Speaker Magnet Mystery

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B_Kosanda

Member
I never would have thought this was the problem with my sound-equipped Kato AC4400. The sound produced by the speaker was very muted and distorted. I thought the decoder was shot. When I opened up the locomotive to begin replacing the decoder, I was surprised to see metal filings stuck to the speaker.

I guess I should not have been surprised. This speaker rides about 1/8" above the track and has a very strong magnet. Any magnetic debris was attracted through the grid on the bottom of the loco. I never suspected this could have been the problem. Now here's something I never saw in the installation manual! I had done some grinding on a part of the track to clean up some excess solder and to try to even out a rail joint. I assume this loco did a nice job cleaning up the filings. There's a leeson here somewhere...

Bill
 
I guess you know now the track is metal free? Who would have thought that would happen. Maybe some thin fabric over the opening? Or is it enclosed.
 

jbaakko

Diesel Detail Freak
Sound decoder lesson #1, never trust a fuel tank mounted speaker...

Interesting though!
 

Alcomotive

Grandson of ALCO Bldr
Wow! Then I guess it would do well to invest into something like this????:rolleyes:

http://www.aztectrains.com/pages/TrackClean-HO.html


HO Annihilator™ Track Cleaning Car

The Annihilator is one of the meanest weapons in Aztec's arsenal of HO cleaning products to fight the war on dirty track. This car was not built to look utilitarian but as a fashionably functional piece of rolling stock. The custom painted Roundhouse® 40ft gondola is gray with black “M.W.” and dimi data. No road or end numbers are provided. The modeler may apply decals (not included) in the railroad of his choice. To finish off the car the hobbyist might want to cover the mechanism with a piece of cloth (not supplied) to simulate a tarp.

The Annihilator was engineered for ease of use and minimal maintenance. It can be run in a train and go unnoticed without hitting scenery or derailing.

A hard black anodized aluminum chassis holding two free rolling canvas (Sidewinder™) rollers at a slight angle to the railhead, a magnet and a fluid reservoir (1/2 oz. capacity) is housed in a Roundhouse® 40 ft gondola equipped with Kadee® couplers.

There is a valve to regulate the amount of cleaning fluid dispensed to the front roller. The rear roller is run dry and mops up loosened grime. A clear plastic lid covers the reservoir allowing you to see when it is running out of fluid. Turn valve about one quarter turn for ten seconds or so. Turn off and run for 10 to 15 minutes (or change times to suit).

This stealthy lightweight tips the scales at a mere 7-3/4 ounces soaking wet. The Annihilator will clean in either direction but works best with the magnet to the rear.

Some assembly required.

The Annihilator HO scale track cleaning car
Part Number TS1165
$124.95 each
Includes FREE shipping within the U.S.A.
Photos by Jon Fox

To read a review on
The Annihilator click here.




DCC Kit for the Annihilator™

This kit replaces the Annihilator's manually-operated metering valve with a solenoid whch is controlled using a DCC decoder (not included).

With the kit installed you no longer have to stop the car to moisten the roller. Just call up the car’s address, push the F2 function button for a few seconds, and the roller is wet again.

Some assembly required.

Works only with “The Annihilator” track cleaner purchased after August 2004.

DCC Kit for The Annihilator
Part Number TS1175
$64.95 each
 

NZRMac

In Training Down Under.
Gota get me one of those, that looks like the answer to the track cleaning blues.

Ken.
 

Railphotog

Railroad Photographer
With track made of nickle silver (or brass!), and solder made from tin/lead which are all non magnetic, I don't see where working on the track would generate metal that would be attracted to a magnet. Perhaps there might be a different source? Just a thought.
 

NYC_George

Well-Known Member
I never would have thought this was the problem with my sound-equipped Kato AC4400. The sound produced by the speaker was very muted and distorted. I thought the decoder was shot. When I opened up the locomotive to begin replacing the decoder, I was surprised to see metal filings stuck to the speaker.

I guess I should not have been surprised. This speaker rides about 1/8" above the track and has a very strong magnet. Any magnetic debris was attracted through the grid on the bottom of the loco. I never suspected this could have been the problem. Now here's something I never saw in the installation manual! I had done some grinding on a part of the track to clean up some excess solder and to try to even out a rail joint. I assume this loco did a nice job cleaning up the filings. There's a leeson here somewhere...

Bill
Hi Bill

I'm not surprised at all. Any metal filings or the like will end up in your engine's gear box if you don't vaccum them up. The very first thing I did when I started construction of my layout was to install a vaccuming system with the vaccum out side the house. My layout has 1&1/2 PVC pipe running under the benchwork so no matter where or what I'm working on it gets cleaned up right away no waiting. That way your wheels, gearboxes or even speakers won't be ruined by what ever is lose and on the track.

NYC_George
 

JeffShultz

Stay off the tracks!
I understand that Tower55 is changing the speaker positions on it's models from the fuel tank to up in the radiator area due to this very problem.
 

B_Kosanda

Member
I question what on the track would be magnetic too. Those filings are definitely from either solder residue that I filed down or filed down nikle-silver rail. I'll do a magnet test on those items in a few...

Bill
 

CBCNSfan

Registered Member
Staff member
Solder can also have 40% tin, but still it would take quite a magnet to pick it up,
Wouldn't it? :confused:

Willis
 




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