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RkyGriz 07-23-2020 03:50 PM

Bachmann Service Department Meh!
Hi, guys! I would like to share a recent experience that I had with the Bachmann Service Department.
I recently sent back my On30 4-6-0 locomotive for repairs to the tender wiring.

The set up is flimsy, thin wires that go into two small separate plugs on the bottom of the loco for the DCC system.The connections at the plugs themselves break easily, and are difficult to repair.
I called Bachmann and they said fine. Send it on back.
I sent it back.
A replacement unit arrived 4 weeks later .
And it was in worse condition than the original was when I sent it back to Bachmann !
Two of the little pins holding the front drawbar to the pilot were broken. One front tender step was broken, as well as one of the supports for the tender rear foot board.
To top everything off, now my MRC Loco Genie DCC system ,which was working just fine with the original loco/tender was no longer working with this replacement loco and tender.
The sound just crackled, the rear tender light wouldn't work, and the train wouldn't move.

The whistle and bell would sound, but that was all it would do with the MRC system installed in the tender.
Funny how it worked just fine with the original 4-6-0 that I bought from Train World back in February !
This loco did run fine with the Bachmann DCC board installed.
Ordinarily, I would have called Bachmann, and complained about the issues with the replacement.
But,( and here's where the Large Scale component of this post comes into play),in 2012, I had a problem with an Anniversary Edition 4-6-0 (D&RG#12).
I sent it back to Bachmann for service. I received a replacement back from them some 3 weeks later.
It arrives with broken parts.
I called Bachmann. They said to send it back. I did. The next one arrived broken. Sent it back. The third one arrived. Same thing.
At this point, I was getting very frustrated,especially when the Service Department guy said that they didn't have any more of the D&RG #12's!
So, they wound up sending me a black, painted, unlettered Anniversary Edition 4-6-0.
Which I really didn't want (initially), but it did finally work out fine.
And I was happy.
Until this latest debacle.
I decided that ,rather than having to possibly go through the same ordeal with Bachmann Service over this little On30 4-6-0, especially should those flimsy wires break again ,I would just list it for sale on Ebay.
Which I did .
And it sold.
Good riddance!

I hope it's new owner will be happy with it.
I was until the wiring broke, and then I received a pre-broken(again!!!) replacement from Bachmann.

This really has me rethinking if I want to buy any more trains from Bachmann.

I was interested in the new 4-6-0 G Scale locomotive, but not any more.
Too bad, but if this is how they treat their customers, then they can keep their products and close their doors forever.
I'm done with them.

Pete Thornton 07-24-2020 12:15 PM

Sorry to hear your tale of woe.
My impression is that the Service dept doesn't actually repair anything - they just look at what they have and send you the next best thing.

RkyGriz 07-24-2020 02:06 PM

Thanks, Pete! I have to agree with you on what you said. Cheapest way for them to go.

Greg Elmassian 07-24-2020 02:49 PM

In talks with TOC, the way they used to operate was just to send a new loco, and scrap the unit you sent in.

When times got tight, the service has changed to the way you describe it Rky...

I wonder if they never developed the expertise to fix things properly in the first place.

The part that really gripes me is that people have sent in locos that were in a trim/roadname you could no longer get, and the would often get a loco back of similar but actually lesser value.

The worst happened when the loco is no longer manufactured and you get a completely different loco back.

Sorry this has happened to you, but unfortunately it's not surprising.


RkyGriz 07-24-2020 03:48 PM

Yes. You're right,Greg. And if the people running Bachmann think that they can continue doing this to their customers, then they have another think coming,because this is how a business dies.
Sad but true.
Bye-bye, Bachmann!

Dan Pierce 07-25-2020 07:48 AM

I think the scots had it figured out long ago, it may be in the company name.

send it bock mon!!

Pete Thornton 07-25-2020 12:15 PM

Wasn't it said that Kader (the parent co.) thinks they are toys, that you throw away when they break and buy a new one?

Greg Elmassian 07-25-2020 12:56 PM

Could be, but it's just down to the almighty dollar, how to maximize profit. Funny, since if you take the automotive industry, they make their money on parts and service, not the new cars.

Funny, you would think they could follow a different business model as opposed to throw away if it breaks.


oldtrucker 07-30-2020 08:57 PM

I am new to model railroading and my opinion might not be much, but I bought a used Bachmann 4-6-0 and discovered stripped gears. Bought a replacement Anniversary 4-6-0 chassis from Bachmann and when it got here the front trucks were broken only held on by the spring. You would think someone would see that when they packaged it. Waiting on the replacement part now.

Greg Elmassian 07-30-2020 09:25 PM

Yep, you have not had any fun until you ship a large scale loco.

FedEx/UPS/USPS wisdom:

Your shipment is insured from damage, provided it was packed properly.

Their stance, if your package was damaged, it was, by definition, improperly packed.

Often the only way to collect is either a hole through the box the size of a loaf of bread, or just totally lost.


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