Locomotive Reassembly                          

OK, so now that we have one (or more) of the twelve A1G locomotives completely apart (except for the motor which hopefully is refurbished and/or repaired and back together) and the issues identified and resolved, it is time to put it all back together to have a like-new engine again. I will, again, use model by model descriptions with the RSC-2, GP40, and SD45 being, once again, grouped together. In this section, I was originally assuming awareness of the need to lubricate all moving parts. Also, that parts inaccessable after assembly need to be lubricated as assembly progresses. However, I am now including lubrication instructions because there are some special circumstances. I highly recommend LaBelle 106 grease with Teflon for all gears and axles and LaBelle 108 oil for motor bushings that are in good shape and steam locomotive rod bushings and contact points. I use either LaBelle 107 oil or even the 106 grease on motor bushings that have become worn as it makes them much quieter. If you use other lubricants, be sure they are plastic compatible even if used on metal parts because contact with plastic parts of the models is almost inevitable.

Jump to:  E8    C-Liner    0-8-0    RSC-2    GP40    Pacific    WDT    0-6-0    SD45    Mikado    0-4-0    Cow & Calf

E8

Install the hot contact plate with its plastic carrier into the frame at the front of the loco, feeding the lead wire through the opening in the frame, and attach with its retaining screw. Screw the headlight bulb into its socket and replace the dot of paint to keep the bulb from loosening, if you wish. Press the bulb and socket down into the frame between the two raised ribs of the frame at the front, positioning it so that the center contact of the socket presses against the front vertical contact on the hot contact plate.

If not already done, lubricate the motor bushings with the appropriate lube. The motor cap end bushing can almost always be lubricated with a light oil. The motor can bushing is subject to more wear and if there is noticable side play, I use grease here instead of oil. I even pack the recess on the outside of the moter at the bushing with grease so there is plenty there. This may be contrary to conventional model railroad lubrication wisdom (that a little is better) but with this particular motor, I believe it is critical to make sure this bushing is not starved of lubrication.

Install the motor into the frame, making sure that the ground contact (this must be at the "vee" shaped motor cap slot - see "The Rivarossi Motor" page) is toward the rear of the frame. Also, be sure that the contact actually goes down in between the frame and motor and presses against the frame and doesn't catch on the frame and bend. Secure with the two motor retaining screws, inserting them into the same two holes from which they came (some E8s have washers that go under these screws). While these are self-tapping screws and they could be put into the other two holes, it's easier to use the original two. Besides, we want to keep the locomotive as original as possible, right?  Now solder the lead from the contact plate to the lug on the hot motor brush holder.

Assemble the front truck as follows:

If the two top metal plates were removed from the front truck, they will have to be reattached by re-swaging the tops of the bottom screw mounting studs as mentioned on the "Model Specific Issues" page. Use some method of supporting the bottom of the studs (having the screws in place might not be a bad idea to protect the threads) and remember to have the barrel/bullet contact in place first at the rear plate. These must be tight connections here because they are not only mechanical, but electrical as well.

Lubrication of the parts of the this truck is optional. Originally, I used LaBelle 108 only between the wheels and axles, not at the axle - phenolic plate interfaces because the axles themselves do not rotate. Recently, however, I don't use any lubricant because I feel that it just encourages dirt build-up. This must be weighed against wear, of course, so I will leave this up to you.

If the plates are already in place, begin by inserting the wheels and axles into their respective slots in the truck frame. If the later sprung wheel/axle assemblies are used, one end of the axle is a little longer (on one side of the shoulder) than the other. The longer end is to be inserted into the wheel. Position the spring into the recess in the wheel, push the axle in, and insert into the slot in the frame while holding the parts together. Be sure to bottom the axles in the slots. They will protrude a little above the surface of the frame and this is so the metal traces on the retainer plate will contact them.

Insert the truck attaching (kingpin) screw spring into its recess right behind the retainer plate stud toward the front of the truck followed by the screw itself. Be sure the spring goes over the shoulder of the screw and that the screw is free to protrude through the hole in the top plate.

Position the phenolic bottom retainer plate onto the bottom center of the truck frame, copper traces toward the truck. It will go only one way as there is a notch at one end that engages a lug on the frame. In this case, the notch goes toward the front of the truck. If the truck is a later one with auxiliary pickups, position these at this time too into the holes in the truck frame. Fasten the plate (and auxiliary pickups, if present) with the two retaining screws into the mounting studs (not too tight!).

If the coupler was removed, reinstall by positioning the coupler and spring into the truck coupler pocket, uncoupling pin toward bottom of truck, and inserting the retaining clip, bending the ends over at the top of the truck.

Install the truck to the locomotive frame by screwing the attaching screw into the frame. Be sure the screw shoulder abuts the frame and that the metal top plate on the truck doesn't get pinched between the screw and loco frame. It will help to pull the truck away from the loco frame after it is part way in so the screw shoulder clears the top plate. After the truck is installed, try to pull the truck away from the loco frame. It should pull away a little and you should be able to see the screw in there. Release the truck and it should get pulled back toward the loco frame.

Assemble the rear truck as follows:

Insert the brass nut for the retaining screw into its recess in the top of the truck. It should fit snuggly but sometimes it won't. A bit of superglue can be used to retain it.

Lubricate the ends of the axles, the spaces between the center gear and the wheels on the driven axles, the center of the axle on the idler pair of wheels, and the ends of the idler gear with grease before installation.

Turn the truck over and insert the wheel/axle assemblies into their respective "journals" (you did keep them in the correct relative positions didn't you?). It's not so critical with straight-cut gears but helical-cut gears must be oriented correctly. The right way is as follows: the right side (engineers side loco-wise) of the gear teeth of the front drive axle and idler gear must point toward the front of the engine and the teeth of the rear drive axle must point to the rear. This is as you face the bottom of the truck, of course, and shown below:

Also, this is regardless of on which side the traction tires are. If only one side of the axles are insulated, the insulated ends MUST be on the right side of the locomotive.

Install the coupler and spring into the truck coupler pocket, uncoupling pin toward the bottom of the truck.  It may seem silly to have to mention this but it is so easy to get the coupler upside down. Believe me, I know (insert embarrassed smiley face emoticon here). Position the bottom retainer plate by lowering the slot at the rear end over the coupler shank and then pulling it toward the front of the truck so that the plate extension slides over the coupler pocket.

I use just a little bit of oil between the keeper plate and bottom retainer plate in the next step.

If the locomotive has a snap-ring/washer retainer, install the plate retainer screw now to fasten the plate to the truck frame. If the locomotive has a keeper plate retainer, position the copper plate on the black retainer plate (open slot on one end toward the hole in the retainer for the worm shaft) and install the screw part way in.

Final Assembly

Lubricate the motor worm, the end of the worm where it will bear against the bottom plate, and the groove at the end with a dab of grease at each location.

