Hello, and can anyone help me with a (model train) issue?

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New Member
Hello all,

I am new to model trains because of my little boy's love of them.... he is 8, and I have finally convinced his mom that he needs some trains in his life!

For his birthday last Saturday, he got a new (to him) Bachmann 2-6-0 Great Northern 0n30 train and 3 passenger cars, but the engine will not move (light works).

The hobby shop owner offered to exchange it, but the kiddo really loves this train, so we bought him a Diesel HO engine in the interim (He wants a modern and an old-timey set eventually) and will send the steam locomotive back to Bachmann for repair, unless there are some tricks we can use at home to unlock the wheels. (I can turn about 1/32 of a rotation, they seem to be locked by the arms on the side). Is there anything I can do at home to fix this, or should it go back to the Bachmann?

I am pretty mechanically inclined, but completely ignorant of model trains, and would love some guidance and/or schematics if any exist.

As for the kid, he is having a blast pulling the O sized cars with the HO diesel, and is already angling towards a DCC setup LOL.... this kid REALLY likes his trains......

Thanks for any pointers!

Jim (&Sasha)


Gomez Addams
Staff member
Welcome to the forum.
From what you are describing, the drivers are out of quarter. what that means in English is, the wheels are joined by the rods from one to the next, and one of them isn't aligned with the others, causing a bind. It would probably be best in this case to return the engine for repair.


Staff member
There are several potential problems. Out of square drivers is one, as Terry suggests. Broken or bound gear or drive shaft is another. Bent or binding side rods ("they seem to be locked by the arms on the side" would indicate that could possibly be the issue.), broken motor, or simply a broken wire to the motor.

For an advanced model railroader with a good tool kit and experience, they could possibly be fixed at home.

However, if it's under warranty, I'd suggest you return it rather than taking it apart and have them say "You voided the warranty".

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