Bachmann GS-4 Daylight Help

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Trainboy4449

New Member
My Bachmann GS-4 Daylight is not able to take 22" curves without derailing anymore but has done so in the past. The front drivers don't seem to fully rest on the rails even on level track and pop off the rails when trying to make a turn. It's really confusing because it has worked well for the past two years and I haven't modified my EZ-Track layout since then. I hope I haven't damaged the loco in some way but if someone else has experienced this problem I would definitely appreciate some help.
 

bnsf971

Gomez Addams
Staff member
It's possible the wheels have built up crud on them to the point the crud is letting the wheels ride up and over the rail. Take a look at the wheels, and clean any gunk off them.
 

Trainboy4449

New Member
It's possible the wheels have built up crud on them to the point the crud is letting the wheels ride up and over the rail. Take a look at the wheels, and clean any gunk off them.
It's a little more drastic than that. The front set of drivers visibly hover over the rails. Applying some pressure to the top of the locomotive pushes them back down but the whole loco seem to want to pitch back.
 

bob

Administrator
Staff member
Unfortunately, they're somewhat fragile and can be prone to problems. Do you have a hobby shop anywhere nearby? This could be tough to troubleshoot online.
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
Is there supposed to be a spring above the pilot truck? It sounds as if the spring has sprung off to parts unknown. Or perhaps you can gently bend the truck down to where the wheels are on the rails.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
How old is it? Early models were prone to axle failure. Once that happens, there's not much you can do with them. I believe the newer ones licked that problem. 18" radius is a bit small for a 4-8-4. It would do better on a 22" curve!
 

bnsf971

Gomez Addams
Staff member
Does the engine have traction tires on the rear drivers? If not, is there a groove in the wheel where they might have been? It's very possible with an older model the rubber tires have failed and fallen off. That would cause the front to raise up like you describe.
 

Trainboy4449

New Member
Is there supposed to be a spring above the pilot truck? It sounds as if the spring has sprung off to parts unknown. Or perhaps you can gently bend the truck down to where the wheels are on the rails.
Oddly enough the pilot truck sits fine I would have thought the same myself.
 

Trainboy4449

New Member
The loco is a dcc-equipped model released around 2007. It definitely doesn't have traction tires on it right now but I don't think it ever did. I lubricated the drivers a bit and massaged the a bit and the loco is definitely sitting better on the track. It can decently take 22" curves now but has a little bit of trouble on crossovers. I don't quite know what I did but the issue is seemly resolved for the time being.
 

Patrick

Well-Known Member
I have an older Bachmann 4-8-4 with a similar problem. Mine was an auction find and have read about my particular model having just that issue. Only it doesn't like my 28" radius curves either.
 

Railrunner130

Well-Known Member
I have a Bachmann War Baby that is DCC and I purchased it brand-new four years ago. It's the same locomotive. It doesn't ride the tracks well at all. I think it's too light, but I've never added weight to it.
 

trailrider

Well-Known Member
I am not familiar with the configuration of the Bachmann steamers, but can you remove the cover plate that holds the drivers, and see if the axles of the center drivers accumulated dirt that results in there being forced downward, thus causing the end drivers or at least the front one off the track? It might be possible to shim the front axle down by putting a .010" sliver of brass between the axle and the bottom of the frame. I do that with Mantua locomotives, but don't know if it's possible with Bachmann stuff.
 

MikeM

New Member
Take the front (pilot) truck off and run it. If its fine then you have to much down pressure on the pilot truck bar. They bend easy, just bend it so its not supporting any of the weight of the loco. It should basically just float on its own weight and the loco should push it along. Ive had to add weight to all Bachmann front trucks to keep them from derailing. Here is a photo with two washers attached to the front truck and painted black. Works perfectly and the locos can easily do 18" radius now. I also remove the shells on these and put 2 or more oz of stick on weights under the shell over the drivers. Turns these cheap Bachmann steamers into something that can actually pull more than 5 cars. LOL
 

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