Install the truck onto the loco chassis by lowering it over the worm shaft so the shaft protrudes past the bottom of the retainer plate. Sometimes, a bit of turning the truck from side to side is necessary to get the gears to "climb" the worm.

On units with a snap-ring/washer retainer, slip the washer over the worm shaft and position the open end of the snap-ring against the groove in the end of the shaft. Now shove the ring all the way on with some sort of tool (I use a plastic or wooden stick so as to not scratch anything) so it locks onto the groove.

On units with a keeper plate, slide the slot in the plate into the worm shaft groove and tighten the retainer screw. The screw has a shoulder on it that must enter the circular cutout in the keeper plate so it can swivel. While tightening the screw, make sure the keeper plate is not pinched between the screw shoulder and bottom plate.

Put a dab of grease in one spot on each gear. Here only a little is needed as it will get distributed.

If you are confident, put the carbody back onto the chassis by spreading the lower edges near the fuel tank area and installing so that the four locks engage the four slots in the body. Otherwise, track test the chassis now before reinstalling the body. If all the steps on the "Model Specific Issues" page were followed, you should have a smooth, and relatively quiet, running E8!

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C-Liner

Install the hot contact plate with its plastic carrier into the frame at the rear of the loco, feeding the lead wire through the opening in the frame, and attach with its retaining screw. Insert the headlight bulb into the hole at the front of the frame and push the contact/block into its recess in the frame so that the shorter bottom contact presses against the center contact of the bulb and the longer vertical contact passes up through the opening in the frame behind the windshield area.

If not already done, lubricate the motor bushings with the appropriate lube. The motor cap end bushing can almost always be lubricated with a light oil. The motor can bushing is subject to more wear and if there is noticable side play, I use grease here instead of oil. I even pack the recess on the outside of the moter at the bushing with grease so there is plenty there. This may be contrary to conventional model railroad lubrication wisdom (that a little is better) but with this particular motor, I believe it is critical to make sure this bushing is not starved of lubrication.

Install the motor into the frame, making sure that the ground contact (this must be at the "vee" shaped motor cap slot - see "The Rivarossi Motor" page) is toward the rear of the frame. Also, be sure that the contact actually goes down in between the frame and motor and presses against the frame and doesn't catch on the frame and bend. While lowering the motor into the frame, the contact from the headlight contact/block may have a tendency to catch on the hot brush holder. Use a small screwdriver to hold it out of the way if this happens. Secure with the two motor retaining screws, inserting them into the same two holes from which they came. While these are self-tapping screws and they could be put into the other two holes (unless, of course, there are no other two holes), it's easier to use the original two. Besides, we want to keep the locomotive as original as possible, right?  Now solder the lead from the contact plate to the lug on the hot motor brush holder. Also, check that the headlight bulb cantact is pressing against the hot brush holder.

Assemble the rear truck as follows:

If the two top metal plates were removed from the front truck, they will have to be reattached by re-swaging the tops of the bottom screw mounting studs as mentioned on the "Model Specific Issues" page. Use some method of supporting the bottom of the studs (having the screws in place might not be a bad idea to protect the threads) and remember to have the barrel/bullet contact in place first at the front plate. These must be tight connections here because they are not only mechanical, but electrical as well.

Lubrication of the parts of the this truck is optional. Originally, I used LaBelle 108 only between the wheels and axles, not at the axle - phenolic plate interfaces because the axles themselves do not rotate. Recently, however, I don't use any lubricant because I feel that it just encourages dirt build-up. This must be weighed against wear, of course, so I will leave this up to you.

If the plates are already in place, begin by inserting the wheels and axles into their respective slots in the truck frame. If the later sprung wheel/axle assemblies are used, one end of the axle is a little longer (on one side of the shoulder) than the other. The longer end is to be inserted into the wheel. Position the spring into the recess in the wheel, push the axle in, and insert into the slot in the frame while holding the parts together. Be sure to bottom the axles in the slots. They will protrude a little above the surface of the frame and this is so the metal traces on the retainer plate will contact them.

Insert the truck attaching (kingpin) screw spring into its recess right in front of the retainer plate stud toward the rear of the truck followed by the screw itself. Be sure the spring goes over the shoulder of the screw and that the screw is free to protrude through the hole in the top plate.

Position the phenolic bottom retainer plate onto the bottom center of the truck frame, copper traces toward the truck. It will go only one way as there is a notch at one end that engages a lug on the frame. In this case, the notch goes toward the rear of the truck. If the truck is a later one with auxiliary pickups, position these at this time too into the holes in the truck frame. Fasten the plate (and auxiliary pickups, if present) with the two retaining screws into the mounting studs (not too tight!).

If the coupler was removed, reinstall by positioning the coupler and spring into the truck coupler pocket, uncoupling pin toward bottom of truck, and inserting the retaining clip, bending the ends over at the top of the truck.

Install the truck to the locomotive frame by screwing the attaching screw into the frame. Be sure the screw shoulder abuts the frame and that the metal top plate on the truck doesn't get pinched between the screw and loco frame. It will help to pull the truck away from the loco frame after it is part way in so the screw shoulder clears the top plate. After the truck is installed, try to pull the truck away from the loco frame. It should pull away a little and you should be able to see the screw in there. Release the truck and it should get pulled back toward the loco frame.

Assemble the front truck as follows:

Insert the brass nuts for the retaining screws into their recesses in the top of the truck. They should fit snuggly but sometimes they won't. A bit of superglue can be used to retain them.

Lubricate the ends of the axles, the spaces between the center gear and the wheels on the driven axles, and the ends of the idler gear with grease before installation.

Turn the truck over and insert the wheel/axle assemblies into their respective "journals" (you did keep them in the correct relative positions didn't you?). It's not so critical with straight-cut gears but helical-cut gears must be oriented correctly. The right way is as follows: the right side (engineers side loco-wise) of the gear teeth of the rear drive axle and idler gear must point toward the front of the engine and the teeth of the front drive axle must point to the rear. This is as you face the bottom of the truck, of course, and is shown below:

Also, this is regardless of on which side the traction tires are. If only one side of the axles are insulated, the insulated end MUST be on the left side of the locomotive.

Position the retainer plate on the bottom center of the frame so that the cutouts in it line up with the gears. Install the front screw to hold it in place.

I use just a little bit of oil between the keeper plate and bottom retainer plate in the next step.

If the locomotive has a snap-ring/washer retainer, install the rear plate retainer screw also to fasten the plate to the truck frame. If the locomotive has a keeper plate retainer, position the copper plate on the black retainer plate (open slot on one end toward the hole in the retainer for the worm shaft) and install the screw part way in.

Final Assembly

Lubricate the motor worm, the end of the worm where it will bear against the bottom plate, and the groove at the end with a dab of grease at each location.

