Newbie Help! Lionel 2026 (from 47-48)

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Newbie Help! Lionel 2026 (from 47-48)
Posted by NorthEastChris on Friday, December 23, 2016 12:38 PM

Hi all, 

Happy Holidays!

I've inherited a Lionel 2026 steam engine from 1947/48 (amongst other Lionel stuff) and I want to clean/lubricate/refurbish it for my 9-year old who loves trains. I've got it broken down to the two metal plates everything attaches to, and I want to get these two plates apart, but I don't want to do any damage. Are there any articles on such a thing?

Anyone ever take these things apart that could coach me through it?  

Any help is much appreciated.

Chris

https://www.flickr.com/photos/92433421@N06/31711274261/in/dateposted-public/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/92433421@N06/31711275121/in/dateposted-public/

 

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Posted by ADCX Rob on Friday, December 23, 2016 3:09 PM

 

Unless you are changing the field winding or replacing the axle bushings(and they all look good, or better) there would be no reason to upset the original staking on these parallel plate motors.

In fact, you've already gone too far for periodic maintenance. Unless there is a specific failure, there's no reason to pull wheels(which must now be quartered and/or reset with the exact same geometry as built) or remove the armature.

Cleaning & lubrication(preferably with modern synthetics) is all that's usually needed in motors in as good condition as yours. Sometimes the reversing "E-Unit" switch needs a drum or contacts, the brushes can be renewed, the commutator cleaned, and that's all that's really needed.

Rob

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Posted by Firelock76 on Friday, December 23, 2016 3:11 PM

Honestly I wouldn't go any further, those plates look to be riveted together and unless you've got the wherewithal to rivet them back together you could just be asking for trouble separating them.

Unless they're a horrible corroded mess the best way to clean them would be to use a spray electrical contact cleaner and leave it at that.

I've cleaned, lubed, and re-brushed Lionel motors and quite honestly haven't had the need to do any more than that. 

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Posted by rtraincollector on Friday, December 23, 2016 3:54 PM

As rob said you have gone to far unless you have a press and put them back together how they should be ( quartered) It a process to put back in sink ( kinda like sinking a 4 speed trainsmision so it all sinkernised (sp) Your drive rods will jam up if your close but not right or they won't all line up to put all the screws in. Also you can get them on not perfectly level and that can cause problems . Now if this is all overwhelming I'm sorry I don't mean to do that. 

The best way with out a proper press is ( take it to someone who does ) other wise line up the middle axle so your one wheel is at the 6 O'cock setting and put the wheel to go with it on at exacly same position. Then put either front or rear other axxle on in same manner ( do both at this point but do not add the wheels to other side yet. put your side rod that connects all 3 of them so they are lined up then using the other side rod to help line up the other two wheels. You have a lot of help here that can help you get them in correct alignment, and other help. 

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Posted by NorthEastChris on Friday, December 23, 2016 6:20 PM

Thank you all very much for your responses. I appreciate your time & thoughts.

I'll get an electrical spray cleaner to get inside that body. There's a bit of grease & what may be carpet hair in there, but as Firelock76 said, the mechanical components look all right to my (admittedly uneducated) eyes.

Thanks for the tip on lining up those wheels rtraincollector.  I'll give it a go & post a follow-up on here when (if?) I get it back up and running. 

Chris

 

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Friday, December 23, 2016 10:31 PM

Hello NorthEastChris,

  The metal plates are not intended to be taken apart, unless you have a major failure. The only thing I can add to this thread is a suggestion about approach when servicing these old trains:

1. start with a little cleaning, and lubrication.Most of the time, that's all that is needed. Lubricate the axles, and the motor bearings.Grease the gears. Clean the commutator, which is the 3 segment copper disk visable on the side of the locomotive, just above the drive wheels. You can turn the drivers by hand, and clean this with a pencil eraser, without even taking the engine apart.

2. run the engine. In most cases, you are "good to go".

3. If you notice any issues, then address them. Every engine is different, many are trouble free, some need a little tweaking, and a very few will need surgical intervention.

I have learned to be cautious when handling these old trains, I had a whistle relay fall apart in my hands when I was trying to "fix" it. So, address what needs fixing, but be careful not to take it further than actually required. Start with the simple things first, and then progress to the more heavy duty repairs only if the problems have not been resolved. These Lionel trains are rugged, and robust, and usually don't need much.

You've gotten great advice on getting it back together, and I know you'll be the 2026 expert when it's done ! This is a really great engine. You, and your son will love it !

