Bachmann Spectrum 4-8-2

I was wondering if anyone owned a Bachmann Spectrum 4-8-2.
[a] If so, are they nice engines with regards to their motor's performance
and its pulling ability? [b] What was the defined purpose of the 4-8-2?
Thank You! Matt
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Light or heavy? I have both. The heavy out pulls the light as it has a cast metal boiler Vs the plastic boiler on the light. However, I add weight to all my steam and remove all springs from above leading and trailing trucks.

I think that's somewhat road dependent. On the GER, the light 4-8-2s are mainly passenger locos and are tarted up as such with white wall tires and running board edges while the heavies are freight engines and are basic black.
-- Cheers Roger T.
Home of the Great Eastern Railway http://www.highspeedplus.com/~rogertra /
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What's the purpose of completely removing the springs from the bogies?
Is it to avoid, or reduce the derailments, as I would have thought that some spring pressure would have been needed
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Simple. Improve traction.
The springs, by their very nature of being springs, exert a force, in this case, a downward force.
Physics dictates that the downward force also exerts an equal and opposite force in the upward direction.
In other words, that spring will also lift the locomotive. At the front for a pilot truck, at the rear for a trailing truck. On a loco with both pilots and trailing trucks this force is applied to both ends of the locomotive.
Thus lifting also lifts the wheels, thus reducing traction.
The trucks themselves, on reasonably well laid track, do not need any additional force to keep their wheels on the railhead. Their weight alone is more than enough.
So, leaving the springs in place applies a slight lift to the loco and its driving wheels therefore, removing the springs permits the entire weight of the loco to rest on the driving wheels. This must and does improve traction.
Before I removed the spring from the pilot truck on my low driver Spectrum 4-6-0s, they could barely pull five cars plus van up my steepest grade. After removing the pilot truck spring, they could quite easily pull 8 cars plus van up the same grade.
If you don't believe me, try loading a loco with the maximum number of cars it can pull up a grade, then remove the leading (and trailing if it has one) truck springs. Repeat test loading loco until wheels spin. You'll be amazed at the improvement.
-- Cheers Roger T.
Home of the Great Eastern Railway http://www.highspeedplus.com/~rogertra /
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Roger is 100% correct. As long as your trackwork is decent the trucks do not need springs to keep them on the rails. I have not had to removed the springs from either of my Spectrum 4-6-0's as they pull OK for me. But I have no grades at all where Roger has quite a few so that is probably why I don't have any pulling issues. I did remove the springs from an old brass locomotive that would not pull well and it made a big difference. Bruce

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I agree with Roger. The Bachmann Mountains are super engines. The 4-8-2 is normally listed as a general purpose locomotive. The C&O ran them as pure passenger engines until the last days of steam. But others ueed them as both freight and passenger. I'm guessing that freight service would ordinarily be fast freight -- reefers, stock, timed, as opposed to coal or crude oil.
Roger T. wrote:

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Matt. I have a Spectrum Heavy 4-8-2. It's a very nice model, runs smooth as silk, looks great, and has some real heft to it. I don't know how much it will pull as I don't have enough HO rolling stock to see what it can do. I think it will pull a very respectable train. Mine is lettered for the SP with a Vanderbuilt tender. This is not an exact SP 4-8-2 model but similar in size.The tender seems to ride a bit high on the trucks compaired to pictures I've seen but it's not objectionable. Mine will eventually pull a passenger train, as most locomotives with a 4 wheel pony truck arangement were intended. However I'm sure you will find situations where the 4-8-2's hauled freight as well. Bruce

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Thanks Bruce.
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