Install the truck onto the loco chassis by lowering it over the worm shaft so the shaft protrudes past the bottom of the retainer plate. Sometimes, a bit of turning the truck from side to side is necessary to get the gears to "climb" the worm.

On units with a snap-ring/washer retainer, slip the washer over the worm shaft and position the open end of the snap-ring against the groove in the end of the shaft. Now shove the ring all the way on with some sort of tool (I use a plastic or wooden stick so as to not scratch anything) so it locks onto the groove.

On units with a keeper plate, slide the slot in the plate into the worm shaft groove and tighten the retainer screw. The screw has a shoulder on it that must enter the circular cutout in the keeper plate so it can swivel. While tightening the screw, make sure the keeper plate is not pinched between the screw shoulder and bottom plate.

If the coupler was removed, reinstall by positioning the coupler and spring into the truck coupler pocket, uncoupling pin toward the bottom of the truck, and inserting the retaining clip, bending the ends over at the top of the truck.

Put a dab of grease in one spot on each gear. Here only a little is needed as it will get distributed.

If you are confident, put the carbody back onto the chassis by spreading the lower edges near the fuel tank area and installing so that the four locks engage the four slots in the body. Otherwise, track test the chassis now before reinstalling the body. If all the steps on the "Model Specific Issues" page were followed, you should have a smooth, and relatively quiet, running C-Liner!

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0-8-0

Locomotive

If the crosshead guide/valve hanger assemblies were removed, they will have to be reinstalled either by re-swaging the original rivet or using a suitable screw and nut.

Slide the cylinder and pilot beam assembly onto the extension at the front of the frame, guiding the crosshead guide extensions into the slots in the assembly.

Push the headlight bulb and socket into the opening in the frame far enough back so the lead can exit the left side of the frame at the squared opening at the rear of the bulb opening location. This will roughly be when the tip of the bulb is flush with the front of the frame.

If not already done, lubricate the motor bushings with the appropriate lube. The motor cap end bushing can almost always be lubricated with a light oil. The motor can bushing is subject to more wear and if there is noticable side play, I use grease here instead of oil. I even pack the recess on the outside of the moter at the bushing with grease so there is plenty there. This may be contrary to conventional model railroad lubrication wisdom (that a little is better) but with this particular motor, I believe it is critical to make sure this bushing is not starved of lubrication. Also, put a dab of grease on the motor worm before the next step.

Insert the motor into the frame at the rear with the extended motor brush holder down. Make sure that the ground contact on the upper brush holder goes between the motor and frame and presses against the frame and doesn't catch and bend. Attach with the two screws in the original holes. With the other Rivarossi steamers, it is not critical when the motor is installed; it can be either before or after the drivers are installed. With the 0-8-0, however, it must be installed first because of the vertical extension at the rear of the driver retainer plate which, when installed, covers the lower motor mounting screw and brush holder extension.

Solder the headlight bulb lead to the lug on the hot motor brush holder. This lead needs to be routed correctly so there is no interference with the boiler shell when the shell is installed. From the rear of the bulb, it comes out of the opening up over the top of the frame on the left side in the recessed area. Then it goes around the flattened area for the boiler mounting screw to the left. Then over the frame to the motor, through the slot in front of the upper brush holder, and down around the circular part of the motor cap to the lug, like this:

Lubricate the spaces between the center gear and the drivers on the driven axles, the sides of all gears, between the idler gears and washers, and the ends of the idler gears with grease before installing.

Turn the frame upside down and install the three internal gears. The 22 tooth gear goes in the center slot and the two 20 tooth gears go into the outside slots. These are, of course, the three slots that extend deeper into the frame than the driver slots. Be sure there is a washer on each side of the axle next to the gear. Install the three plastic u-shaped gear retainers.

Install the 3rd (main) driver pair. This is the pair with threaded crankpins. The side of the driver pairs with the bluish colored shorting washers installed on the inner surface of the drivers goes to the left side of the loco. Install the 2nd driver pair (no crankpins), matching up the position of the counterweight with that of the 3rd pair. Install the 1st driver pair (it has headed crankpins), matching the counterweight position with that of the other two. Install the 4th driver pair (no crankpins), also matching up the counterweight position. If any of the counterweight positions (or crankpin positions) are not correct, the driver pair can be lifted slightly up from the slot, rotated in the correct direction, and dropped back into the slot. Due to mechanism slop and gear backlash, the alignment may not be exact, but will be close enough for good running.

Position the driver retainer plate at the bottom center of the frame over the drive axles. The rear vertical extension goes toward the top of the loco and covers the bottom of the motor cap. Make sure the retainer is laying flat against the frame and install the two attaching screws. The longer front screw also secures the cylinder/pilot beam assembly. There are bosses on either side of the gears on the driver axles. Make sure these are not under the retainer plate when you tighten the screws. They need to be located within the slots in the plate. It will be readily apparent if one of the bosses is trapped under the plate. The driver pair will be stuck and not free to move side to side.

After the driver retainer plate has been secured, turn the frame around and ensure the counterweights and crankpins are also in correct relationship on the other side. It isn't critical with the 2nd or 4th pair, other than for appearance, since there are no crankpins on these but the 1st and 3rd pair must be in correct relationship to prevent the siderods from disengaging from the crankpins on the 1st pair. See the "Model Specific Issues" page for more information.

OK, so now that the drivers are all in place, the rods and valve gear can be put back on. This is kind of a finicky little job but comes easier with experience. Magnification helps a lot. I will describe the operation for one side. The other side is the same except for direction of front and rear. Begin by placing the side rod over the crankpin on the 3rd driver and, at the same time, engaging the fork at the front of the rod in the headed crankpin on the 1st driver. Place the washer over the 3rd driver crankpin. Slide the main rod crosshead into the crosshead guide so the piston rod enters the hole in the cylinder casting and position the hole at the other end over the washer on the 3rd driver crankpin. Position the eccentric rod crank over the threaded hole in the 3rd driver crankpin so that the expansion link (on the valve gear hanger) is hanging down and the eccentric rod crank is roughly "pointing" at the counterweight on the 3rd driver. Start the gigantic eccentric rod crank screw into the threaded crankpin. I use a tweezers to hold the screw while getting it started.

When the screw is almost tightened, momentarily apply power to the loco to get the counterweight of the 3rd driver pair to the top. Hold the eccentric rod crank into position so it "points" a little forward of an imaginary vertical centerline from the driver bottom through the center of the counterweight and fully tighten the screw. It should look like this when done:

Apply low voltage to the loco with two wires from a power pack to ensure it runs smoothly.

Lubricate each gear with a dab of grease in one spot. It will be distributed when the gears turn. Put just the tiniest amount of light oil on all pivots and friction points on the driving gear (rod journals, crossheads, etc.).

Tender

I don't lubricate anything on the tender.

If the weights were removed, reattach using an appropriate rivet or other fastener.

