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Old 08-02-2010, 01:28 PM   #11
tjcruiser
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Ryan,

A bit more ...

Remember that the US was in the midst of WWI in 1917, and Lionel was busy making military equipment, rather than a full focus on trains.

Click the links below to read a bit of the history going into your tank set ...

See top-right of Page 32 and photo on Page 33

http://books.google.com/books?id=4kz...&q=203&f=false

also ...

http://www.thirdrail.com/ttr_ww1.htm

For your understanding in the first link, "Cohen" (or sometimes "Cowen") is Joshua Lionel Cohen, the founder of Lionel.

TJ
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Old 08-02-2010, 08:33 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by smpldezine View Post
Thanks! I have not tried to run it since the wire out of the transformer is very old and brittle. I did find that info and was the ONLY info I found. I would just like to get in touch with the right person I guess and not just any local train shop around my area. Any tips on removing rust? There is a very small amount on the one car wheel. Thanks again Ed...
Just got home from work 13hrs! And I got to get up early tomorrow!

I have seen just one on e bay and it was only the tank not the set GO FOR BIG BUCKS!

I guess I don't have to say much more as everyone else beat me to it.
Keep checking back I am going to try to dig up some more to add to the post but I don't have the time right now.

The rust? I say it would not hurt but help if you take some wd-40 and rub it on your finger and apply it to the rust on the wheels. It would help stop further rusting. Don't try to clean them if you don't know what your doing.


I can't remember how much just the tank fetched but it was a good buck!
And you got the set with the box!

Watch out for appraisers too, especially if they offer you money. I would keep them if I were you. If your young another 10, 15 years they will be WORTH A LOT OF DOUGH!
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Old 08-03-2010, 07:13 AM   #13
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I'd echo ed's comment about appraisers or anyone who begins a sentence with "I'll give you (enter value here) right now for it..." or who needs to know where you live, etc. An apartment phone number or house phone number given out is like offering a key to your door. So is calling them from your home phone---everyone has caller id, these days. I don't mean to sound paranoid or over-react, but the item you have is worth stealing and can be easily sold under the table to an unethical collector. Just be circumspect about personal information and you'll do fine.



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Old 08-03-2010, 07:15 AM   #14
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Thank you everyone so much for the info and input, it is truly appreciated and wonderful! I am so torn on even thinking of selling it but with just purchasing a house last fall and the wedding next fall it should would be great. Like I said before, I dont want to sell to just anyone. I am going to get 2 apprasials today and 1 tomorrow and will keep y'll posted. I did put them in plastic bags just for the next few days while I take it around. Should I contact someone at Lionel as I don't just want this going to some train shop... Again, thanks for all the valuable information regarding the set I have inheritied.
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Old 08-03-2010, 07:22 AM   #15
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I'd echo ed's comment about appraisers or anyone who begins a sentence with "I'll give you (enter value here) right now for it..." or who needs to know where you live, etc. An apartment phone number or house phone number given out is like offering a key to your door. So is calling them from your home phone---everyone has caller id, these days. I don't mean to sound paranoid or over-react, but the item you have is worth stealing and can be easily sold under the table to an unethical collector. Just be circumspect about personal information and you'll do fine.
I certainly will take this into consideration... I use my cell phone only and have it locked in my gun safe. That is something I didn't really think about but they are all good points. I have some time to sit and think about this and where I want this train to go. I just want to make sure whatever happens is the right thing. What is an approximate quote I should expect on this set?
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Old 08-03-2010, 08:27 AM   #16
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Should I contact someone at Lionel as I don't just want this going to some train shop
That's a good question. Normally, (present day) Lionel doesn't get involved in collector issues (restoration, appraisals, etc.). But this tank/loco is so rare, that they might have some interest in steering you in a suitable / ethical direction. Give 'em a shot, perhaps.

Do follow through with the TCA and the National Toy Train Museum ... I think they'd offer ethical advice, too.

Maybe your bride-to-be would love to have a little old tank as a wedding gift ?!?

TJ
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Old 08-03-2010, 08:43 AM   #17
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I did call Lionel and left a message just to see where I should go with it from here. I don't think I'm going to take it to any local shops today, maybe just the pictures. If they know what they are doing, they will know what it is anyway. I'm sure she'd love an old tank loco as a wedding present haha that might just pay for the divorce that would soon follow lol
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Old 08-03-2010, 11:00 AM   #18
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I don't think it's overkill to suggest renting a PO Box for your correspondence. The real problem is that, in not knowing how you want to proceed, you need to create some flexibility in advance. Reputable people may need to send you documents to sign or return photos to you; unfortunately, you can't tell who is reputable. Build yourself some leeway now. It can be awkward to say "I won't give you my address" to someone who is interested. Also, don't be too averse to having it end up in someone's collection instead of a museum. My guess is that both your Mom and Grandpa would rather you have a great wedding present than an antique train. Use part of the money to start a new train set to hand down to your grandchildren and pass on the favor!



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Old 08-03-2010, 11:15 AM   #19
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My parents have a PO Box if it comes to that I would use. I called the National Toy Train Assoc and they were very helpful. It is #203 and not 154 and both cars are #900. They recommended I get the Greenburg pocket price guide to Lionel trains 1901 - 2010 so I just ordered it. Should be here by the weekend and I guess I will go from there. That's a great idea about investing in another train to pass on and good point. I will def search for a pre '70 set though. Thanks again for the help everyone!
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Old 08-03-2010, 12:37 PM   #20
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Best wishes to you, and please let us know how you came out on it!



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