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Offline husafreak  
#1 Posted : 24 September 2023 17:25:20(UTC)
husafreak

United States   
Joined: 09/04/2019(UTC)
Posts: 559
Location: California, Bay Area
Gotta love Z scale ;) Sweeping through a distant hobby shop for model airplane stuff I spied a pair of Marklin 8831 Jagermeister Railbuses in the display case. Hmmm. Something from an estate. I asked why one was marked $100 and the other $150? without my glasses and with the salesman handling the locos we couldn't see a difference so I went away with the better deal. On returning home after a long drive and with my jewelers loupe I found I had a running loco with a cracked body shell, darn! Right through all the window mullions too. I called the hobby shop about sending it back and the owner said he would just send me the other one for free, he said "hopefully between both of them you can get one that runs" LOL. The second example does not run, lights are on but motor won't turn.

Here's what I have found about these locos. They are noisy, with 3 plole motors, produced from 2000-2010, made in Germany, and with a snap on clear plastic top chassis half (ugh!) above a metal lower frame. This is kind of clever as the clear plastic carries the end lighting throughout the chassis and Marklin could advertise this as "interior lighting". But for maintenance it is a really bad design. To get at the running gear and clean it up requires bending the clear plastic at the four corners and pulling up. Which may break the fragile clear plastic (one on the running loco is already broken) and will also suddenly free the motor, gears, and coupler assemblies, springs and all, in an instant. Z Scale Hobo posted a video of a repair he did for a client after the client lost a gear. So I'll do that inside a bag if I have to!

So, I'm looking for any advice you guys might have. I don't know if hardened oil syndrome would happen in a Marklin loco after 2000. The only hidden thing that could produce drag are the bearings on either side of the motor. The gears look clean. I'd like to try submersing the chassis in an ultrasonic bath to free up the drive without risking dissassembly but I don't want to discolor the clear plastic or chassis paint (these have painted red wheels) so the fluid used has to be a safe choice. If it has to come apart maybe someone here has a clever way of doing that without breaking it? And I would like to know how they run in general? The video mentioned does a good job of showing that. The one which is running hesitates at anything below half throttle and will not run slowly. I used a tiny bit of Libelle oil and ran it for a half hour in both directions but it did not loosen up. It could run better.

Edited by user 28 September 2023 00:01:23(UTC)  | Reason: Mine have 3 pole motors

Offline BenP  
#2 Posted : 24 September 2023 18:53:40(UTC)
BenP

United States   
Joined: 04/02/2021(UTC)
Posts: 344
Location: Michigan, Ann Arbor
Originally Posted by: husafreak Go to Quoted Post
Gotta love Z scale ;) Sweeping through a distant hobby shop for model airplane stuff I spied a pair of Marklin 8831 Jagermeister Railbuses in the display case. Hmmm. Something from an estate. I asked why one was marked $100 and the other $150? without my glasses and with the salesman handling the locos we couldn't see a difference so I went away with the better deal. On returning home after a long drive and with my jewelers loupe I found I had a running loco with a cracked body shell, darn! Right through all the window mullions too. I called the hobby shop about sending it back and the owner said he would just send me the other one for free, he said "hopefully between both of them you can get one that runs" LOL. The second example does not run, lights are on but motor won't turn.

Here's what I have found about these locos. They are noisy, with 5 plole motors, produced from 2000-2010, made in Germany, and with a snap on clear plastic top chassis half (ugh!) above a metal lower frame. This is kind of clever as the clear plastic carries the end lighting throughout the chassis and Marklin could advertise this as "interior lighting". But for maintenance it is a really bad design. To get at the running gear and clean it up requires bending the clear plastic at the four corners and pulling up. Which may break the fragile clear plastic (one on the running loco is already broken) and will also suddenly free the motor, gears, and coupler assemblies, springs and all, in an instant. Z Scale Hobo posted a video of a repair he did for a client after the client lost a gear. So I'll do that inside a bag if I have to!

So, I'm looking for any advice you guys might have. I don't know if hardened oil syndrome would happen in a Marklin loco after 2000. The only hidden thing that could produce drag are the bearings on either side of the motor. The gears look clean. I'd like to try submersing the chassis in an ultrasonic bath to free up the drive without risking dissassembly but I don't want to discolor the clear plastic or chassis paint (these have painted red wheels) so the fluid used has to be a safe choice. If it has to come apart maybe someone here has a clever way of doing that without breaking it? And I would like to know how they run in general? The video mentioned does a good job of showing that. The one which is running hesitates at anything below half throttle and will not run slowly. I used a tiny bit of Libelle oil and ran it for a half hour in both directions but it did not loosen up. It could run better.


