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Discussion Starter #1
i am getting email daily now from people who are running marx and lionel trains for the very first time. MANY people cannot afford to get into this hobby, high end stuff is $ 1,000s even common lionel locomotives cost $ 100s in good running condition.

in any case the point of my videos is to ENCOURAGE anyone who has the interest to be able to run a model train without spending a great deal of money. derusting junk track, repairing junk locomotive from ebay, pennies on the dollar of any other source. anyone with the inclination and a 4" screwdriver, a wheel press and a wheel puller and a supply of parts can fix ANYTHING they can find.

i am getting over 100 subscribers a month now and there are LOTS of new people running marx and lionel trains. buying junk and putting a bit of work into it gives you a great sense of satisfaction knowing you have resurrected a 70 year old relic from the dead. lots of positive input on this.

i encourage all of you to post videos on simple repairs and shortcuts that you know, what ever it may be. video is informative, entertaining and FREE. video will hold a viewers attention a lot longer than a photograph or a wordy description.

obviously i enjoy repairing junk trains, its fun and its CHEAP...

MARX 666 SMOKER / EBAY $ 10 / UNBOXING / DREADFUL CONDITION


MARX 666 SMOKER / EBAY $ 10 / RUNNING AND SMOKING / FIRST TEST



MARX 666 SMOKER / EBAY $ 10 / 18 LIONEL CARS / SMOKING WELL


MARX 666 SMOKER / EBAY $ 10 / HEADLIGHT INSTALLED / FIRST TEST


MARX 666 / EBAY $ 10 / FRONT & REAR TRUCKS / LOCOMOTIVE IS COMPLETE

 

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WORKS FOR ME

I enjoy your videos posted here at MTF as well as on You Tube. I do glean information from your videos as well as add some information that I think may be relevant or helpful. Keep up the good work.

LATER
 

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Benz, your videos are entertaining and do provide info on low budget train operations. Its all good for the preservation of the electric train hobby.

Bill
 

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Very interesting videos. It has to be very rewarding to get this from junk to useful again.

How much do you have invested in it beyond the $10? What do they sell for as it is now?

Looks like a fun way to get a nice engine without the problems of electronics. And 20+ years from now you can put it on the track and it will still run great.
 

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I love your videos and watch them all. I hear you and understand about this hobby and having fun on a limited budget. In a way that can be more rewarding than the "What Budget?" approach people often see me take. Further, there is a charm, both due to nostalgia and the elegant simplicity of older locos, that makes them special and adds to the fun. I have a lot of old Marx -even some wind up - and old Lionel and love them all.

But don't think poorly of me, please. For much of my life I scrimped and saved and had to run my model trains on a tight - at times nearly non-existent, budget. In retirement I'm enjoying doing the opposite.
 

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I don't know very much about PW trains, so I find your videos very helpful. I don't run PW, but when I meet someone who does- and who is experiencing issues , I'm able to make suggestions based on your videos. :)

I find them to be entertaining AND informative.
 

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Ben, in the past we have had our disagreements on restoring broken Marx trains. I have however had a change of heart and I think most of what you post is helpful. Keep up the research and development.

I only have one objection, JUST ONE. One squirt of WD-40 into the works of the Marx E unit, will fix most. The E units are operated by a low torque solenoid, so even the slightest gunk will jam them, WD-40 will free them up. All of my E units work.
I couldn't resist. :eek:


Dan
 

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I have followed (in the process now...) the process to take junk rusted track and soak it in vinegar and go through that process. I have had TONS of junk track that was given to me and while it isn't MINT condition... it has been restored enough that I hope to sit back and set it up soon.

I just did 80% of the straights and now the rest of the straights and the curves are soaking.

While you mention to let them sit for 24-48h, my track is in such a bad shape that it is taking 3-5 days to soak!!!!!!

I haven't run on the track yet to see if it totally did what I intend, rejuvenate the track, but will find out eventually... still cleaning and going about it...

thx for your videos...
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Ben, in the past we have had our disagreements on restoring broken Marx trains. I have however had a change of heart and I think most of what you post is helpful. Keep up the research and development.

