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Three weeks ago Navin told me he was mailing back my live steam Mikado , after having it for three months. I had finally written to Lewis and he had gotten on him, I guess. Two weeks went by and NO Mike. I called again and he told me he was working on it, after telling me he had mailed it back. I wrote to Lewis again and was told it was going out that day. Well, it was a mess when I got it. Cab had a sticker over it that messed up my lettering and was dirty.

The smokebox they sent back(not mine) was warped and melted from boiler heat, since they had not sealed up the boiler/smokebox gap.

Melted smokebox.


Note the circuit board above, it's supposed to be screwed in a box under the smokebox, but it was not screwed together and all the wires pulled out.

A flashlight shining inside the smokebox gives you an idea of the gap that would let the boiler heat out, melting the smokebox. It's about
the same all the way around it also. It is now sealed back up.


They put on a used boiler from a demo unit-wll all the parts they 'fixed' mine with were used. Guess they
discovered a bad sight glass, now this mess is what I have. Wonder how much pressure it will hold?


I also found many missing or loose screws. By the boiler I found a piece that I found out was an insulator plate that
protected the metal servo plate from heating up the servo. They test fired it twice, so I wonder? ALSO some wires under the boiler

that the plate was relocated to by me had some wires stuck in there and touching the bottom of the boiler. I am now
charging the tender batteries to test the R/C unit. Guess how much faith I have in that working?


I used to think Aristo cared, but now don't. Tate there seems to be the only one with any concerns.
 

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ARISTOCRAP!!!! Right? nuff said!!!! Higher prices Less and Less quality it's the American way now!! Go get em Jerry
 
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Although I am not an Aristo Mikoado owner, here is the problem as I see it for Aristo. They approached this offering as if it was an electric train. You produce and sell the product, the user opens the box, follows the instructions, and sets it on the rails and runs the model. If something malfunctions you send out a part and the owner spends an hour with a screwdriver and off we go again, providing the model is designed such that it can be repaired at all. So far so good.

What they have done however is supply the market with a relatively complex and idiosynchratic machine, with many things which can go wrong, with some components which are not designed to be repaired, or repaired easily, to a market which is generally uninformed and ill-equipped to carry out repairs, even if the parts are supplied, and who are also consumerist, who will demand the product performs as expected or get satisfaction. It appears the home office is also generally uninformed and ill-equipped to carry out repairs. IMHO this spells trouble for owners and by extension Aristo and I think they will soon regret this adventure, if not already. Have I missed anything?
 

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Jerry
It is evident that Lewis, Scott and Navin have no ability to repair their products. The repairs represent an amateurish attempt to fix one problem only it became a multitude of failed fixes based on the lack of fundamental knowledge of the original problem. The engine you received should never have been released back to you, their customer. Would have been better for AC to send you a new unit or offer a prorated "buy back."
 

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Jerry,
I would email Lewis the photos and demand an explanation. Then after that a brand new engine period! What a mess. Don't take it lying down friend. They owe you on this one.
On another note, I have completely tore down and rebuilt a couple of Accucraft C-16's. They are bullet proof. I am in the process of stripping all the paint off one right now to back date it to a DSP&P engine. Guess what I found under thier paint? Chinese finger prints on the raw brass......LOL
Noel
 

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Sorry to hear Jerry!
i think this issue needs attention!
Why you dont make up a list and we as LS Fans will sign in and then represent it to aristo!

Manfred Diel
SA #1313
 

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I agree this is a total bust for repairs. One can only imagine why it took so long to replace a boiler and then to botch it putting back together. The down side folks is AC has no extra units to send out for replacement. Again no parts which we have all asked for numerous times but has fallen on deaf ears. AC praises there commitment to correct defects but in this case they have failed . I have seen work that Navin has done with the LS so it makes me wonder if someone else did not preform the work. I had sent my loco in for new parts to be installed and it never came back inthe shape that Jerrys did.


Jerry would have to wait another year or so to get a replacement even if AC did consider making another run. We all have hounded AC for at least a parts diagram so we could see what goes where. This has fallen on deaf ears also. This as AC has mentioned numerous times is not a main priority on any new products. So now your stuck. However due to some folks having the skill and knowledge about disassembles of LS some have solved there problems such as Jerry knowing how to dismantle. Maybe you folks should provide a parts diagram and how to disassemble as it looks like it will be a while longer before AC does it.

