VISION Big Boy Help!

Gentlemen,  I am about to take the shell off the Big Boy to see if there is a CAP on the motor.  I know there are 4 screws and where they are at (just forward of the cab and in deep inserts and 2 under the front driver).  I have a foam cradle to work from.  I am thinking that there must be a process to do this.  Maybe turn the loco upside down in the cradle to remove the screws and then??????  How to get it out of the cradle to right side up????  Any pointers would help.  I have seen many threads on how easy this is but no detail.

RickM46

And now it starts.

Turn it upside down and take out the screws.  Then set it on the wheels again and lift the top shell carefully!  There are some plugs to disconnect, do so by carefully working the plug out of the connector, do NOT pull on the wires!

The hand rails and cab light plug into a board screwed to the top boiler shell.  You'll need to disconnect the wires from that board to the boards on the main frame.  There are also wires towards the front of the boiler for marker lights you'll need to be mindful of.  Hence why you move the top slowly.

As for where the cap wires go, I'll have to look.  And there are only two.

I typically disconnect all of them so I can work without screwing something up.  You do need to proceed carefully with the connectors, too many people yank on the wires and pull them out of the pins, then you have a bigger issue.

I have successfully separated the shell without breaking anything; once you find the right 4 screws it separates easily with no force (mistakenly took out the wrong screw under the cab).  The toughest part was putting the loco back on its wheels and keeping the boiler in place; big danger to the front boiler number board lights and marker lights and wire hand rails due to my hand getting too close to them - luckily they suffered no damage.  I have it lying beside the bottom with the wire connectors to the front of the boiler marker lights still connected but have that front close enough to the bottom so no stress on them.  Lots of slack in the rear cab lights due to the wires sticky stanchion being unstuck.   I am working on adjusting my camera to send a photo. 

The top of the motor does not have the round (I thought it was rectangular) cap.  Now, here is where maybe I can get some directions on how to install it once I get the cap.  Finally figured out that cap really stands for capacitor - feel like Homer Simpson - DOH!

RickM46

And now it starts.

OK, I got some pics of the work area to contend with and with the blow down tube disconnected; I have ordered the caps.  I am thinking that the white plug at the front of the motor that goes into a board that has 4 soldered nubs on the forward side of the board is where I will have to solder the cap??

Big Boy with boiler resting on cradle

 

Boiler front as close as possible.

RickM46

And now it starts.

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Well, chalk up the next picture to Divine Providence.  Upon inspecting the wiring going from the rear of the motor forward, I found a number of wires that had their insulation fried by heat and then fused to one another.  The top red wire was fused to the black wire just below it and then that to the blue wire below the black wire.  When I separated them, the top red wire lost its insulation for an inch.  I also discovered a red and black wire attached to the 4 wire white plug at the top of the motor looking stressed by heat.  I am thinking that at one time those wires were located too close to the smoke unit.  Any suggestions for repairing the exposed spot on the red wire? 

I also am open to any advice on attaching the cap when it arrives.

RickM46

And now it starts.

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Obviously, the simple method of fixing a wire is just splicing in a fresh piece of wire.  Using heatshrink of the correct size, you can make it pretty slim and it shouldn't be an issue.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Obviously, the simple method of fixing a wire is just splicing in a fresh piece of wire.  Using heatshrink of the correct size, you can make it pretty slim and it shouldn't be an issue.

Thanks GRJ, I am gearing up for the cap as well.  I have a Hakko FX888D-23BY on its way with heat sinks and multiple tips.  I also have electrical 60/40 rosin core solder, heat shrink tubing of many sizes, lots of 18 Gauge red and black wire.

RickM46

And now it starts.

RickM46 posted:

Well, chalk up the next picture to Divine Providence.  Upon inspecting the wiring going from the rear of the motor forward, I found a number of wires that had their insulation fried by heat and then fused to one another.  The top red wire was fused to the black wire just below it and then that to the blue wire below the black wire.  When I separated them, the top red wire lost its insulation for an inch.  I also discovered a red and black wire attached to the 4 wire white plug at the top of the motor looking stressed by heat.  I am thinking that at one time those wires were located too close to the smoke unit.  Any suggestions for repairing the exposed spot on the red wire? 

I also am open to any advice on attaching the cap when it arrives.

IMG_0201

That usually is caused by having one roller power pickup like in the front on one voltage or ground and the other pickup in the rear on a different voltage. Then a huge current flows between the rollers which are connected together by a red wire which melts it’s self and anything it touches.

Chuck TCA LCCA ARRL BMWMOA

Chuck, thanks for the input!  Maybe my track voltages aren't what they should be; makes me want to test each segment with a meter.  I have a ZWL where I set the voltage lever to 17 volts.  Lost the picture - re-inserted it again.

RickM46

And now it starts.

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Photos (1)
RickM46 posted:

Chuck, thanks for the input!  Maybe my track voltages aren't what they should be; makes me want to test each segment with a meter.  I have a ZWL where I set the voltage lever to 17 volts.  Lost the picture - re-inserted it again.

Sometimes it's a derailment, sometimes between a non powered block with a potential load parked on it and across to a powered block.

I did have a wire meltdown in a Genset due to one side (the powered side) of the smoke resistor shorted to ground. I had to replace the wires on three smoke units and another harness. All melted together. I did find out that Lionel parts search for "harness" and similar terms allowed me to construct what I needed by buying appropriate parts. There were and are few harnesses listed with engines. I was avoiding crimping up my own harness, but as GRJ points out, it's a lot cheaper to crimp.

Chuck TCA LCCA ARRL BMWMOA

Chuck, thanks for the info!  I am awaiting some new soldering gear, wire strippers, wire, and finally the capacitor.  I have to admit, after looking at the interior, Lionel engineers did a great job of routing and placement of the bunches of components.  I am leaving the electrical plugs untouched - tried to unplug a few with my finger tips but they wouldn't budge; still plenty of room to work with the boiler off to the side.

RickM46

And now it starts.

Actually, the boiler is still off of my BB as I was planning to work on the smoke units, but life got in the way.  I can take detailed photos of where the cap goes, but not until late Saturday or Sunday, if you can wait.  I just soldered the cap in place without removing anything from the chassis.

sinclair posted:

Actually, the boiler is still off of my BB as I was planning to work on the smoke units, but life got in the way.  I can take detailed photos of where the cap goes, but not until late Saturday or Sunday, if you can wait.  I just soldered the cap in place without removing anything from the chassis.

Sinclair, thanks a bunch!!  I am awaiting the cap and other soldering gear so take your time.  Pictures would be great.

RickM46

And now it starts.

RickM46 posted:

One other thing, my apologies to Zachariah for hijacking your thread; on the other hand, if you hadn't started this trip, I would have never discovered the fried wires - thanks a million.

No problem always great when we can get some information and be able to fix these engines ourselves. Saves a lot of time and money

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