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Someone else will know exactly how to fix it, but I know electronics. Post pics of the bottom of the unit.

The 2 posts on either end of the caboose with locking shims likely hold the trucks to the frame, and that will be connected to the outside rails (the wheels). if you look on the bottom of the caboose you will likely see the center tab of the bulb socket, and that will be where the wire goes. But, I'd like to see pics of the bottom before you do that.

If you're so inclined, now would be a good time to replace it with an LED, with a bridge rectifier and 1000uf cap to keep the light from flickering.
 

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Yeah, the wire is connected to the roller that contacts the center rail. Look to the left of where the wire goes through the hole in the center of the frame You will see two tabs holding the bulb socket in place, and in the center there is a wire or piece of metal connected to the center tab of the bulb socket. That's where the wire goes.
 

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Yes. I can't see in the pictures very well, but there are tabs bent over on the bottom (likely bent over, maybe soldered but I can't see) that hold the socket to the frame. The frame is connected through the trucks to the outside rails. The roller on the truck on the right rolls on the center rail and picks up power, which then needs to connect to the center pin on the light bulb.

If the tabs on the bulb socket are indeed just bent over, you could carefully pries up the tabs and pull the socket away from the frame. That will give you a better idea of what I'm talking about.
 

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The wire from the center rail roller should be connected to the bottom of the bulb's socket - in the center there should be an isolated "dimple" for that wire. The other connection to the bulb comes from the chassis ground - inherently connected to the frame via the wheels contacting the outside rails.

Based on the pic.'s, the roller's wire should not go through the chassis into the car as shown. It looks like the wire should be fed through the hole underneath the socket. You may need to bend the sockets tabs to remove it. That would allow you to solder that wire to the dimple. Then replace the socket. I'd test it first before reinstalling the socket by firmly holding the socket to the chassis while on powered track. The tabs can only take a few bends before they may break.
 

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Mike is right. I can't see in the picture because the wheels are in the way, but there are probably tabs holding the socket to the frame.
 

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If you remove the bulb from the socket you should see a contact at the bottom. The contact is a fiber washer with a metal grommet crimped to the washer. If the hole is closed with wire and solder you should first heat the solder and suck it out or tap it on the table while its melted to clear the hole. There should also be a spring under the washer. The wire comes up from the bottom of the socket, through the spring and then gets soldered to the open grommet. The solder bead becomes the hot contact for the bulb. The spring provides pressure to maintain the electrical contact.

Pete
 

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What Norton,Millstonemike and Tom C said AND your wheels have a lot of dirt on them. Those aren't tires, they are dirt rings. Clean them after you get the wire put back.

DO NOT USE STEEL WOOL

You can scrape the dirt off and use a Scotchbrite to finish it off.

Good luck
 

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Hard to tell with the shadows in the pic. I think I can see a dimple. But is should be firmly centered in the middle of the socket to avoid a short to chassis ground. You may be missing the piece that does that, can't really see.

Here's a generic bayonet bulb socket assembly. If you think about it ... the wire needs to go through the chassis, through the bottom of the socket, through the spring, through the isolating washer and then soldered to the dimple. Then all the pieces can be inserted into the socket ready to accept a bulb and re-installed in the chassis ... if there's enough slack in the wire. Else you'll need to unsolder the wire from the roller to fix the socket and then reattach it to the roller.

Font
 

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After the reminder by the other guys about the fiber washer, it's possible that it's been lost. After the wire came loose, it may have floated freely in the socket, and it could have fallen out when the bulb was removed.

That is pure speculation. Getting that socket off the frame and posting some closeups will help. ADDED: Actually, you may not need to remove the socket. See if the washer and spring are still inside the socket.

ADDED: I think this is what you need, if you can't solder the wire or are missing the fiber washer:

http://stores.towncountryhobbies.com/61-22x/

You may also need the spring if you're missing that:

http://stores.towncountryhobbies.com/r-91-pack-of-50/

Here is a pack of 10 washers and springs on ebay:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/332210500977
 

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Mike is right. I can't see in the picture because the wheels are in the way, but there are probably tabs holding the socket to the frame.
Adding, perhaps the tabs from the chassis hold the spring and fiber washer/contact in place in the socket. You may be able to bend back the tabs to release them through the bottom of the socket. Solder the wire. Then insert the spring and rewired washer assembly and bend the chassis tabs to hold the assembly in place.

Repeatedly bending tabs will break them. Bend them gently and the minimum amount to necessary remove the parts.
 

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Agreed, and I added above that I'd first see if the washer and spring are in the socket... maybe they've been lost. You may not need to remove the socket at all. If they are present just turn the car over and see if they fall out of the socket.
 

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I'd bet the spring and fiber washer can be scavenged from many different sockets using the same size bayonet bulb. If the socket is pressed or formed into the chassis, I'd try to avoid removing it - just replace the missing pieces.

In the last pic posted by Lioneltrains13, I thought I saw the center dimple with some wire wrapped u in the socket. That piece gets the wire and fits in the middle of the fiber washer.

Eye Auto part Muffler
 
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