I have an AF o gauge steam engine (post war) that has a cow catcher that is rubbing the track and shorting. What is the solution?

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I have an AF o gauge steam engine (post war) that has a cow catcher that is rubbing the track and shorting. What is the solution?
Posted by Tom from Hawaii on Thursday, January 24, 2019 9:57 PM

I have an O gauge AF steam engin (561) from 1947 that has a cow catcher that rubs on track causing a short.  What is the solutin? 

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Posted by lionelsoni on Friday, January 25, 2019 9:40 AM

I can't help you with the short-circuit problem.  But I think you've got a prewar locomotive there.  American Flyer switched from three-rail O (1/48) to two-rail S scale (1/64) after the war.  The postwar 561 is a Diesel-horn billboard!

Bob Nelson

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Posted by TrainLarry on Friday, January 25, 2019 11:15 AM

One solution would be to put a piece of electrical tape on the underside of the pilot. Another would be to paint the underside of the pilot with an electrical insulating paint.

The best solution is to find out why the pilot (cowcatcher) is touching the rails.

 

Larry

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, January 25, 2019 4:42 PM

Not an AF guy, but if one of my Lionels was doing that I'd say it was one of two things...

1)  Somehow or another the cowcatcher's been bent.  There should be plenty of clearance between the underside of the cowcatcher and the railhead.

2)  Something's  out of alignment with the locomotive causing it to run rear-end high and front-end low.   Place it on a table-top and take a good look at it from the side.

Just my thoughts, for what they're worth.

One last thing.  I just remembered (and had to look up the thread) but frequent poster "Penny Trains" mentioned she has an AF 310 which is very intolerant of poor track.  So, how's your track look?  Is it well-laid and in good shape?  Something else to check in case the locomotive looks good.

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Posted by Major on Friday, January 25, 2019 10:39 PM

The 561 is a Pensylvania K-5 pacific Made 39 to 41. I have a couple of them. Like  previously said the pilot (cow catcher) should not even come close to the rails and short out. Since the pilot is a separate part ensure that it is properly seated to the steam chest and that both of them are secured to the boiler casting. If the pilot is bent you can get a replacement part from Port line Hobbies. Post war parts will fit. I did have one postwar K-5 that had a straight pilot but still rubbed the rails. I raised the boiler by epoxying a washer around the screw holes in the boiler so it sat level. I have no clue as to why this particular engine sat lower in front than the other ones that I have, but it did. 

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Posted by Tom from Hawaii on Saturday, January 26, 2019 12:25 AM

lionelsoni

I can't help you with the short-circuit problem.  But I think you've got a prewar locomotive there.  American Flyer switched from three-rail O (1/48) to two-rail S scale (1/64) after the war.  The postwar 561 is a Diesel-horn billboard!

 

lionelsoni

I can't help you with the short-circuit problem.  But I think you've got a prewar locomotive there.  American Flyer switched from three-rail O (1/48) to two-rail S scale (1/64) after the war.  The postwar 561 is a Diesel-horn billboard!

 

lionelsoni

I can't help you with the short-circuit problem.  But I think you've got a prewar locomotive there.  American Flyer switched from three-rail O (1/48) to two-rail S scale (1/64) after the war.  The postwar 561 is a Diesel-horn billboard!

 

This was a train that my father gave me in 1945 or 1946.  I had a catalog that showed the three rail tains.  It certainly could  have been cobblered together from 1942 probuction.  My father was a bargain hunter, so I am not sure where he got it.  As you probably know train makers had to stop selling trains in 1942.  So this could be an AF train from left over stock after the war.

Thanks for your imput.  Tom

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Posted by rrlineman on Saturday, January 26, 2019 7:40 AM

Gilbert did sell left over O gauge stock in 45 and 46. the 561 K5 and the 556 alantic were in 2 sets. and they did stock parts until 49 or 50 when they wholesaled them out to the service stations. As for the arcing, your pilot is probably bent or loose. you can tighten the screw to see if that helps or take the pilot off and try to straighten it. If that don't work, a S gauge 1 should work but you may have to file the back of the cowcather to get clearance for the larger O gauge wheels.

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Posted by Penny Trains on Saturday, January 26, 2019 6:29 PM

 

Big Smile  I'm Cuckoo For Choo Choo Stuffs!  Big Smile

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