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I am running ho train with dcc.Train is outdoor under covered patio sealed with tarps on three sides.problem is engines stop randomly in different spots.Could weather cause these problems.Have tried everything.

don
 

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I am running ho train with dcc.Train is outdoor under covered patio sealed with tarps on three sides.problem is engines stop randomly in different spots.Could weather cause these problems.Have tried everything.

don


Yes even covered outside will attract dust and dirt
Clean the track I would also clean the engine wheels also because your probably getting more crud than a inside layout.


Is it always the same spots also? How is your layout wired. What kind of weather do you normally get because you still have one side open. Could be getting rust on the joiners.

Edit you said sealed so I would imagine house is the 4th wall. Still would check for rust tho.
 

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You must have a clean track and clean
loco wheels for good electrical
conductivity.
When a model train is exposed to non
climate controlled air you have to
clean the track before every use.
You can use a rag and alcohol or
make or buy a track cleaning car.
Run it before every train session.
That will prevent most of the crud
buildup on loco wheels.

Don

Don
 

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I doubt your layout area is "sealed", in the strict sense. "Protected" would be more descriptive. Unless you have a
"clean room", you will have to deal with the effects of air, humidity and dust. Give your track a thorough cleaning.

Also, where do you live? Metal rails expand and contract with temperature. Although the effect is small, it might be pinching the gauge of the track just enough to cause trouble. Likewise the contraction of any wood in your layout structure with the lower humidity in winter. Check those spots with an NMRA standards gauge.
 
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It could be dirt, but it could also be uneven tracks. If they dip, or rise a bit, especially at joints, and most especially around curves, you can expect problems with intermittent pickup by the tender if a steamer, or just the loco. If it's DCC, is there a tender cable, a tether, between the steamer and the tender? If so, that might have worked its way loose.
 

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You must have a clean track and clean
loco wheels for good electrical
conductivity.
When a model train is exposed to non
climate controlled air you have to
clean the track before every use.
You can use a rag and alcohol or
make or buy a track cleaning car.
Run it before every train session.
That will prevent most of the crud
buildup on loco wheels.

Don

Don
Good advice! I have shelf layout in my attached garage and I make it a point to clean the tracks every time before I run trains. An old habit I acquired running G scale outdoors some years ago.
 
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