Bachmann Doodlebug

Has anyone seen an HO-scale, Bachmann Doodlebug operate? Could you please
rate its performance, its detailing, and its paint/lettering. I have never
seen one.
Out of curiosity, what time period did the Doodlebug operate?
Thanks!
Matt
Reply to
Matt Brennan
Loading thread data ...
"Matt Brennan"
I have one, it runs well if a little growly.
formatting link
Late 1930 to mid 1950s?
-- Cheers Roger T.
Home of the Great Eastern Railway
formatting link

Reply to
Roger T.
Hey, Matt.
I've got one and so do a couple local model RR friends.
We've had good experiences with them as well, similar to what Roger reports. One guy put in working marker lamps as well and they look great.
Stay well . . .
Paul - "The CB&Q Guy (Modeling 1969 In HO.)
Reply to
The CB&Q Guy
Hi Matt,
My Doodlebug works fine - a little noisy but not too bad. I have another one in the box but have never run it.
My wife recalls riding one in the mid-40s.
Reply to
kt0t
"Has anyone seen an HO-scale, Bachmann Doodlebug operate? Could you please rate its performance, its detailing, and its paint/lettering. I have never seen one."
According to the June 1997 Model Railroader review [page 32] The Bachmann product has no prototype but is based on EMC late 20s practices. EMC basically just supplied the mechanicals and the actual carbody was built by any one of several passenger car manufacturers. The most common being Pullman or St. Louis
Car Co.
The problem is that it's a bachmann and has a single power truck which limits traction. That limits it to maybe three or four trailing cars on level track. My friend and i got one going with three MDC express reefers on a club layout.
I think it has only single truck power pick up. It's very suceptable to stalling.
Bachmann HO doodlebug Model Railroader, June 1997 page 32 ( BACHMANN, GAS-ELECTRIC, REVIEW, SPECTRUM, MR )
"Out of curiosity, what time period did the Doodlebug operate?"
They came in about 1920 and lasted into 1940s-early 1950s.
Matt, you do realize you asked virtually the same question almost two years ago to the day?
formatting link
Eric
Reply to
newyorkcentralfan
The prototype couldn't do as well!
formatting link
Reply to
Greg Procter
One power truck, picks up power from all wheels including the non-powered truck and is not susceptible to stalling. Mine never does.
Some prototype doodlebugs would haul one or two trailers at most or, sometimes, two or three freight cars.
-- Cheers Roger T.
Home of the Great Eastern Railway
formatting link

Reply to
Roger T.
Thanks everyone. Eric, it's classic that you located that thread. I don't remember it [a lot has happened in those two years], but we abandoned the Doodlebug in favor of an ATSF "Super Chief" that took us 12 monthly payments to purchase. I thought we would stop with the one passenger option, but now the Doodlebug has gained interest as a branchline option.
Reply to
Matt Brennan
[...]
I have one, it is growly, but otherwise OK. Not that I;ve run it that much - maybe 1 hour total time sofar.
Doodlebugs usually ran alone or with one trailer. I've never heard or seen a photo of a doodlebug with more than one trailer, in fact. But there is probably evidence to the contrary somewhere.
That means dirty track on your layout: tsk, tsk! :-)
[...]
The Bachmann doodlebug is generic, as mentioned in this and other posts, and it's also long, about 80 scale feet. This makes it look bad on curves under about 30" radius. There were some around the 60-70ft mark, so shortening it would be prototypical. I recall seeing an article on doing this, but can't recall where.
HTH
Reply to
Wolf Kirchmeir
never seen one."
The vast majority of prototype 'doodlebugs' only had one power truck. They could only pull one or two trailing coaches, or a few freight cars, so the model is correct in that regard.
A few such 'doodlebugs' had both trucks powered, and could sub as a light locomotive, at lower speeds, usually in branchline service.
Dan Mitchell ============
Reply to
Daniel A. Mitchell
I operate one on a friend's layout about once a month. It runs OK, but is slow. the prototypes were slow too, but this one is too slow to suit me. It operates at a moderatly scale-ish speed, and while prototypical from a strict point of view, is visually too slow. The railroad is a long one and it takes 40 minutes to traverse the entire run. This is too much time for a model railroad. If the thing could run at, say, 50 scale MPH- which is just a weeee bit less than 1 car length per second- it would be a lot better. This may be a bit rapid for a doodlebug, but in 1:87 scale, on a big model railway, it looks OK.
Because it has pickup on only one truck, and is a lightweight as well, it tends to stall if you stop it in switchwork or crossings. Sometimes it will stall on straight track when you stop, as at a station, even when the track is relatively clean. This does not happen often though.
Paint and lettering is good enough. Detailing is typical for a mass-market oriented non-specific prototype model. It needs a *lot* of work if you want to model a specific ACF, Brill or EMC machine.
The "heyday"was from around the early 1920s to 1950. However - - some doodle bugs lasted a lot longer. GM&O operated them until 1960 - - AND - - unless the California Western has retired thier Skunk - - there is still one running between Willits and Fort Bragg, California.
formatting link
Froggy,
Reply to
Froggy
"That means dirty track on your layout: tsk, tsk! :-) "
It's not my layout, it's a club layout. They insist on using orange cleaner to clean the track. I've suggested that they use something else that doesn't cause the dust from the ceiling to glue itself to the track but I was out voted.
Eric
Reply to
newyorkcentralfan
I have two, one lettered for the home road, and the other in Burlington livery. I reckon their performance is quite good. A number of posters refer to them being a little noisy, but this can be vastly improved by removing the part of the glazing that sits on top of the frame/mechanism. On both of mine this vibrated and buzzed like a bastard, and turned the whole of the body into a sounding board.
The detailing is of reasonable quality. The body features separate grabirons, handrails and stirrups. These are a little heavy, but can easily replaced with finer wire parts. Underbody detail consists of separate parts representing the major components such as air reservoirs, tanks, brake cylinder, triple valve and the like. Moulded detail on the body shell is likewise quite reasonable. There are separate parts for the bell, headlight, radiator and diaphragm.
As for paint, it would probably pay to compare individual models in the shop before purchase. My home road doodlebug started out painted and lettered for the Santa Fe, and the paint was rather heavily applied in places, with a few ragged paint separation lines. By comparison, the Burlington model had a much finer and neater finish.
EMC's first doodlebug was built for the Chicago Great Western in 1924. Prior to that, GE and other manufacturers were building doodlebug cars from the early 1900s onwards. At least some remained in service until the early 1960s.
All the best,
Mark.
Reply to
mark_newton
formatting link
Good shots here, but for the sake of mild correction, the M100 is a rebuilt Mack Railbus, rebuilt after an altercation with the M80. Don't know what the M300 is, but could well be something made locally from some other wreck. My time there goes back to '56 - '63 era, not sure which one was running, Only saw it while fighting forest fires and usually just as it was disappearing from sight.
I know it's slightly dated for an answer, but I have both the Bachmann and the Walthers in GN, both look good, but I like the walthers better, it's shorter. Haven't bothered to measure. Interesting in both models have the same number, one of them can't be correct.
Reply to
Richard
On 20 Oct 2005 01:49:37 -0700, " snipped-for-privacy@bigfoot.com" shared this with the world:
We found that orange stuff also eroded any plastic wheels that rolled over it, leaving gooey black stripes on the railhead after an alarmingly short time.
The only cleaner that our group uses on track now is 99% alcohol.
Reply to
Kent Ashton

PolyTech Forum website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.