Same problem here. After checking that motor runs freely (some cleaning helped), I had to remove all the (tiny) gear and soaked them in alcohol and removed old oil with wooden pin. Then the railbus worked fine. Make sure to put two sets of gears together as before, so they rotate correctly.
Ben



Digital M (+ some K) track layout with mostly vintage rolling stock and accessories, and small Z scale layout.
https://youtube.com/play...0kgVYbh0CeDTF-bYXoD_2-V9
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Offline Zme  
#3 Posted : 25 September 2023 03:41:25(UTC)
Zme

United States   
Joined: 02/10/2013(UTC)
Posts: 771
Location: West Texas
Hello, hope all is well.

Adding a few new (used) railbuses to your collection makes for a great day. Sound like you found a good seller who is willing to work with you. That one might be damaged considering the shell is damaged.

You are right, the railbus is a noisy runner, but simple to work on. At least there are no wheels to “quarter “, still there are a few challenges to getting it working.

I would hesitate to put the frame into your machine as I believe this will fade your dark black frame. A small brush and alcohol will clean this. I believe you will be able to get this railbus disassembled without breaking anything, assuming that is what you would like to do.

To avoid the complete disassembly, you could try increment cleaning perhaps doing the lower gears and wheel sets. The plastic cage which holds the wheels in, seems to be flexible and not easily broken. Just note how they are installed, so you can reinstall them correctly. The cage can be pressed in the wrong orientation. To remove just press it out from one corner. Put the parts into your ultrasonic. I usually put a small glass into my cleaner and use a few pumps of Simple Green and add distilled water to dilute it a bit. The glass keeps the parts together. When clean, I dip the parts in 97% alcohol and air dry them with compressed air. The front and rear parts are identical but if you want to, you can keep them together. I have found it somewhat difficult to reinstall the wheelsets because the wheel contacts must be kept behind the wheels. Make certain you check that all contacts are in the correct position. I do this in a foam tray which has a side wall. I put the wheel set in while pressing in the contact. I am sure someone has a better way, but I use an old fashion plastic covered wire bag tie which I loop and use the foam sidewall to help keep pressure on the contact as I install them. I discovered you can get contact behind the wheel on one side and use the loop to keep the contact in position on the other. Yes you will need real dexterity for this one. It may take me more than once to get this right. This is perhaps the most challenging part of this, providing you with frustration and eventual joy in the end. I am sure you can get this done. With the wheels cleaned, you can test to see if it works now.

You are right the clear insulator is a more rigid assembly. I usually have some of these new plastic tooth cleaner/toothpicks and insert one into the holes in the bottom of the frame, to unhook the circuit board. They fit right into the holes but might need some trimming. Probably want to remove the brushes first and watch for the coupler spring to come loose when working on this. Don’t want to lose one. Remember to reinstall this correctly, the brushes are on one side and I just carefully press it down until it snaps. It must be seated on the frame and the contacts must be behind the wheels. If you do this, probably would want the wheels off and repeat the install procedure above once the circuit board is on. If you break something, a seller on eBay’s says the insulator works even if one tine is broken, but I cannot say this is true.

Clean up that motor when you have these parts off. Look for melted housings and look for a motor replacement if it is real bad. Some, abuse their railbus. The motor only goes in one way. No problems should be encountered here. Use the correct brushes if you are replacing them. Three pole brushes might not work on a five pole motor. I put usable brushes in my ultrasonic.

When you finish, your railbus still might be on the noisy side compared to new stuff . Five poles are more quiet, bell motor’s even better. Noisy is part of the charm of an old railbus in Z. If you don’t like this, don’t purchase the railbus cleaner, it is worse.

Hope this long winded response explains my process clearly enough to help. Lubricant everything that needs it. Consult those videos if needed. I would like to see these myself.

Enjoy the railbuses, I do mine. Take good care.

Dwight
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Offline Zme  
#4 Posted : 26 September 2023 06:27:20(UTC)
Zme

United States   
Joined: 02/10/2013(UTC)
Posts: 771
Location: West Texas
Hello, hope all is well.

