MSS Problems

A very popular starting point for Live Steam. With their low cost comes a number of problems which can be discussed here
angr607
Trainee Fireman
Trainee Fireman
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:05 am
Location: West Sussex

MSS Problems

Post by angr607 » Sun May 11, 2014 5:16 pm

Afternoon all,

After buying a MSS engine from Dreamsteam, I've been slowly starting to run it in after flushing the boiler multiple times to remove the . After a few days running, I'm starting to get a number of problems.

1. Rate of steaming. With the original tablet burner it was terrible and its not much better with the replacement Meths burner I brought with the engine from Dream Steam. I'm not expecting a perfect steamer like my Accucraft but I'd have though it would be less asthmatic than it is!

2. Running over points. Today when running over the newly completed line today, the engine would continuously derail on the points in the station area. I suspect I think the wheels need replacing but with what is the question.

3. Priming. Even after flushing the boiler 3 times getting all the remains of the soldering debris out, the engine is still priming like mad. Will it improve with more running in or is there a problem?

On the upside, I am planning to fit/get someone to fit a regulator kit, displacement lubricator, new wheels along with a small number of cosmetic improvements like a Tender/chimney cap but I suspect its going to be a case of pioritising which is more urgent.

Any advice on how to make this engine run relatively well?

Cheers,

Jon
Bowaters Models:- http://www.bowatersmodels.co.uk

Current Projects:-
Rebuilding the Railway!
Turning a Second hand 'Superior' into Bowaters 'Superior'

User avatar
mikewakefielduk@btinterne
Fireman
Fireman
Posts: 309
Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2012 1:43 pm
Location: Shropshire

Post by mikewakefielduk@btinterne » Sun May 11, 2014 6:17 pm

What make of track/points do you have?

angr607
Trainee Fireman
Trainee Fireman
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:05 am
Location: West Sussex

Post by angr607 » Sun May 11, 2014 6:42 pm

Should have put that, make is Peco and its two of thier newer left hand 38" radius points. I've already checked them with other stock and only the MSS engine has problems.

Cheers,

Jon
Bowaters Models:- http://www.bowatersmodels.co.uk

Current Projects:-
Rebuilding the Railway!
Turning a Second hand 'Superior' into Bowaters 'Superior'

dougrail
Driver
Driver
Posts: 1524
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:11 pm
Location: West Midlands

Post by dougrail » Sun May 11, 2014 7:20 pm

Might be your wheels are arsed up then - recently Peachbottom bought an MSS loco ready to built and found its wheels were immensely problematic.

As for the asthmaticness, is your wick burner's wicks set correctly? Are there any steamleaks?

User avatar
DLRdan
Driver
Driver
Posts: 1083
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:05 am
Location: Blyth
Contact:

Post by DLRdan » Sun May 11, 2014 8:00 pm

I never had any problems with my MSS on the tablet burner and its been happy on the meths burner for the past 8 years. Is it possible for you to post a picture of your wicks ?

I do have one of the new points and all 3 on my locos pass over without issue. When you push the loco over the point, does it come off at a specific place ?

The priming may improve with running. Instead of running it on the track run it on blocks for a couple of runs, this will help bed the moving parts in. If you want a hand with fitting things drop me a message, the current project will be leaving the workshop shortly.
Dan,

James: "Dan, can you use your hearing and tell me if that trains coming ?"
DLR
www.freewebs.com/dlrail

User avatar
mikewakefielduk@btinterne
Fireman
Fireman
Posts: 309
Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2012 1:43 pm
Location: Shropshire

Post by mikewakefielduk@btinterne » Sun May 11, 2014 8:07 pm

I thought you were going to say Mamod points as I know they can be an issue (I'm in the process of changing all of my track from Mamod to Peco for that very reason). I've never had problems with Peco.

Derailing is most likely to be wobbly wheels but also check the frame isn't twisted (put the loco on a flat surface and see if it can wobble). Also check the wheel's gauge is correct, it doesn't take much to cause problems.

