Author Topic: BLI PRR-P5A In Now  (Read 13926 times)

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reinhardtjh

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #15 on: February 11, 2022, 07:26:59 PM »
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@Ed Kapuscinski — guess what?  They ALL came in, including the CR!  MBK has all of them in stock.  So you have a decision to make!  :D

Looks like a tidal wave of BLI products arrived.  There are new USRA Mikes and F3/F7's listed as well as the P5a's.

Also the Feb MTL items are in.  To Mail train or not to Mail train, that is the question.
John H. Reinhardt
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CBQ Fan

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #16 on: February 11, 2022, 07:48:30 PM »
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Same problem with the prototype. Prototype solution: run ‘em in 2’s and 3’s!

Well that doesn’t work well for me. I would get the GN first and I thought about the Milwaukee Road. I would not run in mu even if multiple numbers were available in those two roads.
Brian

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learmoia

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2022, 12:30:18 PM »
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Some photo grabs from Ebay.
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I wanted a few GN cars to fill out my 10 car BN passenger train.
.. I ended up with 21 Empire Builder cars.
~Ian

bbussey

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2022, 01:17:27 PM »
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These arrived a day earlier than expected. Will give them a spin later tonight. The electric looks impressive at first glance. I will use it in run-though freight service from Woodlawn to Cedar Hill. The pans are equalized, not as well as Bachmann G pans but much better than Kato pans and they stay level.  The middle axle wheels are flangeless.




« Last Edit: February 16, 2022, 01:26:48 PM by bbussey »
Bryan Busséy
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learmoia

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2022, 01:56:21 PM »
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These arrived a day earlier than expected. Will give them a spin later tonight. The electric looks impressive at first glance. I will use it in run-though freight service from Woodlawn to Cedar Hill. The pans are equalized, not as well as Bachmann G pans but much better than Kato pans and they stay level.  The middle axle wheels are flangeless.





The solid spoke-ed drivers and lead/trailing truck sideframes could use a bit more relief..... but not as offensive as the outside braced box stock car.

Otherwise.. Looks good.. hard to complain about an obscure model being made in N scale.

Is the flangeless center driver prototype?  Doesn't seem like the wheel base is longer than the 2-8-2..
I wanted a few GN cars to fill out my 10 car BN passenger train.
.. I ended up with 21 Empire Builder cars.
~Ian

dem34

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #20 on: February 16, 2022, 02:15:29 PM »
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Not Prototype, but BLI is pretty committed to making sure all their stuff is able to negotiate 9.75" curves and #4 turnouts. Fair enough I guess, again I will echo the sentiment that if that's what it takes to get lesser known prototypes in plastic so be it.
-Al

bbussey

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2022, 02:27:45 PM »
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It may be possible to purchase a flanged wheel as a replacement for those of us who don't run 9¾" radius.  But I don't think it will be noticeable on the rails.  They did a good job of blackening everything out below the carbody.
Bryan Busséy
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peteski

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2022, 02:42:58 PM »
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I don't understand the flangeless thing BLI has.  This loco's rigid wheelbase is short enough for sharp curves, even with middle axle having flanges.  Axles likely have enough side play, and the gauging of the wheels will allow that.

One of my future projects (among dozen others waiting their turn) is to get rid of those flangeless drivers on BLI N T1 Duplex loco.  But  this will be more difficult than just replacing a driver (I'm not going to get into that here).  I was able to convince BLI to sell me the "spare parts" driver set I needed, but it was not easy - they didn't want to sell them to me at first (even after showing proof of purchase).
. . . 42 . . .

bbussey

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #23 on: February 16, 2022, 03:40:29 PM »
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There is no parts documentation with the product and it's not online yet.  I just submitted a parts request for a flanged driver wheel/axle set.  We'll see what happens.

The Mikado has flanges on all drivers thankfully.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2022, 03:42:25 PM by bbussey »
Bryan Busséy
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jargonlet

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2022, 09:47:39 PM »
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I was able to convince BLI to sell me the "spare parts" driver set I needed, but it was not easy - they didn't want to sell them to me at first (even after showing proof of purchase).

