Author Topic: Kato MP36 a stinker? (now fixed)  (Read 2535 times)

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jagged ben

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Kato MP36 a stinker? (now fixed)
« on: January 02, 2014, 01:54:00 PM »
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So I got my Caltrain MP36 from Chuck a little while back, took it to the club, set it up with my Athearn Bombadier cars...and it will not pull or push more than one of them on the flat. 

Admittedly the Athearn cars are anything but light and free-rolling, but my F40PH has no problem with them.

Back at home, the MP36 barely pulls all five of the (light and free rolling!) Kato Nippon-Sharyo Caltrain cars. 

It seems that with enough load the gears are disengaging inside the trucks.  The worms spin and the wheels do not.  I hear a high speed clicking. 

So, before I go back to Chuck or Kato and ask "WTF?"...

Anyone else having this problem, or is mine some kind of lemon?
Anyone who had this problem find a way to fix or mitigate it?
Any other suggestions?
« Last Edit: January 18, 2014, 04:40:23 PM by GaryHinshaw »

CBQ Fan

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2014, 02:15:00 PM »
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My Metra unit pulls awesome!
Brian

Way of the Zephyr

SecretWeapon

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2014, 02:19:25 PM »
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My engine pulls & pushes 3 weighted cars up & down hills without a problem. I wouldn't hesitate to add more cars. It must be your engine. I'd call Kato & send it back to them.
Mike

sizemore

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2014, 02:37:34 PM »
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Have you disassembled it and refit everything back together? Sounds like you have one truck partially engaged and the other truck not engaged. Probably the truck is not locked in the bolster properly or worms are out of alignment. As long as there is no physical damage to the parts, disassembly and reassembly will most likely correct the issue.

The S.

Kisatchie

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2014, 02:52:39 PM »
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...As long as there is no physical damage to the parts, disassembly and reassembly will most likely correct the issue.

I'd be worried about voiding the warranty.


Hmm... I bet Kato is
just waiting for you to
try to fix the problem...


Two scientists create a teleportation ray, and they try it out on a cricket. They put the cricket on one of the two teleportation pads in the room, and they turn the ray on.
The cricket jumps across the room onto the other pad.
"It works! It works!"

jagged ben

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2014, 04:51:43 PM »
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Have you disassembled it and refit everything back together?

Yes, but only to a point.  I have not removed the sideframes from the trucks or any of the gears in the trucks.  I did remove and reseat the worms. 

Quote
Sounds like you have one truck partially engaged and the other truck not engaged.

I don't think so.  When the loco is run without cars it runs fine.  When run with cars, both trucks are clicking .  One seems to start slightly before the other.     

Quote
Probably the truck is not locked in the bolster properly or worms are out of alignment.

I don't believe either of those things are true.  These trucks are all self contained with the worm so the bolser does not play a role in gear alignment.   The clicking is not between the worm and the worm gear, it is between one or more of the gears between the worm gear and the axles.  Nothing appears to be misaligned.


Perhaps a couple of the the gears on this one are defective or damaged.  I'm going to start looking into the warranty process.

Jeff AKA St0rm

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2014, 04:56:34 PM »
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I have one of the Metra and have had no problems with it. I have only used it with the Kato cars but I have pushed/pulled 6 cars. You might need to take yours back.

jagged ben

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2014, 05:11:33 PM »
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I honestly don't get what the problem can be unless the gears are actually either the wrong gear or the manufacturing tolerances have slipped. 

For those of you with MP36s, please try the this experiment...

Forget about how many cars it can pull, just do this: Stick your finger in front of it and turn up the throttle.

Every other N scale locomotive I've ever owned will spin its wheels when I do this.  The MP36 wheels do not spin.  Instead, the gears inside the truck disengage and click past each other.  Specifically, it seems to be the worm gear and the idler gear that disengage.  Nothing seems to be out of place or misaligned.  It really seems like a design flaw to me, but if you all say that your locos spin their wheels then mine is a lemon. 

peteski

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2014, 05:31:10 PM »
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I honestly don't get what the problem can be unless the gears are actually either the wrong gear or the manufacturing tolerances have slipped. 

For those of you with MP36s, please try the this experiment...

Forget about how many cars it can pull, just do this: Stick your finger in front of it and turn up the throttle.

Every other N scale locomotive I've ever owned will spin its wheels when I do this.  The MP36 wheels do not spin.  Instead, the gears inside the truck disengage and click past each other.  Specifically, it seems to be the worm gear and the idler gear that disengage.  Nothing seems to be out of place or misaligned.  It really seems like a design flaw to me, but if you all say that your locos spin their wheels then mine is a lemon.

Sounds like it is your specific locomotive that is clearly defective.
--- Peteski de Snarkski
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Wutter

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2014, 06:05:16 PM »
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My MP36 definitely spins its wheels even if I block it in the front.
Alvin
Owner of Wutter Vehicles and Details
https://www.shapeways.com/shops/wuttervehicles

jdg

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2014, 06:25:14 PM »
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I have the Caltrain unit also and it can only pull 3 of the new bombardier cars.  I have worked on the cars and they all roll freely but the loco can't pull worth anything. I also have a Metra unit and it performs the same.

peteski

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2014, 07:19:58 PM »
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I... but the loco can't pull worth anything. I also have a Metra unit and it performs the same.

Great, but does it click when its spinning its wheels in place?
--- Peteski de Snarkski
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jdg

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2014, 07:27:18 PM »
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Peteski - no the loco does not click.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 08:18:24 PM by jdg »

jnevis

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2014, 07:33:27 PM »
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I'd be worried about voiding the warranty.


Hmm... I bet Kato is
just waiting for you to
try to fix the problem...



Actually that is Kato's first suggestion if you think it's broken.  The Kato repair page says to tear it down and see if anything is obviously wrong and try and fix it yourself, THEN call them about it.  The reason is so you learn the inner workings of your model and better understand it's operation.
Can't model worth a darn, but can research like an SOB.

Kisatchie

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Re: Kato MP36 a stinker (?)
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2014, 07:47:17 PM »
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...The Kato repair page says to tear it down and see if anything is obviously wrong and try and fix it yourself, THEN call them about it.  The reason is so you learn the inner workings of your model and better understand it's operation.

Hmm... I'm glad Toyota
doesn't do that...


Two scientists create a teleportation ray, and they try it out on a cricket. They put the cricket on one of the two teleportation pads in the room, and they turn the ray on.
The cricket jumps across the room onto the other pad.
"It works! It works!"