1980's Lima Ho on 83 profile track

 
Topic moved from Help For Beginners by bevans on 24 Jul 2020 08:31
  Kefci2000 Beginner

Hello all

I have decided to brush off my old Lima Rheingold and TGV trains from circa 1980 and mid 90's and build a new model railway.

All my track is 100 profile steel track, and have been advised if starting from scratch to go Nickel Silver.

I have read that many vintage loco's will only run successfully on 100 profile, especially across points.

Whilst there is much agreement on this point there is no definitive cut off to whether vintage means 1950/60/70's Lima or 80's and beyond.

The TGV looks much lower profile on the wheels so I am confident that will work, but unsure about the Rheingold set.

Any help appreciated

Peter

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  apw5910 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Location: Location.
If the wheels are still the old NEM "pizza cutter" flanges, forget it. Either turn them down to at least match the NMRA track gauge (gage) or replace them with better wheel sets. You can get drop in replacements for NSW outline stuff, so I suppose they'd work for European prototypes, too.
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
If the wheels are still the old NEM "pizza cutter" flanges, forget it. Either turn them down to at least match the NMRA track gauge (gage) or replace them with better wheel sets. You can get drop in replacements for NSW outline stuff, so I suppose they'd work for European prototypes, too.
apw5910
apw5910 who can you get the nsw replacement sets from ??

Regards,
David Head
  apw5910 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Location: Location.
If the wheels are still the old NEM "pizza cutter" flanges, forget it. Either turn them down to at least match the NMRA track gauge (gage) or replace them with better wheel sets. You can get drop in replacements for NSW outline stuff, so I suppose they'd work for European prototypes, too.
apw5910 who can you get the nsw replacement sets from ??

Regards,
David Head
dthead
I got mine from Casula Hobbies, although it was a few years ago now. Maybe they've run out.
  Oscar Train Controller

Wow, I was going to say if it's Lima, stick to code 100, actually I'll still say that, but I tried a LIMA 422 (bought early 2000s from Tom's) on a piece of Peco code 83 and the flanges of the loco rode clear of the sleepers and spikes. The only other Lima loco I have left is a 040 shunter and it's flanges rode clear too.  All my coaches that I haven't sold off are either converted or have flanges that do hit the sleepers or rail spikes.  So it seems drive units may have smaller flanges so you may be lucky regarding the TGV's power unit, not sure about the dummy.  But I'd imagine you'll have to replace all coach wheels. Lima have 24.6mm pinpoint wide axles and everything I had or have has 11.5mm wide diameter wheels. For any I've replaced I've used 25.0mm wide axles and 10.5mm disc wheels. Although I bought a bunch years ago from Tom's you can still get those sizes from Steam Era Models, Auscision Models and AR Kits.

If it were me though, I'd just buy all new Peco nickel silver code 100 track, because it's cheaper and I'd replace wheelsets over time as newer wheelsets usually made to RP25 spec have a curved transition from tread to flange whereas the stock Lima wheels have an abrupt angle and lead to a lot of friction. If you're just going to kick around with a couple of of short trains then no real need to worry about that.  However, if you find yourself maybe going beyond the route of a 8 by 4 foot layout and find yourself buying more older stuff to run, you might be tempted to change the wheels. Regardless, check this layout for inspiration on what can be done with code 100 track and old gear.  There's plenty of layouts like it I'm sure but when you mentioned Rheingold I had to search for this layout which I saw on YT years ago.

http://members.optusnet.com.au/burgerbahn/steam.html




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6D78pguyEY
  LaidlayM Chief Commissioner

Location: Research
Can you try your biggest flanges on some Peco code 75 track?

Track lasts a long time, better to change the wheels and lock more realistic track into your future.

Mark in Research
  Oscar Train Controller

Plastic and metal wheels on rollingstock hit the spikes on code 75. Surprisingly though, the two locos I mentioned previously don't. I thought they would and I think my 422 used to ages ago but it's got new traction tyres on so that's where the proper clearance comes from.
  Garahbara Station Master

Location: Northern Rivers, NSW
Can you try your biggest flanges on some Peco code 75 track?

Track lasts a long time, better to change the wheels and lock more realistic track into your future.

