gunrunnerjohn posted:

Be more specific, what exact locomotive are you talking about?  Some of them have a smoke control board that just controls the smoke motor, others have a a controller that actually manages the whole smoke unit.

John,  this board is in a Lionel F-12e.

That one just controls the smoke fan, the smoke heater is controlled by the smoke voltage regulator module directly.  In truth, that board is a disappointment to me.  It doesn't provide idle smoke, and the heater just cooks when you stop, one day mine is going to get a Super-Chuffer to fix that.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

That one just controls the smoke fan, the smoke heater is controlled by the smoke voltage regulator module directly.  In truth, that board is a disappointment to me.  It doesn't provide idle smoke, and the heater just cooks when you stop, one day mine is going to get a Super-Chuffer to fix that.

You’re right John!  Currently,  I’m starting to have intermittent fan function during regular operation.  I’m going to put the meter on the fan motor and see if I’m getting intermittent voltage drops.  If that’s the case,  that board must be going bad.  

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Replace the fan motor first.

I noticed that this smoke unit runs fine at very low speeds with no fan cut out.  Once I jack up the speed and let it run a little,  that’s when the fan motor starts cutting out,  but starts back to working fine when slowing the speed back down.  You recon thats still a fan motor going bad?

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Well, that's a bit odd, it does sound more like electronics.  Important question, does the chuff sound also cut out?  If so, look at the mechanical chuff switch, a likely suspect.

It will chug its little butt off without cutting out at all.  I’ve already replaced the AC regulator last month because the smoke would slowly fade out.  I had to constantly bump the smoke button on my cab2 to make it come back on.  That’s why I was asking about the smoke logic board and if it could be the culprit.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Well, it's a likely suspect, that's for sure.  That and the smoke motor are really the only real suspects if the wiring is all intact.

I’m going to go ahead and order a new board and if I can get one,  a new fan motor too and replace it all.   I think my Kline unit arrived at your location today for that buffer.

I have that same model, mine is the C&O.  Hard to imagine that board dying, it just has a couple of logic chips and a power supply on it.  I replaced mine with my Super-Chuffer, what an improvement!   I now have better chuffing, smoke at idle, and Rule-17 lighting on my little 10-wheeler.   With the size of the board, I can't imagine why they couldn't have done a better job.  My big complaint with the board is the motor stops when you stop the locomotive, but the smoke heater keeps running.  Needless to say, this quickly chars the wick and screws up the smoke production!

I was having issues with (another) swift hotbox car again. It appeared to be cutting out and even reversing the airflow at times.

I traced the flow reversal back to the rpm after ruling out some sort of test mode flow reversal ...recalling the unit mount diode would prevent it.

Further investigation led to me finding the fan motor was spinning CCW, but the housing was set up for CW. (non-curved impeller, but I always rely on exhaust ports vs blade to decide cw/ccw anyhow).  I reversed the motor wires and it always blows into the chamber now,and much better too.  

This isn't the first hotbox that would fill the body with smoke, just the first I caught before it burnt up an element though wet.   ....It still melted the filler/drop stack (to frame level), new, right out of the box 😣

...constant-on element issue aside; a reversed fan can flow air in either direction while turning backwards, based on rpm, I just saw  happen 3 days ago

"Still trying to not shoot my eye out"

 

"Nursing insomnia one railcar at a time"

My aroma therapy? Smoke Pellets.

 





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