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I just got my 2020 big boy legacy today. Got everything figured out and it’s all working besides the smoke.. here is my problem.. I put the drops in maybe 3/4 of the Lionel smoke dropper, it smokes like crazy for the smallest amount of time. It might go around a o-96 circle maybe twice like that then it dies out. Directions and other forums say don’t over fill it so I hesitate and put a little more in. Same thing. Also the smoke whistle doesn’t work as a bubble forms on top clogging it. I just blow down the tube and it’s all good but still, the smoke only lasts max 2 rounds. Is it because it’s new that it just fries the fluid? Or am I doing something wrong.
 

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Well, it sounds like you're doing things correctly. How many drops does the 3/4 of the Lionel smoke dropper equate to? I've found with most Legacy smoke units they need far more than the 20 drops that Lionel specifies in their manual. When I am priming a brand new dry unit, I use a full dropper of JT's Megasteam, that's about 45 drops if I measure them out.

I will say my Vision Line Big Boy goes through smoke fluid faster than many other locomotives, not sure why. Since the 2020 version is much of the same internal parts, it stands to reason it would have a similar issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
About 20 drops is what it equates to. I just added four 3/4 full dropper to it. 2 per stack, and it smoked my whole room up for 5 minutes or so. Just wonder how much it can handle.
 

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To smoke, or, not to smoke? I like it, but it does fill the train room quickly. If I turn on the overhead fan, it dissipates the smoke so rapidly that it can't be seen. I am torn between using this great feature and having a smokey barroom look or being able to see the trains clearly. I have a couple of family members with asthma, so, when they visit, smoke is off.

That brings up another problem/benefit. Sound. With all the trains running (seven at the moment) the noise is so loud, between train sounds and the clickety-clack track sounds, I can't even hear my grandkids when they ask me a question.

I remember the old days when I was a kid, with two Lionel trains. One diesel and one steamer. The steamer used pills for smoke, and had no whistling tender. Just the noisy E unit. The diesel had a horn, and no bell. The pill smoke was pungent, but not repugnant, and there was only ever a little bit of it. The diesel had no smoke, but it did have magnetraction. These are just memories. I do remember that these trains were indestructible, never had any maintenance, and ran for years, being abused all the time.

AS I said, just memories, and not an attempt to hijack this thread.
 

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I just got my 2020 big boy legacy today. Got everything figured out and it’s all working besides the smoke.. here is my problem.. I put the drops in maybe 3/4 of the Lionel smoke dropper, it smokes like crazy for the smallest amount of time. It might go around a o-96 circle maybe twice like that then it dies out. Directions and other forums say don’t over fill it so I hesitate and put a little more in. Same thing. Also the smoke whistle doesn’t work as a bubble forms on top clogging it. I just blow down the tube and it’s all good but still, the smoke only lasts max 2 rounds. Is it because it’s new that it just fries the fluid? Or am I doing something wrong.
My new legacy Big Boy did the same thing. Let it sit for 24 hours to let the fluid soak into the wick. Try it after that and you will have plenty of smoke. In fact this engine smokes more than any other Lionel engine I have. I have to turn off the main smoke or it will fill the room. I leave the whistle smoke on for the grandsons, they love that effect.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I got it running better with like 4 droppers full. I posted a video online if anyone wanted to see it.
 

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My new legacy Big Boy did the same thing. Let it sit for 24 hours to let the fluid soak into the wick. Try it after that and you will have plenty of smoke. In fact this engine smokes more than any other Lionel engine I have. I have to turn off the main smoke or it will fill the room. I leave the whistle smoke on for the grandsons, they love that effect.
I did your trick and let it soak over night. Yeah you were right had to shut off the smoke.. good tip. I looked for a while, not saying I looked insane hard, but I tried and yours was the first to say soak it overnight. Works perfect now! Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
To smoke, or, not to smoke? I like it, but it does fill the train room quickly. If I turn on the overhead fan, it dissipates the smoke so rapidly that it can't be seen. I am torn between using this great feature and having a smokey barroom look or being able to see the trains clearly. I have a couple of family members with asthma, so, when they visit, smoke is off.

That brings up another problem/benefit. Sound. With all the trains running (seven at the moment) the noise is so loud, between train sounds and the clickety-clack track sounds, I can't even hear my grandkids when they ask me a question.

I remember the old days when I was a kid, with two Lionel trains. One diesel and one steamer. The steamer used pills for smoke, and had no whistling tender. Just the noisy E unit. The diesel had a horn, and no bell. The pill smoke was pungent, but not repugnant, and there was only ever a little bit of it. The diesel had no smoke, but it did have magnetraction. These are just memories. I do remember that these trains were indestructible, never had any maintenance, and ran for years, being abused all the time.

AS I said, just memories, and not an attempt to hijack this thread.
The whole reason I got a train.. never had one as a kid, but during Christmas friends of the family always had one. They used to let me control it. All I would do for hours. Good memories.
 

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I did your trick and let it soak over night. Yeah you were right had to shut off the smoke.. good tip. I looked for a while, not saying I looked insane hard, but I tried and yours was the first to say soak it overnight. Works perfect now! Thanks!
Glad to see it's working for you. You're welcome.
 

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Thanks for this question and the answers provided. I have been having very similar problems with my Lionel 0-8-0. I think my problems are, A not enough drops, and B not letting the wick soak. I didn't know it had a wick. The bottle that came with the 0-8-0 says to add four to five drops and caution do not over fill. Engine would puff but only once or twice around track. I could stop train and see faint smoke out of it. I would then turn off smoke due to fear of tearing it up.
I am going to let soak and try again. Thanks Andy
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Last info needed.. does Lionel make their smoke fluid specifically for their trains?? I mean is mega steam safe to run in them as Lionel premium smoke fluid? these trains aren’t cheap and want a pro answer. If the mega steam wont mess my train up i hear they have tons of different scents. but if lionels is better for my train, ill stick with that. any opinions?
 

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If I missed it forgive me. You running under legacy? If so is smoke set to low, med, or high? Try a lower setting If running under legacy. Lionel says using other smoke fluid than theirs will void the warranty. I don’t care as I can fix my smoke units and run nothing but mega steam. Your decision
 

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Discussion Starter #18
If I missed it forgive me. You running under legacy? If so is smoke set to low, med, or high? Try a lower setting If running under legacy. Lionel says using other smoke fluid than theirs will void the warranty. I don’t care as I can fix my smoke units and run nothing but mega steam. Your decision
It’s on low. Honestly don’t notice ANY difference on the other settings. I did get some mega steam... problem is, or maybe not a problem, the fan unit seems to be louder??? Maybe I’m hearing things.. but in this video you can for sure hear it whine higher pitch I think. I don’t know I’m going to do a side by side sound video here soon to check if I’m hearing things. Any opinions on this??? Is it a problem?? Should I only run Lionel smoke fluid in here??
 
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