User avatar
Chris Cairns
Driver
Driver
Posts: 2343
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:25 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland

Post by Chris Cairns » Sun May 11, 2014 8:33 pm

Hi Jon,

You are now experiencing first hand why these locomotives are attractively 'cheap'. There is a lot of good information within this sub-Forum (although the supplied search facility is very poor). I would recommend visiting the Mamod Reference Library which David Hippey (HGLW) is hosting ( http://gardenrails.myfreeforum.org/about7948.html ), and read through my comprehensive build report on how I got an MSS kit loco to run with minimal priming on its first run (the video is genuinely the first run without any rehearsal) - http://gardenrails.myfreeforum.org/Buil ... t6201.html

To answer your questions: -

1. As proven in my video they can be run on solid fuel. I only stopped running mine in on solid fuel as I run indoors with limited ventilation and the fumes were causing me a headache. 3 wick meths burners are capable of raising 60 PSI so it is all down to trimming the wicks to the right height, etc. Secret is not to pack them too tightly.

2. Not sure what radius Peco points I've run my MSS kit loco over but did not experience any problems. As already posted we are aware of a quality issue with the wheels being out of gauge in a recent MSS kit loco from Dream Steam. Can you check their back to back measurements? Best aftermarket replacement steel wheels are the RWM Steam spoked wheels which use the same style bearings as the MSS ones. However not cheap at £42.50.

3. We have already discussed flushing out your boiler so 2 other areas that will cause priming. Are you using untreated tap water? Southern Water is hard and will suffer from limescale which does affect the boiler. I had to descale all the fittings on a modified 45mm SL1 I picked up at Peterborough recently. The height of the steam pipe inside the steam dome nut can also be a factor with priming. I experienced some serious priming with my MSS Saddle Tank, leading to a melted sight glass plastic. As well as a contaminated boiler I found the steam pipe into the reduced height steam dome nut was too short. See this discussion for photos and the important measurement of the steam pipe height (11mm in my case) - http://modelsteam.myfreeforum.org/Probl ... 71423.html

It is normal to get lots of water around the cylinder backplates whilst these are running in (this is not really priming but rather the steam condensing as it struggles to move the pistons) and honing the cylinders & regulator/reverser valve certainly improves their efficiency. I also agree that running in on blocks first is the best way to get these locos to perform better. Lots of lubrication and run it in both directions for an equal amount of time.

Chris Cairns

angr607
Trainee Fireman
Trainee Fireman
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:05 am
Location: West Sussex

Post by angr607 » Sun May 11, 2014 9:41 pm

Thanks for the suggestions so far. Definately food for thought.

I've put the engine on a flat surface and it wobbles enough to say the wheels are buggered. When running over the points, it would get into the vee then either wedge or it would physically lift the engine out the point and off the railway completely. Frames are parallel and flat leaving the problem at the wheels.

Back to Backs are both 28mm but the tires on the rear set are about 1.2 mm thick compared to the 0.5 mm thick of the leading set. I suspect that's where the problem is with getting though the points. I think replacement is going to be the solution for this problem.

Hieght of the steam pipe inside the ome has been measured and its 10.5mm high so that shouldn't be a problem. There are no steam leaks bar lots of water in the cylinders when being run at the moment.

Re the wicks, as requested by one or two people, here's two shots of the wicks both unlit and lit.

Image

Image

@ DLRdan, Hello, I might be in contact to discuss what's needed and how much it would cost to do.

Cheers all,

Jon
Bowaters Models:- http://www.bowatersmodels.co.uk

Current Projects:-
Rebuilding the Railway!
Turning a Second hand 'Superior' into Bowaters 'Superior'

User avatar
Chris Cairns
Driver
Driver
Posts: 2343
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:25 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland

Post by Chris Cairns » Sun May 11, 2014 11:54 pm

Sounds like MSS quality control has taken yet another nosedive.

