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What sort of battery do I need?

All locos sold by MTS are fitted with connectors to make it easy to install a driving car mounted battery. We generally use USA made Federal DC24 and DC27 types.

Always use a deep cycle battery rather than a car battery - it will give you longer daily operation and longer battery life and is well worth the extra cost.

Federal Batteries

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Can I drive two or more electric locos together?

Yes, using the MTS "Multiple Unit Control" ("MU") option available on all electric locos sold by MTS. This feature provides the driver with a control unit held in the hand or on the driving car, linked by a cable to the first loco. There are then additional cables between the other locos. Once these are connected, you can drive two or more locos with the one driver.

At present all MTS locos are fitted with an MU connector. There are some restrictions on locos sold in 2010 that have not had the latest control circuit revisions. Consult MTS to check if uncertain.

Even different voltage (12V, 24V, or 48V) locos can be mixed! The battery power is shared though all attached engines and driving cars, however there may be differences in the pulling performance due to differences between engine types.

MU Cables are available if you need them for this purpose.

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What happens if my electric loco comes away from the driving car while under power?

The "Break Away" feature in all locos sold by MTS cuts the power off in the loco, which will then coast to a halt. If you have two or more locos running in MU they will all shut down, even if you have internal batteries.

Be careful if you do, as you will catch up to those engines quickly, so apply the handbrake!

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What do I do if my electric loco gets a fault and won't stop?

While this is very rare, the "Break Away" feature on all MTS locos and the "Power Cut Off" Switch on all MTS Battery Fitted driving cars solves the problem: Pull the link or hit the switch and the loco will shut down straight away, even if it has internal batteries. If you have two or more locos connected together, they will all shut down immediately.

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Is child safety an issue?

Subject to state legislation, the parent is responsible for the continuous supervision of all persons under 18 years of age operating miniature railways.

The disable key fitted to all MTS locos helps parents prevent unauthorised/unsupervised use. In addition, the "Power Cut Off" switch provided on MTS driving cars can be padlocked in the "off" position.

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My Planet doesn't pull well in reverse - why is this?

This can sometimes happen in Planets with an internal battery. The weight distribution puts more weight on the front wheels than the back, and when you are pulling hard in reverse the back wheels tend to lose traction.

All except the very first of the Planets sold by MTS have had their internal batteries replaced with well centered steel ballast weights and use a driving car mounted battery. Ballast weights can be back fitted to older Planets without too much trouble.

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My loco was pulling well but now it seems to be slipping a lot. What is the cause?

Check that all wheels are actually driving. ie, when it's slipping check that all wheels on each bogie are actually slipping. On 24V locos one bogie slipping at high load while the other is normal under high load, particularly on slippery track. However a single wheel slipping within a bogie (or say the front or rear wheelset on a 4 wheel loco) is not.

If you have a single wheelset slipping, that one is actually OK! It's the one that isn't slipping that is the problem. See if you can if the motor on the non-slipping wheelset is running. If it is then the pinion gear on the motor shaft has come loose and needs to be re-fixed. Please make an appointment to bring the loco in - we can normally fix it while you wait.

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Do Maxitrak Steam Locos comply with the AMBSC boiler code?

All Maxitrak boilers are made by professional builders, meet CE standards and come with a Maxitrak boiler test certificate. We provide drawings of each boiler type to AMBSC for assessment before releasing the locos for sale. To date the only modifications required for compliance have been the fitting of safety valve spindle retaining screws.

Under the clause in the code for Imported Boilers, it is up to your club boiler inspector to test and certify your loco and they can call up copies of the boiler drawings from AMBSC if they need to check anything they are uncertain of.

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What sort of fuel does my Maxitrak steam loco burn?

Maxitrak steam loco boilers are generally built to burn Welsh anthracite. As many clubs in Australia burn "char" instead of black coal you may need to change the grate and ashpan. We are happy to share drawings for different grates and ashpans as they come to hand.

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Does MTS provide train brakes?

Requirements vary from club to club but generally the AALS requirement is that at least one car in three has some sort of brake.

All MTS driving cars have a very effective handbrake fitted, so if you are running an MTS driving car (which may also be carrying passengers) plus two passenger cars then in most cases you won't need additional brakes.

Once you go beyond this then you have a couple of options:

Firstly, a when you have more than two passenger cars many clubs require a guard, then it may be sufficient (depending on your club) to include the "guards" version of our passenger car at the back of the train. This car has its own hand brake working on the rear bogie, to be operated by the guard for emergency or parking use.

If driver operated brakes are required, we can supply very effective electric powered brakes, vacuum or air in as many cars/bogies as are required.

Many 5" gauge clubs use vacuum brakes, and many 7.25" gauge clubs use air brakes. We can supply bogies with brakes fitted, and the rest of the equipment required, or we can do the full installation for you

Guard's Wagons are available to suit your train, integrated into both 5" gauge or 7.25" gauge carriages.

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Does MTS provide repairs on other makers' products?

In general, yes, but it is considered on a case by case basis. We restrict our work to petrol-electric and electric powered locos, but any scale or gauge is OK.

Be aware that some locos are not be very well built, and just may not be worth repairing! We can take a look at any loco and give you advice on where to go from there.

Services covering many aspects of design and construction are available.

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Does MTS provide support for privately imported Maxitrak products?

Yes, but of course we charge for this at a fair and reasonable price. MTS modifies all Maxitrak locos before sale to enhance performance and reliability, and achieve compliance with Australian Standards. Privately imported locos do not incorporate these modifications and MTS is more than happy to quote for incorporating them during the course of repairs.

Services including upgrades on engines are available.

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Can I use my Maxitrak loco commercially?

Maxitrak 5'' gauge locos are not designed for commercial use. They are intended for the backyard railway and club use market, and are designed and priced accordingly.

Our MTS custom built 7.25'' and larger gauge equipment is designed specifically for heavy duty use and is based on our own 20 years of commercial operating experience. The warranty on this equipment is for commercial level use.

If you have any queries then just let us know.

A range of Commercial Railway equipment is available.

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How long do I have to wait to get my train?

If we have it in stock and tested then you can take it with you when you visit our workshop.

That is unlikely for many products, however, and delivery time will vary. We'll quote you a delivery time and do our very best to meet or improve on that time when you place your order.

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How much does it cost for delivery?

Free if you pick it up from our workshop! Otherwise we'll quote you for delivery. It depends on the size and weight of the goods, and the distance they need to travel.

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What warranty does MTS provide?

MTS provides a 12-month warranty covering defects in parts and labour on all products, subject to normal wear and tear in normal operation.

Locomotives designed by Maxitrak are not intended for Commercial use, so the warranty for these locomotives is only for non-commercial use.

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What are the payment terms for Mini Train Systems?

Depending on what is being purchased, if it is ex-stock or needs to be manufactured, we will ask for a deposit or full payment with your order. In any case payment must be made in full before the goods are shipped.

Orders cancelled after 7 days of placement are subject to a 20% re-stocking charge. We accept payment by Visa, MasterCard, Cash or Direct Deposit to our account.

See our Conditions of Sale for more information.

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