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Engine Stalls On Straights

Lester sent in this question:

“I bought a Bachmann engine that must be more than 30 years old and tried it out on my basic oval test track which has a straight piece on each side. It runs ok on the curves but is starts to stall on the straights. My voltmeter showed no power loss. I then cleaned the track, but it still runs ok on the curves and slows a stall on the straights. It baffles me. Any thoughts?”

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9 Responses to Engine Stalls On Straights

  • John Howie says:

    Have you checked the track guage on the straight bits?

  • Hervey says:

    I suspect the contacts at the back of the wheels is where the problem is. While gong around the curve the wheels are “squeezed” and make firmer contact with wipers. On the straight the “squeeze” is not there and contact is sporadic at best.
    Check the backs of the wheels and the wipes for accumulated dirt and dust.Carefully clean both with Isoproponal Alcohol being very careful to not bend the wipers.

  • phil johnson says:

    If this is a Spectrum diesel you may need to remove the shell and trucks to clean the frame and the bronze-phosphor spring on the truck. Oh, yeah, don’t lose the tiny screw holding the truck.

  • Frank MILES says:

    Phil, Hervey and John all have good points. The only other thing I’d check is make sure the wheels are firmly being held on their axles. I have a similar issue and found a set of wheels were loose on the axle. Hope you find the issue. Good luck..

  • John Haughey says:

    The longer a conductor is, the more resistance it has. Normally not a problem, but this syndrome can be rectified by adding extra supply booster points in addition to the initial supply point. Also solder joint fishplates as sometimes dirt can accumulate at connections.

  • Chris Bouckley says:

    Hi Lester, It’s always possible that the engine simply has dirty wheels; the contact would be made with the tracks due to the flanges on the curves, but once it hits the straights, the engine runs on the central portion of the rim which may be dirty. Just a thought. Good luck! Chris.

  • Lester says:

    thanks all, great advice. thanks for caring

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