The wheels should be made from the same Mazak castings which are machine finished, and then the appropriate coupling pin is fitted. So there should be no difference in the tyre/flange thickness between the axles. Just checked my MSS wheels, and a set of unused old Mamod SL wheels which I'm Loctite 603'ing back onto the axles. Both axles are the same and both sets of wheels are effectively the same - flange thickness is 0.05"/1.3mm & back to back 28.5mm.

I'd approach Dream Steam to have them repaired/replaced before you modify the loco thus invalidating your warranty.

Chris Cairns

angr607
Trainee Fireman
Trainee Fireman
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:05 am
Location: West Sussex

Post by angr607 » Mon May 12, 2014 1:14 pm

I've contacted Dreamsteam and they've been very good about sorting it out. They're sending out a complete spare set of wheels so that a good pair can be made out of the four wheelsets for the engine. Hopefully that problem should sort itself out over the next few days.

Cheers,

Jon
Bowaters Models:- http://www.bowatersmodels.co.uk

Current Projects:-
Rebuilding the Railway!
Turning a Second hand 'Superior' into Bowaters 'Superior'

User avatar
Chris Cairns
Driver
Driver
Posts: 2343
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:25 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland

Post by Chris Cairns » Mon May 12, 2014 8:34 pm

That is great to hear Jon.

Hopefully PeachBottom will see your posting and similarly get some replacement wheels from Dream Steam for her problem MSS loco kit.

Chris Cairns

angr607
Trainee Fireman
Trainee Fireman
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:05 am
Location: West Sussex

Post by angr607 » Thu May 15, 2014 12:08 pm

Chris Cairns:100596 wrote:That is great to hear Jon.

Hopefully PeachBottom will see your posting and similarly get some replacement wheels from Dream Steam for her problem MSS loco kit.

Chris Cairns
Well the wheels arrived yesterday which considering I picked them up from the sorting office the day after Royal Mail tryied to deliver it. Bar a messup at my end, 24 hours from complaint to parts arrival, its safe to say I'm very impressed with the service.

The wheels have been fitted and the improvement is massive. The engine is a lot better running and will now safely run though my points. Also because its now a better runner, the steaming problem isn't anywhere near as bad as the wheels are rubbing on the frames (there are rubbing marks on the frames around the rear wheelset).

Cheers,

Jon
Bowaters Models:- http://www.bowatersmodels.co.uk

Current Projects:-
Rebuilding the Railway!
Turning a Second hand 'Superior' into Bowaters 'Superior'

gamma
Cleaner
Cleaner
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:01 pm
Location: Italy

Post by gamma » Thu May 15, 2014 12:27 pm

I am a newcomer too to the steam locomotives world, my MSS , fortunately, since the beginning had no troubles at all to steam up. Only the wheels have the same problems of yours, i can run the loco safely only at low speed.
Is is my intention to replace the wheels, is it a ddifficult job?

angr607
Trainee Fireman
Trainee Fireman
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:05 am
Location: West Sussex

Post by angr607 » Thu May 15, 2014 12:44 pm

gamma:100668 wrote:I am a newcomer too to the steam locomotives world, my MSS , fortunately, since the beginning had no troubles at all to steam up. Only the wheels have the same problems of yours, i can run the loco safely only at low speed.
Is is my intention to replace the wheels, is it a ddifficult job?
Hi,

It was relatively easy but you do have to take a hell of a lot off to remove them and replace them.

I had to take off the following to get the wheels out:-
  • ~Rear drawbar
    ~Rear bodywork
    ~Centre frame spacer
    ~One side of the frame spacers on the reversing block
Basically a fairly large amount of the engine has to come off but its do able with a flat bladed screwdriver and a small pair of pliers. Its safe to say if this idiot can do it, anyone else can.

Cheers,

Jon
Bowaters Models:- http://www.bowatersmodels.co.uk

Current Projects:-
Rebuilding the Railway!
Turning a Second hand 'Superior' into Bowaters 'Superior'

gamma
Cleaner
Cleaner
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:01 pm
Location: Italy

Post by gamma » Thu May 15, 2014 9:44 pm

Thank you Jon :thumbup:

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest