Accucraft live steam Mogul

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BRIAN

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I bought an Accucraft 2-6-0 Mogul a year ago and I have been disappointed with its pulling power so far. It is radio controlled and I am wondering if the regulator is not being opened far enough to get the power it should have. I do wait until the pressure guage is reading about 50 psi and then rock the loco back and forth to get the cylinders warmed up but after it gets going it does not build up the power I think it should have. Any suggestions ?
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
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St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
Few questions about that, first what are you trying to pull around what curves and at what gradient? These can all have the effect of reducing that or any locomotives pulling power. Also a 2-6-0 with a tender will never match the pulling power of an 0-4-0 tank as my friend that bought a Roundhouse Fowler 0-6-2 Tender Loco and tried to compare the haulage with his Roundhouse 0-4-0 Steam Tram Loco Discovered much to his dismay.
 
stevedenver

stevedenver

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24 Oct 2009
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pressure is critical
without enough pressure, the loco wont move itself up a slight grade, no less haul much.
i dont know what the recommended pressure is for you loco.

im a know nothing, only dabbling in live steam

id consider checking the jet to be certain it is clean, clear it by inserting a wire, (use tiny bit of wire) and properly adjusted to blend fuel and air

warm up and clear the cylinders as well, once you have pressure. i have learned to do this while the loco is raised on blocks above the track, and simply let the loco sputter and clear itself without a push, although a push works. i would think if you prefer to puch, pushing only in the direction of travel is best.

if you suspect the throttle doesn't open fully and is possibly interfering, perhaps disconnect the RC linkage, fire up , and manually open it up (within the parameters of your ROW, obviously wide open is fine on a flat, broad radius line, less so on uppy downy grades with sharp turns , etc.

i dont know the accucraft fire system, but, you might search the topic. sometimes, if the burner is a perforated stick type, one can wrap it in a fine stainless steel mesh with stainless steel band to better dissipate the flames and increase BTU dispersion under the boiler.

the other thing, actually, which i should have thought of first, is, is the fuel tank getting cold?

as gas leaves the fuel tank/container, the result is refrigeration, the low pressure results in the fuel getting cold and reducing the pressure into the burner. some fuel tanks have a surround , which hold water, and helps equalize and reduce this chilling effect. this can absolutely wreck pressure . but if you hold pressure without diminution over the period of the burn, this might not be relevant.
 
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maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
I have owned one of these locos from new and felt it was a little underpowered given the apparent size of its cylinders. Mine was ok on the level but show it an incline with a load on the back and it did give the impression it could not pull the skin off a rice pudding. 50 psi sounds about right the safety valve should lift at about 60 psi. I could never get mine to haul more than 3 AMS Fn3 box cars and a Spectrum Long Caboose or equivalent weight. I traded mine in for an Accucraft C-19, a very different proposition.

It is a good starter loco though. Was it new ? If not it may need servicing, like checking the valve timing and replacing piston seals. That can impair performance markedly. As Steve says check the gas jet but do not use a wire - you can destroy its fine broached aperture that way. Blow it through with gas, from the pointed end or dip it in cellulose thinners. Make sure you use some PTFE tape to seal the thread properly. Perhaps even replace it with a better made one than the standard fitment, Chinese broaching is a bit iffy by all accounts. Gas tank is in the cab on these locos Steve. Make sure you are using the correct grade of steam oil and check the superheater pipe has not become gunked up with the stuff if you have used a too thicker grade. Max
 
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stevedenver

stevedenver

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thanks for the wire bit, I only have an aster and roundhouse , which apparently are more forgiving.
 
tac foley

tac foley

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Near Huntingdon, UK
Ditto with the propellant gas clearing method. IF the loco is used, and it must be, since they have been OOP for some years now, you might benefit from fitting a new jet. The usual people can help you here Tony at Rhos Helyg or Dave Mees in North Wales, Mike Derby or Michael Ousby for England. I agree that they are not great haulers - I'd limit the one I used to help run the three AMS Jackson Sharpe cars and be happy - it looked right, too.

Be warned that live steamers DO wear out - it is the very nature of any mechanical device - and an overhaul may well be on the cards - any of the four gentlemen I mentioned come highly recommended.
 
B

BRIAN

Registered
18 Sep 2019
19
3
70
Ontario
Few questions about that, first what are you trying to pull around what curves and at what gradient? These can all have the effect of reducing that or any locomotives pulling power. Also a 2-6-0 with a tender will never match the pulling power of an 0-4-0 tank as my friend that bought a Roundhouse Fowler 0-6-2 Tender Loco and tried to compare the haulage with his Roundhouse 0-4-0 Steam Tram Loco Discovered much to his dismay.
I am trying to pull 2 Bachmann heavy weight passenger cars but there is little or no grade involved. The curves are tight granted ... but even on the straight aways there is trouble. Even with no load the locomotive is slow to build up speed. Maybe it is the nature of the beast but that would disappoint me.
 
