They are double insulated and you would have to make your own wipers from phosphor-bronze. Be sure to make them long, if they are too short they don't act like a spring or could brake down the wheels. They have to cope with the wheel side play. You want to from them like a spoon to touch the inside of the wheel. You might want to use a tiny bit of Di-Electric Grease to enhance the pick-up.
I tried the ready to run Atlas caboose trucks with wipers installed and they just don't work properly so making my own is the alternative.
Can I use wipers to the axle or are they insulated from the wheel on Atlas trucks? I want to attach the wipers to the bolster and then pick up the current either from the axle or the wheel. If I attach the wipers to the bolster will it cause a short?
From Sarah's description, and I'm assuming she probably knows, the wheels are insulated from the axles, so you have to have the wipers on the inside of the wheel. However, use your ohmmeter and check to see if both wheels on the axle are insulated, many times it's just one. If so, you can use the axle and get one wheel conductivity. Maybe swap one wheel around so you get one wheel on each rail that is connected.
Modern Atlas 100 Ton roller bearing trucks have both wheels insulated from the axle with a Delrin or Nylon bushing in each wheel. Therefore, each wheel is fully insulated from the cast metal sideframe/axle. You will need to have the wiper rub on the backs of any of the wheels (not the axle) that you want to pickup power from the rails. If you attach the wiper directly to the bolster, then the cast metal truck assembly will be live with track power from that rail but as long as you only pickup power from one rail per truck, then that should work. Please note, however, that this assumes that the car that the trucks attach to has a plastic frame. Using this scenario on a car that has a metal frame will cause a short circuit through the frame that the trucks attach to since it will be common to both trucks which would have opposite polarities.
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