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AF reversing unit questions.

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  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
AF reversing unit questions.
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, December 29, 2003 8:06 AM
I have a couple of questions about reversing units for AF locomotives. I have 2 locomotives, the Pacific (4-6-2) with a very flakey reversing unit. and the super cheapo Baldwin switcher with a single motor and a spdt underneath. I went to the greenburg Chantilly, VA show, and when I asked the two restoration/repair parts people about AF reversing units, you would have thought I had suggested to them that eating live puppies was important to dietary health. [:(!] Visually, what I held in my hand did not appear much differet from the one in my Pacific. What is it about AF E-units that cause such revulsion? What options might I have other than trying to clean and rehabilitate the E-unit I have now?
While there, I also saw that Dallee Electronics carrys a "universal" electronic e-unit to replace other types of e-units. Has anyone used any of these to replace an older system? Does anyone know if this could be used with a train that had no reversing unit to start with, like the baldwin switcher?
  • Member since
    August 2003
  • 28 posts
Posted by arnoldafl on Wednesday, December 31, 2003 8:27 AM
I don't know why you were met with such a negative attitude for AF reverse units. I wouldn't think they were any worse than mechanical Lionel units. Anyway, these units can be tricky. They are prone to sticking which sometimes can be corrected with a small amount of light oil. However sometimes it's a part out of alignment or bent slightly out of shape which is a bear to find and correct. You can try to clean the unit from your Pacific and see if it runs better. It may take some tinkering to get it to work right. These either work well or stick.

As for the Baldwin. Sounds like your engine is the model that came with a switch instead of a functioning E-unit (21808). There should be a metal strip that protrudes from each side of the locomotive through the fuel tank that slid one way or the other to reverse the motor. The best bet for this if you want an automatic reverse, is to buy the Dallee unit. However the motor in these Baldwin units are not very good. So if you are going to add a reverse unit, you might as well replace the motor for a little more. Port Line Hobbies (www.portlines.com) sells both motor and reverse unit for $79. You may have to struggle with the decision whether the Baldwin switcher is worth that investment, I know I am.

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