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Motorizing Tram from 8404/60097

Vindic8edVindic8ed Member Posts: 184
edited September 2015 in Everything else LEGO
Has anyone tried motorizing the tram from either of these sets?  All of the train stuff I currently have is based on the electric track, but I ordered some of the newer ones which should be here this week.  I'm going to tinker around with it to see how it looks but wanted to see if someone else has already come up with something so I'm not reinventing the wheel.  I'd like to make a city setup with the tram running through the middle of the street sort of like this:


  • crazycarlcrazycarl USAMember Posts: 392
    edited September 2015
    Seems like #60097 would be best motorized using #6399 monorail parts.  Adding power functions with powered trucks to this tram would, in my opinion, look silly.  Not to mention far from the look of the prototype tram in your picture.  It would make the tram sit far too high.
  • TigerMothTigerMoth Member Posts: 2,343
    Modern ultra low-floor trams like that in  #60097 don't have "trucks" anyway but individual, electronically-steered wheels. The real snag is that to get a floor height of just over six inches from the road, the wheels are almost entirely within the body profile which limits how much the wheels can turn, particularly with a LEGO version. A key part of the look is the unbroken body line. If you don't want your trams to go round anything more than gentle bends, life gets easier.

    The Trax LRV in the photograph isn't a ULF vehicle and has a raised floor at the ends. Unfortunately, it still has totally enclosed wheels. However, there are similar vehicles that don't but which have panelling added to the sides of the wheelsets instead. These do not have the same limitation on steering. The question is whether you can add the fairings and still keep everything slim enough to be convincing.

    Powering any of them is the easy part. As you can't get it under such a low floor, the motor is going to end up in the passenger space. If the pivot for whatever wheel configuration you choose is on the ceiling of the car, then you've plenty of space for a motor and gearing.

    If you use Tr. Brown for the windows, then replacing them with black where you want to hide working parts works reasonable well - as is used in #7938.
  • crazycarlcrazycarl USAMember Posts: 392
    ^^^ It would be easy to do if he uses a 9v powered truck and track.  That would only take up about 1/3 of the passenger space in one car.  However if by "ordered the new ones" he means power functions;  it would take up an entire car for the battery box, ir receiver, and 1 powered truck.  Either way I think to make it look right, using any "train" parts the track should be entirely straight.  Keep in mind he wants to hide the track in the road as the pic shows.  that could be done with studless plates on straight track. Not so easy on turns. However with old monorail parts, based on 4 stud wide construction, this 6 stud tram would work fine straight and turning.  it would be fairly easy to level the road to the monorail track to.  It just wouldn't look prototypical.   It will be neat to see if anyone else does this and posts pics!!!
  • luckyrussluckyruss UKMember Posts: 872
    edited September 2015
    There are some 9v / PF modifications of the tram in 8404 online, mainly through the extension of the mid carriage to 8 studs long.

    I turned it into a six wide monorail train (so dropping the door below the level of the mono-train base to give it that low to ground feel).  It's quite a bit larger than the airport shuttle, for example - but annoyingly at 6-wide I then need to mod all my monorail stations else it doesn't run through them!

    Haven't had a go yet with the orange one from 60097.

  • crazycarlcrazycarl USAMember Posts: 392
    edited September 2015
    ^^^^ That is awesome!  That is exactly how I would do it!  Man this thread may be the reason I buy #60097.  I hadn't planned on buying it but really want to try this.  I could also use the extra buildings on my layout.  Man that is cool luckruss!
  • Vindic8edVindic8ed Member Posts: 184
    Yes, I meant the new power function trains vs. My old 9v.  I looked around on YouTube and found a couple of videos.  I might have to get more 9v track and power it that way.  The 9v modification was nice and didn't mess up the passenger space too much but the power functions mod took up all the space in both cars...


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