I only have one objection, JUST ONE. One squirt of WD-40 into the works of the Marx E unit, will fix most. The E units are operated by a low torque solenoid, so even the slightest gunk will jam them, WD-40 will free them up. All of my E units work.
I couldn't resist. :eek:


Dan
dan,
your assuming the e unit works but has a sticky solenoid. if the e unit is defective or if the coil is open on the solenoid the e unit will NEVER work again so the motor will never run again.

repairing an e unit is a major under taking and is beyond the skill of 90% of the people who run marx trains. most people dont have the tools, knowledge or even interest in repairing the e unit, a dead e unit means a dead motor, the bypass takes two minutes and the motor will run better than it ever will through an e unit as your applying track power directly, bypassing the e unit contacts. you can teach a child to do this bypass with virtually no tools needed at all. in many cases the solenoid works but the contacts are so corroded the motor wont run. to repair that e unit requires complete disassembly of the motor, pulling all 4 wheels, splitting the case, remove the e unit, completely disassembling the e unit to repair it, or replace it, which costs more than the locomotive did. the logical expedient for a dead e unit is to bypass it.


INSTALLING A TOGGLE SWITCH MANUAL E UNIT


DPDT MICRO SLIDE SWITCH WITH NEUTRAL


MARX FORWARD ONLY MICRO MOTOR WITH REVERSE

 

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Ben;
I can clean the contacts and free up a stuck solenoid without tearing down the motor. A touch of WD-40, and a bit of compressed air will fix 90% of non op E-units. Guaranteed. No tools, No expertise.
I fully understand that open coils can make an E unit not operate. My point is, I have worked on at least 100 Marx Locomotives, and only ONE E unit I could not get working. Even that one, was a broken coil wire that I was able to unwind One wrap and resolder it and now it works. What I don't understand is I do not have a single E unit that does not work after the slightest amount of cleaning or a bit of WD-40, and in one rare case the broken wire.
It seems that almost every single one of your loco's has a, In your words a DEFECTIVE unfixable E unit. How come you get all the unfixable ones and I have never had one that was not fixable. Not one.
The time it takes to bypass an E unit and install a switch to make the action manual, you could have cleaned the solenoid and kept it running as intended. Just give a bit of effort and try it a few times and you also will see how very easy it to maintain the original function of the E unit.
Also if you remove the solenoid plunger, and move the toggle assembly to the forward position you don't have to bypass anything. That will do the same thing and not effect the design of the Unit. All the reversing mechanism on the E unit is, is a solenoid operated toggle switch. With the plunger removed the switch will remain in whichever direction you set it.


You love to experiment, try that just once. an Operating E unit adds a lot to the running of the loco.

Dan
 

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Ben;

With all due respect.
No it is not an opinion.
It is a fact based on MUCH experience.

But like others have said. They are your trains, you can do with them what you please.
HOWEVER, I think it is wrong to encourage the implementation of a procedure that is not required. With a little effort, 99% of all E Units can be made to run, and 99% of those repairs, can be accomplished by simply removing the motor from the shell, no motor disassembly is required. In fact if you look at the motor outside of the shell, you can see at least 4 spots where the E unit mechanism is visible for cleaning and moving the parts involved.
I'm not set up to produce videos like yours, but I will do my best to post a video showing the simple procedure to make almost every dead E unit, into a functioning E unit without tearing it down.
In fact If indeed the E unit is beyond repair, you can accomplish the same procedure as the bypass, by simply manually toggling the E Unit switch to the direction you want the loco to move, and being that it is not capable, (as you say of functioning), the switch will stay in that position until you manually switch it. That way the loco will function, and is still in original configuration. If you choose to make it reversible, your bypass and adding a switch is way more work than the average person may have the ability to accomplish, for example soldering. In that case the simple procedure of WD-40 and a Q tip to clean the contacts, and some compressed air, can be accomplished in 5 minutes.

I'm not trying to by any means discount your very useful hints and procedures, however I have to respectfully adamantly disagree with your E unit procedure.

The worst E unit I have ever had was one with the coil wire broken. Other than that one unit, every single E unit was able to be made functional without modification.
Is it going to really hurt to try an alternative method.

Respectfully;
Dan
 

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BOTH WAYS WORK FOR ME

Boy I hope that there is not any upcoming discussions about Lionel pre & post war E units malfunctioning. Whole new ballgame there. Marx E units are simple in comparison to the Lionels in my opinion. Informative as usual Ben.

