of failure.

On the other hand, I was not that keen on opening up my TOR S Class to take a look, and just as importantly, if I said another word about the TOR S Class on here, I would probably by lynched, sued or run out of town.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
I might dissect my TOR S on Monday, will report in if it happens and I find anything interesting.
  a6et Minister for Railways

It is interesting Mark, because I had the Austrains bogie from the 73 Class handy and was able to open it up. The Austrains bogie had slightly wider gears and not near as much sideways travel, so it would not be prone to the same type of failure.

On the other hand, I was not that keen on opening up my TOR S Class to take a look, and just as importantly, if I said another word about the TOR S Class on here, I would probably by lynched, sued or run out of town.
"TheBlacksmith"


Geoff

I think that it would not matter in regard to what locomotive nor who it came from in this case, certainly not from my POV.  I contacted a fellow who does a lot of work on models mainly repairing them & installing sound to them, & it includes all brands for the Oz modeller, as well as a very large percentage of US modellers.

What he said is that this cracked gear problem is very common for US models, & they are the big names as well, he did mention three of them. I also do not know of anyone in the group I am in that meets each week who have had problems with the 44cl, although some may want to look into it & check their models out.  ATM I only have 2 diesels, both TOR products, a 42cl & a 44cl that is presently being repainted after retro work back to the 56 delivery colours & appearance wise.

What I & I think many would like to know is how common this problem is with the models, & as there has been more than one run of them, are they a problem with each run or just one?  The other aspect of this also is if its only found in one run, then who really is to blame for the problem, the importer, in which case TOR, or the manufacturer which means the Chinese factory? which also brings out another question, if as someone in an earlier post said that early runs had a wider gear that has meant the problem has not surfaced (that is what I am assuming, or interpreting, based on what was said) why was there an alteration carried out?  & if that was just a factory decision, as part of the common aspect that prevails today.

That being, factories can alter products in accord with new technology changes.  Most would know that not every change in techology is of benefit either. If the change was not sanctioned by TOR & just part of the tecnology or the way the factory did things, I wonder what sort of regress that TOR would have against the factory to get the bogies fixed, especially if the problem is found on models that were purchased earlier & are now outside the normal warranty period of 12 months.

It certainly does not say anything for the old factory in the way they have handled themselves in a lot of ways with each of the 3 who used them, especially when one sees the amount of seconds being sold on an "as is" condition with no warranty at exhibitions.
  a6et Minister for Railways

I might dissect my TOR S on Monday, will report in if it happens and I find anything interesting.
"Aaron"


Aaron, please keep us posted in that regard.

I really hope that the problem is not evidant in the model.
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
I think that it would not matter in regard to what locomotive nor who it came from in this case, certainly not from my POV. 
"a6et"


That was in reference to the fact that when I criticised the TOR S class back just after it was released, based on some errors and shortcomings, a certain BBB threatened to take legal action against 'several' Railpage posters, and that would presumably have meant me, and also I was roundly shouted down for my criticisms.

What I & I think many would like to know is how common this problem is with the models, & as there has been more than one run of them, are they a problem with each run or just one?  The other aspect of this also is if its only found in one run, then who really is to blame for the problem, the importer, in which case TOR, or the manufacturer which means the Chinese factory? which also brings out another question, if as someone in an earlier post said that early runs had a wider gear that has meant the problem has not surfaced (that is what I am assuming, or interpreting, based on what was said) why was there an alteration carried out?  & if that was just a factory decision, as part of the common aspect that prevails today.
"a6et"


My view is that the Chinese manufacturer designed this bogie drive system and probably TOR did not know of the ticking (pun intended) time bomb inside the bogie.

It was me who raised the issue of an earlier design in which the gears were wider and did not have as much sideways travel, but that was an Austrains bogie, not a TOR one. And it would have been manufactured quite a long time back as it was included in the 49 Class kit made by LLoyd Sawyer. And as Lloyd sold the business quite some time back, that would make it quite an old bogie.

As for why the gears were made narrower, who knows? As I also said, they could have been made around 4mm wide instead of 1.5mm. I am guessing that they may have been made narrower so the same components could be used in 12mm gauge bogies.
  Albert Chief Commissioner

I took one of my 42's apart (this is the first time this loco has touched fresh air outside of China).

The gears are the same width as the 44 however there is not as much play in the tranfer gears as depicted by Blacksmith.

