Jump to content


PF in old train?


  • Please log in to reply
21 replies to this topic

#1 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 12 May 2009 - 10:22 AM

Posted Image

I am considering to get my old 171 train set running again. I do have a 4,5v motor for it but it is not working any more (it moves really slow and have a hight pitch sound).
I was thinking of using the new power functions motor with IR receiver and the cheaper non rechargeable battery box (to reduce cost). But the power functions train motor 8866 is not available in Sweden and I can't find any for sale on Bricklink. I understand that the 9v motor should be usable to. How about the RC motor? It is cheaper on BrickLink.

If it is possible to use it, what other parts do I need? Does the power cords work between systems?

I will run on plastic rails. I have not decided if I will keep my existing blue rail or purchase new ones. If it works I will consider buying red wheels from Big Ben Bricks.

Anders

#2 Freddie

Freddie

    Posts: 871
    Joined: 16-February 06
    Member: 670
    Country: Norway

Posted 12 May 2009 - 11:04 AM

8866 is nothing more than the RC train-motor when sold separately. Even the connection point is identical. The PF-extension cord is backwards compatible in one end, and using this you can power and control any 9V-motor. So the answer is yes, this should word, and should be all you need.

Just keep in mind that the 9V train-motor has fixed wheels, while the RC train-motor has grippers for technic axles and uses technic train wheels. So with the latter you can use red BBB-wheels.

#3 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 12 May 2009 - 11:50 AM

Thanks!

I will order the parts and try it out then!

#4 TheBrickster

TheBrickster

  • Loved Ghost Ranger


    Posts: 9642
    Joined: 15-January 05
    Member: 174

Posted 12 May 2009 - 02:22 PM

Make sure you share some pictures when you get it running. :wink:

EDIT: oh, and welcome to EB!

#5 KH3D

KH3D

    Posts: 28
    Joined: 15-December 07
    Member: 2287
    Country: USA

Posted 15 May 2009 - 02:03 AM

Finally got a chance to put the new #8866 Train Motor and PF parts from the #10194 Emerald Night into one of my older locomotives, the #10020 Santa Fe Super Chief. There are some things you should probably know if you plan to do this.

  • The motor does not come with a PF wire, but you will need one. There's plenty of room for all the electronics inside the Chief, so #8886 is fine.
  • The motor comes with two black #3706 Technic Axle 6 as axles. As I understand it, if you are converting one of the newer #7897 Passenger Train or #7898 Cargo Train, this isn't an issue, because their Decorative Side pieces are drilled out to accommodate Technic axles. However, the old 9v #2871 Decorative Sides were only drilled out for the smaller metal pin axles. So, they can't accommodate the extra length of the axles, and can't be installed properly because of it. You have some choices to make it work. I went with number 3, until I can get the parts and try number 2.
    • Use the decorative sides from #7897 or #7898, which should work but aren't available in Light Gray (old).
    • Use 5-stud Technic axles, which may not go all the way through the wheels on both sides.
    • Shave a half-stud length off of each 6-stud axle.
    • Drill out the metal pin holes in the old Decorative Sides to accommodate the larger diameter of the Technic axles.
  • The signal strength between TX and RX is fairly weak, so much so that it has a hard time going through one layer of bricks. At first, for no particular reason, I yanked the brick-built engine out of the locomotive and put the battery pack/ESC toward the front of the interior and the RX toward the back of the receiver. Reception was erratic at best. I pulled the driver's seat and control panel out and put the RX there, behind the windshield, and the battery pack/ESC in the back. It worked fine from that point on.
  • The motor has a bit of a hum to it. At higher speeds the train running drowns out the noise, but at very low speeds it's pretty audible.
  • The battery pack/ESC and RX are both 4-studs wide, so they won't fit in narrower locomotives like the #10133 BNSF Locomotive. You could always put them in a follow-on car and run a wire to the locomotive, like the engine and tender in the #10194 Emerald Night.

I talked to a guy at LEGO Customer Service that's their train expert, and my call was the first he had heard about the problem with the axle length. There's not much chance of them making a 5.5-stud axle, but he said he will pass the issue along to the train team, so they'll know about it.

Overall, I still feel it's worth it, especially since it's only $11 (+ $3 for the PF wire). Just be aware there are some things you may need to work through.

Edited by KH3D, 15 May 2009 - 02:06 AM.

- Kurtis Harris
http://KH3D.com

#6 TheBrickster

TheBrickster

  • Loved Ghost Ranger


    Posts: 9642
    Joined: 15-January 05
    Member: 174

Posted 15 May 2009 - 03:58 AM

View PostKH3D, on May 14 2009, 06:03 PM, said:

Finally got a chance to put the new #8866 Train Motor and PF parts from the #10194 Emerald Night into one of my older locomotives, the #10020 Santa Fe Super Chief.
Thanks for sharing this info KH.  Please consider providing a picture or two.

