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Author Topic: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels  (Read 2646 times)

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Offline Sprintex

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Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« on: September 16, 2012, 10:52:48 AM »
Has anyone had issues running older stock with huge-flanged wheels on Code 55 track?

I've read a couple of times on here that Code 55 track is supposed to work fine with older stock due to its design. However, after an extensive testing session yesterday it appears not quite to be the case?  :hmmm:

All my newer stock ran faultlessly over all crossings whether pushed or pulled, but older MK2 coaches and Pullmans (all old Farish with pizza-cutter wheels) would randomly derail over various points including the single-slip, and even a couple of times over the scissors crossings. The same was true for the DVT of my Farish Class 91 set, again with the same wheels.

On closer inspection it appears that if the bogie is not running perfectly central and is twisting slightly the large flanges of the leading wheels can catch the end of the point-blade and ride up over it. Checked the back-to-backs on these and well within tolerance at 7.5-7.6mm, also made sure that point blades have not been bent in any way.

I intend to replace all these wheels eventually anyway for aesthetic purposes, but it in the meantime I wondered if anyone else had the same problem?


Paul

Offline EtchedPixels

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2012, 12:02:35 PM »
Not with Peco code 55 no. In fact I've found it very reliable with old type wheels, including ones somewhat under width.

Are the points laid flat and the blades level or below the railhead - if they are twisted or have been bent (eg by being pinned too much and getting temperature changes) so the moving parts of the blades are above the railhead or not sitting in the groove cleanly they can do this.

Otherwise I've only seen it with things like slightly faulty points (blades misaligned with the groove for them, blades bent at the ends so they are not going into the groove properly etc)

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Offline Sprintex

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2012, 12:40:12 PM »
All points laid flat, no pins as I glued my track down with even weight  :)

Regarding the blade end fitting into the recess in the stock rail it appears not ALL of the rail end fits into the recess as ideally it should, the recess is only half the width of the switch rail end leaving a bit sticking out, and it's this 'bit' that the flange catches on :worried:

Will probably wait till all wheels are replaced anyway, but other than that the only fix is to thin the blade end down a bit.


Paul

Offline Zunnan

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2012, 02:58:02 PM »
The club layout is laid 50/50 in code 55 and code 80, with the code 55 being used entirely for the visible layout frontage and the code 80 limited to the fiddle yard. In all the operating time the layout has had in the past year, be it running ancient Minitrix, Lima, Grafar or more modern Bachfar, Dapol and Union Mills models (along with my Atlas, Intermountain and Kato stuff), the only derailments we encounter is on the code 80 curved turnouts or on the screws currently holding the track in place while it is being ballasted. I can't remember a single instance of an old pizza cutter equipped model derailing for anything other than striking an obstacle on the code 55 laid portion. My own home layouts were also laid using code 55, the only derailments I had there was on a heavily modified long crossing that had been curved to 3ft radius, and even then only when running 'wrong line'.
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Offline Frank lax

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2012, 10:49:46 AM »
Slighley off topic but I have had problems with occational derailments with Farish large prairie chassis derailing on facing points with code 80 track. Worst offender was a 43xx mogul where the front bogie would climb over the switch rail. I noticed that the loco was crabbing, ie, twisting so that it was runing at an angle to the direction of the track. Thus the loco twists say to its left causing the bogie to twist in the opposite direction and ride over the switch rail. I came to the conclusion that the wire between the tender and loco was causing the bias and after adjusting its position the problem appears to have been resolved.

So I am wondering if there is a bias in the 'train' of coaches that is causing a bias to one side or the other. Have you tried running the offending coach singly or in combination with others in the set.

Are all the bogie pivots free and the couplings straight without any excess tightness, or is a wheel set in the bogie not seated properly or even is an odd wheel crooked on its axle?

I have replaced my old style coach wheels with Peco disc wagon wheels which were taken out of wagons that were updated to spoked wheels, and they run OK and I reckon look better.

Hope this helps

Regards
Frank


Offline Sprintex

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2012, 05:05:35 PM »
Thanks for the reply Frank  :thumbsup:

It happened far too randomly to be certain stock, and even when I removed a derailed coach/wagon from the train it would happen again sometime later with a different coach or a different point. I did wonder whether I had applied too much paint to rail-sides and effectively spaced the switch rail out further from the stock rail in doing so, but some derailments were on unpainted track in the fiddle yard so that wasn't it either! :no:

I will reiterate that not once did a newer coach/wagon with better wheels derail, only old stock - Farish Pullmans, MK2s, and older container-flats. I plan to replace ALL older (read: ugly!) wheelsets with newer ones over time but they're not cheap when you have 60-odd coaches/wagons to convert at four axles each. I did however buy four packs and changed the end-most axle on each coach/wagon, plus all axles on the Class 91 set DVT. Not once did anything derail since then, not even the DVT when being pushed by the 91 with eight coaches inbetween at near full speed ;)


Paul

Offline Flounder

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2012, 10:27:48 AM »
Hello,

By pure coincidence I've been having issues with my Farish 100t bogies tankers derailing randomly at points - code 55.  It didn't happen all the time, and I was running at constant speed each time.  After trying to identify the problem (lots of checking the track laying!!) I replaced the wheels on three wagons by 'borrowing' them from China version MK1 coaches. Perfect - no problems with those wagons for the last fortnight!  :claphappy:

Over time I would like to replace all the wheel sets now on my rake of 100t tankers - does anyone know the part number/type of axles that would be most suitable?  I also want to replace the wheels on some Farish post office coaches - would these be the same wheels as well, or is it a different part number?

