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  • Topic: Accucraft Whitcomb 45T Side Rod Diesel

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    • May 15, 2014 12:21 PM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      So here is the latest...
      I was driving home for lunch today and my cell phone rang..
      Normally I don't answer calls when I don't know the number, but today I did.
      On the other end of the line was Cliff from Accucraft.
      They are shipping me out a new locomotive and sending a call tag for me to return the one currently in my possession!

      I sent Accucraft a email this morning at 8:30am Eastern time, less then 4-hours later not only did I get a response.. but a solution!
      I can't even get that quality of customer service from companies I order 100's of Thousands of dollars worth of Switch Gear and Lighting from (my real day job selling Electrical Supplies).

      Hopefully this info restores a little bit of hope about some of the manufacturers left in Large Scale!

    • May 15, 2014 12:31 PM EDT
      • Easton , Massachusetts
         
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      Well in that case.....
      We will be waiting for a new Review!!:)
      Good to hear!

      ____________________________________

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    • May 15, 2014 12:39 PM EDT
      • Fort Myers Beach & Annapolis, Florida & Maryland
         
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      Vincent D'Agostino said:

      So here is the latest...
      I was driving home for lunch today and my cell phone rang..
      Normally I don't answer calls when I don't know the number, but today I did.
      On the other end of the line was Cliff from Accucraft.
      They are shipping me out a new locomotive and sending a call tag for me to return the one currently in my possession!

      I sent Accucraft a email this morning at 8:30am Eastern time, less then 4-hours later not only did I get a response.. but a solution!
      I can't even get that quality of customer service from companies I order 100's of Thousands of dollars worth of Switch Gear and Lighting from (my real day job selling Electrical Supplies).

      Hopefully this info restores a little bit of hope about some of the manufacturers left in Large Scale!

      Cliff is pretty good t solving customer problems.  I've had excellent service from them.

      ____________________________________

       

        Pete

    • May 15, 2014 4:00 PM EDT
      • Parts Unknown,
         
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      Glad to hear they're taking care of you. The very few problems I have ever had with accucraft have been taken care of the same way.

      It's a nice looking loco.

       

      Terry

    • May 15, 2014 9:24 PM EDT

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      There are a few people at a few companies that are "golden", Cliff at Accucraft, Navin at Aristo/Crest, and Mike at USAT.

       

      Greg

      ____________________________________

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    • May 15, 2014 9:51 PM EDT
      • Victoria, Gondwana
         
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      Good you are being looked after by Accucraft. It is strange how these problems manage to leave the factory in the first place though. Final test and inspection would prevent wasting everyone's time and money Now Accucraft have a 'customized' unit with a roadname. ;-)


      Andrew 

    • May 15, 2014 11:27 PM EDT
      • Candlewood Valley, Connecticut
         
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      I was going to suggest you call Cliff. I've had him help me out a number of times with parts for discontinued NOS cars I've purchased. It's always been quick and at no charge even though the cars are years out of production.

      Always seems to be service above and beyond expectation.

       

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    • May 16, 2014 9:26 AM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      And another update..
      Had a few more emails with Cliff and another phone call yesterday.
      It appears that the other (2) Yellow colored 45T loco's they have in stock have the same wheel issue that mine has, so they are not sending me either of those.
      Cliff is going to send me a Blue colored one that he has been running on there test track, too see if I like how it performs on my railway.
      I have two options left should the Blue one not work out.. They will refund my money or, I will have to wait until around August and I can send them the Yellow one that I have and they will re-machine the wheels on mine to make them run true.
      I don't want a refund as I really like the locomotive and have wanted one since I seen them introduce it, so I will see what happens with the Blue one, and then make a decision.. I just might buy the Blue one if I like it and still send the Yellow one back in August to have them fix it.      

    • May 16, 2014 10:32 AM EDT

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      As I suspected, it was an issue in manufacturing... the Aristo PCC car has wheel issues that could only be corrected with a lathe.

       

      If the Blue one works, swap the wheels ;-)

       

      greg

      ____________________________________

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    • May 16, 2014 10:47 AM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      I am really leaning towards buying the Blue one (provided it runs properly) and sending the Yellow one back to be fixed
    • May 16, 2014 11:16 AM EDT
      • Victoria, Gondwana
         
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      Vincent, seems like the heart has grown fonder. Do they have pressed on treads?

      Andrew 

    • May 16, 2014 11:43 AM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      I am not really sure , I will have to take a better look when I get home tonight.
    • May 16, 2014 7:02 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Greg, comparing Aristo to Accucraft isn't really a comparison. Accucraft is supposed to be a big step above what Aristo was. And they should have caught that simple error before the locomotive was completely assembled, or at least before it was shipped. Vincent, I am glad that Accucraft is promptly rectifying the problem. At least there are still companies out there who still know what customer service is.

       

      BTW, Greg, despite the known issues with the PCCs, mine run just fine. In fact, if they did have a bit of a wobble or a lurch, that would actually be prototypical. But they don't. They run smooth and even.

      ____________________________________

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      and King Butt Modeler

    • May 16, 2014 11:02 PM EDT

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      David, you are again misinterpreting one of my posts.

       

      I was giving another example where wheels could only be corrected on a lathe... no more and no less.

       

      ALL products are not perfect, no matter what the cost. Even expensive stuff needs correction on occasion.

