My new Aristo Mikado will smoke for about halfway around my 18 foot oval, then quit. (It will smoke for quite a while sitting still). The only way to get it going again is to turn the switch off, then back on. Anybody know how to fix this?
I don't have an Aristo Mikado but I do have an Aristo smoke unit. These are well known to have issues just as you described. It's most likely a defective unit. The reason it quits is because of two reasons, either you run over a section of dirty track that temporarily (as in just for an instant) loses power to the smoke unit. Just as you described the only way to get it going again is to shut the power off.
Second, it may have a bad heat sensor. When idling, assuming you are not DCC, then it gets less power to the unit. When running more power generates more heat.
You could run some tests. Does it always shut off in the same section of track? If so clean it real good and see if the unit still works now, and maybe shuts off at a different location? To see if it's heat related start the loco at particular spot and if it stops after a certain amount of time, then start it at a different section and see if it's about the same amount of time.
There a couple of things you could do, but first I would first see if Aristo will replace the smoke unit.
A couple of things thing you can do if your up to it is make it so more pickups power the smoke unit, so when you run over a section of dirty track and lose connection for an instant the smoke unit still gets power. The reason the loco keeps going is there are many pickups for the engine. The other thing I did was since I run DCC, I hooked up one of the DCC outputs to control the power to the smoke unit and if it stopped I just hit the button to turn it off and back on again without having to restart.