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Hi all,

I recently posted about the 3rd Rail K2a I recently purchased and my struggle with finding the battery. I've pulled the battery out now, successfully ran a conventional test on a short piece of straight track, and also successfully addressed the engine to my Cab-2. I've run into a new problem however:

When entering a curve (turning right), the engine abruptly stops. Lights and sounds are still on with no interruption, engine simply halts in its tracks. This sometimes happens on straights but not consistently. What I have discovered is that if I angle the train so that the locomotive nose is pointed slightly to the left relative to the track, it will move (there is some slop between the wheels and rails such that the engine can sit at a slight diagonal and still fit comfortably on the track). However, the moment it enters a turn or this angling is lost, movement is instantly killed. If I re-angle the train while it is still powered and "running", it will immediately begin to move again (at least on straights).

With this in mind, what might be the problem part? Is it the wire plug/connector between the tender and the engine?

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@rplst8 posted:

The tether is a good candidate. It could also be a wire coming loose inside when stretched/relaxed.

Thanks for the idea - do you have any suggestions for what I could do to fix? Tweak a wire? Should I look at replacing the ten-pin connector? It seems like the most likely culprit as I noticed that the connector simply slid out when I went to detach the tender.

if your saying the tether is loose like a worn out wall socket, then that is likely worth a look first.  That said, I don't know the mechanicals of 3rd Rail locomotives that well, so I'm only guessing based on similar issues from MTH offerings.

My guess is if you are handy, you could open the loco and very carefully pinch the contacts on the tether receptacle to provide a better connection when the tether is inserted.  I'm not sure if you can access those contacts from the underside of the loco or if the receptacle has some screws on the outside that could be used to loosen it to access the contacts from the rear.

If you've not done something like this before, and given the value and rarity of most 3rd rail steam locomotives, I would take it to a technician or send it to 3rd Rail for repair.

@rplst8 posted:

if your saying the tether is loose like a worn out wall socket, then that is likely worth a look first.  That said, I don't know the mechanicals of 3rd Rail locomotives that well, so I'm only guessing based on similar issues from MTH offerings.

My guess is if you are handy, you could open the loco and very carefully pinch the contacts on the tether receptacle to provide a better connection when the tether is inserted.  I'm not sure if you can access those contacts from the underside of the loco or if the receptacle has some screws on the outside that could be used to loosen it to access the contacts from the rear.

If you've not done something like this before, and given the value and rarity of most 3rd rail steam locomotives, I would take it to a technician or send it to 3rd Rail for repair.

That is correct, the connector goes in fine but it also pulls out effortlessly.

I did notice screws under the receptacle but I will have to take a look at those later.

I've been considering that idea. Still thinking about it

@Norton posted:

Any chance you pinched the tether after removing the battery? It should be free to move in and out of the shell anf flex in the curves.

Pete

There is enough play with the tether cord coming from the tender that I am able to gently pull it out some when I connect the tether to the engine. It glides back inside the tender when I attach the tender to the engine with the drawbar.

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