Brought 3 car tank sound set out of storage, checked them out ensured sound slide in Board was seated  properly. However the amount of crackling at idle is loud and repeating. One car responds well to commands and movement with crackling sounds in between. The other two just crackle away. Track has been cleaned, no issue with any other command locomotives. Same crackling operating as single tank cars or within a train configuration.I run command and fresh 9 V batteries are in all three.Any advice from folks?


Al Bisback
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Original Post

Just a thought (because I have not had this issue with my set) but have you cleaned the wheels and pickup rollers as well? I have found that doing so resolves power interruption issues with sound and lighting systems of  a similar vintage. 

Cleaned wheels, albeit they very clean. These cars  have had little use.

Used  Rail Zip  cleaner on pick ups and there seems to be improvement.

I will adjust volume pots and see. I think they were turned all the way up.


Al Bisback
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After making sure it's not the volume pot, I suspect you have oxidation of the contacts on the two chips on the RailSounds board.  I see the exact same symptoms regularly on the modular RailSounds boards.  You need a PLCC extraction tool to pull the two chips up and then reseat them.  That will clear the oxidation from the contacts for a few years.  Do NOT try to remove the chips without the proper tool, you'll crack the socket and that's a much bigger issue.

Al B posted:

Any suggestions where one gets that tool, in the event I need to go that route?


Readily available on Amazon and flea bay for a few $. Used to be hanging on a rack in your local Radio Shack but finding in an electronics  retail outlet is very hit and miss these days. 



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