Author Topic: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help  (Read 4063 times)

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eja

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DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« on: May 20, 2014, 10:00:20 PM »
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I am in the process of converting several Atlas 4 axle Geeps to DCC with, so far, very maddening results.  One conversion went fine (B23-7) and two of them (GP-40 and GP38) have produces locos that struggle to move and now sound like coffee grinders. 

Of course the wheels fall out when remove the old light board and I had to take the frame apart to get the old board out and the new one in so there are lots of potential suspects.

Any suggestions regarding what I might be doing wrong or where to look to fix these previously fine running locos will be appreciated.

Thanks  .... eja

Burlington Bob

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2014, 10:20:43 PM »
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I had the same problem with a couple of Atlas GP7's until I came across the Bearden Solution.  Do a search for "Ron Bearden bearing block".  Done properly, it should cure the problem you are experiencing.
Everywhere West

u18b

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2014, 10:39:49 PM »
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http://trainweb.org/passengercars/Bearingblock.pdf

Works every time for me.

Done well over 100 times.
Ron Bearden
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"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

Bob Horn

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2014, 10:54:52 PM »
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I knew you would get in there before I found the link. Thanks Ron. Bob Horn.

u18b

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2014, 11:12:00 PM »
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So many people ask about this I saved the bookmark in a handy place.
Ron Bearden
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"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

eja

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2014, 12:17:56 AM »
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I have read about Ron's "solution" before, and thanks for reminding me.   


What I don't understand is how a perfectly running loco became a coffee grinder.


Keep the suggestions coming... thanks all
« Last Edit: May 21, 2014, 12:23:53 AM by eja »

u18b

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2014, 12:45:10 AM »
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The motor and the worms don't end up exactly like they were and are ever so slightly out of alignment.
Ron Bearden
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"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

peteski

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2014, 12:49:21 AM »
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I have read about Ron's "solution" before, and thanks for reminding me.   


What I don't understand is how a perfectly running loco became a coffee grinder.


Keep the suggestions coming... thanks all

Ron's workaround is ... a workaround.  If you really want to find what is causing the problem, you will have to spend some time playing a detective and a troubleshooter.  As to why, it is most likely because some parts of the model were not assembled exactly the way they were before you took it apart.   :)
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eja

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2014, 12:19:13 PM »
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[quote ]
  As to why, it is most likely because some parts of the model were not assembled exactly the way they were before you took it apart.   :)
[/quote]


Any suggestions as to where to start looking ??  Most likely candidates ?

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2014, 02:09:17 PM »
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If Ron's solution of removing a bearing block works then I'd look there. One of them may have gone back in 180 degrees from how it came out.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2014, 05:32:27 AM by garethashenden »

peteski

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2014, 04:08:43 PM »
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Any suggestions as to where to start looking ??  Most likely candidates ?

Well, if the loco is struggling and making noise, I woudl look at the alignment of the main drive-train components to the frame halves.  This should also cover the alignment between the motor and the worm gear shafts and the worm shaft bearings.   How bad is the binding?  Assuming that the decoders in a working and binding locos are the same (and identically programmed), at what speed step each loco starts to move?

Another TRW member had a problem with some poorly running locos. He sent them to me to see if I can make them run better. While not the same models as yours, if you look at this thread you will see (on page 2) the examples of what can be causing a problem.
--- Peteski de Snarkski

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u18b

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2014, 05:17:26 PM »
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Ron's workaround is ... a workaround.  If you really want to find what is causing the problem, you will have to spend some time playing a detective and a troubleshooter.  As to why, it is most likely because some parts of the model were not assembled exactly the way they were before you took it apart.   :)

You are sort of correct, but I would respectfully disagree.

What I mean is...... yes, the noise problem is what drove me to the solution.  In that sense it is a workaround.
And yes, if there is STILL a slight misalignment, this procedure compensates for it.

The huge however is..... when I have a brand new loco that runs pristine quiet.... I still do this procedure anyway.  I do it on every last loco I can possibly do it on because the locos run better since friction is reduced.

Take a loco you are perfectly happy with.  Do this procedure and it will run a bit faster (and possibly even quieter still).  Why is it running faster?  Because you have removed two points of friction.

So honestly, to me, that is not a workaround...... it is an improvement.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2014, 05:26:40 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
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u18b

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2014, 05:25:11 PM »
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If Ron's solution of removing a bearing block works then is look there. One of them may have gone back in 180 degrees from how it came out.

Something got lost in the typing here.

But I think you are correct.  Plastic bearings are usually not 100% perfect.  Or at least they don't wear perfectly either.  So when putting a loco back together a bearing may get rotated.  or it may not seat as perfectly.

Or the motor is no longer 100% in line.  Think of the typical motor saddle.  The little fingers get damaged the first time to disassemble the loco.  Maybe those have an effect.

But just removing the inner bearing blocks solves ALL of this  (as a posted stated above IF you carefully follow directions).

Ron Bearden
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"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

spookshow

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2014, 06:35:20 PM »
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I forget, but isn't there a "right way" and a "wrong way" to seat the bearing blocks? It's been a while since I've had to take one apart, but I seem to recall having drivetrain alignment problems on disassembled Atlas locos because I didn't get the bearing blocks put back correctly (IE, I had to rotate them one turn to make them "right").

Cheers,
-Mark
« Last Edit: May 21, 2014, 06:36:55 PM by spookshow »

eja

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Re: DCC Conversions produce coffee grinders - help
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2014, 07:55:58 PM »
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Whoa .... are you guys telling me that the bearing block are not symmetrical and  have a specific way they must be installed ?   Is there any way to tell "which side is up"

If they need to go in a certain way that is probably the cause of my problem.  Now to figure out the "right' way ! :facepalm:


thanks