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Thread: The Best Wheels and trucks

  1. Default The Best Wheels and trucks

    Can I get some opinions on Trucks and or wheels?
    When you purchase a new train any rolling stock, and you decide to put on some good trucks "What do you purchase to give your new train that really good ride?
    I would like to know what you think is the very best and what you consider good enough because of the cost factor.


  2. Default

    In my experience, the stock plastic trucks that come with most manufacturers freight cars are good. I ream them all with a "truck-tuner" although many don't need it. Metal wheels make the most difference. I have used KD, Atlas, Intermountain, and the older P2K, and I am happy with all of them. Most newer models have metal wheels, such as Athearn. I don't know who makes them...maybe Athearn? I have read that the wheelsets with metal axles work better but I have not noticed any difference. If you have to convert a lot of cars, I found that buying bulk packs of 100 is the way to go pricewise. Again, my experience only.

  3. Default

    Put me down for Intermountain wheels as well.
    When I need to replace trucks I like to use Accurail when I can find them.
    I also use the truck tuner tool, everyone should have one.
    Questions answered, Answers questionable.

  4. #4


    I don't replace trucks as a rule unless there is a prototypical accuracy issue, then I buy whoever's that fits the prototype I'm looking for. This has been Kadee, Bethlehem Car Works, or Tahoe Model Works. For wheels, I have standardized on Intermountain wheelsets.

    Modeling Espee on the Coast and in steam

  5. #5


    I also use Intermountain wheels with the stock trucks. I'm more operation oriented, so if the trucks aren't exact, it doesn't make that much difference to me, I'm just after reliability and free rolling.


  6. #6


    Actually, the "very best" are made by a German company and sets of 100 ton roller bearing freight trucks that are individually built to scale spec are $379 a set. Is that what you are looking for?
    When ya absolutely positively need model railroad fun, choose the D&J Railroad.

    Visit the progress of the construction of the D&J Railroad at:]

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Colorado, Kansas, and servicing all points between


    Quote Originally Posted by nycentral57 View Post
    I would like to know what you think is the very best and what you consider good enough because of the cost factor.
    As pointed out by a prior poster there is the genuine "best" and there is the good enough for all practical purposes. I generally consider the trucks and wheels that come with the cars to be good enough.

    When you purchase a new train any rolling stock, and you decide to put on some good trucks "What do you purchase to give your new train that really good ride?
    As above, unless there is some issue that develops with a truck, or there is a prototypical inaccuracy I don't see any need to change out trucks to "good" ones. Most give a good ride from the vendor.

    For simply converting from plastic to metal wheel sets, I have used many brands. When I do this the most important thing to me is matching the axle length. Nothing worse than putting Proto-2000 wheels (a wonderful product by the way) into Athearn blue box trucks. They're too short, so the car rides too low and can slop side to side down the track. Get an axle that is too long and it is pinched in the truck and won't turn freely. While I have used all brands at some time or another, I like Reboxx because they have the most options and that makes them "best" in my view. I buy bulk Inter-mountain wheel sets (100 or 500 quantities). I avoid Kadee wheel sets, but they do have the advantage of being double insulated and I use them where that is an important feature (like brass passenger cars).

    Oh yeah, I run on layouts that have current detection for signalling. To use my cars on those layouts 20K resistors have to be applied to the wheels. For this the wheel sets have to have metal axles and the plastic insulators be small enough to fit a resistor over. Probably not an issue for most folks.
    Last edited by Iron Horseman; 03-19-2016 at 11:11 AM.

  8. #8


    I don't worry if the trucks are 100% prototypically correct....I'm more concerned that everything works smoothly and the wheels are in gauge. Since I don't buy second-hand or toys pretty well everything I do buy is new and seems to come out of the box with metal-wheels. I always check to make sure the wheels roll freely and are in gauge and that the trucks are properly adjusted on the car....if anything needs tweaking it gets tweaked....and I agree that the Reeboxx truck tuner is a great tool and a must have for every modeller.

    for a short while I was putting semi-scale wheels on cars, but in reality my eyes are bad enough that I really don't notice any difference visually so I stopped.

  9. Default

    I have been looking online for a "truck tuner" tool since reading this thread. Can anyone point me in the right direction as to where I might purchase one online? I have tried Walthers and cannot find it listed. Folks have mentioned Micro-Marc.....but I have had bad experiences with them and would like to avoid them if possible.

  10. #10

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