Paul

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Posted by cwburfle on Saturday, December 24, 2016 4:22 AM

As rob said you have gone to far unless you have a press and put them back together how they should be ( quartered)

What would you use for wheel cups?
It's not just a matter of having a press. Over the years, Lionel manfactured many different wheels that generally require different cups. I don't think any of the cups Lionel offered would fit nickle rimmed 2026 wheels. The after market tool companies may offer one.

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Posted by NorthEastChris on Saturday, December 24, 2016 6:48 AM

cwburfle

As rob said you have gone to far unless you have a press and put them back together how they should be ( quartered)

What would you use for wheel cups?
It's not just a matter of having a press. Over the years, Lionel manfactured many different wheels that generally require different cups. I don't think any of the cups Lionel offered would fit nickle rimmed 2026 wheels. The after market tool companies may offer one.

 

Cups? I was planning to use a little gentle persuasion with the back end of a screwdriver. 

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Posted by rtraincollector on Saturday, December 24, 2016 8:44 AM

Thats the part I was meaning when mentioned the press. I have put them on with out but your taking a big chance of not getting them on level. I haven't gotten that far yet in my repairs. 

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Saturday, December 24, 2016 10:53 AM

google "Lionel 2026". there is a you tube video describing how to use an arbor press, and the wheel cups mentioned. It shows the late model 2026, but still great info. 

Paul

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Posted by cwburfle on Saturday, December 24, 2016 1:19 PM

 It shows the late model 2026, but still great info. 

Lionel offered a set of cups that would fit a late model 2026 with sintered drivers.

 

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Posted by cwburfle on Saturday, December 24, 2016 1:25 PM

 I haven't gotten that far yet in my repairs.

If you are just getting started building your set of cups, the good news for you is that the folks making them have become much better at developing cups that fit more than one wheel. When I started buying them, most were very specific to one wheel.

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Posted by cwburfle on Saturday, December 24, 2016 1:32 PM

Cups? I was planning to use a little gentle persuasion with the back end of a screwdriver

Is that how you got them apart?

Before I had a press, I used a vise with blocks against
the wheels to remount them. Not something I'd generally recommend.

At one time Lionel recommended that their service station fashion their own wheel cups and use a metal working lathe to mount the wheels (by turning in the tail stock).

One of the issues with mounting wheels without cups is the fact that most Lionel wheels aren't flat across their face. I've gotten around that by using sockets that only contacted the rim of the wheel. Other times I've used small flat anvils in the press that only contacted the hub. I guess the equivalent in a vice would be a small block.

The other issues with using a vise are:

Does the vise have truly parallel jaws?
If it does, the motor assembly /wheels have to be held square.

 

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Posted by NorthEastChris on Tuesday, January 03, 2017 3:09 PM

So the wheels are on, and they look reasonably straight to the eye.  They turn without much resistance. I followed service manual pictures I found online: the side with the gears was at 12 o'clock whilst the other side was at 3.  I used a vise.

However, I stilll get the same humming sound & even less movement from electric motor. I was hoping to solve this by cleaning the thing.

Can anyone recognize what is going on through the video?

https://www.flickr.com/photos/105547860@N03/32084659505/in/dateposted/

The track isn't in the greatest shape, but I ran a good engine on it with no problem. 

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Posted by cwburfle on Tuesday, January 03, 2017 3:28 PM

I think you need to perform the most basic test. Disconnect the wires from the e-unit (reversing switch) to the brushes and field. Attach a jumper wire between one brush holder and the field. Attach test leads to the other brush holder and the chassis. Does the motor run?

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Posted by ADCX Rob on Tuesday, January 03, 2017 4:03 PM

NorthEastChris
...However, I stilll get the same humming sound & even less movement from electric motor. I was hoping to solve this by cleaning the thing.

Can anyone recognize what is going on through the video?

That humming sound is normal when the E-Unit is energized. That sounds fine.

You have an open circuit somewhere, my guess would be among the 6 E-unit contact fingers. Have you been able to confirm that the E-unit drum is advancing each time you power up?

Rob

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Posted by NorthEastChris on Tuesday, January 03, 2017 7:30 PM

I get movement in the drum, but only when the lever is on the metal contact. Also, the drum moves upward to the same degree that the throttle is applied.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/105547860@N03/31247717764/

I didn't get it on video, but I had the e-unit hanging outside the chassis, connected by wires but not touching, and there was nothing when I applied the throttle. However, when I bumped the side of the e-unit to the chassis, I got some wheel movement. What this means, I dunno.

