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New Heljan class 17 issues


Simon Moore
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  • RMweb Gold

Is it the motor that has seized or the worm drive/ gear towers?

 

They certainly were problems with the early ones, I have a reliable one but only because I have taken it apart and fettled it.

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1 hour ago, locospotter said:

Just purchased a preowned Heljan Class 17 Clayton from Hattons the green D8600, they did say that the motor was noisy but I went ahead and purchased it. Done a 3 hour running in at half speed and plenty of lub to try to quieten the motor to no avail.This morning I decided to fit dcc decoder to try it out on my layout after ten minutes running at half speed total seizure of motor, and the front left hand front window fell out. Heljan quality going down the tubes Clayton going back to Hattons, hope there 0 gauge is not the same for 2021.

 

With the greatest respect, it was pre-owned, by Hattons' own admission it was a noisy runner and you still went ahead and bought it, then you say Heljan's quality is getting worse.  Caveat emptor.

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On 01/10/2020 at 17:35, locospotter said:

.......d a preowned Heljan Class 17 Clayton from Hattons the green D8600, they did say that the motor was noisy...

 

What a coincidence.  I had one just the same just over a year ago.  Hattons described it exactly the same.  I picked up a replacement motor, probably one of the last from Howes.

 

I am not sure what to think about Heljan - I like their Westerns and Hymechs but I have had issues with most of their newer designs.  What I find really annoying is their inattention to important detail - the under size cab side plates on Night Owl being a glaring example of how to spoil something.

 

Good luck

 

Ray

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Thanks for the replies people, yes I do stick to the policy of buyer beware so I did think about keeping the Clayton and purchase a new motor but just had email from Ian at Gaugemaster who are now Heljan agents but haven't any class 17 motors at this time but if it cost £30 for a motor and postage I can get a discount one for the same cost.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • RMweb Gold

I have recently suffered problems with the PCB on one of these locos after I removed the decoder chip, returning it to DC operation, but eventually overcame that by replacing the 8 pin DCC socket and some careful reflowing of solder joints. (Covered in another thread in the DCC help area).

 

Having done all of that I carefully lightly lubricated the bearings (oil) and gear train (grease) but now find the loco will only run for about 30-40 seconds on the rolling road before slowly grinding to a halt. This happens no matter which direction it runs or what speed it is set to. After about a minute it will run again before again slowing and stopping. Presumably over heating?

 

This is one of the first generation Heljan Cl 17 and I know there were a lot of problems with the motors but it has always seemed to work fine on my layout. The only thing is that my layout is a relatively short out and back so it may not have demonstrated this fault until I tried continuous running on the rolling road. 

 

Can anyone advise if this behaviour is typical of the problems with motors on this model please?

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • RMweb Gold

ive found removing one drive shaft can improve performance of a class 17.

 

But it is worth checking the worm isnt being squeezed by the tight fitting cap on the bogie towers, and thus preventing it rotating easily in the gearbox.

Edited by adb968008
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  • 2 weeks later...

I think both the last two posters have it right. The motors expire because the load on them is too great, due to issues in the gear train. The motors themselves are of dubious quality, so it doesn't take much to push them over the edge, into a puff of smoke!

 

As we've said before, the ideal is to dismantle the gear trains, clean them out of gooey grease, and re-assemble, checking at each stage that movement is free and unrestricted. Lubricate lightly and carefully.

 

John.

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3 hours ago, John Tomlinson said:

As we've said before, the ideal is to dismantle the gear trains, clean them out of gooey grease, and re-assemble, checking at each stage that movement is free and unrestricted. Lubricate lightly and carefully.

 

John.


Spot on, all that is needed to make a poor runner good in my experience (six 17s, 3 early, 3 later).


Roy

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If I remember correctly, there is a key on one of the gear train housings that is difficult to keep seated properly during assembly.  If it moves, it causes extra friction in the drive train, leading to motor problems.

 

Regards

 

Roddy

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 06/11/2020 at 16:05, Roy Langridge said:


Spot on, all that is needed to make a poor runner good in my experience (six 17s, 3 early, 3 later).


Roy

Are you recommending this as a "must do" right from the unboxing? I have an early 70's ScR layout crying out for Claytons.

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1 hour ago, w124bob said:

Are you recommending this as a "must do" right from the unboxing? I have an early 70's ScR layout crying out for Claytons.

I would suggest that if you have any reservations at all about the performance  of a new purchase, yes you should do this. I'm sorry to be a misery, but it really is too late when the loco has expired with a burnt out motor. If it starts to hesitate, make undue noise or slow down without you moving the controller cut the power straight away. The next para. indicates why I'd probably check out a new purchase from the off, or from the unboxing in your words.

 

I have a class 16 (that has the same motor as a Clayton). I thought it was OK, ran it around a fair bit and had dismantled the gears to check for free movement. One day I was cleaning the wheels and must have applied too much pressure on the wheel with my dampened cotton bud. The loco slowed noticeably, and was never right again, that is until I fitted a new motor bought from Olivias. It doesn't take a lot to push them over the edge.

 

John.

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2 hours ago, John Tomlinson said:

I would suggest that if you have any reservations at all about the performance  of a new purchase, yes you should do this. I'm sorry to be a misery, but it really is too late when the loco has expired with a burnt out motor. If it starts to hesitate, make undue noise or slow down without you moving the controller cut the power straight away. The next para. indicates why I'd probably check out a new purchase from the off, or from the unboxing in your words.

