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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Since it seems to be a while since anyone has made any S scale posts, I thought I'd introduce myself here. I recently re-discovered an old American Flyer train I've had for over 30 years, using it mostly for Christmas. It's a 267 locomotive, 1954 vintage, a few generic cars and enough track for a simple oval. I started wondering if any other cars were available, and one thing led to another. I've just acquired a Brownhoist lift 944, some more track, and a fever to spend waaaaaay too much on ebay, bidding on cars! I'm no expert, but if I can be of any help to anyone with S scale, please let me know.
 

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Since it seems to be a while since anyone has made any S scale posts, I thought I'd introduce myself here. I recently re-discovered an old American Flyer train I've had for over 30 years, using it mostly for Christmas. It's a 267locomotive, 1954 vintage, a few generic cars and enough track for a simple oval. I started wondering if any other cars were available, and one thing led to another. I've just acquired a Brownhoist lift 944, some more track, and a fever to spend waaaaaay too much on ebay, bidding on cars! I'm no expert, but if I can be of any help to anyone with S scale, please let me know.

S scale???? what's that?:D
Welcome to the site!
 

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American Flyer 314AW "resurrection"

Hi, Reckers,
I have read some of your other posts and appreciate your expertise. As a newbie, here is a post I was going to submit myself before I saw your request for S-gauge discussion:

Long, long ago I was a child. My father purchased a new American Flyer 314AW locomotive, tender, 2-bay hopper, shell tank car, lighted caboose, whistle control, uncoupler, lamp posts, and a supply of tracks. It was lots of fun, as I recall. Now, 62 years later I have opened the box and am attempting to assemble the parts together...maybe give to a new grandchild.

I put all pieces together, but the engine does not work. The wheels do not turn at all and I don't remember if that is correct or not...i.e., do the locomotive's wheels only turn when there is power to the track?
I get some clicking from the tender so I know there is "juice" getting to there.

Thanks. I look forward to working on the train set with the help of this forum.
 

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The locomotive's wheels will only turn when given power. After sitting so long, chances are good you're going to need to clean everything - nad I mean everything.

Start with the tender, which is where the pickups for the power are located. Remove the wheels from the tender, and clean them with steel wool and RAdio Shack electronics cleaner. Clean the axle and the brass pickup the contacts the axle. Before reinstalling the wheels, dab the tips of the axle in a little grease or motor oil and then reinstall. (It's a good idea to lube the wheels for all of your cars, it makes pulling them much easier!)

Disassemble the locomotive and get access to the worm gear that drives the wheels. Use a little automotive axle grease there. Spray contact cleaner liberally into the reversing unit, and work it back and forth by hand, and then with power, until it operates reliably. Spray the contact cleaner into the motor and clean out as much black soot as you can. Check the drive wheels on the locomotive - they'll have a rubber "tire"... make sure these tires are nice and tight. IF they're loose, cut a chunk out with a razor blade, and superglue them back together (and superglue them to the wheel).

Chances are you're going to need a new wick in your smoke unit. Check portline hobbies for the parts. Clean your track with a green scotchbrite pad, don't use steel wool or sandpaper - you'll take the plating off with sandpaper and steel wool will leave little pieces of metal to get sucked up by the motor magnets.

Enjoy your new find!

Charles.
 

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Also, clean the sides of the track where your track lock-on attaches. That gave me fits! All my electrical connections, the pins, the track, everything was clean.... except where the lock-ons attached. I went from needing 6 lock-ons for a medium-sized loop to needing two.

Charles.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Dr-art, welcome to the forum! Charles has given you some very good advice: Charles, thank you for taking the time to share all that. The only place where our opinions differ is using the steel wool on the wheels. I prefer a dremel tool and buffing compound; I think steel wool cuts the metal and makes scratches that contribute to carbon deposits. I prefer to polish them with the wheel, instead, but that's just me. I don't like to let sandpaper or steel wool into the same room with my trains.

When you have the locomotive apart, take a look at the armature and the brushes. Ideally, the copper plates on the armature are clean and smooth. If not, this is a good time to resolve the problem. Most guys will mount the end of the armature into a drill press or electric drill and spin it while applying something to the copper surfaces. This is to remove the grooves, carbon buildup, etc. Again, what to use is a matter of choice: some like small grindstones, sandpaper and so on. I prefer a small jeweler's file or my dremel and jeweler's rouge, a very mild abrasive. Take a small metal pic and scrape the little slots between the copper plates to clean them.

Look at the ends of your brushes, those round copper things that have springs to push them against the armature plates. These need to be clean and smooth, too.

Finally, the lube job: try this. Carl Tuveson was nice enough to post it and it will show you what to lubricate.
http://www.tuveson.com/ServiceKit/service_kit_manua.htm

Best wishes,
 

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Major Fault Discovered

Well, after getting contact cleaner and all my tools ready for big-time maintenance, I discovered that the 4-prong male connector from the tender to the locomotive has 2 broken wires where they attach to the male bracket.