Install the washer, drawbar, and spring contact, securing with the screw. The contact starts out on the bottom of the drawbar at the rear but inserts through a hole in the drawbar so that the front part of it is above the drawbar.

If the trucks and wheel wipers were disassembled, one wheelset has to be absent to get the wiper back in place. Insert the mounting screw through the bolster hole and position the wiper so one end is hooked over the axle of the mounted wheelset. Lower the wiper so its hole is over the bolster screw head and then replace the remaining wheelset so the other end of the wiper is hooked over its axle. The idea is the wheel wipers put upward pressure on the shoulders of the bolster screws and downward pressure on the axles to maintain good electrical contact. The insulated side of the wheelsets must be on the left side of the tender and the angled edges of the truck bolster should be toward the front with the little tabs of the wheel wipers hooked onto them. Then just insert the bolster screws into the holes in the tender floor and tighten them.

Slide the tender shell over the floor and snap it into place over the two locks.

Track test the locomotive with the boiler shell off and if everything is OK (it should be), slide the shell straight down over the loco frame and secure with its screw.

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RSC-2, GP40, and SD45

Begin by reassembling the trucks.

Front Truck

The front truck is fairly straightforward. Just insert the axles into the holes in one of the truck halves and install the other half of the truck, aligning the axles with the holes in this half too. I suppose lubrication could be optional here but I have seen too many cases of plastic against plastic and the resulting powder that develops indicating wear, so I use a bit of LaBelle 106 on these axles. Press the two halves together fully. Install the two wheel wipers from the sides until the middle section is against the truck side. Adjust the ends of the wipers so they will maintain contact with the inner sides of the wheels at all times but not put undue pressure on them which would add excess friction. Press the wheels back onto the axles until they butt against the steps on the axles. If the coupler was removed, reinstall into the truck side frame molding by positioning the coupler and spring and retain with the clip, bending the clip ends over on the top. Install the truck side frame molding onto the truck from above and snap into place at the two ends. The coupler goes toward the mounting hole end.

Rear Truck

Rear truck assembly is pretty much the same as the front truck. It's easier to do by first installing the axles and idler gear into the truck half that will be nearest the gears (left side). Install the little flat spring that pushes down on the front axle and position the end on top of the front axle. Lubricate all friction points with grease as you install the parts (except for the wheel wipers - I don't lubricate these). Install the other truck half, working the other ends of the axles and spring into their holes and slot respectively. Press the two halves together fully. Install the wheel wipers and press the wheels onto the axles as with the front truck. The wheels with traction tires go on the drive axles, of course. Reinstall the coupler into the truck side frame molding and install the side frame molding onto the truck. In this case, the coupler goes toward the end of the truck with the gear tower.

If the wire leads were removed at disassembly, solder them carefully back onto the wheel wiper tabs on the rear truck. Use a hot iron and work quickly to avoid melting the truck plastic. The wires should either point straight up or be tilted slightly toward the front.

Truck Installation

Install the rear truck into the locomotive frame. Position the worm gear so that the smaller diameter gear meshes with the idler gear and the larger diameter gear is in position to mesh with the worm. Again, use grease here for lubrication. Guide the lead wires through the frame opening toward the front and then down through the frame opening in the motor mounting area while raising the truck toward the frame. When the truck is fully in position in the frame, roll the drive wheels back and forth and look through the retaining pin hole. The worm gear will move back and forth as you roll the wheels. Do this until the worm gear hole is aligned with the holes in the frame. Then, install the retaining pin with a very thin coating of grease on it. Push the lead wires through the frame opening going toward the front truck.

Install the front truck to the frame by either soldering the lead wires to the wheel wiper tabs first and attaching with the screw and nut or attaching to the frame first and then soldering the wires. This depends on where the wires are to be soldered to the tabs. I like to attach the truck first and then solder because the truck isn't flopping around while trying to solder. Admittedly, there isn't much room here to work without melting some plastic which is why a very fine point solder tip is necessary. Remember to solder the same wire to the same side tab as the rear truck (left and right). Solder the headlight bulb to the tabs also and replace the tab spacer if there was one present (later units). Bend the top end of the tabs toward the outside over the spacer.

Final Assembly

If not already done, lubricate the two motor bushings. Usually, a light oil such as LaBelle 107 or 108 can be used but here, too, I have used 106 grease in the case of a sloppy bushing.

Position the motor so the two solder lugs extend through the frame bottom openings and the drive coupling points to the rear. On SD45s, be sure the brass hex-head piece for securing the bottom weight is in place before installing the motor. I temporarily attach the motor loosely to the frame with the bottom screw to make it easier to solder the lead wires to the lugs. Solder the lead from the left side of the trucks to the right side motor lug and the right side truck lead to the left side motor lug. Use a tweezers to pull the lead slack into the fuel tank area so they lay flat in the areas leading from the trucks. This is especially important in the rear truck area so the leads won't rub on the drive coupling. Also, position them so they will not be pinched between any mounting surfaces when the bottom cover or weight is installed. Now remove the motor mounting screw, insert through the hole in the plastic bottom cover or weight, and permanently secure the motor and bottom cover or weight with the screw. On SD45s, the weight is secured first with the mounting nut and then the bottom cover and motor are secured with the screw. Make sure the motor is seated properly in the frame.

With the coupling, washers, and bushings positioned on the worm shaft, install the assembly into the gear tower by aligning the coupling half with the half on the motor shaft and lowering the bushings into the recesses in the frame. This is a bit tricky to do because the shaft will be at an angle at first. Be sure the washers go inside the worm gear housing. Lubricate the worm and bushings with grease after installation. Replace the plastic worm cover.

Place the separate weight over the gear tower and take the loco for a test spin around the track. Don't run it too much, however, because the rear truck retaining pin may work its way out. If the mechanism runs smoothly, reinstall the shell onto the frame and you are done. If there is noise or roughness, please see the "Model Specific Issues" page for information on eliminating it.

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Pacific

Locomotive

Install the headlight bulb housing into the shell by sliding it in from the rear so the screw hole on the bottom aligns with the hole in the shell and secure with it's screw. Slip the bulb into the hole in the end of the housing. There is a slot cut into the housing which will end up at the top to clear the solder blob on the bulb. Keep the shell horizontal so the bulb doesn't fall out.

Lubricate the worm housing bushings and worm with grease before installation.

Slide the worm and housing into the frame from the rear so the opening is at the bottom. Secure with the brass screw on top of the frame that also serves as the shell attaching point.

Attach the pilot and cylinder assemblies to the front of the frame with the screw from the bottom. The pilot slips into the recess and then the cylinder assembly lowers over it. The screw screws into a brass nut mounted in the top of the cylinder assembly.

Install the two valve hanger/crosshead guide assemblies by sliding the crosshead guide extensions into the cylinder assembly and postioning the two top extensions on the step in the frame where the headlight bulb ground contact attaches. Position the ground contact so the arch points up and secure all assemblies with the screw.

