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Hi guys...

I recently picked up a Proto1000 Erie Built A/B pair on EBay. They are in mint physical condition and are super smooth when they do run, but the power pickup isn't too good. They both jerk around a lot even though the track is clean. The wheels are freshly cleaned as well with no significant improvement.

Any tips on improving electical pickup? Is there anything I can do with the side plates to improve that pin-type of pickup? Maybe a conductive lube in the pins? It looks like they were in a smoking home - even though there isn't any visible residue, can that get in the contacts and (shutter) the motor?

Thanks in advance guys. :)

Just wanted to update this if anyone else has this problem. I'm really surprised no one else has had this (*scratcheshead*).

I tried a bunch of things, but what worked best by far was conductive grease. It has silver in it and was applied sparingly in the contact points on the side rails. What a huge difference - perfect contact now. The stuff ain't cheap but would go far as well.



Fleeing from Al
You might also try Radio Shack Contact Cleaner and Lubricant. It's safe for all plastics and does a great job cleaning up hard to get to places since it's a spray. It's also good for cleaning har to get to sections of track. Spray some on a section of track ahead of a locomotive and let it run around the tracks. Your trains will run fine no matter how cruddy the track looks. It aso helps clean the wheels at the same time.
The problem had to do with the way the metal side truck piece makes contact with the tips of the wheels. That piece is stamped steel and just doesn't have the good tolerance to make a clean, consistent contact. I'd pull it apart, clean it, bend it, whatever - it would work fine for a bit then fail again. Once I cleaned it all down again and went with this stuff, it has been flawless.

Thanks for the suggestions though. I still have to put together some sort of track cleaning car.



Well-Known Member

I would say run jumpers. I run jumpers on every pair or three or four engines I run. That way at least one engine will be drawing the power from the rails and supplying it to the others.

So you're saying jumpers between engines? That's an interesting thought - would help get more current to all the motors as well.



Coal Shoveler
There's a couple of folks who simulate the MU hoses between the units using the functional jumper wires. They're outsized, but at least they don't entirely stick out, since most modellers know they should see hoses between the units. The rivet counters will tell you they're out of scale, but when you say they're power wires, that goes away.



Diesel Detail Freak
Kennedy, great idea, bet it would be easy to pull off, with the air line being one pole, and the MU line being the other. Those two hoses are larger anyways.

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