I haven't bypassed the e-unit yet. Hopefully tomorrow I'll give it a go. 

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Posted by lionelsoni on Tuesday, January 03, 2017 9:31 PM

Be sure that you wire the field and the armature in series, not in parallel.

Bob Nelson

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Posted by ADCX Rob on Tuesday, January 03, 2017 9:49 PM

NorthEastChris
I get movement in the drum, but only when the lever is on the metal contact.

That's all good.

I wish you had a working version to compare so you can see how normal all this is, even "the drum moves upward to the same degree that the throttle is applied".

That's the pawl that moves up, the drum rotates.

Rob

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 12:11 AM

Hello Again,

that's a very good sign that the motor is trying to turn. one possibility could be dirty contacts at the drum, and E-unit fingers. You could try cleaning the E-unit drum, very carefully with a Q-tip, and alcohol. Advance the pawl, and clean a small spot at a time. Have you already cleaned the brushes, brush wells, and commutator ?

Paul

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 12:18 AM

Hello again,

it sounds promising that the motor is trying to turn. Try cleaning the E-unit drum. Use a Q-tip, and alcohol, and advance the drum one notch at a time, cleaning very carefully a small area, and using the pawl to advance to the next notch. Have you cleaned the brushes, brush w Ellis, and commutator yet ?

Paul

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 12:20 AM

Sorry, I am Fat Fingering this new I pad mini.

Sorry to repeat myself more than normal

Oops - Sign

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 12:45 AM

IdeaAlso, the E-unit needs to be touching the frame for the solenoid to pull. Mount the E-unit first in the frame, and try it.

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Posted by NorthEastChris on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 6:54 PM

The brushes, buckets, springs and motor have all been cleaned. The drum has been cleaned, and I saw two "fingers" at the bottom of the e-unit I could get a toothpick under. There are four others that I'll be darned if I can get to. I used a dental pick with a 90 degree bend to get something under there.

Half the drum cleaned, the other half what I started with:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/105547860@N03/31300407773/

Still getting the same thing:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/105547860@N03/31962189692/

I'm a little queasy of disconnecting wires, but that may be the next step. How do I wire in series and not parallel? Anyone have a diagram? 

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 7:30 PM

Chris,

you can Google, and get a world of info,including wiring diagrams. I see your E-unit solenoid is working. You are getting down to the point where you will somehow need to determine that your motor is functioning. I suspect it is, and I suspect it will be your E-unit, since the circuit runs back through there twice. You can bypass the E-unit for now, and get the wiring diagram later when you are ready to build it back in.

To bypass:

1. Take the wire coming from the pick up collector plate, and connect this to one of the motor brushes.

2. Run a wire from the other brush to the wire that goes into the field coil.

3. The other end of the field coil should go to frame ground. This will put you in "series".

put 'her on the track , and fire it up.

It should start to run in one direction.

If this is successful, you can send the E-unit to be rebuilt.

Great job on getting those wheels back on!

Good Luck!

Yeslet us know...

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Posted by ADCX Rob on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 7:38 PM

NorthEastChris
How do I wire in series and not parallel? Anyone have a diagram?

Switch the brush connections to run in the opposite direction.

Rob

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Posted by lionelsoni on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 7:46 PM

I suggest that you remove the existing wires from the brushes for the test.

While it is possible to bypass a functioning e-unit without removing those two wires, by rotating the e-unit drum to one of its neutral positions, you don't know yet whether your e-unit is functional.  Later, when you reconnect those wires, it doesn't matter which goes where.

Bob Nelson

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Posted by ADCX Rob on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 7:48 PM

Here is the as-built wiring diagram:

Rob

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Posted by Postwar Paul on Wednesday, January 04, 2017 10:37 PM

Nice visuals, guys ! That was what I was trying to describe in words. 

Chris, for now focus on the simplified circuit to test your motor. The other diagram will help to put the E-unit back in. And as Lionelsoni said, you will want the E-unit disconnected. Only this simple motor circuit.

Paul

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Posted by NorthEastChris on Thursday, January 05, 2017 8:41 AM

Many thanks for all the advice and diagrams. 

Will I defeat the purpose if, rather than removing the old wires, I merely use wire to bypass the e-unit? I was thinking of attaching jumper wire to the various connection points without removing the old ones.

Again, thanks to all for pitching in. 

Chris

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