B

BRIAN

Registered
18 Sep 2019
19
3
70
Ontario
pressure is critical
without enough pressure, the loco wont move itself up a slight grade, no less haul much.
i dont know what the recommended pressure is for you loco.

im a know nothing, only dabbling in live steam

id consider checking the jet to be certain it is clean, clear it by inserting a wire, (use tiny bit of wire) and properly adjusted to blend fuel and air

warm up and clear the cylinders as well, once you have pressure. i have learned to do this while the loco is raised on blocks above the track, and simply let the loco sputter and clear itself without a push, although a push works. i would think if you prefer to puch, pushing only in the direction of travel is best.

if you suspect the throttle doesn't open fully and is possibly interfering, perhaps disconnect the RC linkage, fire up , and manually open it up (within the parameters of your ROW, obviously wide open is fine on a flat, broad radius line, less so on uppy downy grades with sharp turns , etc.

i dont know the accucraft fire system, but, you might search the topic. sometimes, if the burner is a perforated stick type, one can wrap it in a fine stainless steel mesh with stainless steel band to better dissipate the flames and increase BTU dispersion under the boiler.

the other thing, actually, which i should have thought of first, is, is the fuel tank getting cold?

as gas leaves the fuel tank/container, the result is refrigeration, the low pressure results in the fuel getting cold and reducing the pressure into the burner. some fuel tanks have a surround , which hold water, and helps equalize and reduce this chilling effect. this can absolutely wreck pressure . but if you hold pressure without diminution over the period of the burn, this might not be relevant.
The point about the cooling butane is well taken. They even out a tank in the tender to keep warmer water in to keep the butane pressure up. I haven't tried it yet. Im going to try disconnecting the RC linkage and see what happens as well. Thanks
 
tac foley

tac foley

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The load you mention - two Bachmann Jackson Sharpe cars - should not make the slightest difference to your live-steam loco. Do you mean the 1/20.3 versions, or the type you get with the Big Hauler set? However, given that is does have limitations, the cylinders are rather small, it should be hauling around four of those old-style cars.

Without a load of any kind, it ought to take off like a scalded cat. As such, I suspose that there is either a great lack of steam due to the servo setting, or there is something more amiss that needs rectification. As already recommended, try uncoupling the servo from the throttle and see what happens then, One thing, though, I'm not sure why you say that you push the loco back and forth. Simply toggling the reverser back and forth should do this for you, and it allows the LOCO to do the clearing, not you.

Oh yes, the tender water tank is put there for a very good reason - a remote tank DOES freeze up and fast, Most smaller locos have the gas tank adjacent to the boiler, where they quickly get warmed up and stay that way.

I suggest that you use it, like it says in the instruction manual, 'Add 1” to 2” of (warm) water to the tender truck.' Then tell us what happened next.

And I HAVE to ask, what grade of steam oil are you using? It really DOES matter.
 
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maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
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Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
Oh yes, the tender water tank is put there for a very good reason - a remote tank DOES freeze up and fast, Most smaller locos have the gas tank adjacent to the boiler, where they quickly get warmed up and stay that way.
Are there two versions of this loco Tac ? Mine, a "new old stock" "Nevada Short Line" ex' PSS stock item bought from ANG about 7 years ago, had the gas tank in the cab. It was so cramped in there that Mike at Chuffed2Bits could only put a servo on the regulator, so reverser was manual on mine. I did note that there were two holes in the tender well's floor and a hole for a feed pipe in the end wall, which I assumed were for the standard Accy' hand pump and feed to the boiler. Max
 
tac foley

tac foley

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Ah, you do indeed have the original version of the two models, yours with the gas tank in the cab. The two holes in the tender floor are, as you figure for the manual water pump using the tender as a reservoir, as was the case with the early two and three-cylinder shays.

Are you now saying that Mike put the new gas tank in the tender? In which case, IF you can waterproof the joints, then you SHOULD be good to use the tender as a reservoir to hold some WARM water to keep the gas flowing.

If, on the other paw, right now, to me at least, it's not clear WHERE your gas tank is, since you talk about 'they even out [put?] a gas tank in the tender'....are you talking about YOUR loco or somebody else's?

If your gas tank IS in the tender, then surround it with warm water.

