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Discussion Starter #1
I'm new to this forrum and first let me start by saying hello!
I have an early 50's vintage Lionel 2353 that belonged to my dad when he was a boy. It had been in storage for about 40 years when I inherited it a couple years ago. I took it to a local hobby shop that specializes in model trains, and paid them to service it. I only get the train out at Christmas, and set it up around the Christmas tree. This year the train speed seems to vary a lot. I keep the 90 watt transformer at max, but the train speed continually fluctuates. I'm getting 13 volts from the transformer, and about 12 at the opposite side of the circle track (farthest from the transformer). The voltage doesn't fluctuate, so I can only assume it is a current continuety issue. The track is sixty years old and some pins fit very loose. I have shined the track with steel wool and don't see any rust. I'm just looking for tips from someone who's been around as to what I should check / do. I would like to do all my own service on this engine and not have to rely on a hobby shop. Thanks for any tips / suggestions and Merry Christmas!
 

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Yard Master & Research
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F-3

Hi and Welcome. Your Dad got a very nice Engine.
Do the motors look like this?

If they do they are held by rivets and often come loose. The engine jitters with the extra play.
Electrically you have to tighten the track pins. Check the wheels for dirt build up. The eunit may be old. Check that the drum turns freely. Maybe clean it up with an eraser don't mess with the contacts.
Check for play on the axles. A lot of play is a worn bushing and that oftten leads to stripping the brass worm gear.
Look it over closely.Oh check the horn if it shorts it would cause the jitters.
Is that enough for now?
Bob
A pic with the shell off would be nice. My F -3 is under my gallery a 2333.
Also you can throw an extra set of leads from the transformer to the far side of the track.
Al so it could be mechanical where a little oil goes a long way.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks T-man. I haven't had the top off the engine so I will need to do that first to have a good inspection of the rivets etc. I don't know exactly what the "eunit" is, maybe you can explain that term to me. The wheels and axles all look clean. I'll lube everything that looks like it moves. I suppose 3-in-one sewing machine type oil is good? Thanks again.
 

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Yard Master & Research
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The oil will be fine. Don't overuse. The e unit is located in the center. It has a lever to actuate the reverse or just forward. There is a drum that rotates by an electromagnet the position determines direction. It is made of plastic and sometimes breaks which shorts the engine and sometimes burns up the motor.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
What is the best way to tighten loose fitting track? I've tried squeezing the hole together with pliers, but it is easy to distort the track. Any tips / secrets there...
 

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Yard Master & Research
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Well, ebay has track pliers that have a hole to fit the tube in.
Second option is make one. I got a cheep pair of slip joint pliers. With a dremel I formed an L on each jaw to go around the tube and cinch it.
I did both.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Took the 2353 apart tonight. Found the loose rivets you spoke of. I was able to tighten them with a large pair of slip ring pliers. Is there another way? I also got some wheel bearing grease into the end of the motor where the gears are visible. And dropped some heavy gear oil down into the hole on top, and into grooves down below the gear box. I also cleaned the wheels really well. It is running much better, and faster, now. Thanks for the tips.
 

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Yard Master & Research
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Another Way

My way, was to remove the rivets and replace then with a #6 screw ( 1.75 inches long) and locknut. I also used an aluminum spacer that was cut to length. See the picture. The #6 fits into the hole a #8 screw needs drilling. My rivets were very loose so I designed an upgrade. It's not original but it runs great. I also replace the axle bushings with ball bearigs. At you tube under RaRdRob see 2333 and watch it run.

http://www.modeltrainforum.com/showthread.php?t=656
The old thread.
 

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Yard Master & Research
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Get a grip

What is the best way to tighten loose fitting track? I've tried squeezing the hole together with pliers, but it is easy to distort the track. Any tips / secrets there...

make em or buy.



A drill is not hard enough for tool steel, go with a tungsten carbide bit. Wally mart 7 bits. That bit will last years.
 
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