A poor shot of the 42 class gears


The drive gear (the one in BS's photo the arrow is pointing to) still has enough play in the 42 to cause problems later in life but the mis-alignment is not a servere as the 44 BS posted. 
  a6et Minister for Railways

I think that it would not matter in regard to what locomotive nor who it came from in this case, certainly not from my POV. 
"a6et"


That was in reference to the fact that when I criticised the TOR S class back just after it was released, based on some errors and shortcomings, a certain BBB threatened to take legal action against 'several' Railpage Australia™ posters, and that would presumably have meant me, and also I was roundly shouted down for my criticisms.

What I & I think many would like to know is how common this problem is with the models, & as there has been more than one run of them, are they a problem with each run or just one?  The other aspect of this also is if its only found in one run, then who really is to blame for the problem, the importer, in which case TOR, or the manufacturer which means the Chinese factory? which also brings out another question, if as someone in an earlier post said that early runs had a wider gear that has meant the problem has not surfaced (that is what I am assuming, or interpreting, based on what was said) why was there an alteration carried out?  & if that was just a factory decision, as part of the common aspect that prevails today.
"a6et"


My view is that the Chinese manufacturer designed this bogie drive system and probably TOR did not know of the ticking (pun intended) time bomb inside the bogie.

It was me who raised the issue of an earlier design in which the gears were wider and did not have as much sideways travel, but that was an Austrains bogie, not a TOR one. And it would have been manufactured quite a long time back as it was included in the 49 Class kit made by LLoyd Sawyer. And as Lloyd sold the business quite some time back, that would make it quite an old bogie.

As for why the gears were made narrower, who knows? As I also said, they could have been made around 4mm wide instead of 1.5mm. I am guessing that they may have been made narrower so the same components could be used in 12mm gauge bogies.
"TheBlacksmith"


Thanks Geoff

I  tend to think that the importers in general allow a bit too much trust with the factories, so here's hoping things will get better in the future.

For me I think a 1.5 mm gear is pretty thin especially if its in plastic.
  PeltonPinch Locomotive Fireman

Hi all,

I ran one of my 44s this morning (one of a pair purchased together) for the first time. The only time it had been out of the box previously was to install the DCC decoder)

After 20 mins running time, the dreaded ticking noise became evident. It became especially pronounced when run in reverse.

The track is essentially an oval of 8m total track length, and the 44 was loaded by 8x Auscision KLYs.

I'm presuming that the loco is from the later run by TOR, as it was purchased for $150 from Tom's. (In my view I was getting 2 for the price of one). This correlates with what a previous poster theorised, in that perhaps these bogies are made with a shorter boss than required. I'm not yet game enough to run the second.

I have not opened it up to inspect, as I think The Blacksmith's photo says it all, especially the point, in my view, that the entire gear would need to be replaced, as any attempt to shim the gear into position on the shaft would most likely result in premature wear of the gear boss or the shim anyway due to differing materials.

I recall that some of these models were supplied without the correct dual-headlight lens. Is this indicative of which run they were from, or a matter that cannot fit into the same timeline as the bogie problem? Perhaps it may help to identify those models which will likely give problems.


  a6et Minister for Railways

Hi all,

I ran one of my 44s this morning (one of a pair purchased together) for the first time. The only time it had been out of the box previously was to install the DCC decoder)

After 20 mins running time, the dreaded ticking noise became evident. It became especially pronounced when run in reverse.

The track is essentially an oval of 8m total track length, and the 44 was loaded by 8x Auscision KLYs.

I'm presuming that the loco is from the later run by TOR, as it was purchased for $150 from Tom's. (In my view I was getting 2 for the price of one). This correlates with what a previous poster theorised, in that perhaps these bogies are made with a shorter boss than required. I'm not yet game enough to run the second.

I have not opened it up to inspect, as I think The Blacksmith's photo says it all, especially the point, in my view, that the entire gear would need to be replaced, as any attempt to shim the gear into position on the shaft would most likely result in premature wear of the gear boss or the shim anyway due to differing materials.

I recall that some of these models were supplied without the correct dual-headlight lens. Is this indicative of which run they were from, or a matter that cannot fit into the same timeline as the bogie problem? Perhaps it may help to identify those models which will likely give problems.

"PeltonPinch"


How long ago were they purchased?  If under 12 months they would be still under warranty & you should be able to ask for a refund, as it is an identified problem.

