Monday, June 1, 2015

Caring for and Quartering of Steam Locomotives

Caring for Liliput Class 91 2-6-0 Steam Locomotives

  1. DO NOT handle the locomotive by the drivers or they WILL bind and the locomotive will stall and need to be quartered.
  2. Use two hands to handle the locomotive and beware small details – one hand on the cab and one hand on the valve gear.
  3. A Rix Railer is a nice tool to have when placing locomotives and cars on the track.
  4. DO NOT run the locomotive at maximum power if at all possible – the locomotive has enough power to throw itself out of quarter even without moving a train.  Slow speeds will keep the locomotive from binding.
  5. If the locomotives stalls, expect there to be a bind in the drivers that requires quartering.
  6. To prevent binding, an eyeglass screw has been used on the fireman’s side front driver.  At high speeds or heavy loads you will throw this rod off.  Gently replace the driver back onto the screw and reduce speed or lighten the train.
  7. The main gears have been lubed with white lithium.  This grease is especially good at NOT spreading all over everything.  When cold, this grease is stiff.  A couple medium speed warm-up laps results in a very smooth and quiet operation.
  8. DO NOT perform a torque test. This is not a diesel locomotive.  The torque test will cause a bind and will require the locomotive to be quartered.
  9. Operate with small cuts of cars – this is a small shunting locomotive that was not meant to shove heavy trains.  Build trains a few cars at a time and leave the heavy work to heavy class locomotives.
  10. You can learn to quarter your locomotive.  First study the forums and all the advice you can get then apply this rule:

On the Engineer’s side all driving lugs are placed at 12 o’clock.
Rotate the loco as if on a turntable.
Now on the Fireman’s side all driving lugs need to be matched at 3 o’clock.

Think carefully before twisting a wheel into proper quarter.

One wheel at a time.

Have patience.  This skill is very hard at first, then very easy once you catch on.

After you fail 3 times, stop and goto a Yogi and have him slap you in the face 27 times then drink a 6 pack of beer and start over.

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