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Loco Stopping and Starting at Slow Speeds

Rex models HO and writes:

“I just put a new Walthers Mainline F7B unit with a Sound Value Diesel Walthers Mainline Decoder on the track. It works fine going forward. In reverse at slow speeds, it will lose power (no sound) and stop but, in most cases, immediately start up again. This can happen 2 or 3 times while moving 12 inches. It does not stop while running at mid-range speeds and higher. Nothing changed after cleaning the track. I tried jiggling the wires but could not find a cause and effect. Usually, I don’t have time to reach the engine. Any ideas?”

6 Responses to Loco Stopping and Starting at Slow Speeds

  • Dale says:

    Since you say it loses sound also, perhaps the drive wheel pickups may be loose. When you put it in reverse, it might be shifting slightly out of position and losing contact with the wheel. Once the loco stops, it drops back into contact and all is well for a moment, until it happens again. At higher speeds, there isn’t enough time for the friction to move it out of contact so the loco performs properly.

    I would recommend checking the pickups and cleaning them and the wiper surfaces of the wheels.

  • Kim Fokken says:

    Is it happening on the same place on the track each time? My gp 60m does that. It has 2 axle trucks. When running faster, it will have enough momentum to keep it moving.

    • Rex Nichols says:

      It happens everywhere on the track but does have some consist places. It happens close together sometimes and then may go awhile with no problems.

  • kim says:

    either dirty wheels or pickup.
    Try some electrical contact cleaner
    any type will do, this is just the easiest to find.
    use q-tips with most of the cotton off.
    The best results are if you take the trucks off

  • Frank B says:

    I’m with Dale on this. You have intermittent electrical contact somewhere, probably due to dirt, possibly due to improperly bent pick-up contacts. Inspect underneath, clean wheel rims and contact points on axles or inner wheels surfaces. 
    If you don’t have all wheel pick-up on the loco, consider fitting additional spring wire wheel contacts to improve electrical efficiency.

  • Mel Sloan says:

    I agree with all the above comments. If you can find the space in the loco consider adding a Keep Alive.

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