Lubricate the spaces between the center gear and the drivers on the driven axles, the sides of all gears, between the idler gears and washers, and the ends of the idler gears with grease before installing.

With the frame upside down, install the two internal gears and washers into the two deep slots in the frame. These two gears are the same so it's not absolutely critical that they be reinstalled in the same slot out of which they came but, as I have stated elsewhere, it's best to keep things in their original places. Install the two gear retainers into the slots over the gear axles.

Install the 2nd driver pair with the bluish colored metal shorting washer on the inner surface to the left side of the locomotive. This driver pair has threaded crankpins and goes into the middle shallow slot in the frame. Install the 1st driver pair (it has headed crankpins) into the front slot in the frame. Match up the crankpins and counterweights with the 2nd driver pair. Install the 3rd driver pair (it has no crankpins) into the rear slot in the frame, matching up the crankpins and counterweights with the 1st and 2nd drivers. If any of the driver counterweights or crankpins are mispositioned, the driver pair can be lifted from the frame slightly, rotated in the correct direction, and lowered back into the frame. You may not be able to get perfect alignment ,due to mechanism slop, but it will be close enough.

Position the driver retainer plate at the bottom center of the frame over the drive axles. Make sure the retainer is laying flat against the frame. Position the trailing truck mounting hole over the rear retainer plate hole and secure both the plate and truck with the screw. Position the pilot truck spring, mounting extension, and screw over the front hole in the retainer plate and secure both the plate and truck with the screw. This is most easily accomplished by inserting the screw through the truck mounting extension, placing the spring over the screw shaft, and inserting the screw into the retainer plate/frame hole. The spring goes between the truck mounting extension and the retainer plate. There are bosses on either side of the gears on the driver axles. Make sure these are not under the retainer plate when you tighten the screws. They need to be located within the slots in the plate. It will be readily apparent if one of the bosses is trapped under the plate. The driver pair will be stuck and not free to move side to side.

After the driver retainer plate has been secured, turn the frame around and ensure that the counterweights and crankpins are also in correct relationship on the other side. It isn't critical with the 3rd pair, other than for appearance, since there are no crankpins on this but the 1st and 2nd pair must be in correct relationship to prevent the siderods from disengaging from the crankpins on the 1st pair. See the "Model Specific Issues" page for more information.

OK, so now that the drivers are all in place, the rods and valve gear can be put back on. This is kind of a finicky little job but comes easier with experience. Magnification helps a lot. I will describe the operation for one side. The other side is the same except for direction of front and rear. Begin by placing the side rod over the crankpin on the 2nd driver and, at the same time, engaging the fork at the front of the rod in the headed crankpin on the 1st driver. Place the washer over the 2nd driver crankpin. Slide the main rod crosshead into the crosshead guide so the piston rod enters the hole in the cylinder casting and position the hole at the other end over the washer on the 2nd driver crankpin. Position the eccentric rod crank over the threaded hole in the 2nd driver crankpin so the expansion link (on the valve gear hanger) is hanging down and the eccentric rod crank is roughly "pointing" at the counterweight on the 2nd driver. Start the eccentric rod crank screw into the threaded crankpin. I use a tweezers to hold the screw while getting it started.

When the screw is almost tightened, turn the worm shaft coupling to get the counterweight of the 2nd driver pair to the top. Hold the eccentric rod crank into position so it "points" a little forward of an imaginary vertical centerline from the driver bottom through the center of the counterweight and fully tighten the screw. It should look like this when done:

This particular chassis is from a Pacific in which I replaced the motor shaft/worm shaft couplings with tubing. Otherwise it would show in the frame opening ahead of the motor mounting opening.

Before installing the motor, turn the worm shaft coupling with a suitable tool to ensure there is no binding in the mechanism. Turn it so the drivers complete at least one revolution.

If not already done, lubricate the motor bushings with the appropriate lube. The motor cap end bushing can almost always be lubricated with a light oil. The motor can bushing is subject to more wear and if there is noticable side play, I use grease here instead of oil. I even pack the recess on the outside of the moter at the bushing with grease so there is plenty there. This may be contrary to conventional model railroad lubrication wisdom (that a little is better) but with this particular motor, I believe it is critical to make sure this bushing is not starved of lubrication.

If the hot headlight bulb lead was removed from the hot motor brush holder soldering lug, resolder it now. Slide the motor into the frame from the rear and guide the lead into place. It goes across the motor cap at the bottom, along the right side of the frame in a slot, up over the top and forward. Make sure that the ground contact on the upper brush holder goes between the motor and frame and presses against the frame and doesn't catch and bend. Push the hot bulb contact block into its recess in the frame above the 1st/2nd driver pairs. The wire must be routed correctly to avoid interference with the shell when the shell is installed. It should look like this from the top:

Secure the motor with the two motor mounting screws.

Lubricate each gear with a dab of grease in one spot. It will be distributed when the gears turn. Put just the tiniest amount of light oil on all pivots and friction points on the driving gear (rod journals, crossheads, etc.).

Tender

I don't lubricate anything on the tender.

If the weights were removed, reattach using an appropriate rivet or other fastener.

Install the washer, drawbar, and spring contact, securing with the screw. The contact starts out on the bottom of the drawbar at the rear but inserts through a hole in the drawbar so that the front part of it is above the drawbar.

If the trucks and wheel wipers were disassembled, one wheelset has to be absent to get the wiper back in place. Insert the mounting screw through the bolster hole and position the wiper so one end is hooked over the axle of the mounted wheelset. Lower the wiper so its hole is over the bolster screw head and then replace the remaining wheelset so the other end of the wiper is hooked over its axle. The idea is the wheel wipers put upward pressure on the shoulders of the bolster screws and downward pressure on the axles to maintain good electrical contact. The insulated side of the wheelsets must be on the left side of the tender and the angled edges of the truck bolster should be toward the front with the little tabs of the wheel wipers hooked onto them. Then just insert the bolster screws into the holes in the tender floor and tighten them.

Slide the tender shell over the floor, spread the bottom of the shell one side at a time to clear the two locks projecting from the floor sides, and snap it into place over the two locks.

Track test the locomotive with the boiler shell off and if everything is OK (it should be), reinstall the shell by working the rear portion over the cab area of the frame first while making sure the headlight bulb lead doesn't get pinched anywhere. Then lower the front portion down over the loco frame and secure with its screw. I keep the loco vertical with the front pointing down during this operation so the headlight bulb doesn't fall out of the shell.

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WDT    

If the couplers were removed, replace them by postioning the coupler and spring in the coupler pockets of the Zamac frame and retaining with the metal clip, bending the tabs over at the top.

Lubricate the worm gear and drive gear/axle with grease as you assemble these parts.