One thing to remember this loco was made for the novice to operate. It was to get folks interested in LS an AC did just that. As with any product there are folks that have to just tinker and think they can make it a better product. Some will get it right while others will not. I think that Jerry is lucky they did not charge him for the repairs even if not done right. he had done mods but none that would hve affected the operations but it's the principle. You do not buy a new car and imediatley change things, if you do you viod the warrenty. Lets see what the out come from here is. I'm sure it's going to get interesting. Later RJD
 

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They fixed an rs3 of mine after the lighting failed. When I got it back the smoke box fan ran backward, it had been miss wired by the repair department. Which was odd as it was not the broken part. It's sad when you have to repair a repair. I doubt that I would by an expensive loco from aristo or Bachmann.
 

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And Aristo is due to release two more LS models in the near future...
 

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"I think that Jerry is lucky they did not charge him for the repairs even if not done right. he had done mods but none that would hve affected the operations but it's the principle. "


I wondered what Jerry is going to charge them for fixing the sight glass problem properly which did not have any thing to do with the original boiler and its problem. Seems to be that they side stepped the issue at hand: boiler leak and found themselves in a pickle when the replacement had a probable cross thread situation on the sight glass.

Bottomline- Aristocraft not only got it wrong but made it worse with cabin, smokebox, etc. Jerry is due more than any out of warranty bill that could of came his way! Seems to me IMHO, Aristocraft is lacking principle when they assure someone to trust them to do a repair properly then fails to do so.
 

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I have to agree, the availability of parts for any Aristo product has been an issue for years.

Lewis has made several statements to wit "we don't just have parts sitting on shelves" on his own forum, which pretty much put me in orbit. It's a problem for sparkies, but many electric locos can be repaired or worked on by average people.

A steam locomotive is very special, and few people have the ability to repair and pressure test a boiler, to do silver soldering, or to fabricate metal parts. The issues of pressure and heat multiply the problem.

I think Aristo went into this ill-prepared for long term maintenance or repairs of these locos.

The follow on live steamers may be further delayed from these experiences.

In any case, from what I have seen, some of the poor quality repairs show either no concern for long term operation of the loco, or just plain ignorance of how it operates, or just plain sloppy.

After 3 months, if Aristo could not repair it properly, they should have farmed it out to an expert, in my opinion.

Regards, Greg
 

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So you have NOT fired it since you got it back? or more damage was done when you fired it that caused the wires to melt?
That part was not clear to me..

I also know you have promoted the LS part of the hobby and had that loco on the cover ov SIG mag when you was here.
 

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Posted By aceinspp on 02/08/2009 7:04 PM
I agree this is a total bust for repairs. One can only imagine why it took so long to replace a boiler and then to botch it putting back together. The down side folks is AC has no extra units to send out for replacement. Again no parts which we have all asked for numerous times but has fallen on deaf ears. AC praises there commitment to correct defects but in this case they have failed . I have seen work that Navin has done with the LS so it makes me wonder if someone else did not preform the work. I had sent my loco in for new parts to be installed and it never came back inthe shape that Jerrys did.


Jerry would have to wait another year or so to get a replacement even if AC did consider making another run. We all have hounded AC for at least a parts diagram so we could see what goes where. This has fallen on deaf ears also. This as AC has mentioned numerous times is not a main priority on any new products. So now your stuck. However due to some folks having the skill and knowledge about disassembles of LS some have solved there problems such as Jerry knowing how to dismantle. Maybe you folks should provide a parts diagram and how to disassemble as it looks like it will be a while longer before AC does it.

One thing to remember this loco was made for the novice to operate. It was to get folks interested in LS an AC did just that. As with any product there are folks that have to just tinker and think they can make it a better product. Some will get it right while others will not. I think that Jerry is lucky they did not charge him for the repairs even if not done right. he had done mods but none that would hve affected the operations but it's the principle. You do not buy a new car and imediatley change things, if you do you viod the warrenty. Lets see what the out come from here is. I'm sure it's going to get interesting. Later RJD





Many years ago (and still today, too) Radio and TV receiver manufacturers did not supply schematics of their products to the many small independent Radio and TV repair shops. Howard W. Sams decided to fill this need by buying the most popular radios and TVs, take them apart down to the individual components, writing down how the components were wired, then drawing a schematic of each set. Once a schematic was done, he would then reassemble the unit using the schematic and if it still worked he then knew the schematic was correct. He then would sell the schematic to the many radio and TV repair shops that needed them.

The product was known as "Sams' Photo-Facts". His product was known to be so good that the manufacturer's were purchasing them from him because they were better than their own drawings!!!

I am not suggesting that someone here could make a living producing assembly drawings of Aristocraft and other manufacturer's products, but why doesn't someone take the plunge and do the Sams thing and publish the results?
 
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