LGB 2055 White Pass directional lights are reversed

Dean Palmer

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13 Nov 2020
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St Pete FL
After much searching and not finding people with a similar issue I figured I'd ask here. My 2055 White Pass Alco has a problem where the headlights come on in the wrong direction. They shoot backward when going forward, and to the front of the engine when going backward. The engine runs forward with the flashing red light going, and the bright whites shining on the rolling stock behind it. I took it apart and there is nothing odd or miswired. It has a PH Hobbies sound card installed but that doesn't seem like it would have any effect. The plugs for the front cab and the rear lights on the main circuit board are different and not able to be swapped (3 wire to rear, 4 wire to front). The trucks are all plugged into the correct front/rear pins on the circuit board. Just nothing seems wrong, and my other 2055 works perfectly with correct lighting.
 

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ntpntpntp

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This is running under DC? Does the loco itself run the same direction as other locos?
 

Paul2727

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5 Jun 2018
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England
After much searching and not finding people with a similar issue I figured I'd ask here. My 2055 White Pass Alco has a problem where the headlights come on in the wrong direction. They shoot backward when going forward, and to the front of the engine when going backward. The engine runs forward with the flashing red light going, and the bright whites shining on the rolling stock behind it. I took it apart and there is nothing odd or miswired. It has a PH Hobbies sound card installed but that doesn't seem like it would have any effect. The plugs for the front cab and the rear lights on the main circuit board are different and not able to be swapped (3 wire to rear, 4 wire to front). The trucks are all plugged into the correct front/rear pins on the circuit board. Just nothing seems wrong, and my other 2055 works perfectly with correct lighting.
Looking at an original 2055 wiring diagram, as you say the plugs for the front cab and the rear lights on the main circuit board are different and not able to be swapped. This does suggest that the power feed to the board is somehow reversed.
Paul.
 
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PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
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If the lights are correct to the direction you turn the knob on the controller, then I think I would flip the motors over in the blocks/bogies/trucks?

As this loco is 'of an age', watch out for the possibility of 2mm ball-bearings to control end-float of the motor shaft(s).

PhilP.
 
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Dean Palmer

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13 Nov 2020
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St Pete FL
"This is running under DC? Does the loco itself run the same direction as other locos?"

Yes, runs the same direction as the other locos. I will take a look at swapping the direction of the trucks if possible as above, and then respond. :)
 

Dean Palmer

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13 Nov 2020
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St Pete FL
So the trucks are probably assembled backward, and assume the person who installed the sound did it. Here is a pic of two of the identical locos side by side. The tough part is that the reed switches are mounted on one of them and until I try the swap I will not know if the wire is long enough for the swap. Going to pretty much leave it as-is for the time being. Thanks for the help everyone!
 

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Paul2727

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Judging by the position of the pick up skates, one of the locos definitely has the motor blocks reversed in the bogie frames. but which is the one that works correctly?
Unless the wiring has been cut down, I see no reason they shouldn't be long enough.
Please see exploded diagram below. These both appear to be pancake motor blocks so should not have end float ball bearings.
 
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Dean Palmer

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The one on the left is the correct one. the one on the right has the reed switches and it's the one needing the change. Hopefully this weekend I can dig into it and figure out if the wires to the reed switches will reach if swapped around.
 

Dean Palmer

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St Pete FL
Resolved. I took apart the trucks and figured out that the drivetrain was reversed inside the trucks. I was also able to pop the reed switches off the cover from the old glue and position them at the same place with the trucks reversed. I thought it was going to be as easy as reversing the motor cover to reposition the reed switches, but the covers must follow the reversal of the motor units as they have specific molding on the inside. A little hot glue reattached the reeds where they were before so no wire length or position issues. So, now the loco is tested and working properly. No idea how these trucks would have gotten reversed just by someone installing sound a few decades ago, and it did not appear that there was any major effort to take them apart for maintenance or any other modification. Good learning experience! Thanks again for all the help.
 

Greg Elmassian

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Just out of curiosity, how can the drivetrain itself be reversed inside the truck? Swapping axles? I thought the issue was the trucks them selves were reversed in relationship to the body?

Just curious as this may come up in the future, would like to understand the repair.

Greg
 

Dean Palmer

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13 Nov 2020
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St Pete FL
Wish I had taken pics, but the wheel and motor unit is surrounded by the trucks, and pop right up and out. The trucks themselves on one end have the coupler, and the other a rounded end that faces the middle of the loco. Those cannot be swapped, but the motor units inside the trucks were backward when compared to a factory fresh untouched model, that I also have here. It is as if someone took all of this apart for some reason, and then assembled them backward. See the pics above to see that the contacts are backward. It didn't make sense at first to me either, but after comparing to the untouched unit, it was obvious. Even the place where the wires from the loco body attach to the drive units is now correct. It was as if someone decided to take it apart to maintain it, and assembled backward, but there was no evidence of aftermarket grease or any other mods than the sound system install.
 
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Paul2727

Registered
5 Jun 2018
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England
Glad you got it all sorted.
Ok just to clarify. Both motor block are identical and are orientated in the same direction. The bogie frames are orientated in opposite directions so that the couplings are at the ends of the locomotive. Therefore the motor blocks can be fitted either way round. If both motor blocks are fitted backwards the loco would still run in the same direction on even though polarity was reversed as the motor would be running in reverse but as the two diodes controlling the lighting are orientated to operate with the correct polarity the lights would operate the the wrong way round, giving the same effect as if the diodes were fitted the wrong way round. At least the sound card would have been designed to operate in both directions, so it should not have suffered any damage. It's just a good job that both motor block were orientated in the same direction, even if it was the wrong way round.
Regards,
Paul.
 

Dean Palmer

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13 Nov 2020
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St Pete FL
The bogie frames had to stay oriented as they were as they only fit with the couplers facing outward, but I would assume you could swap the entire bogie frame. I could at first not do that as the reed switches were mounted on the cover of the rear assembly. Looking at the factory fresh loco, the number label on the assembly, 2055-I and 2055-II were located on the correct truck assembly and at the correct end of the loco, so if I would have been able to simply swap the whole assembly end to end on the loco, it might have had the same effect of reversing the power units. I had the other puzzle of how to deal with the reed switches and wiring and did not want to take apart the body again to plug and unplug and hope it all fit together another way, and as above, I was lucky the glue that was used to install these reed switches long ago was weak and I was able to pop the reeds off the one motor cover and reinstall them on the other end of the cover at the same end of the loco. That was really the limiting factor. If no reed switches, I assume the whole bogie frame and motors could have been swapped, but then the numbers placed on these items from the factory would not be proper not that it matters, but I don't know if both these assemblies are truly identical.
 
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