I’ve heard that before but recently I ordered several replacement parts for an ho N&W auxiliary tender that were damaged by a previous owner. They never asked for any sort of proof that I owned the actual tender. I bought it used so it’s a good thing because I don’t have proof of purchase. Maybe I just got the right person at Broadway…

peteski

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2022, 09:56:39 PM »
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I’ve heard that before but recently I ordered several replacement parts for an ho N&W auxiliary tender that were damaged by a previous owner. They never asked for any sort of proof that I owned the actual tender. I bought it used so it’s a good thing because I don’t have proof of purchase. Maybe I just got the right person at Broadway…

The fact that I wanted to buy a full driver set for my T1 might have raised a flag. They told me that only provide parts to replace broken parts on their models. So how did I damage *ALL* the drivers?  That's when I had to explain what I was planning to do (and that parts would still be used on the BLI T1)
. . . 42 . . .

bbussey

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #26 on: February 16, 2022, 10:48:49 PM »
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I set the addresses on both engines and did some quick test runs.  Significant highs and significant lows.

Regarding the P5a:  The first of many disappointments is that the flangless driver wheel doesn't touch the rail, by a lot.  The second is that the pilot trucks may not be wired, and even if they are, they are very light and are not sprung, so no pressure to hold them against the rail.  That means the two outer drivers are the only reliable electrical pickup wheels for the unit, and it really needs a keep-alive capacitor but there's no place to put it.  Hopefully I can get a flanged driver wheel, so the flanges at least will touch the rail, and maybe the front trucks can be modified to accept Kato GG-1 springs to push them against the rails.  Then, all the wheels have to be wired for pickup.  The unit is heavy enough, just not enough pickup.  Unless the track is squeaky-clean, the engine stalls.  If it hits a dead spot for a split second but continues, it resets to the startup routine before continuing.  I had to set the throttle to 30 to have it travel reliably.  Fixable I believe, but extremely disappointing.  But a stupid decision not to have the center driver functional.



Regarding the Mikado:  This model is at the opposite end of the satisfaction scale.  The mechanism is outstanding.  The pilot wheels and trailing wheels may or may not be wired for pickup, I didn't check.  But every other wheel definitely is.  On the same stretch of track where I tested the P5a, the Mike crawled with the throttle set to 1.  No sound-skipping at all, and it never stalled.  It took 1 minute 38 seconds for the Mike to travel the distance that the P5a traveled in 14 seconds at its lowest reliable non-stalling speed.  I'm very impressed with the Mike.  The only  negative is minor and cosmetic in that there is no rear light in the tender.  I'm pretty sure New Haven had tender rear lights and I may put one in if that is the case.

The sound library on both units is acceptable.  The P5a will be decent when the pickup arrangement is increased.  But at this price, every wheel should be picking up and the center driver should be for more than just window-dressing.
Bryan Busséy
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nkalanaga

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2022, 02:06:00 AM »
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That looks like the driver arrangement on many Marklin Z locos.  No, it doesn't help the operation a bit.
N Kalanaga
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bbussey

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2022, 09:01:19 AM »
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I fired off a scathing letter to my BLI contact last night, the same one that I complained to about the false USRA boxcar advertising. Also asked for a flanged wheel. Should get a response no later than tomorrow.

Also, no documentation in the box or online regarding a parts explosion diagram or service diagram for either model. Just a function button table for the sound commands.
Bryan Busséy
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learmoia

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Re: BLI PRR-P5A In Now
« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2022, 09:26:43 AM »
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Oddly enough, I was looking through photos of the P5A to verify the flange issue.

Initially, I couldn't find a prototype photo that was clear enough but photos of brass models had a flangless center driver.

Then a second search for this post, I found a walk around video of the P5 at St. Louis.. and from what I can see flangless driver.
I wanted a few GN cars to fill out my 10 car BN passenger train.
.. I ended up with 21 Empire Builder cars.
~Ian