Position the worm gear between the two thin upper extensions of the frame. One side of the gear has a little bit thicker shoulder than does the other side. The thicker shoulder goes toward the left side of the locomotive. Push the side drive gear through the holes in the extensions and worm gear from the left side. The drive gear should be against the left side extension and its axle inserted into the right side extension hole when you are through. The worm gear should be fairly centered in the space between the two extensions. Check for free rotation.

If the axles were removed from the left side drive wheels, reinsert them until the drive gears are against the inside surface of the wheels. Lubricate the axles with grease before you install the drive wheels and idlers. This is better than putting the grease in the holes first because it avoids grease getting on the axle end where the other wheel mounts. Insert the drive wheels/axles and idler gears into the frame from the left side. The idlers go into the upper holes and the drive axles into the lower holes. Install a spacer onto the right side of each drive axle and install the right side wheels onto the drive axles until they are against the steps on the axles. Check again for free rotation of all parts.

Lower the side frame molding over the Zamac frame and then the contact plate, headlight bulb forward. Secure with the mounting screw right behind the worm gear (and with the one under the headlight bulb if you added it like I did). Check that the four wheel wipers make constant contact with the flanges of the two end driver pairs by pushing up on the drivers and releasing. The wipers should stay in contact with the drivers at their lowest position. After all, this little loco needs all the electrical pickup it can get!

If not already done, lubricate the two motor bushings. Usually, a light oil such as LaBelle 107 or 108 can be used but here, too, I have used 106 grease in the case of a sloppy bushing.

Lower the motor into position between the two motor brush contact tabs from the contact plate. Once the motor is seated into the plate and the worm is in mesh with the worm gear, push the two tabs over the brush holders so the holes in the tabs engage the two nubs on the brush holders and are against the holder flanges.

Put a dab of grease at one spot on the motor worm and each driver gear. The grease will be distributed as the gears turn.

Install the weight, wide part over the front part of the motor and narrower part over the worm. Lower the body over the weight and sideframe molding and push in on the sideframe sides so the body can engage the two side locks and release. Take 'er for a test spin!

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0-6-0    

If the couplers were removed, replace them by postioning the coupler and spring in the coupler pockets of the Zamac frame and retaining with the metal clip, bending the tabs over at the top.

Lubricate the worm gear and drive gear/axle with grease as you assemble these parts.

Position the worm gear between the two thin upper extensions of the frame right behind the weight "bump". One side of the gear has a little bit thicker shoulder than does the other side. The thicker shoulder goes toward the left side of the locomotive. Push the side drive gear through the holes in the extensions and worm gear from the left side. The drive gear should be against the left side extension and its axle inserted into the right side extension hole when you are through. The worm gear should be fairly centered in the space between the two extensions. Check for free rotation.

If the axles were removed from the left side drivers, reinsert them until the drive gears are against the inside surface of the drivers. Lubricate the axles with grease before you install the drivers and idlers. This is better than putting the grease in the holes first because it avoids grease getting on the axle end where the other driver mounts. Insert the drivers/axles and idler gears into the frame from the left side. The idlers go into the upper holes and the drive axles into the lower holes. Be sure to get the driver with the hole in it for the drive rod into the rear hole. Install a spacer onto the right side of each drive axle and install the right side drivers onto the drive axles until they are against the steps on the axles. Again, make sure the driver with the hole for the drive rod is at the rear hole. Although quartering is not necessary on this loco, for prototypicality, the two holes for the rods should be 90 degrees apart. Install the drive rods by lowering the front of the rods into the slots in the frame and securing to the rear drivers with the little metal pins. Check again for free rotation of all parts.

Lower the contact plate/pilot step molding over the Zamac frame. Secure with the mounting screw right behind the worm gear and the screw in the front. Check that the four wheel wipers make constant contact with the flanges of the two end driver pairs by pushing up on the drivers and releasing. The wipers should stay in contact with the drivers at their lowest position. After all, this little loco needs all the electrical pickup it can get!

If not already done, lubricate the two motor bushings. Usually, a light oil such as LaBelle 107 or 108 can be used but here, too, I have used 106 grease in the case of a sloppy bushing.

Lower the motor into position between the two motor brush contact tabs from the contact plate. Once the motor is seated into the plate and the worm is in mesh with the worm gear, push the two tabs over the brush holders so the holes in the tabs engage the two nubs on the brush holders and are against the holder flanges.

Put a dab of grease at one spot on the motor worm and each driver gear. The grease will be distributed as the gears turn. Also, apply just a tiny amount of light oil at each main rod crank on the two rear drivers.

Lower the body over the frame until it snaps into place over the two side locks. Take 'er for a test spin!

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Mikado    

Locomotive

If your Mikado is like mine and has the headlight bulb housing retained by a pin, it's probably already in place. If there is a screw, install the headlight bulb housing into the shell by sliding it in from the rear so the screw hole on the bottom aligns with the hole in the shell and secure with it's screw. Slip the bulb into the hole in the end of the housing. There is a slot cut into the housing which will end up at the top to clear the solder blob on the bulb. Keep the shell horizontal so the bulb doesn't fall out.

If the crosshead guide/valve hanger assemblies were removed, they will have to be reinstalled either by re-swaging the original rivet or using a suitable screw and nut.

Lubricate the worm housing bushings and worm with grease before installation.

Slide the worm and housing into the frame from the rear so the opening is at the bottom. Secure with the brass screw on top of the frame that also serves as the shell attaching point.

Position the pilot and cylinder assemblies to the front of the frame. The pilot slips into the recess and then the cylinder assembly lowers over it while guiding the crosshead guide extensions into the slots at the rear of the assembly. These parts will be secured later when the driver retainer plate is installed.

Lubricate the spaces between the center gear and the drivers on the driven axles, the sides of all gears, between the idler gears and washers, and the ends of the idler gears with grease before installing.

With the frame upside down, install the three internal gears and washers into the three deep slots in the frame. These three gears are each a different size and must be installed in their original locations. The front gear has 15 teeth, the middle gear has 18 teeth, and the rear gear has 23 teeth. Also, the three slots go progressively deeper into the frame from front to rear. Install the three gear retainers into the slots over the gear axles. The shortest retainer goes into the front slot, the medium length retainer goes into the middle slot, and the longest retainer goes into the rear slot.

Install the 3rd (main) driver pair. This is the pair with threaded crankpins. The side of the driver pairs with the bluish colored shorting washers installed on the inner surface of the drivers goes to the left side of the loco. Install the 2nd driver pair (no crankpins), matching up the position of the counterweight with that of the 3rd pair. Install the 1st driver pair (it has headed crankpins), matching the counterweight position with that of the other two. Install the 4th driver pair (no crankpins), also matching up the counterweight position. If any of the counterweight positions (or crankpin positions) are not correct, the driver pair can be lifted slightly up from the slot, rotated in the correct direction, and dropped back into the slot. Due to mechanism slop and gear backlash, the alignment may not be exact, but will be close enough for good running.

