Bachmann Birney Safety Streetcar

Kerrskountry Apr 5, 2011

  1. Kerrskountry

    Kerrskountry TrainBoard Member

    Hi Guys and Gals,

    I guess I can say we learn from our mistakes for sure. I'm working on a small 2 x 4 city display to practice my modeling and painting skills plus I thought it would be something different for a while. My larger layout will be changed in the near future. Anyway, I started by setting up a straight trolley run at the front of the display using a Circuitron AR2 reverser and an ITTC trolley sound module. It's only a 4 ft run. I guess I made the mistake of purchasing one of Bachmann's $32 Cable Cars to run for some animation etc.

    After around two months this cheap piece of whatever was continuously stalling while going in one direction more and more until it now no longer runs. I've cleaned the track and wheels, doubled my feeders (remember only a 4 ft straightaway) and greased the gears as recomended with no sucess. I figured the frustration and time spent on this cheap toy was not worth it!

    I still would like to get some type of streetcar since it would fit nicely into my theme. I looked at the Bachmann Birney Safety Streetcar and felt it may be a good fit. It comes with a dual mode DCC decoder. Since I don't have DCC yet (planned for my new layout) would it be worth getting one of these models to run on DC? I can't find any streetcars or trollies that are DC only except for the Bachmann "you know whats". This model is part of Bachmann's Spectrum series which I understand are pretty good. Though it is only a 4 ft run, smooth abd slow run speeds will be nice. If they are anything like those cheap toy trollies please let me know.

    Any advice on this woul be appreciated.

    Wanna Bea RR
  2. Dee Das

    Dee Das TrainBoard Member

  3. tooter

    tooter TrainBoard Member

    I got an old cheap beat up all diecast metal Birney shell off ebay for next to nothing. Then I disassembled it, straightened it out, sandblasted it, painted it, and installed a cheap new DC only powered Tyco trolley truck...

    Just got a chance to actually run it tonight and took a little video...

    With the really short wheelbase, it's able to negotiate all curves no matter how small the radius. Total cost: $22 including paint. :)

  4. alocsin

    alocsin TrainBoard Member

    I bought the Bachmann Spectrum Birney and I like it a lot. I also have a DC layout (actually just a test track) but hope to upgrade to DCC when I get a final layout done. It's a good looking car and runs well. A friend of mine installed an N-scale sound decoder in his. Says it fit better and the sound was fine.

    I tested the trolley and it goes through 4-inch radius curves fine, which is what I'm using on my test track. I suspect it may even go down to 3-inch curves, but I couldn't get the flex track to bend that small.


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