Here is a link to the parts diagram for the older railbus.

https://www.maerklin.de/...elnummer=8816&lang=2

I forgot to mention, I believe the motor must be kept in the same position regarding top to bottom orientation. If the motor is installed upside down, your railbus will run in the wrong direction.

When you get to work on the motor removal, just put a dot on the top of the motor case, to make certain it is reinstalled in the same orientation.

Take good care.

Dwight
Offline husafreak  
#5 Posted : 26 September 2023 07:42:59(UTC)
husafreak

United States   
Joined: 09/04/2019(UTC)
Posts: 559
Location: California, Bay Area
Thanks. I was hoping someone knew of a fluid to clean it without taking it apart, and concerned the clear plastic tabs will break. That’s pretty much it. But I guess I’ll have to take it apart, fingers crossed the plastic doesn’t fracture, it sounds like it’s not as brittle as I think it is. It’s a simple machine as Marklin locos go, and I agree that they should be put back together in the order they came apart.
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Zme
Offline Zme  
#6 Posted : 26 September 2023 18:10:15(UTC)
Zme

United States   
Joined: 02/10/2013(UTC)
Posts: 771
Location: West Texas
Hello hope all is well.

Anytime we get into this work, there is a certain amount of risk that goes with it. It is after all, risky business to a degree.

I found this discussion about railbus work. It is off a google translate so you can read it. It might be useful, but if the translate doesn’t come across, just go to the original page and then translate it. Just scroll down.

https://bautipps-z--kuep...en-US&_x_tr_pto=wapp

Might find it useful. I notice this discussion says to use a screwdriver as a wedge just above the coupler pocket. Just work carefully and if you have a plastic tooth pick, it will unhook the catch it has inside the frame.

Best wishes for your project. I can safely say, I have never broken that insulator and I am fat fingered and don’t always know what I am doing. You have even better odds.

Take good care.

Dwight
Offline husafreak  
#7 Posted : 26 September 2023 21:34:22(UTC)
husafreak

United States   
Joined: 09/04/2019(UTC)
Posts: 559
Location: California, Bay Area
Excellent link! I'm starting to get more confident about this job ;)
Offline husafreak  
#8 Posted : 28 September 2023 00:00:47(UTC)
husafreak

United States   
Joined: 09/04/2019(UTC)
Posts: 559
Location: California, Bay Area
Good news everyone! I've been watching reruns of Futurama ;) Anywhoo, I knocked out the maintenance of my two Railbus in two hours today and have a new found respect for Marklin craftsmanship, nothing broke! The video on the AZL forum of a Zmodell DCC conversion of a current Railbus showed me how to remove the wheels and the pictures in the article linked here helped a lot too. Like with the plastic on a new car if you know where to pry and apply leverage it works pretty well. The running (but broken body) Railbus is running more smoothly now but the brushes and commutator are well worn and it is down on power compared to its mate. That one had probably never been run, almost no brush wear, shiny silver wheels. It was completely glued tight. No gobs or clumps of waxy old oil, just everything stuck together. I had to pry everything apart. But after a thorough cleaning with brushes and alcohol it is running amazingly well. I used magnets and worked inside a bag so no flyaway springs, and I glued them to their couplers with a pinhead of UHU for reassembly. Oh, these turned out to be 3 pole motors. With the pair poorly matched at slow speed I probably shouldn't run them together, much, but they look pretty keen that way.
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Offline Artologic  
#9 Posted : 28 September 2023 17:48:37(UTC)
Artologic

Belgium   
Joined: 21/08/2010(UTC)
Posts: 498
Originally Posted by: husafreak Go to Quoted Post
Good news everyone! I've been watching reruns of Futurama ;) Anywhoo, I knocked out the maintenance of my two Railbus in two hours today and have a new found respect for Marklin craftsmanship, nothing broke! The video on the AZL forum of a Zmodell DCC conversion of a current Railbus showed me how to remove the wheels and the pictures in the article linked here helped a lot too. Like with the plastic on a new car if you know where to pry and apply leverage it works pretty well. The running (but broken body) Railbus is running more smoothly now but the brushes and commutator are well worn and it is down on power compared to its mate. That one had probably never been run, almost no brush wear, shiny silver wheels. It was completely glued tight. No gobs or clumps of waxy old oil, just everything stuck together. I had to pry everything apart. But after a thorough cleaning with brushes and alcohol it is running amazingly well. I used magnets and worked inside a bag so no flyaway springs, and I glued them to their couplers with a pinhead of UHU for reassembly. Oh, these turned out to be 3 pole motors. With the pair poorly matched at slow speed I probably shouldn't run them together, much, but they look pretty keen that way.