       

      And in general, the PCC cars wobble and have terrible gauge issues. If yours does not have that problem, it will be the first one I have seen without it... Measure the gauge and the back to back and post here along with a youtube of it running if possible, seeing it close and down low.

       

      All the better for you that yours is fine... you are the exception, by far, count yourself lucky.

       

      I've turned a number of wheelsets already, and had to turn down others that needed the fix.

       

      Greg

       

      ____________________________________

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    • May 16, 2014 11:26 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Greg, I did have to fix the gauge on my first run PCC. That was actually quite simple, once I got over being upset that my new toy didn't work. I don't see any wobble when they run. I have never shot video before, my camera knows how, but I don't. I will have to see what I can do once the rain stops.

       

      Sorry for the thread derailment.

      ____________________________________

      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • May 22, 2014 1:20 PM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      Today the replacement 45T arrived at my shop, hopefully I will get (1) day out of this upcoming holiday weekend where it will NOT be raining so I can try this one out.
      To be continued.. 

    • May 22, 2014 5:50 PM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      Well no need to wait to test the replacement loco outside, it suffers from the same issues my original one does.
      Cliff from Accucraft had forewarned me that the replacement also showed signs of some *waddle* but he didn't think it was as bad as my original.
      I am not sure how many of these Accucraft has sold, but after some conversation with Cliff I am going to surmise that these have not sold well at all. And maybe that is why there are not more complaints about the issue of the waddle (axles/wheels not trued).
      It's too bad because this IMO is a beautiful locomotive, and I really hope a fix is in the near future.

      For now I will have to wait for Cliff to return (June 2nd) he has a few trade shows he is attending and we will discuss my loco's issues when he returns.
      Looks like I will be returning at least one of them now, then waiting until about August to return the one I plan on keeping to be worked on to correct the issues.

      I am happy that Accucraft (Cliff) is doing all he can to help, and I do appreciate the quick response from him and I know we will eventually get this worked out.
      However in saying that, I probably am a little more relaxed over this situation because I have a wall full of locomotives that run well and I can use whenever I want (and the weather cooperates). If this was my first or second purchase, or my first semi big dollar engine purchase, I would not be so nice,, in fact, I am pretty sure I would be very upset.

      That's all I have on this for now, wont have any new news until after I talk with Cliff.  

    • May 22, 2014 11:53 PM EDT
      • St. Louis, MO
         
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      Cliff is amazing.

       

      I managed to miss my Accucraft brass short caboose derailing and shorting out on a switch to the extent of melting the truck frame and wheel.  Cliff sent me an entire new caboose with a return shipping label.

       

      Best customer service I've ever found outside of HP's high end business support; I requested a replacement laptop power brick from them at 6:30 one evening and it was outside my house at 5:00 AM--10.5 hour turnaround time!

    • June 3, 2014 11:27 AM EDT
      • Warwick, RI
         
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      Just wanted to provide an update..

      I was shipped the replacement locomotive from Accucraft to try out and see if it was any better then the one I already had in my possession.
      The replacement suffers from the same issues as mine, the wheels are not true at all and create excessive waddle as the train moves down the track.
      Sadly, the replacement also suffers like my original on the slightest of grades. These locomotives don't like grades period, they stall right out when being run slow.. or what I like to call a realistic operating speed.
      Sure the engine will make it up the grade (which is about 1%) if you run it fast, but then it just looks stupid.
      I have many locomotives that cost 1/3 the price of the Accucraft that operate on my layout flawless, they do not stall out going up the slight incline and they do not speed away going down the slight decline... The Accucraft does.

      At this point I am just waiting to hear from Accucraft on how to proceed.
      I doubt they will be able to fix the stalling out issue without putting in some type of a electronic speed sensor.. which they are not going to do. So the issue of this engine stalling out will most likely never go away (unless I build a perfectly flat layout...)
      I was told I may have to wait until August to have the wheels fixed, which from where I sit now I will probably just wait and have the wheels fixed, then put the engine up on my display shelf and at least be able to admire it.

      It really is a beautiful piece, but I don't understand how a product from a company with supposed high quality control let an entire run of these loco's out the door.           

    • June 3, 2014 1:10 PM EDT

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      I like the people at Accucraft, the owner listens and works to improve product.

       

      I've got several "success stories" with the AML 1:29 products.

       

      Cliff is very responsive also.

       

      All that said, their drive trains are hit and miss. The 1:29 K4 Pacific is a beautiful model, comes with the "requisite" Pittman motor, but can't pull a thing because the gear reduction is 11:1 and it is just wrong.

       

      Clearly the final gear ratio on this loco also sucks. The right motor and the right gearing is the answer.

       

      To their credit, after I beat them mercilessly about the head and shoulders on the K4, the next 1:29 loco, the 0-6-0 switcher does not have the stupid Pittman motor (wrong motor type for a train), is fan cooled, and the right gear ratio... it's a great loco, pulls well, runs at the right speed, etc.

       

      If you want this loco to work, find a way to re-gear, but it might be impossible. The steamers use Pittman "gear head" motors, which are available in a number of gear ratios. I think your drivetrain is different, and it has 2 motors.

       

      Regards, Greg

      ____________________________________

      Be sure­ to visit ­my site, l­ots of tec­hnical tip­s and modi­fications,­ and you c­an search ­for topics­ and key w­ords.


      ­Click HERE for Greg­'s web sit­e
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