#7 CP5670

CP5670

  • In search of litmus paper


    Posts: 2519
    Joined: 02-February 08
    Member: 2646
    Country: United States

Posted 15 May 2009 - 03:59 AM

5.5 axles have actually been available for a long time (the only non-integer length they appear in), but they have a stopper in the middle that would probably prevent you from using them here.

#8 KH3D

KH3D

    Posts: 28
    Joined: 15-December 07
    Member: 2287
    Country: USA

Posted 15 May 2009 - 11:23 AM

View PostTheBrickster, on May 14 2009, 09:58 PM, said:

Thanks for sharing this info KH.  Please consider providing a picture or two.

My camera has given up the ghost. I'll see if I can borrow one this weekend and post some pics.
- Kurtis Harris
http://KH3D.com

#9 MetroiD

MetroiD

  • Lost in the forest of life


    Posts: 2661
    Joined: 22-February 09
    Member: 5374
    Country: Bulgaria

Posted 15 May 2009 - 01:46 PM

Thanks ever so much for posting this information, KH3D! I've purchased a Super Chief recently and was curious as to how and if it would work with PF... I'll also post here in case I come up with anything useful.
Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image

#10 KH3D

KH3D

    Posts: 28
    Joined: 15-December 07
    Member: 2287
    Country: USA

Posted 16 May 2009 - 11:52 PM

Here are some pics. Sorry, a couple of them are a bit blurry.

Here's everything mounted and the locomotive closed up. Notice the hole at the top back of the vertical yellow stripe. This is where the 1x6 light gray plate goes across the top of the brick-built motor, which needs to be removed. Will have to fill that in on each side with a 1x1 light gray plate.

Posted Image


Here's the locomotive with the roof off.

Posted Image


Here's the receiver. I suggest removing the driver's seat and control panel to make room for it behind the windshield, for best reception.

Posted Image


Here's the battery pack/ESC. I suggest removing the brick-built engine to make room, but you will need to fill those holes on each side.

Posted Image


Here's a bottom view of the locomotive with the motor mounted.

Posted Image


Here's the motor off the locomotive with the old-fashioned light gray Decorative Sides installed. Remember, this won't work with the included Technic 6-stud axles.

Posted Image


Here's the motor off the locomotive with one of the Decorative Sides removed. Using a Technic 5-stud axle, the axle only extends half-way through the wheels on each side, but this seems to be sufficient under normal running conditions.

Posted Image


- Kurtis Harris
http://KH3D.com

#11 mendes

mendes

    Posts: 12
    Joined: 28-May 09
    Member: 6227

Posted 28 May 2009 - 12:46 PM

Hallo Anders,

I am trying to do exactly the same thing as you - update my old 171 train with the RC motor, and would also like to first try it out with an old 9v battery box before buying the new, rather expensive rechargeable battery. There are two things I'm not sure about. Perhaps someone here could help:

1. Which 9v old battery box can i use, the 4 x 8 stud one (http://www.peeron.com/inv/sets/5391-1) or the bigger 4 x 14 one (http://www.peeron.com/inv/sets/5293-1)?

2. I would prefer to use a shorter cable than the current pf one, for instance the 8.5 cm one  (http://www.peeron.com/inv/sets/5041-1). Would it work with the rc motor?

Good luck with your project Anders!

#12 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 29 May 2009 - 09:09 AM

I use http://www.peeron.com/inv/sets/8881-1 now. But it is too big to be god. The small one you link to I think takes one 9V battery and that will not be enough to drive the train any longer time. The bigger one will work IF you rewire the cable so that the IR receiver gets the right voltage. Or if you connect it directly to the motor without the IR Receiver.

I think that the cable works with the motor and the battery boxes you linked to but it will not work with Power Functions like the IR.

I have now the motor running in my train. In order to fit the motor at the right place I had to file of the plastic of the cable connector where the cable comes out and instead let the cable go right up. I also have not got my remote control yet so I can not use the IR speed regulation. The motor fits nicely but I don't know where to put the IR yet. It is really ugly as I have it now. Perhaps a smaller battery box so that the IR can be placed in the tender.

I don't know why but the train moves way to fast! It is hard to get it to run on the rail and ones it even tipped outwards in a curve because of the speed! I guess that it will be better with the remote but how does it work in the RC trains where it is not possible to regulate the speed?

Also the motor did not run well on my blue rail and I had to by new RC rail instead.

I will post pictures soon to show how I have put it together.

#13 mendes

mendes

    Posts: 12
    Joined: 28-May 09
    Member: 6227

Posted 29 May 2009 - 12:53 PM

Thanks very much for your reply and useful info.

I also think the current 9v battery is to ugly to use for a train that's why I was wondering if I could use the old one. I guess I'll have to use to bigger one then, which means I'll have to have to bigger tender than the old one from set 161.

Instead of filing bits off the cable perhaps it would be possible to use a couple of these parts:
http://www.peeron.com/inv/parts/4755

I was hoping to use my old blue rails. I guess it just derails on them - a constant problem with the old track.

