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Discussion Starter #1
I was cleaning the wheels and to me they look like bronz or brass. What is a good polish to use to get them bright and shinny. Thanks. Al this is for my 490 and 492 diesel.
 

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I use Mother's Wheel Polish.
 

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I've done both. It usually easier to do it by hand with a soft cotton cloth.
 

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I use copper cleaner by hand. That's what I use on tender wheels. Makes them bright and shiny.
Mine is called Twinkle and I got it at my grocery store. I know others here use it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ok thanks and it so happenes i work part time at a grocery store and iam working tonight thanks.
Al
 

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Easier to clean if you remove them from the trucks first. Its amazing how fast and quickly Twinkle will take off the oxidation off brass or copper. You will want to shine the wheels on
your tenders. I had some pics of some tender wheels I had cleaned but can not find.
 

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Al is asking about the wheels on his recently acquired 490 NP diesel. Take out the two screws holding on the truck sideframe to remove them, then spray some electrical contact cleaner on a clean cloth and wipe the wheels. They need to be electrically clean and conductive with no coatings or deposits. Check for any pitting, there should be none because these engines have sliding pickup shoes on the truck sideframes. If there is any pitting that indicates an electrical continuity issue in the truck or worn out shoes or springs. The metal polish is fine on brass tender pickup wheels but I would not use it on the diesel drive wheels. They are not actually brass like some tender wheels but do have a faint copper color.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ok thanks if wheels have pits buy new wheels . idid order new springs and shoes. Thanks everyone.

Al
 

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For any wheels on cars and dummy diesels here is the quickest and easiest way to clean them. Spray contact cleaner on a paper towel, lay it across the track and roll the car back and forth several times. Wheels get totally clean, takes less than 10 seconds/car. Note the tracks of black deposits on the paper towel.


E7FA4809-C7E5-47F2-A7CC-F16F9DDC13AB.jpeg
 

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Al, I would not buy new wheels. Pulling and reinstalling is a major pain. Just power the engine when off the track and use between a 400 and 1,000 grit sand paper against the spinning wheels to smooth out the surface. They should clean up fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Al, I would not buy new wheels. Pulling and reinstalling is a major pain. Just power the engine when off the track and use between a 400 and 1,000 grit sand paper against the spinning wheels to smooth out the surface. They should clean up fine.
Ok good i dear. Thanks again
 

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For any wheels on cars and dummy diesels here is the quickest and easiest way to clean them. Spray contact cleaner on a paper towel, lay it across the track and roll the car back and forth several times. Wheels get totally clean, takes less than 10 seconds/car. Note the tracks of black deposits on the paper towel.


View attachment 544382
That's the first thing I do with a new piece of rolling stock, works well.
I tried Twinkle polish on a bunch of stuff. I like Simichrome Polish better, I've been using it on motorcycles for years. Simichrome will make your wheels look like with just a few q-tips.
 

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If those diesel wheels are not brass, do not use Twinkle. I do not have any original AF diesels.
So I do not know what they are. My newer Lionel/Flyer diesels do not have brass wheels. Might
be some kind of sintered metal. They will not shine. No biggie. You want clean. Alcohol or CRC
will work. I even think a couple of my tenders have sintered wheels, not brass.
 

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None of the diesel drive wheels are brass, they are all sintered metal, metallurgy unknown. Should only be cleaned with a plastic and rubber safe solvent, that is why I use an electrical contact cleaner.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I cleaned wheels on 490 and 492. Problem the 490 wheels spin on track but doesn't go any were. Why . when i first got them they worked so i must have done something. Help would be appreciated. Thanks
Al
 
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