I wonder about other diesels made at the SDK factory since the 2nd run 44cl came out, & as the Eureka 40cl is being made there, I hope its not going to have the same issue.
  PeltonPinch Locomotive Fireman

Good Point... if I dig the receipt out, I should make it in time.

What factory were the 42 class made in? Are they likely to suffer the same fate?
  a6et Minister for Railways

Good Point... if I dig the receipt out, I should make it in time.

What factory were the 42 class made in? Are they likely to suffer the same fate?
"PeltonPinch"


Same factory but I have not heard any of the noise in my model.
  PeltonPinch Locomotive Fireman

Thanks. I'll give mine a go & see how it fares.
  tsubameau Train Controller

Location: QLD
I'm fortunate to own a few Traino 930s ... all have clocked up a few miles running on the layout.

The single enders don't have the "click".

All the double enders do ... first and second release, dual headlight lense or not, full price or $150 special.

Some click louder than others, some more so in one direction than the other.

I also have a few Traino Ss ... no clicking there ... yet?

Looking forward to a possible future solution ...

Regards,
Anthony
  ANDL36Y Train Controller

Howdy,

I own two TrainO 44 class and fourteen 930 class, six of which are single-enders, and only two of that lot have had any decent running time under load but on a level grade. No clicking from those two. Who knows about the remaining fourteen models? ConfusedEvil or Very Mad

A friend owns seven examples and three of them have developed the noise after running loaded on graded track at his club.

So will at least eight of mine become useless when they are finally brought out of the cupboard to earn their keep? That would be completely unacceptable as;

a) They were supposed supposed to be the staple mainline motive power on my 80's era layouts

b) They represent a significan financial investment ("sale" pricing notwithstanding as several were bought before the price drop)

c) If they fail because of a design fault, then are they are also not "fit for purpose"?

Sure, this issue could be corrected before the production run of 48/830s and GM etc. but that's not a solution... or is it? Replacement axles as an extra during production of the aftorementioned locos? One way to fix the issue. I hope so. Confused

Cheers
  snerd Station Master

Location: BNE
Huh. Was getting excited about the cheap TrainO 44's on EBay, then I came across this thread. Frankly, I can't see myself buying any of the Chinese factory RtR stuff until I can be a bit more confident in their reliability now Smile

New strategy: Wait for austrains/trainorama shells to appear on eBay, buy hollywood foundry mechs Smile

Also: this is my first time back on RP for five or six years. Used to post on aus.rail a lot. Just trying to get back into the hobby, please be nice Smile
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
In an interesting development, this morning I received a phone call from Bob Cooke, the new owner of TOR and Bob's Hobbies, regarding this issue with the TOR 44 Class. Bob was asking if he could make use of the information I presented here in discussions with the Chinese manufacturers.

After a fairly long call, it would seem that Bob is serious in his desire to see this problem solved, and will be taking up the issues with the Chinese engineers. At this stage it is not certain what the likely strategy will be, but it most likely will at least involve supplying replacement parts to repair the problems with the bogies.

It should also be borne in mind that Bob, having only recently taken over TOR and the shop, was not aware of the problem previously. There is little point speculating further until he has had a chance to talk to the Chinese factory, but at least there is recognition of the problem and a stated desire to see it resolved.

We will know more when Bob returns from China. I will keep you posted.
  a6et Minister for Railways

In an interesting development, this morning I received a phone call from Bob Cooke regarding this issue with the TOR 44 Class. Bob was asking if he could make use of the information I presented here in discussions with the Chinese manufacturers.

After a fairly long call, it would seem that Bob is serious in his desire to see this problem solved, and will be taking up the issues with the Chinese engineers. At this stage it is not certain what the likely strategy will be, but it most likely will at least involve supplying replacement parts to repair the problems with the bogies.

It should also be borne in mind that Bob, having only recently taken over TOR and the shop, was not aware of the problem previously. There is little point speculating further until he has had a chance to talk to the Chinese factory, but at least there is recognition of the problem and a stated desire to see it resolved.

We will know more when Bob returns from China. I will keep you posted.
"TheBlacksmith"


Geoff

That is certainly good news indeed. 

The last time I was at the shop, around 4 weeks ago, I found a real change of overall attitudes from the new staff there & I certainly got the impression that they were looking to a positive future & addressing problems in a real way.

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