I think I'll send off this weekend for a motor and try and get an old battery box and cable and see how I get along. I'll move on to IR later.

#14 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 29 May 2009 - 02:45 PM

Yes perhaps two (or four, two and two?) of thoose peices might get the tip of the connector over the baseplate so that it works without modification.

#15 mendes

mendes

    Posts: 12
    Joined: 28-May 09
    Member: 6227

Posted 06 June 2009 - 10:47 PM

I ordered an rc motor 8866 from lego and bought a cable, a 9v battery box and a couple of contact plates put them all together with my old 171 and I'm pretty happy with the results. I've uploaded a short video to youtube:



As you can see, it runs well for me on the old blue rails.

I did however have the same problem as Anders when I just ran the engine and the battery box - it tipped over on the curves. With the extra weight of the wagons it's ok though.

Another slight problem is that the wheels skid when starting and when coming out of curves- I guess this is due to the fact that the engine is much lighter than modern trains are. Or maybe there not enough traction from the small rubber band on the wheel?

After this successful test I think I'll order the IR stuff now!

#16 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 10 June 2009 - 01:02 PM

Good that it works on the blue track for you. I guess that my white pieces that hold the rails are to old (i can't remember their name now, but the 2*8 plates). your battery box also looks much better than mine.

I have now taken some photos of how I have it connected right now.

Posted Image
Motor with some part to connect to the train base.

Posted Image
Notice how I have filed of the extruding part on the connector for it to fit nicely in the train base.

Posted Image
I have started to rebuild the train around the new motor. In the empty space I will but some weights to get more traction when running with lots of wagons.

Posted Image
Complete on the tracks. I will rebuild the tender with some other battery box and move the IR receiver to it also later.

As it works so nicely I will be ordering red wheels for it. I wan't that old look that is somewhat ruined by the black wheels.

#17 mendes

mendes

    Posts: 12
    Joined: 28-May 09
    Member: 6227

Posted 11 June 2009 - 02:04 PM

Nice pictures Anders!

About 10% of my curved blue rails are a bit too loose on the sleepers too. An extra sleeper in the middle of a curve can sometimes be helpful here.

I'll try out your idea with making the engine a bit heavier for better traction.

By the way, do you know the right rubber bands to use with big ben bricks wheels?

Unfortunately my modernization project will be severely held back by the fact that the IR remote control is sold out and will only available in August again! In the meantime i will try to make a nice tender and incorporate:

the pole reverser:

Posted Image
(http://www.peeron.com/inv/parts/x877)

and the switch brick:

Posted Image
(http://www.peeron.com/inv/parts/x880)

So that I can use my old signals.

I think lego must really be congratulated in maintaining compatibility with a 40 year old system!

Mendes

#18 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 11 June 2009 - 03:15 PM

The remote was sold out at S&H when I vas going to order also but I found some on Bricklink and ordered mine from US. But now I can't find any for sale there either.

I am working on a new tender with this battery holder. I took the one for 8 bateries and modified it to 6 batteries instead. I will then build a wagon around it so that it does not take so much space as the one i am using now. It will also fit the IR receiver somewhat better.

#19 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 07 April 2010 - 08:39 PM

One of the problems that started my quest for PF in my old train was a faulty 4.5V motor. In Railbricks number 6 there is an article on page 41 about changing the actual motor inside. I followed those instructions and this is what I ended up with!

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

I like the red original wheels a lot more then the new black ones on this train.

Edited by Anders Nolberger, 07 April 2010 - 08:40 PM.


#20 mendes

mendes

    Posts: 12
    Joined: 28-May 09
    Member: 6227

Posted 09 April 2010 - 11:23 AM

Nice work Anders! I would prefer to use the old red wheels as well because you can then also use the old piston rods (like in set 133).

I'm a bit apprehensive about doing that modification though. What tools are required?

I see you made a customized cable. Can you do all the RC stuff with your new system, for instance regulation of speed?

#21 johanby

johanby

    Posts: 29
    Joined: 30-May 09
    Member: 6246

Posted 09 April 2010 - 05:50 PM

Interesting! I suppose you use the 4.5V motor or is it the 12V motor? Are you having the battery on full voltage (7.2V) or did you choose a lower voltage? By the way, does anyone know how high voltage is it possible to use on the 4.5V motor without damaging it?

#22 Anders Nolberger

Anders Nolberger

    Posts: 70
    Joined: 03-March 09
    Member: 5456
    Country: Sweden

Posted 09 April 2010 - 06:33 PM

The tools to switch the motor is described in the article in railbricks. I used a 12V motor so it does not run at full speed but it is enough and can run all of my wagons without problem. You can see my wagons on my flickr account.

The PF-wire has 4 connections. 2 that has constant voltage and two that can be regulated with for example the IR receiver. I just cut the wire and connected the regulated ones to the old connectors that fits in the motor. So it can be controlled with my IR remote.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users