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the-menace

New Member
I am extremely new to model railroading. I bought my first train about a month ago. A Bachmann H O Christmas train along with some other cars. The outfit is preowned but in great condition. I had a lot of trouble getting my engine and tender to run consistently. I found that I had quite a few issues with the E-Z track but when I finally got the track connected properly, the engine and tender ran very well for 6-8 days. The variable speed controller worked well until just the last day of so. Now when I turn on the controller very slightly, the engine spins it's wheels and is running wide open instantly. Now my limited ability told me I needed to ask someone with experience what to do next. I have no clue and I tried looking it up on the internet but didn't find a solution. I am a retired factory electrician so you would assume I could figure it out. Well I guess that is why I am typing this message here. I would appreciate any help anyone can give. It took me two days to figure how the send a message on the forum. I want to add that turning the controller on at the very minimum the track voltage is 15.69 volts. Almost tells my the controller is messed up?????
 
Last edited:

wvg_ca

Well-Known Member
sounds like you are running DC, and yes the controller is messed up ... probably the easiest is to replace it ..
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
I would say it's something gone "Phuuutt" in the controller. Not familiar with Bachmann's DC controllers, but generally speaking, 12V is pretty standard for DC trains.
 

trailrider

Well-Known Member
Definitely sounds like something in the controller shorted across the variable electronics. I would recommend filing the controller in the File 13, and obtaining a good powerpack/controller. If you intend to stay with the hobby, I would recommend getting one of the larger ones to allow for expansion. If you intend to go to DCC, but not quite yet, an MRC Tech 6, 6.0 would give you dual capabilities.
Welcome and always ask questions!
Stay well and safe!
 

the-menace

New Member
I am extremely new to model railroading. I bought my first train about a month ago. A Bachmann H O Christmas train along with some other cars. The outfit is preowned but in great condition. I had a lot of trouble getting my engine and tender to run consistently. I found that I had quite a few issues with the E-Z track but when I finally got the track connected properly, the engine and tender ran very well for 6-8 days. The variable speed controller worked well until just the last day of so. Now when I turn on the controller very slightly, the engine spins it's wheels and is running wide open instantly. Now my limited ability told me I needed to ask someone with experience what to do next. I have no clue and I tried looking it up on the internet but didn't find a solution. I am a retired factory electrician so you would assume I could figure it out. Well I guess that is why I am typing this message here. I would appreciate any help anyone can give. It took me two days to figure how the send a message on the forum. I want to add that turning the controller on at the very minimum the track voltage is 15.69 volts. Almost tells my the controller is messed up?????
Thanks to wvg_ca and tootnkumin for their wisdom I will attempt to replace the controller. I'd like to find one like the one that came with the set but I think it is an older one. Thanks again guys. the-menace
 

bnsf971

Gomez Addams
Staff member
What came with the set is a lower-quality power supply, and if you gt another one, it will likely fail also.
You don’t need a high-end, super-duper power pack that will do everything except walk your dog, but something a little better than what you now have will be a good start. MRC has made really good power packs for many years. Most of their Tech 2 series would be more than enough for what you need. Stay away from their 1300 train power series, but any 1400, 1450, 1500, 2400, or 2500 will be great.
While they are not the latest-and-greatest, they are solid, reliable devices that should keep going for many years. They also have the advantage of being pretty cheap these days. I see them regularly for sale online for $20-$25.
 

the-menace

New Member
Thanks for the help. A really strange thing happened with this controller. When I began having problems with it, along with the high speed at initial power,it would not run in reverse either. Well I did purchase anothe controller online and it has not arrived as yet. Now the strange thing that occurred. I unhooked all wiring from the controller, even the 110VAC. A short time later I plugged in everything again and behold, now everything works as it should. Forward, reverse, slow, fast and now I am really confused as to what really happened to it? Today I bought a 1974 vintage Tyco H O train set and set it up on a track inside of the original train set and both ran very well for a couple hours this evening. Strange things happen for no apparent reason. ?????????
 

bnsf971

Gomez Addams
Staff member
Do you remember pissing off the gods of electronics lately?
Whenever the replacement power pack arrives, I’d use that, because there’s nothing more frustrating than an intermittent problem.
 

the-menace

New Member
I do not recall upsetting any Gods, But I guess one never knows do they? I have set and watched both my trains most of the evening and both have performed very well. However, I will say that the Tyco transformer did get pretty warm when I just shut it off.
 

Greg@mnrr

Section Hand
Is it possible that you connected one wire to the +terminal of the accessory outputs and the other wire to the -terminal of the variable outputs? Close to what Toot suggested or even a wire touching across terminals could cause problems.

Greg
 

ShermanHill

Well-Known Member
I will say that the Tyco transformer did get pretty warm when I just shut it off.
Tyco is NOT a known for their transformers/power packs. Although serviceable for 'Train Set' applications, I would not trust it farther than I could see it. DO NOT let it run un-attended.
 

the-menace

New Member
Thanks ShermanHill, I will heed the warnings and comments you all are giving me. I appreciate all the input I can get. Dennis "the-menace"
 




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