There are 4 wires in the cable, 2 with plain black cloth coverings and 2 with black/orange cloth coverings. Connected by a "thread" are a black and a black/orange.

I had no idea where the broken wires should be connected until I looked inside the engine female connector where a plastic coated wired connects to a black cloth wire and a cloth wire connects to a black/orange. I figure that the same setup should work for the broken wires and I will try to attach them that way.

I am not an expert solderer and there is still a small wire piece stuck inside the male prongs, so wish me luck. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

This is a quite convoluted post, isn't it?

Art
 

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Well, after getting contact cleaner and all my tools ready for big-time maintenance, I discovered that the 4-prong male connector from the tender to the locomotive has 2 broken wires where they attach to the male bracket.

There are 4 wires in the cable, 2 with plain black cloth coverings and 2 with black/orange cloth coverings. Connected by a "thread" are a black and a black/orange.

I had no idea where the broken wires should be connected until I looked inside the engine female connector where a plastic coated wired connects to a black cloth wire and a cloth wire connects to a black/orange. I figure that the same setup should work for the broken wires and I will try to attach them that way.

I am not an expert solderer and there is still a small wire piece stuck inside the male prongs, so wish me luck. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

This is a quite convoluted post, isn't it?

Art
What I do is hold the soldering iron to the male prong, heating it up good. Take a toothpick, after the prong is heated, and push the remnants of the wire and solder out. Works every time. Make sure you use the style of toothpick that is round, with a point. It works a lot better than the flat ones.
 

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Thanks for the tip. I'm not sure how this will work on the male prongs in my case since the tips are crimped (like a cap), but I may be able to pull out the wire stub after the solder is melted.

Also, can anyone point me to a site/file that gives a step-by-step process for disassembling an AF 314AW? I am reluctant to begin removing bolts, screws, etc., without a plan.

Thanks for all your help.
 

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Thanks for the tip. I'm not sure how this will work on the male prongs in my case since the tips are crimped (like a cap), but I may be able to pull out the wire stub after the solder is melted.

Also, can anyone point me to a site/file that gives a step-by-step process for disassembling an AF 314AW? I am reluctant to begin removing bolts, screws, etc., without a plan.

Thanks for all your help.
On page 6, I did a breakdown of my 312, very much like your 314 but without whistle.I believe another member did one also. The engines are the same basically, but the tenders are different because of the whistle.
 

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flyernut, did you mean page 6 as in: http://myflyertrains.org/gallery/album221/Page_6

I see some text about Cleanup and Repair, but not a breakdown. Is this what you meant?
No my friend. I apologize... On page 6 of the s gauge thread. If you go to forum home.scroll down to S gauge. Open S gauge, then scroll down to the bottom. You'll see page after page. Go to page 6, or just type in 312 on the s gauge search, it should bring you up to it...
 

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Pretty awesome 312, flyernut. I hope I can get mine to that stage sometime. I'm still a little reluctant to start unscrewing things without really knowing what needs to be removed to get to the innards for cleaning. I wish there were a step-by-step training document (wishful thinking).
First, I need to get the wiring straightened out and secured between the tender and engine. Seeing the wheels turn on the engine should get me pumped up so I can get to the rest of the cleaning.
 

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Your engine is VERY easy to breakdown and service.The only thing you have to watch for is getting the linkages all back on correctly. They must be "synced" with the opposite side. That's the only hard part. When you go to take your loco apart, the very first thing you want to do is unscrew the smokestack. Just put a small screwdriver down inside the stack and unscrew. If you don't take that out first, you won't get the innards out without breaking a part of the smoke unit gasket or the stack. I believe the one in your loco is brass, easily available. After that is done, separate the tender from the engine, removing the screw under the motor holding the under cab wheels in place, and then the jack. From there, just keep un-screwing. I have the loco breakdown diagram. Your first purchase should be the K-Line American Flyer Service manual, if still available. The tender is a little more tricky, and I have not had an engine with the air chime whistle in the tender, except for my K335, and that worked from the start. When you feel confident enough, PM me or respond in the forum and I can help walk you through the tear-down. IT IS EASY!!
 

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OK. You make it sound easy. I appreciate your help.
Not a problem. I just wish I had the ability to take better close-up photos. I'm a wiz at 35mm, but with my digital camera,er,not so good,lol. When the time comes to tear your engine apart, let me know, and I'll be on stand-by. I'll even go so far as to give you my home phone # if you get stuck, or just want some support...Loren
 

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Here's a very small sampling of what I have on hand.. Each engine was torn torn completely by me, replaced/rebuilt parts by myself, polished, etc. All except that tender on the K335!!
 

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