I do not believe that this is correct since the electrical pickup is only on the drivers at the extreme ends of the locomotive, the other interior axles are elevated to place more weight on the drivers and hence on the track ensuring better electrical pickup. The adhesion comes from the total weight of the locomotive on the rails and is not a function of how many wheels are on the rail. The weight is divided by the number of driving wheels on the rail. Increasing the number of wheels on the track just reduces the adhesion per wheel but the total remains the same so the engine does not pull more just does with a better electric supply.
On uneven track without the interior axles being elevated you could loose electrical contact on one or more axles. I enhance the loco's performance by adding a wiper to the other drivers and have even added tender pick up on some. Whenever I add the additional electrical pickup I also file the small tit on the cover plate that elevates that interior axle bringing it down to the track. These two things increase the electrical pickup and engines are less likely to stall. The trick is finding the fine phosphor bronze sheet stock in the right size. Some times When I run out of sheet stock I use a brass wire wiper which has an inverted V shape at 90 degrees to the wiper arm and runs on the tire at the top of the wheel where it is out of site and this can also act as a spring on the interior driver to keep weight on the driver placing it on the track most of the time. This adds drag to the drive train and is not as efficient as the wide wiper strips, but it is better than no wiper.
At 01:02 AM 10/03/2000 +0000, you wrote:
>>It's interesting that despite the number of "powered axles"
>>advertised by Marklin, the 2-8-2 and the 4-6-2 have the same number
>>of powered wheels doing the work -- four! The other drivers don't
>>quite touch the rails. Why are they designed this way? For better
>>traction or better electrical contact? Some other reason?
>The reason is to allow the long wheelbase locos to negociate the tightest of
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