Position the driver retainer plate at the bottom center of the frame over the drive axles. Make sure the retainer is laying flat against the frame. Secure the front of the retainer plate with its screw. This will also attach the pilot and cylinder assemblies as the screw screws into the brass nut mounted at the top of the cylinder assembly. Position the trailing truck mounting hole over the rear retainer plate hole and secure both the plate and truck with the screw. There are bosses on either side of the gears on the driver axles. Make sure these are not under the retainer plate when you tighten the screws. They need to be located within the slots in the plate. It will be readily apparent if one of the bosses is trapped under the plate. The driver pair will be stuck and not free to move side to side.

After the driver retainer plate has been secured, turn the frame around and ensure that the counterweights and crankpins are also in correct relationship on the other side. It isn't critical with the 2nd or 4th pair, other than for appearance, since there are no crankpins on these but the 1st and 3rd pair must be in correct relationship to prevent the siderods from disengaging from the crankpins on the 1st pair. See the "Model Specific Issues" page for more information.

Install the pilot truck by inserting its extension through the opening at the front of the driver retaining plate and positioning the end with the hole on the step in the frame right above the first driver pair. Install the washer and spring, in that order, over the attaching screw and secure the pilot truck (the spring must be in between the washer and pilot truck extension end). The spring acts to put downward pressure on the pilot truck and upward pressure on the washer, which serves as the headlight bulb ground contact.

OK, so now that the drivers are all in place, the rods and valve gear can be put back on. This is kind of a finicky little job but comes easier with experience. Magnification helps a lot. I will describe the operation for one side. The other side is the same except for direction of front and rear. Begin by placing the side rod over the crankpin on the 3rd driver and, at the same time, engaging the fork at the front of the rod in the headed crankpin on the 1st driver. Place the washer over the 3rd driver crankpin. Slide the main rod crosshead into the crosshead guide so the piston rod enters the hole in the cylinder casting and position the hole at the other end over the washer on the 3rd driver crankpin. Position the eccentric rod crank over the threaded hole in the 3rd driver crankpin so the expansion link (on the valve gear hanger) is hanging down and the eccentric rod crank is roughly "pointing" at the counterweight on the 3rd driver. Start the eccentric rod crank screw into the threaded crankpin. I use a tweezers to hold the screw while getting it started.

When the screw is almost tightened, turn the worm shaft coupling to get the counterweight of the 3rd driver pair to the top. Hold the eccentric rod crank into position so it "points" a little forward of an imaginary vertical centerline from the driver bottom through the center of the counterweight and fully tighten the screw. It should look like this when done:

Before installing the motor, turn the worm shaft coupling with a suitable tool to ensure there is no binding in the mechanism. Turn it so the drivers complete at least one revolution.

If not already done, lubricate the motor bushings with the appropriate lube. The motor cap end bushing can almost always be lubricated with a light oil. The motor can bushing is subject to more wear and if there is noticable side play, I use grease here instead of oil. I even pack the recess on the outside of the moter at the bushing with grease so there is plenty there. This may be contrary to conventional model railroad lubrication wisdom (that a little is better) but with this particular motor, I believe it is critical to make sure this bushing is not starved of lubrication.

If the hot headlight bulb lead was removed from the hot motor brush holder soldering lug, resolder it now. Slide the motor into the frame from the rear and guide the lead into place. It goes across the motor cap at the bottom, along the right side of the frame in a slot, up over the top and forward. Make sure that the ground contact on the upper brush holder goes between the motor and frame and presses against the frame and doesn't catch and bend. Push the hot bulb contact block into its recess in the frame above the 2nd driver pair. The wire must be routed correctly to avoid interference with the shell when the shell is installed. It should look like this from the top:

Secure the motor with the two motor mounting screws.

Lubricate each gear with a dab of grease in one spot. It will be distributed when the gears turn. Put just the tiniest amount of light oil on all pivots and friction points on the driving gear (rod journals, crossheads, etc.).

Tender

I don't lubricate anything on the tender.

If the weights were removed, reattach using an appropriate rivet or other fastener.

Install the washer, drawbar, and spring contact, securing with the screw. The contact starts out on the bottom of the drawbar at the rear but inserts through a hole in the drawbar so that the front part of it is above the drawbar.

If the trucks and wheel wipers were disassembled, one wheelset has to be absent to get the wiper back in place. Insert the mounting screw through the bolster hole and position the wiper so one end is hooked over the axle of the mounted wheelset. Lower the wiper so its hole is over the bolster screw head and then replace the remaining wheelset so the other end of the wiper is hooked over its axle. The idea is the wheel wipers put upward pressure on the shoulders of the bolster screws and downward pressure on the axles to maintain good electrical contact. The insulated side of the wheelsets must be on the left side of the tender and the angled edges of the truck bolster should be toward the front with the little tabs of the wheel wipers hooked onto them. Then just insert the bolster screws into the holes in the tender floor and tighten them.

Slide the tender shell over the floor, spread the bottom of the shell one side at a time to clear the two locks projecting from the floor sides, and snap it into place over the two locks.

Track test the locomotive with the boiler shell off and if everything is OK (it should be), reinstall the shell by working the rear portion over the cab area of the frame first while making sure the headlight bulb lead doesn't get pinched anywhere. Then lower the front portion down over the loco frame and secure with its screw. I keep the loco vertical with the front pointing down during this operation so the headlight bulb doesn't fall out of the shell.

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0-4-0

Locomotive   

If not already done, lubricate the motor bushings with the appropriate lube. The motor cap end bushing can almost always be lubricated with a light oil. The motor can bushing is subject to more wear and if there is noticable side play, I use grease here instead of oil. I even pack the recess on the outside of the moter at the bushing with grease so there is plenty there. This may be contrary to conventional model railroad lubrication wisdom (that a little is better) but with this particular motor, I believe it is critical to make sure this bushing is not starved of lubrication.

Slide the motor into the rear of the boiler/cab casting with the ground contact at the top. Be sure this slides in between the motor and casting and makes contact with the casting and doesn't hang up and bend. If not already done, pull the lower brush holder out about 1mm to clear the brush contact on the frame when the contact is installed.

If the cylinder block and valve hanger/crosshead guide assemblies were removed, they will have to be reattached. The cylinder block assembly must be secured with a suitable hollow rivet because the front boiler mounting screw must go through it. The valve hanger/crosshead guide assemblies are attached with the small pins to the cylinder block.

Install the two little wheel wiper/contacts on either side of the frame with the small brass pins. The right side contact must have the two little fingers pointing down toward the bottom of the locomotive and the left side contact must have the fingers pointing up toward the top of the locomotive. These contact the driver retainer plate and the boiler casting respectively.

Lubricate the worm gear with grease on the axle ends. Install the worm gear into its slot in the top of the frame. There is a kind of dished out or indented side to this gear. This side must face the left side of the locomotive. Thus there will be clearance between the gear and the two little fingers of the wheel wiper/contact.

