Zscale Monster Trains
ZSM HomeContact Zscale Monster TrainsAbout ZSMShippingLinksGift CertificatesOrdering Info
Z ScaleNn3SearchSpecialsLost N
American Z Lines   • Back to AZL
  • Back to Z Sitemap
  • Email for help
Congress enacted the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 and we must now note that these ARE NOT TOYS, AND ARE NOT INTENDED FOR USE BY CHILDREN UNDER AGE OF 14. These products are Model Railroad Equipment and Accessories intended for use by adults.
Tech Tips     Truck Pick-Up Wipers
From Zscale Monster Trains:
Have you experianced some electrical drop-outs with one of your locomotives? Is your motor spinning but not transfering all the power to the trucks? If so this page could be helpful to you. I will help you take a look at the electrical pick-ups that transfer the power from the truck to the chassis.
The following symptoms could be a sign:
    • Electrical dropouts on corners
    • Jerky performance
    • Requires a tap to get going
    • Motor spinning but little movement
American Z Lines
One of the problems could be the pick-up wiper which conducts the electricty from the truck to the chassis. There is a lot to know about the Pick-Up wipers. If they have too much arch to them they can actually push the truck away from the chassis enough to cause the gears to slip. This can be seen by noisy or jerky motion, yes, simply too much arch in your wiper can cause the truck to push away from the worm gear.
Start by taking a good look at the pick-ups just above the truck. Hold the loco in one hand and manuver the truck through its full motion, left to right, forward and back and every combination in between. You should see the wipers moving (ever so slightly) with the truck. When the truck pushes the wiper up it should return back down when the truck is released. If you see no movement the wiper could be stuck between the chassis and the shell.
Rough Edge:
The most common cause of a stuck pick-up wiper is a rough edge on the chassis. This rough edge could either be snagging the wiper periodically, or worse, it could be holding the wiper up in the channel between the chassis and the body. There could be some left over flash on the edge of the chassis or simply a roughness left from the manufacturing process. It may be so slight you can't even feel it with your finger but it may still be there. Simply take a nail file or utility knife and file (or scrape with the blade) until it is smooth.
American Z Lines
American Z Lines This photo is an example of the truck pick-up wiper and how there is just enough room for the wiper to move on some American Z Line locomotives. It works great, an excellent design, until something foreign interfers with the required amount of travel, or worst case scenerio, that the truck pick-up wiper has been hung up in its most extended position, far out of reach of the truck. If this happens, only one truck, on this side of the locomotive, is capable of picking up electricity... and if that is the truck with the traction tire there is a lot of electricty loss. The locomotive really does need both trucks picking up the electricity.
Go to:
Back to AZL
Back to top

Z Sitemap
ZSM Home
Email for help
The pictures above, and throughout this website, are the property of Zscale Monster Trains. Copying any for retail use is theft.
Many were designed by Zscale Monster Trains for use on this site only.