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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so my question relates primarily to post war motors. Although this probably applies to something as modern as my Dremel.
So I have slowly acquired about a dozen locos since I dove back into this hobby in December. My question relates to the motor brushes, is it in your best interest to replace the brushes? Or just doing a good cleaning and polishing to restore them to excellent working condition? I believe replacing the springs are essential after decades of use anyways. So does anyone make it a point to buy new brushes or do you all clean em like I do?
 

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Ok, so my question relates primarily to post war motors. Although this probably applies to something as modern as my Dremel.
So I have slowly acquired about a dozen locos since I dove back into this hobby in December. My question relates to the motor brushes, is it in your best interest to replace the brushes? Or just doing a good cleaning and polishing to restore them to excellent working condition? I believe replacing the springs are essential after decades of use anyways. So does anyone make it a point to buy new brushes or do you all clean em like I do?


Damaged or excessively worn motor brushes should be replaced.


Clean the brush wells and brushes with cleaner to ensure the brushes slide freely in the brush wells.
Clean out the slots in the commutator face with a toothpick to remove buildup of brush debris.
The face of the commutator can be cleaned with a pencil eraser.
To remove some of the more stubborn areas of build-up, clean the slots and face of the commutator with cleaner and cotton swabs.

I just clean them up if they are in good shape. I only replaced one spring that someone screwed up. If it still works why replace it.

Brushes do wear from use so it will all depend on how much they are worn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Alright thanks guys. I. Wanted to see if that was a common item being replaced. Also if I should have been replacing them while servicing the engine. I have not come across any major tell signs of brushes needing replaced. Guess I haven't found that overly run engine to rebuild yet :(

;)
 

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Damaged or excessively worn motor brushes should be replaced.


Clean the brush wells and brushes with cleaner to ensure the brushes slide freely in the brush wells.
Clean out the slots in the commutator face with a toothpick to remove buildup of brush debris.
The face of the commutator can be cleaned with a pencil eraser.
To remove some of the more stubborn areas of build-up, clean the slots and face of the commutator with cleaner and cotton swabs.

I just clean them up if they are in good shape. I only replaced one spring that someone screwed up. If it still works why replace it.

Brushes do wear from use so it will all depend on how much they are worn.
+1, I completely agree to the above statement.
 

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Generally anything made after the mid 1930s will run carbon brushes. These
give much better service life than the earlier woven copper brushes used
earlier. So yes most postwar motors do not need a brush change but all
surfaces need to be clean and free moving.

As for the pre war era... so many motors are called dead during the bench
test by sellers on Ebay just to turn out to be the brushes. The second killer
of motors is the pickup rollers on pre war motors.

Pookybear
 

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I've rebuilt a dozen or so prewar Lionel motors. I've replaced the brushed on just two of them. The rest simply needed a good cleaning.

Of the 12, I'd guess I've replaced the springs on maybe 4 or 5.

Regards,

TJ
 

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Well, if you have a lot of motors that use the same brushes, it never hurts to have a pair of them around. OTOH, there are a number of styles of brushes, so you may just be spending money for no reason. A long time ago, I bought an assortment of brushes on eBay for a few bucks, I still have all of them. When I needed a set, I had to go out and buy it anyway, the ones I had weren't right!
 
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