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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I hope someone can help with an electrical problem. I need to know the wiring for a Lionel 254E. I’m pasting a pic of the pendulum control. I’m new to all this and I’m afraid I don’t know the correct terminology. This is my dads train set that he got when he was a boy. Dad is 81 now and seems to talk a lot about his child hood. My grand son is 4 so he’s just about the age my dad was when he got the train as a Christmas present. I though it would be nice to get the old set out and have it running around our Christmas tree for them both to see. Some of the wiring was brittle and cracked so I replaced it. I tagged the wires that I took off but not the ones I left as is. I got it back together and it wouldn’t run (ran before I fixed it) even got a puff of smoke out of it. I took the body back off and I saw a loose wire between the #1&2 terminals . It is one of the original wires that has a solid copper wire in it.



On the #1 terminal there is one wire that goes somewhere in the motor. #2 has 3wires, headlight, a wire that is grounded to the motor at the end where the hand reverse selector is, and another wire that comes from down in the motor area where the pendulum switch is.
 

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Yard Master & Research
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Quick

For a quick answer keep this in mind. The power from the center rail goes to a motor brush. Throught the spinning armature to the the other motor brush to the field coil around the armature to ground ( the outside rail). Does this makes sense?

Your light needs a center rail power to light so that #1 is powered from the center rail(Could be, let me think, it is). 3 and 5 are from the same motor brush 4 is the other . I bet that there are two contacts on the switch. The left connects 3,4 and the right connects 4,5 One is the reverse flow to the other.
Lets verify this before we continue.

My 249e may have this let me research a little Try Olsen for a sketch.
1937 Electric?
http://pictures.olsenstoy.com/searchcd2m.htm
It has an electric diagram. Digest that and get back to us!

Keep in mind you may have a connection mistake.


Your questions on the picture, I described the field, and the center pickup is from the roller on the center rail. Give me some time.
Bob

Excellent Question!
 

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Thanks! I have bought parts from him, but the library is a big help. My travellng through forum nations has paid off. The more people read the more they know, if someone asks the answer is there. Gee isn't that what a forum is for?LOL
Back to the problem.
I looked at the diagram. 1 is from the center shoe. Both lights need to feed from it. 2 is the ground, through the coil that goes around the armature.
One brush has 3,5 the other 4 so the lever changes connection from, 3,4 to 4,5. This causes reverse.
You want the lights to Draw through the track and not the motor so they should be connected to 1. This lever plate needs to be isolated from the frame or it will short.
Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #6
T-Man

I'm going to try and post pics of my wiring. As a referance point my/dads transformer has 4 posts, two on the left side and two on the right side. The posts are # 1&2(left side), and 3&R (right side). using 1&R=5 1/2-10 1/2 v. 2&R=11 1/2-16 1/2 v. 3&R=17 1/2-22 1/2v. When I took the transformer out of the box the output wires were 2&R. The only constant is the R post. I assume that is the neg terminal and I have that hooked to the center rail. You may need glasses to read the pics





 

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Yard Master & Research
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Ok nice pictures. First the motor goes forward and reverse. So it works both ways. You do not need to take apart the transformer. Positive is only important when you phase two transformers towork on one layout.

The wires on the transformer are reversable when connected to the track and only one transformer is used. then positive only refers to the center rail. The motor grounds out through the frame. A short is a nasty connection between the two.

So connect number one up. Two, leads to the coil and the outer rail. your lights can go to one or two. I prefer one since it is from the center rail.

option two before you connect 1 and 2 . get your two transformer leads and with the transformer at one half power touch the two leads to one and two. keep them separate and use one on each. The motor should run. Keep the motor off the track and on its side when doing this.

Smoke is not good and stop immediately.

Your wheels look in good condition.

any questions?
Before you start?
use 2 and r , 1 is too low and is too high
 

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Discussion Starter #8
T-Man; thanks for your help, the train is running now. I'm sure my grandson will enjoy it as he is to young for playstations. It seems to me that kids now a days don't have to use their imaginations very much. Every thing is right there in front of them, with 3 million colors and stereo sound cards. I guess I would have done the same thing if PCs' and playstations were around when I was a kid. Although looking back it was fun rounding up enough guys for a ball game or playing cowboys and native americans (gotta be pc).

I really hope that seeing his train run again will give my dad a few minutes of his childhood back.

Thanks again. Merry Christmas
 

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Thanks for asking the question here. The Olsen site is a good prewar info source. I thought I lost part of the conversation when you ripped the transformer apart. It sounds like an old one, maybe you should upgrade?
You should be able to wire any train motor now, the theory is the same.
Check it after running for any temperature increases.
Hope it runs for many years to come.
Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I didn't take the transformer apart. I was just describing it to see if it made a diff on how it was wired to the track. I do have a tip to pass on to other new people tho.
never ever catch a falling soldering iron. Don't ask!!!!! LOL
 

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never ever catch a falling soldering iron. Don't ask!!!!! LOL
OOH!
You have too if it falls on the wifes rug!
I stay in the basement!
A picture all together would be nice. The old catalogs are just drawings.
I'm curious.:D
 
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