Bachmann Tram Rebuild

Melbournesparks

Melbournesparks

Registered
30 Sep 2015
224
68
City of Eltham
Hi, You can improve then running of Bachmann trams by fitting old style LGB pick ups. Part number 63210. You have to remove some weights which weren't very heavy which get in the way so I have glued some lead under the vestibule ends.
I did this to the toast rack tram, except I only had some of the newer ones so had to make a custom fitting for them. The Ballarat tram will probably get them too at some stage.



You can also see here the other big performance improving modification. A pair of large onboard capacitors are wired in parallel with the motor, allowing the tram to run over small dead spots (like a leaf or something) without loss of power. They certainly make a huge difference in helping the original motor blocks run smoothly, as well as giving a quite realistic inertia effect. The Ballarat tram has these too, but unfortunately I had to put them inside. There wasn't room under the floor.
 
dunnyrail

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
17,234
1,799
72
St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
Lovely job.

I see with your onboard Capicitors there are some other bits in the wiring. Diodes and is there something else? Could you do a wiring schematic so that I can understand how the setup works. May be the solution to an itinerant Piko Kamel that I have.
JonD
 
Melbournesparks

Melbournesparks

Registered
30 Sep 2015
224
68
City of Eltham
Lovely job.

I see with your onboard Capicitors there are some other bits in the wiring. Diodes and is there something else? Could you do a wiring schematic so that I can understand how the setup works. May be the solution to an itinerant Piko Kamel that I have.
JonD



This is the test version, you can see pretty much all there is to it. The two wires go in parallel with the motor. The capacitors are polarity sensitive, so there is one for each direction. The diodes protect them from reverse polarity.

I used a pair of 47,000uf capacitors since that was what I could get cheaply, but the effect would still be noticeable with less. A larger capacitance would give an even greater momentum effect, but you might need a current limiting resistor to stop the power supply being overloaded by the inrush current. A bonus feature is the intermittent high current draw when running over a piece of dirty wire makes some very realistic trolley pole sparks.

One thing I might try is having another set of capacitors connected in parallel across the power supply output as well. That way they would carry the momentary inrush currents and allow the on board capacitors to recharge faster in conditions where there is only intermittent contact. Needless to say all this high currents and arcing and stuff is not friendly to delicate electronics, so if you're using a loco with a sound module or something make sure it's well protected!
 
Madman

Madman

Registered
25 Oct 2009
13,603
526
Pennsylvania, USA
Kayanbee said:
Hi, You can improve then running of Bachmann trams by fitting old style LGB pick ups. Part number 63210. You have to remove some weights which weren't very heavy which get in the way so I have glued some lead under the vestibule ends.

Some of the early Bachmann trams had these pick-up skates installed from the factory. I just purchased a new old stock tram on Evilbay. It came in a brown cardboard box with it's styrofoam insert, not a colorful box with the plastic window.
 
A

Andrew B. Middleton

Registered
22 Jun 2016
164
0
67
Beechworth VIC 3747
This is a very good build lesson indeed. Your pictures showed every stage clearly. Very comprehensive and clear for anyone else to do also.