Cheers,
Flounder.

Offline Frank lax

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2012, 10:58:12 AM »
Hello again

I've just noticed in the Standars section of the handbook  section 10. page 10.2 that the back to back measurement has changed from 7.2 for the older course wheels to 7.54 min for the newer NMRA standards.

Is this the problem? do you have old wheel sets with new wheel B to B settings, if so I guess that with the old wheels so far apart they may be just catching on the switch rail, try closing the B to B in to 7.2 to see if there is an improvement.

The only other thing I've seen before is a train that randomly stops when one of the uncoupling pins that hang down below the coupler is too low and catches on the middle of the switch rail. Any couplings that hang down slightly I cut the pin back by about 50%.

Good luck

Frank

Offline Sprintex

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2012, 12:31:53 PM »
So it's not just me then!  :D

Over time I would like to replace all the wheel sets now on my rake of 100t tankers - does anyone know the part number/type of axles that would be most suitable?  I also want to replace the wheels on some Farish post office coaches - would these be the same wheels as well, or is it a different part number?


For replacements have a look HERE. I used pack 379-412 for my coaches and the container wagons as the newer ones all have the same coach-style solid wheels. You will see they also do spoked and 3-hole wagon wheels that I think are for older (steam era?) wagons - not sure on that but I don't have any anyway. Should be available from all good outlets - Hattons, Rails, etc  ;)

I've just noticed in the Standards section of the handbook  section 10. page 10.2 that the back to back measurement has changed from 7.2 for the older course wheels to 7.54 min for the newer NMRA standards.

Is this the problem? do you have old wheel sets with new wheel B to B settings, if so I guess that with the old wheels so far apart they may be just catching on the switch rail, try closing the B to B in to 7.2 to see if there is an improvement.


Excellent bit of information Frank, you may well have hit the nail (or the rail? :D ) on the head!! That would explain a lot, as I posted earlier the BtoB was approx 7.5mm so fits in with what you've said. Can't really test the theory unfortunately as the layout is now packed away until next time I can take over the lounge :uneasy: I'm replacing the older wheels anyway bit by bit as they look SOOO much better than the old bright 'n' shiny things, but thanks for posting that valuable bit of info  :thumbsup:


Paul

Offline EtchedPixels

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2012, 02:38:37 PM »
I've just noticed in the Standars section of the handbook  section 10. page 10.2 that the back to back measurement has changed from 7.2 for the older course wheels to 7.54 min for the newer NMRA standards.

Is this the problem?

Shouldn't matter for Peco. It does matter for Fleischmann (7.2mm back to back wheels will fall into some Fleischmann points like the 3 way), it does matter for Kato #4 points.
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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2012, 11:28:26 AM »
A lot of derailments on Peco code 55 are nothing to do with the wheelsets - this track was designed specifically to accept the older style wheels (as that's all that was around when it was designed - if anything the new stuff should have more issues!).

The reason is generally bumps at the turnout blade pivots, where there is often a place where flanges can catch on the rail as they traverse from blade to the normal rails just before the frog - I've seen this on so many turnouts now that I adjust and modify (slightly) by carefully adjusting the blades so no bump then soldering them on the underside - every turnout I've done this to eliminated it as a problem, some have been running now for over a decade in this form. I chose this as once laid there is still the chance of this area getting bent back with over-enthusiastic track cleaning!

Fixing the turnouts is far cheaper than rewheeling a shedload of stock too.

I mentioned it to the Peco rep at a show and the response was to send any turnout back to them for replacement - reasonable offer, but I suspect they are all like that (particularly the curved and long turnouts it seems) so making this part more robust with the mod was the best solution.

I've never had any trouble with the stock mentioned as a result - 100tonners, 91 sets, Prairies etc etc. Given that changing for smaller flanges generally cures this, it implies that the flanges are the cause. Very occasionally something will derail - in this case it's usually an out of gauge wheelset or something with something fairly obviously wrong with a wheelset.

The only loco I've had real trouble with is a Fleischmann 0-4-0T - not derailments, but grounding out of the flanges on the code 55 slips. I turned the flanges down on this in the end as they were really really deep!

So my advice - before laying a turnout straight from the box, go over it very carefully, eliminate all bumps, kinks and uneven areas and check with an old style wheeled wagon that the flanges do not catch anywhere.

Cheers,
Alan
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Offline Sprintex

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Re: Code 55 track and old "pizza-cutter" wheels
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2012, 09:14:53 PM »
The problem you describe though has nothing to do with what I said in my original post though - the wheel flanges are (were) catching on the ends of point blades.


Paul

 

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