Discussion in 'HO Diesel Locomotives General' started by meteor910, Apr 18, 2011.
X2 what Ken said. ~mike
The Proto gear problem is before Walthers bought Life-Like about five years ago, some of the old GP7, GP9, FA1, FB1 and BL2 are still selling on ebay. Life-Like honored the life time waranty till Walthers bought them out, you could get complete gearset axles including wheels for free. The center gear that cracked was cast a few thousandth too tight. Athearn SD40-2 gears just happened to fit and you could buy two packs with a total of twelve gears and fix about three engines for $10.00. If I buy any of those loco's I replace the gears right away. I wait till someone buys a new product in our train club before I buy it to see what mass production problems new items have like the Blackstone K27 motors with the wrong grease in them that would smoke and burn up. I bought a second run engine that had the new motor. I was at the TWMRC when Mike ran his Frisco FA trio and they went clunk clunk clunk. He was mad because some of the club members compared Frisco to Rock Island. A ten dollar fix had him Alco-ing again. mktjames
Here is a pic of the 14 (I think!) axle gears I have had to replace on my various HO Life-Like Proto 2000 BL2/GP7/GP9/GP20/FA1/FA2 locomotives just over these past summer months (!) I replaced them with axle gears purchased from Athearn and also sent to me by a very good friend - it's a pain, but is, thankfully, a simple fix. All the P2K units involved are running fine now! No more clunk-a-clunking!
Boy, those axle gears look like crud! Hopefully your motive power is un-clunked now. This gives me reason to worry about all my P2K power, Geeps and SD45s alike, since I haven't had a place to run 'em on for a while.
As far as that black GP30 goes, it doesn't look bad- put proper "cat-whisker" stripes on the nose & rear of the long hood, and you're in business! There are quite a few "what-if" models in Frisco livery- case in point, Tom Holley's awesome SD70 and his QAP black SD40s and GP60. Nor prototypical, but they do look nice. No idea why Frisco never bought GP30s unless they just weren't in the market for new power at the time.
Likely a combination of financial reasons plus they were not impressed with the GP30 being less HP than the U25b. The Frisco demo'ed the EMD GP20, but did nothing. Later, they considered the GP30, but went instead for the U25B from GE. Shortly thereafter, when EMD brought out the GP35 with HP equal to the U25b, the Frisco bought a bunch.
They might have been happier with the GP30 than they were with the GP35 - not nearly the same maintenance troubles with the '30.
I remember reading about the problems with the GP35, and how it was a bear to ensure the 16-567D was able to put out 2500 horsepower (electrical issues, IIRC). MoPac went so far as to send some of their GP35s thru the shops, turning them into GP35Ms (deturboed, rewired, 645 power assemblies installed in the prome mover). The rebuilds were similar to the GP38 model, and most of MP's rebuilds are still in service.
But, I'm sure Frisco also looked back in regret (deep regret) over buying RS2s and FA/FB1s as well..........
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