THANKS
 

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Ben;
I can clean the contacts and free up a stuck solenoid without tearing down the motor. A touch of WD-40, and a bit of compressed air will fix 90% of non op E-units. Guaranteed. No tools, No expertise.
I fully understand that open coils can make an E unit not operate. My point is, I have worked on at least 100 Marx Locomotives, and only ONE E unit I could not get working. Even that one, was a broken coil wire that I was able to unwind One wrap and resolder it and now it works. What I don't understand is I do not have a single E unit that does not work after the slightest amount of cleaning or a bit of WD-40, and in one rare case the broken wire.
It seems that almost every single one of your loco's has a, In your words a DEFECTIVE unfixable E unit. How come you get all the unfixable ones and I have never had one that was not fixable. Not one.
The time it takes to bypass an E unit and install a switch to make the action manual, you could have cleaned the solenoid and kept it running as intended. Just give a bit of effort and try it a few times and you also will see how very easy it to maintain the original function of the E unit.
Also if you remove the solenoid plunger, and move the toggle assembly to the forward position you don't have to bypass anything. That will do the same thing and not effect the design of the Unit. All the reversing mechanism on the E unit is, is a solenoid operated toggle switch. With the plunger removed the switch will remain in whichever direction you set it.


You love to experiment, try that just once. an Operating E unit adds a lot to the running of the loco.

Dan
+1. As a newbie 2 years ago, my first foray into repairs were two Marx Vanderbilts with sluggish motors stuck in forward.

Some CRC into the E-unit and both reliably switch direction.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
if there is a dead coil in an e unit your not just going to unwind one wire and fix it, if the contacts are corroded NO AMOUNT OF CONTACT CLEANER WILL REPAIR IT. regardless of YOUR OPINION i will do what i want and continue to encourage anyone with a dead marx locomotive to bypass the e unit. i am beginning to wonder if you have ever actually repaired an e unit. i am buying JUNK that no one else wants, rusted and in most cases dreadful condition. i CHALLENGE you to demonstrate your expertise on REPAIRING a defective e unit.

perhaps you could educate me with one of your in depth videos showing the repair of a DEAD e unit. not a sticky e unit A DEAD E UNIT. looking forward to seeing it. in all honesty if you dont like the bypass dont do it, dont like my videos, dont watch them. simple as that.
 

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Because your never wrong (or to insecure to admit it).

On another note -

"WHY I MAKE THESE VIDEOS ...
i am getting email daily now from people who are running marx and lionel trains for the very first time. MANY people cannot afford to get into this hobby ..."

So tell us, to which charity do you donate the YouTube ad revenue?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Because your never wrong (or to insecure to admit it).

On another note -

"WHY I MAKE THESE VIDEOS ...
i am getting email daily now from people who are running marx and lionel trains for the very first time. MANY people cannot afford to get into this hobby ..."

So tell us, to which charity do you donate the YouTube ad revenue?
hey mike i dont make a dime off my videos, i make them to help promote running model trains. what have you done to encourage ANYONE ???

*** mod edit, remove profanity ***
 

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Ben;

I have been very respectful of your opionion. I would appreciate the same in return.
In my adventures with Marx E units I have NEVER run across a coil that was dead, with the exception of one that the wire had been pulled off the contact board. The wire was short, so I unwound 1 turn, stripped the varnish from the end ( Probably something most would not have any idea about ) Then resoldered it back, BAM worked perfect. You have the worst luck on planet earth if every one you get is dead and unrepairable.
Millstonemikes experience is typical of 90 % of all E units from Marx. The rest are broken wire (rare) dust and gunk in the switch, dirty contacts. I've never had a broken contact, damaged switch, none of that.
I feel you have found a reason to post about a problem that does not exist, so you can promote your ability to solve a non existing problem.
On top of that you took that very Minty B&O Locomotive in your 3rd video, and cut a friggin hole in the back, to install a slide switch, when you could have saved a rare for it's condition Locomotive, by simply changing out the motor. So a Locomotive that was worth $50.00 to me, is now worth maybe $15.00.
Sorry about the rant folks, but it is now blatantly clear to me Ben is in it for Ben.
I have said it before and I will say it again without regret, that it is a real shame to ruin the original configuration of rare Marx trains to feed ones own ego. That is not a way to promote a hobby.

You challenge me to post a video about how I repair a coil that is shot, That's the problem Ben, I've never experienced that problem. And neither have you, they just don't exist.

Dan
 
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