Lol I notice a Farnsworth quote there. I love futurama, really curious what the new episodes will be like.
Back on topic, I m glad you got them fixed, they aren t really complicated and well built (I have the chiemgau one). What I mostly do for maintainance (not the big, but the regular maintainance) is just remove the covers for the wheels and normally you can reach every oilable part. Makes the risk for breaking the plastic part less likely.

I love the bag and glue idea, maybe I should do that as well.

Those 3 polers for themselves are quite the good runners, but mine runs even better since I chanced the brushes for the ones used with 5 pole motors (and smoother for that too), I have no clue, but I m happy with it. Maybe something you can try out as well?

Best,
Kristof
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Offline husafreak  
#10 Posted : 29 September 2023 02:58:32(UTC)
husafreak

United States   
Joined: 09/04/2019(UTC)
Posts: 559
Location: California, Bay Area
Interesting idea about the brushes. I may have a set new in the bag. The part number on the exploded diagram is an 8988, have a set of 89881 that sure look about the same. I have forgotten (or never knew) what the addition of the 1 as the last number means?
Also when I started this thread I did not know that the wheels could be removed from the bottom, now that I do I would do like you for a small job like oiling the gears.
Offline Artologic  
#11 Posted : 02 October 2023 21:02:27(UTC)
Artologic

Belgium   
Joined: 21/08/2010(UTC)
Posts: 498
Originally Posted by: husafreak Go to Quoted Post
Interesting idea about the brushes. I may have a set new in the bag. The part number on the exploded diagram is an 8988, have a set of 89881 that sure look about the same. I have forgotten (or never knew) what the addition of the 1 as the last number means?
Also when I started this thread I did not know that the wheels could be removed from the bottom, now that I do I would do like you for a small job like oiling the gears.


Hey Husafreak,

I would try, if it s nothing, you can just put them back in the bag for a different project, but let me know how it went on your side. The last 1 means they are ment for the 5 pole motors, since the ones without 1 on the end are only ment for 3 pole motors.
It took me a while as well, but it makes it so much easier to do maintainance, just watch for the wipers when putting the wheels back :-).

Best,
Kristof
Offline husafreak  
#12 Posted : 03 October 2023 03:19:37(UTC)
husafreak

United States   
Joined: 09/04/2019(UTC)
Posts: 559
Location: California, Bay Area
I’ve done two of them now so it should be easy enough. I won’t be able to try it for a few weeks but it’s worth trying to get these running closer to each other.
Offline daveoZ  
#13 Posted : 04 October 2023 22:01:33(UTC)
daveoZ

United States   
Joined: 02/01/2022(UTC)
Posts: 15
Location: Las Vegas
I likewise have two units. My cat knocked one off the layout onto the carpet. The shell came off the chassis and I simply pushed it back on. I have found the easy way to remove the shell is to put my thumbnail against the front bumper and pull the shell up. I have never changed brushes. Does Marklin still sell them?
Offline parakiet  
#14 Posted : 05 October 2023 10:10:40(UTC)
parakiet

Belgium   
Joined: 20/02/2017(UTC)
Posts: 282
Location: Flanders!
Originally Posted by: daveoZ Go to Quoted Post
I have found the easy way to remove the shell is to put my thumbnail against the front bumper and pull the shell up.


You've got to get you a cheap amazon/ebay smartphone repair kit. They come with al kinde of plastic tools and small screwdrivers. Very easy and safe to remove the shells of any z scale loc.

Offline Zme  
#15 Posted : 07 October 2023 20:41:48(UTC)
Zme

United States   
Joined: 02/10/2013(UTC)
Posts: 771
Location: West Texas
Hello hope all is well.

I know I have shared this good railbus article I while ago, but if you are interested take a look:

http://ztrainsweekly.com/page/28/. Scroll down.

This brief history is missing some of the more recent railbus models. Off hand, I can think of at least three railbus models which have the new cordless motor. Yes, they were different ERAs but all have highly detailed red shells with interior lighting. I like the ones with the adverting on the side and recently customized some shells with decals.

Take good care.

Dwight
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