If your gas tank is STILL in the cab, then you have steam flow problem that may or may not be down to your servo throw, or rather, lack of it.

Talk to Mike is best, since we are blowing smoke here with what ifs and maybes, without being able to help you out much without a hands-on look. You are NOT telling us which passenger cars you have, either. Bachmann do not make large-scale heavyweight passenger cars. I know it can be frustrating, but please try and answer all our questions.
 
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B

BRIAN

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18 Sep 2019
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70
Ontario
Step one ... I put warm water in the tender with the butane tank with no noticeable difference based on two trials. Tomorrow I hope to play with the RC linkage to the regulator and see if more travel with the linkage would help. I am also going to change some sharper curves in the spring to at least 6 ft.
 
tac foley

tac foley

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Near Huntingdon, UK
Step one ... I put warm water in the tender with the butane tank with no noticeable difference based on two trials. Tomorrow I hope to play with the RC linkage to the regulator and see if more travel with the linkage would help. I am also going to change some sharper curves in the spring to at least 6 ft.
Are you talking RADIUS or DIAMETER here?

Be advised that this loco has a long-ish wheelbase, and requires at least a four foot radius to operate - that's 8 feet diameter. Obviously, larger is a lot better. According to the blurb in the maker's specs, quote - 'it will haul up to a dozen standard size freight cars on good, level track. Grades and sharp curves will diminish its capability. '

Anyhow, you seem to be ignoring our numerous questions, which ARE important, and any efforts I'm making to get you some help in Ontario, where we have a bunch of very helpish guys - Geoff Youngs for a start - so I just be's just moving on and letting you get on with it.
 
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B

BRIAN

Registered
18 Sep 2019
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70
Ontario
Are you talking RADIUS or DIAMETER here?

Be advised that this loco has a long-ish wheelbase, and requires at least a four foot radius to operate - that's 8 feet diameter. Obviously, larger is a lot better. According to the blurb in the maker's specs, quote - 'it will haul up to a dozen standard size freight cars on good, level track. Grades and sharp curves will diminish its capability. '

Anyhow, you seem to be ignoring our numerous questions, which ARE important, and any efforts I'm making to get you some help in Ontario, where we have a bunch of very helpish guys - Geoff Youngs for a start - so I just be's just moving on and letting you get on with it.
I apologize for my ignorance on how to use this sight Tuc. First.. I live about 2 hours north of Toronto in a town called Gravenhurst. The 6 ft I quoted is the diameter not radius ( I wish I had the room for
 
B

BRIAN

Registered
18 Sep 2019
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Ontario
I apologize for my ignorance on how to use this sight Tuc. First.. I live about 2 hours north of Toronto in a town called Gravenhurst. The 6 ft I quoted is the diameter not radius ( I wish I head the room for
larger radiius but I just don't. The Mogul I thought was advertised as a minimum of 4 ft radiius and has a blind middle driver so it actually does handle the 4 ft except for the lead truck which I have removed for now. I have had model trains since I was a youngster and I also had a hobby shop so I do realize the effect that a sharp radiius has on the ability of the loco to manuever it. The problem I am having happens on straight aways as well though. The water in the tender was my first attempt to cure the problem and a good start but it doesn't seem to have helped noticeably anyway. If the weather holds today I am going to try to adjust the linkage on the regulator so it opens more.
 
tac foley

tac foley

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'Kay. First of all, you really MUST get some MUCH larger curves. Even with four-foot radius curves you are pushing the limits. However, the poo-poor performance when going straight remains a puzzle.

When your safety hits 50-ish, and lets go, that is as much steam as the boiler will hold. Thereafter, you must balance the throttle with the requirement for steam to keep it just below the blow-off point regardless of the load. Do what you intend to do, and either adjust the servo for more throw or take it off altogether and run it manually.

Then come back to us.

BTW, here are the two different scales of Jackson-Sharpe passenger cars. Right is the 1/20.3 AMS version and left is the Bachmann 1/24th version, maybe 1/22.5 even...note the truly colossal difference...

134114_00bd16093c22f3ca874b8c3feba63bdb.png
 
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tac foley

tac foley

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Near Huntingdon, UK
I know Gravenhurst quite well, but not sure about any steamers there. I'm going to put a post on your profile site and see if you answer that. I have connections a bit to the West, East and South-west of your location. Nobody North, for sure!!!
 
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tac foley

tac foley

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Near Huntingdon, UK
Okay, Brian, I've had a response from my pal in ON. Seems the one guy who could help you in Gravenhurst has moved away, but Alan has offered you a visit and use of his workshop and expertise. Please read your conversations on your profile to get his email address.
 
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