Post-war diesel questions.

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  • Member since
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Post-war diesel questions.
Posted by Michael6268 on Monday, February 04, 2019 4:30 PM

I've got quite a collection of post-war steamers as well as a lot of modern engines. The one thing I never bought was a post-war diesel. Lately I've been looking to purchase my first. I had a couple of questions though.

First, what's a decent road engine that can usually be found that won't break the bank. Just looking for something basic with a 3-position e unit, etc.  Something like an F3, GP7 or 9 etc... 

My other question is-  I have torn apart my share of postwar steam engines for servicing and repair, and I have studied the insides of post-war diesels and basically understand the motors, but was wondering about the horn. I understand how the increase of dc current and relays work for steam tenders.     

From what I see it seems like most, if not all post-war diesel's use D cell battery to power or at least activate the horn/ introduce DC current. But how exactly do these horns work,  as opposed to a steam engine tender with a relay and are whistle. I am familiar with the actual horn unit with the vibrating disc, but was more interested in how the D cell works in conjunction with activating the horn etc?

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Posted by lionelsoni on Monday, February 04, 2019 5:23 PM

The D cell powers only the horn.  The same kind of slugged relay that connects a steam locomotive whistle motor to the track voltage connects a Diesel locomotive horn to the D-cell's 1.5 volts.  So, although in both cases the relay operates in response to a small DC component that the transformer inserts into the track voltage, the DC current supplied by the C cell to the horn has nothing to do with the DC on the track that operates the relay.

The relay, by the way, has a heavy copper ring around the pole nearest its armature.  This shields the pole from AC magnetic flux, but has no effect on DC flux, so, when there is a DC component in the relay's winding, the relay operates, turning on the whistle motor or the horn, whichever the locomotive is equipped with.

I would stick with vertical-motor Diesels.  I'm personally very fond of my first Lionel locomotive, the 2243 A-B F-3 set.

Bob Nelson

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Posted by Michael6268 on Monday, February 04, 2019 5:35 PM

Thanks Bob. That cleared everything up on the horn operation.  And thanks for the suggestion on a locomotive.

Now hopefully some of you guys (or gals) will have some good suggestions on a post-war diesels, the more the better. I might buy a few!

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Posted by Michael6268 on Monday, February 04, 2019 5:45 PM

I'm liking the 2243 AB. Any idea what a fairly decent one goes for?  Separately or together.

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Posted by lionelsoni on Monday, February 04, 2019 6:54 PM

I don't have a current price guide, but I can tell you that the B unit is more valuable than the A, because its black trucks make it the only match for expanding the later 2-motor 2383 to ABBA, which was sold as an AA set.  You might want to consider the 2383 also, although it is not quite as smooth a runner in my opinion, and the red paint tends very slightly toward orange.

The earliest 2243s had cab ladders that protruded far enough from the sides that they are often found damaged, and a seller may charge more if they are intact.

It may be helpful to know that Lionel's designations for the various units was a suffix of P for a powered A unit, T for a dummy A unit, and C for a dummy B unit.

Bob Nelson

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Posted by sir james I on Wednesday, February 06, 2019 10:12 AM

For F3s I would go with the later vertical 2 motor engines. The bodies won't have all the add on features of the earlier ones but they run good and are quitier. The 2383 would probaby be the least expensive to buy. The GP7s and 9s are good as well as the diecast frame Alcos. The later Alcos with a metal frame are not as good and can be problematic. As an aside consider the Williams engines they are excellent runners.

"IT's GOOD TO BE THE KING",by Mel Brooks 

  Charter Member- Tardis Train Crew (TTC) - TCA  - Detroit3railers-  Detroit Historical society Glancy Modular trains- Charter member BTTS

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Posted by lionelsoni on Wednesday, February 06, 2019 10:24 PM

Another thought:  I run my 2383 (with 2 prototypical 2243C B units) "backwards", with the powered unit pushing the dummies.  That way I can pull a longer train without pulling the cars off on the curves.

Bob Nelson

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Posted by Michael6268 on Thursday, February 07, 2019 5:13 AM

Im going to a small train show this Sunday.  Im going to see what i can find.  Seems like there's always a lot of pw steamers,  but not many diesels. 

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Thursday, February 07, 2019 9:07 AM

Keep your fingers crossed and your eyes open, you never know what you'll find at a train show.

I'm come away from some shows with nothing, and others with some big scores and finds I never expected.  Never pass up a train show if there's one around.

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Posted by Roger Carp on Thursday, February 07, 2019 10:30 AM

Hi Michael6268

 

Please contact me at Classic Toy Trains for information to answer your important questions.

 

Sincerely,
 
Roger Carp
Senior editor
Classic Toy Trains
262-796-8776 ext. 253

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