 

I have a class 16 (that has the same motor as a Clayton). I thought it was OK, ran it around a fair bit and had dismantled the gears to check for free movement. One day I was cleaning the wheels and must have applied too much pressure on the wheel with my dampened cotton bud. The loco slowed noticeably, and was never right again, that is until I fitted a new motor bought from Olivias. It doesn't take a lot to push them over the edge.

 

John.

In other words it is totally prototypical! I've a dead line on the diesel depot layout.

Edited by w124bob
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  • 5 months later...
Posted (edited)

I bought one of the early 17s back when they were new but stored it for when I built a layout. Layout now at least finished enough to run trains so got out the Clayton and, unaware of all the problems  duly wrecked the motor.

 

I see that all original motors are gone but I'm willing to search out a replacement.

 

What I can't work out is how to get at the gears to attempt to sort them.

 

Can anyone describe the method please?

 

Syd

Edited by juke
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I had the same problem,bad running and motor burning out,previous posters are right ,the gears are too tight and the load burns out the motor,

First I replaced the motor with a Mashima,there was one then that matched the original motors dimensions,.

secondly removed the bogies and dismantled the gear towers on each one.

There is a thrust washer in each gear tower which is too thick.

I filed the washer down slightly and refitted into the gear tower,did the same with the second….runs really well and still does after nearly 10 years.

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Thanks Brian, the thrust washer is worth some work then.

 

What I haven't worked out is how to remove the bogies so that I can work at them.

 

Hope you can describe the process after all this time, it would be great to sort this.

 

Mind you, I discovered I have a Class 14, probably never been out of it's box and whilst reading up on the 17 I see they have problems too!

 

Syd

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, juke said:

Thanks Brian, the thrust washer is worth some work then.

 

What I haven't worked out is how to remove the bogies so that I can work at them.

 

Hope you can describe the process after all this time, it would be great to sort this.

 

Mind you, I discovered I have a Class 14, probably never been out of it's box and whilst reading up on the 17 I see they have problems too!

 

Syd

 

 

Long time since I did mine, but if I recall correctly:

  • The bogie side frames should just pull off the spigots and the pickups then slip off the same spigots that hold the side frames off.
  • On the top of the chassis you then need to remove the part on the top that holds the driveshaft from the motor. This is under the PCB (slip it from the rubber mount and move it to one end) and there are clips that extend down the side of the gearbox. I use small flat-bladed watchmakers screwdrivers to release them one at a time.
  • Once the top is off, put the driveshaft to one side.
  • You should now be able to remove the bogie from its mounting holes in the chassis on either side.
  • You then have to remove the keeper plate from the bottom - again this is held by four small clips that extend up the sides and must be released.
  • The two sides should just separate exposing the gears.

HTH.


Roy

Edited by Roy Langridge
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Thanks Roy, your memory was spot on. I had guessed some of the possible opening points but they looked so tight I hadn't chanced prying them open.

I've now had the gearbox opened . The gears and bearing are turning OK. If I get the loco running I'll take care until I'm sure they are still free running when in use. Trouble is now I need a motor to complete the rebuild. I see some for sale which I could possibly adapt

but they quote quite high RPM figures.

I got my Class 14 out of it's box and set it on the track and it ran an inch or so and stopped, so next project is decided.

 

Regards

Syd

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

I got the TV12-27 from Roxey and its a drop-in fit. I just pulled the flywheels off and swapped them onto the new motor.

its a flat-sided type so I discarded the existing mountings and laid it on some black-tak with blu-tac above for the circuit board to rest on.

I've run it about 300 feet so far. On the track that is laid straight onto ply it is very smooth and quiet but on the ballasted track it ampifies a humming sound!

It runs fine on DC, haven't tried it yet on DCC as I'm trying to sort out the lighting.

I had stripped the wiring from the circuit board as it looked pretty poor but now the red lights stay on at both ends. Is that normal?

I know they're not very noticeable but I'd disconnect them if that's the case.

Just trying to dim the headcode lights now. i see that a replacement was mentioned on page 1 of this thread but doesn't seem to be around now.

Any help once again would be appreciated.

 

Syd

 

Edited by juke
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On 25/05/2021 at 10:36, juke said:

I got the TV12-27 from Roxey and its a drop-in fit. I just pulled the flywheels off and swapped them onto the new motor.

its a flat-sided type so I discarded the existing mountings and laid it on some black-tak with blu-tac above for the circuit board to rest on.

I've run it about 300 feet so far. On the track that is laid straight onto ply it is very smooth and quiet but on the ballasted track it ampifies a humming sound!

It runs fine on DC, haven't tried it yet on DCC as I'm trying to sort out the lighting.

I had stripped the wiring from the circuit board as it looked pretty poor but now the red lights stay on at both ends. Is that normal?

I know they're not very noticeable but I'd disconnect them if that's the case.

Just trying to dim the headcode lights now. i see that a replacement was mentioned on page 1 of this thread but can't doesn't seem to be around now.

Any help once again would be appreciated.

 

Syd

 

 

Red lights should be directional - without knowing how you have wired it up it is hard to help. If you can upload a picture of how they are wired I can take a look.

 

I use the Stickswipe Class 17 replacement headcode lights. He lists his items on ebay, here is his current set which doesn't have them listed, but just drop him a message and he will often make you a set up.

 

Stickswipe

 

Sorry,


Roy

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