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Thread: 53-54 O guage lionel train running issues

  1. Default 53-54 O guage lionel train running issues

    I just recently set up an old electric train set for my grandchildren and I to enjoy. It is a 1953-54 Lionel steam locomotive. I am new to the hobby and trying to figure out running issues with the set. My transformer gets very hot after running for a while and it always has a hum to it. The train slows significantly when it is farthest away from the power lockon and this gets worse the longer I run the train. I would sure appreciate any advice anyone can give me.

  2. #2


    Transformers that old are old technology, did get warm or even hot to the touch and did hum. The loss of power is due to the track assembly and even today that happens. So attach more lockon feeders on your oval. A newer and larger transformer may even be a better idea I dont know much about the details of your current set. Make sure the polarity is the same on the additional lockons and it should work fine. Hope this helps. Enjoy the trains.

  3. Smile Running Issues with older O27 guage train

    Thank you for the reply Wayne. The information is very much appreciated. I was wondering about the transformer because as you mentioned it gets warmer and warmer as it runs and the train runs slower and slower too. I only have the 1 lockon but I will purchase more. As you suggest, I am thinking I should buy a new transformer perhaps a higher wattage model. We are enjoying the train and I look forward to getting it running even better. Thank you again for your advice.
    Last edited by camaro2010; 03-23-2012 at 07:22 PM.

  4. #4

    Default Running Issues with older O27 guage train

    No problem,BTW has the loco been cleaned and lubed lately. Or even overlubed.

  5. Default

    What model number is the transformer? They all hum but I believe you have a short somewhere that is causing the transformer to burn up. Does the lightbulb in the engine or caboose work? sometimes if they go bad, it creates a short. Also, how big is your loop of track? If it is not very big and you are loosing power at one end, an extra lockon would help, but I think something may be wrong with your transformer. I can run the 1952 2056 engine on a huge room sized carpet layout with the 1033 multi control transformer with no problem.
    B&A 4-6-4 Hudson 618
    Milwaukee Road F3 AB
    ATSF 4-4-2 Atlantic 1492
    Pennsylvania 4-4-2 8632
    Lionel Lines 4-6-4 Hudson 2056
    Lionel Lines 2-6-2 1666
    Lionel Lines 2-4-2 Scout 1060
    ATSF NW-2 Switcher 634
    Lionel 0-4-0 Saddle Tanker 8200 (x2)
    Lionel Lines 2-4-2 Torpedo 1688 (Prewar)
    Lionel Lines 2-6-2 1666e (Prewar)
    Crayola Diesel Switcher No-number
    Santa Fe 0-8-0 8689

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Caboolture in SE Queensland, Australia


    Funny how a query like this brings back memories. I'm not familiar with Lionel track but I do remember from my Hornby days that the old steel track that is taken up and put down often or is stored away gets rusty or loose in the connections. The loco wheels also used to get dirtier as well. So a bit of cleaning and general restorative maintenance is probably in order.

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