Lower the boiler/cab casting over the frame and attach with the front screw only at this point.

Install the lower brush holder contact by kind of swinging it under the lower brush holder toward the rear and lowering over the drawbar mounting boss. Now, push the brush holder all the way in.

Lubricate the axles between the center gear and drivers with grease. Apply a dab to each side of the gears too. Install the two drivers into the frame, matching up the counterweights and crankpins. Although it isn't necessary to the operation of the locomotive, we do want to be prototypically correct, right?  The rear driver pair has the threaded crankpins and the front pair has none.

Hook the driver retainer plate under the frame at the front, swing down at the rear and secure with the mounting screw and plastic washer. The washer must be present or there will be a short circuit between the screw, which goes into the boiler casting, and the lower brush holder contact.

The main rods can now be installed. I will describe one side. The other side is basically the same. Slide the crosshead of the rod into the crosshead guide so the piston rod enters the hole in the cylinder casting. Lower the hole in the other end of the rod over the rear driver crankpin. Position the eccentric crank over the threaded hole in the crankpin so the expansion link (on the valve hanger) is pointing down and the eccentric crank is "pointing" to the driver counterweight. Start the attaching screw into the crankpin hole and turn until it is beginning to get tight.

When the screw is almost tightened, momentarily apply power to the loco to get the counterweight of the rear driver pair to the top. Hold the eccentric rod crank into position so that it "points" a little forward of an imaginary vertical centerline from the driver bottom through the center of the counterweight and fully tighten the screw. It should look like this when done:

Lubricate each gear with a dab of grease in one spot. It will be distributed when the gears turn. Put just the tiniest amount of light oil on all pivots and friction points on the driving gear (rod journals, crossheads, etc.).

Tender

I don't lubricate anything on the tender.

Install the brass nut and its insulator by pressing into the recess in the top of the frame.

If the trucks and wheel wipers were disassembled, one wheelset has to be absent to get the wiper back in place. Insert the mounting screw through the bolster hole and position the wiper so one end is hooked over the axle of the mounted wheelset. Lower the wiper so its hole is over the bolster screw head and then replace the remaining wheelset so the other end of the wiper is hooked over its axle. The idea is the wheel wipers put upward pressure on the shoulders of the bolster screws and downward pressure on the axles to maintain good electrical contact. The insulated side of the wheelsets of the front truck must be on the left side of the tender and the insulated side of the wheelsets of the rear truck must be on the right side. The angled edges of the truck bolster should be toward the front with the little tabs of the wheel wipers hooked onto them.

Install the rear truck by simply inserting the mounting screw into the frame and tightening. Position the front truck contact carrier, contact, upper tender/locomotive contact, plastic seperator (drawbar), and lower tender/locomotive contact on the frame and secure all with the mounting screw. Insert the front truck mounting screw through the contact and up into the frame and tighten into the top mounted brass nut.

Lower the shell over the frame as far as it will go. This is merely a friction fit; there are no locks.

Position the drawbar and two contacts over the boss on the locomotive and install the retaining screw. Actually, because of the springiness, you will have to hold the lower contact in position as you install the screw. Don't tighten this screw too much or it will start to squash the plastic boss and bind up the drawbar and contacts.

Put on the track and have fun watching this little loco run!

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Cow & Calf  

I will describe the reassembly of the Cow unit. The reassembly of the Calf unit is basically identical except much easier since there are no worries of wires, motor, wheel wipers, gears, or insulators. 

If you removed the couplers, put them back into the pockets with the springs and push the retainers back into the frame. Atlas recommended reapplying cement after installation of the retainers so they won't fall out so that's an option.

Position the motor into the frame, making sure the squared-off part of the plastic motor cap is at the upper rear and fits into the space in the casting for it. Route the wiring in the same position it was in before disassembly. Insert the retainer through the holes in the top of the frame and push down to snap it over the motor bearing extensions. Look underneath to be sure the spring ends of the retainer are actually around the extensions and tight up against the motor. Push them into position with a toothpick if they aren't.

Replace the two insulating spacers into the frame. Do the following for both front and rear of the loco. Position the left side truck retaining plate down through the frame opening and over the bosses on the insulator. Similarly, position the right side retaining plate down through the frame and over the bosses on the frame. Insert the screw with insulating washer through the wiring solder lug and then through the frame and just barely get the threads started into the right side truck retaining plate. Actually, you can tighten the screw almost all the way to keep things in position and loosen it just enough when you are ready to install the trucks.

Before installing the trucks, look at the top of them and notice one end of the moulding is a little bigger and rounder than the other and has a little nub on it. This end goes toward the outside end of the chassis.

The retaining plate screw needs only to be loosened a turn or so to allow enough movement of the retaining plates so the bosses on the truck can be inserted into the slots in the retainers. I have installed the trucks both with the wheels already in position and without. If they are already in position, it helps in keeping the wheel wipers in position on the truck pivot but the gears have a tendency to want to move around. With the wheels off, the gears stay in place but then you have to be sure you hold the wipers in position against the truck pivot. Try it both ways and see which way thrills you the most. Hehe.

Anyway, with the screw loosened just enough and the chassis upside down, work one truck boss into one slot in the retaining plates and then the other. Gears toward you, of course. Be sure the wheel wipers stay in position against the truck pivot. After the truck is in position, tighten the retainer plate screw to secure everything.

If you installed the wheels first, the wipers will already be in position behind them and you only have to mess with the gears to be sure they are completely down into their seats. If you didn't install the wheels first, use a tweezers to squeeze the two wipers together to ensure they end up behind the wheels and position the wheel sets into the slots in the truck frame. You will still have to mess with the gears to be sure they are seated before installing the bottom plate/side frame assembly.

When you are satisfied the gears are in place, position the bottom plate/side frame assembly onto the bottom of the truck and secure it with the two screws.

Repeat the procedure for the other truck!

Reinstall the headlight housing between the rear truck retaining plates, reinstall the body shell, and you are done!

One issue I have encountered after reassembly (other than being relatively blind in my old age during reassembly) is a growling noise running the loco on the track. This, of course, is the symptom of too tight a mesh between the worm and worm gear. To remedy it, remove the shell again, slightly loosen the truck retaining plate screws, and gently pull down on the trucks while tightening the screws again. This will result in more clearance between the two gears and get the loco back to smooth running.

Thanks Dave.

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Please contact me with any additions or corrections: dgosha@aol.com

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EMD E8s FM C-Liners IHB 0-8-0s
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USRA Mikados (2-8-2s) 0-4-0 Locos and Tenders SW1500 Cows and Calfs
Atlas Model Specific Issues Atlas Locomotive Disassembly The Rivarossi Motor
The Mehanotehnika Motor Zamac Frame Repair AIG Locomotives Around the World
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