‘Snot everything I’d hoped for

I mentioned in a recent post that my CNR 10-wheelers are slipping a fair bit. It’s especially noticeable with The Daily Effort – the mixed train that patrolled my branch line.

In part, the problem stems from the compensating trucks that I’ve added to the two passenger cars on this train. They increase the drag on the train – and while the 2-6-0s don’t seem to mind the 10-wheelers respond by losing their grip. The 2-6-0s may be tiny, but I think they’re heavier – possibly because some space in the boilers of the 10-wheelers is taken up by their DCC decoders.

Enter Bullfrog Snot:
Snot photo Bullfrog-Snot-Jar_zps12858689.jpg

This is a small jar of green goop that you apply to a pair of drivers. It cures to a thin band around the tire – a goo-it-yourself traction tire. I picked up some last week at an area hobby shop and applied it to the front pair of drivers on my two 10-wheelers over the weekend:
An undignified position photo Bullfrog-Snot-Install_zps3ba2c697.jpg
(Not a dignified position)

Early results are mixed.

CNR 1560 does exhibit some improvement and can now pull the mixed train, although there’s still some slipping. I’d like to improve it further.

But 1560’s identical stable mate – CNR 1532 – continues to spin.

I suspect it’s not a shortcoming of either the Bullfrog Snot or of the locomotive – but of my application of the goo. I found the Snot went on rather lumpy and in order to smooth it as directed, I had to dip my applicator – a piece of (scale 6″ x 6″) stripwood – into some water and thin the goop on the tire. (The manufacturer says thinning with water is fine – although I wonder if I thinned it too much.)

I have several options for next steps. The first is to add a second, thin layer of Snot on top of the first and see if that helps. If not, I can clean the Snot off the driver and try again, perhaps on the rear pair of drivers.

This isn’t really a big issue for me. The 10-wheelers run just fine pulling a freight train. And given that by 1957, the six-axle baggage-mail car was replaced with a four-axle full baggage, only one car in my later version of The Daily Effort will be fitted with compensated trucks – and that should not prove to be any trouble for a 10-wheeler.

But now I am curious as to whether I’m using the Snot correctly, and whether others have had better results than I have… so far…

10 thoughts on “‘Snot everything I’d hoped for

    • Hi Tom:
      I’m not sure about that – all three axles are driven. One through the gear, the other two through the side rods. In any case, I’ll try applying the goop to a different axle if a second application on top of the first doesn’t help.

    • Hi Bruce:
      Good thoughts, but:
      1 – no. The boiler is already packed, including a second speaker and the decoder itself.
      2 – no. Beyond my capabilities. And not worth the trouble. As I noted in my posting, this isn’t a big issue for me, since the Moguls have no trouble with the train. It’s certainly not as big as having the passenger cars derail, which they did before I compensated the trucks on them. If I continue to have trouble with the 10-wheelers and their haulage capabilities, I’ll assign them to freights and assign Moguls to the mixed trains.
      I should add, as well, that I suspect it’s my application that is at issue here. I’ve definitely noticed improvement with 1560 – it’s just 1532 that’s still giving me grief. In fact, I can probably assign 1560 to a mixed train and limit 1532 to freight extras and be done with it. But I’ll keep playing around with this stuff. A small jar includes enough Snot for a couple hundred traction tires…

  1. Can you put hat shaped bearings into the equalizer frames on the passenger truck? I suspect that the wood is not the best available bearing. Just a thought.

    • Hi Bill:
      It’s a good question. Not really. And the wood should be fine. There’s not a lot of it bearing on the axle. I’ve soaked some graphite (Neo Lube) into the wood to see if that helps.
      Adding hat bearings is beyond my skill level – and I’ve gone looking for such things in the past without success. I’ve found plenty of them online from UK suppliers – none of which has answered my inquiries.

  2. Hi Trevor,
    I wonder if the Bullfrog goop might transfer to the rails and inhibit connectivity thereby making it necessary to clean the rails more often???
    Just a thought…
    John Green Vancouver BC

    • Hi John:
      I don’t think so. It sticks to the tires very, very well and once it’s cured it should be fine. I don’t have any trouble with electrical pick-up – even with two tires gooped, each of these little locos has 12-wheel collection.

  3. Hi Trevor,

    I would have put the ‘snot on the rear set of drivers first. I also suspect that differences between the two loco’s, assuming that they are the same total weight, could be as result of centre of gravity differences or how much weight bears down on the front truck.

    A few years back I did some experiments with my On2 loco’s and found that there did appear to be an optimum CG position for a given loco at constant weight for maximum drawbar pull. The differences I found would be sufficient to explain one of your loco’s slipping and not the other,


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