Mark in Research
LaidlayM
I run quite a few old Lima locos on Code 75.  All Australia stuff such as VR B Class, S Class, NSWGR 44 classe etc.  I did run a Lima XPT until I bought a properone.
No problems running on the actual track.  It's the points and crossovers where I have a problem.    It's the width of the wheels.  They short out the points/frogs of both points and crossovers.  The little plastic "pointy bit" isn't wide enough, and you get a short to the other rail because of the WIDTH of the loco wheels.

Solved it with a tiny dab of clear nail varnish to "extend" the plactic bit along the rail a bit.  Have to renew it every now and then, but worked well.

Next was the poor pickup on Lima locos.  The wheelbase of most of the bogies is EXACTLY the same distance as the rails between cross overs and they will stall.  Only way to fix that was to add extra pickups on the non pick wheels.  To solve this even further I usually run a trailing van behind the loco with pickups on the trailing van's wheels, wired through to the loco.

I also bashed-up my Lima locos with flushglaze windows, replacement pilots, kadee couplers, and LEDs and fbire optics for the headlight and drilled-out marker lights.  A Bacis TCS decoder with back-EMF will run an old Lima pancake motor quite well.

Lima loco here

Hope this helps.

TOOT!
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
There is anther way to run  old flanges  on smaller rails. but it is a ton of work.

Solder your rail onto PCB sleepers fopr the entire railway - ie make your own. This is because the older flanges hit the plastic "spikes holding the rail tot he sleeper reduced the distance from the top of the rail. on code 100 it is fine, but with code 83 and 75 Rtr track the distance is reduced making the flanges hit.

But on PCB sleepers and soldered rails to the pcb there is no spike. So smaller rail is poossible. Disadvantages is looks, no spikes on the inside.  Usually with pcb track one does every 3-6 sleepers and use  balsa or other wooden ones in between. And yes point have to be made the same way.

It is a lot of work. my model railway club used code 80 rail and soldered our HO track. we could run powerline and lima without issue. even some older hornby ( but they faled at the points as the points were made to NRMA specs) these days we have gone with peco code 75 as  all our wheel standards have improved.

So after all that changing the wheels is  the better option, however as I have pointed out there are other ways !!

Regards,
David Head
  Oscar Train Controller

I also bashed-up my Lima locos with flushglaze windows, replacement pilots, kadee couplers, and LEDs and fbire optics for the headlight and drilled-out marker lights.  A Bacis TCS decoder with back-EMF will run an old Lima pancake motor quite well.

Lima loco here

Hope this helps.

TOOT!
Garahbara
Awsome work there Cool
  NSWRcars Assistant Commissioner

As far as I know, all Lima Australian outline stuff produced from the 1990s (and maybe earlier) had finer NEM standard flanges that are fully compatible with Peco Code 75 track. I just checked a few 72'6" cars (TAM, MFE, etc) bought in that era and they all run beautifully, never a need to change wheels. Same goes for a 422 purchased in the 1990s. The so called "Pizza Cutter" flanges are ancient history, mostly 1970s era stuff. However I don't know when these newer profile wheels were introduced, and have no idea about Lima European stuff.
  Heihachi_73 Chief Commissioner

Location: Terminating at Ringwood
Never had any issues with my trusty old Limas on Märklin C-Track (not sure whether it's code 83 or code 90 - the rails are 2.1mm). V/Line orange and grey B80 (since sold), Santa Fe FP45, and countless Lima rolling stock (both metal- and plastic-wheeled variants). Code 75 on the other hand would be pushing it I think.

Really old (e.g. 1960s) Tri-Ang OO gauge models are probably the only thing which will bottom out below code 100 (if not bottoming out on code 100 too), as even the tracks for that era of Tri-Ang look more like O scale but at 16.5mm track gauge.

An example of a Tri-Ang B class can be found below:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43926058@N04/6140871823

I have also had no issues running 70s-era Tyco/Life-Like/Bachmann on code 83. I never experienced early Tri-ang like the B class above, but I used to have a late-60s Jouef SNCF BB9201 (converted to a dummy, since it already had a burnt out motor when I got it) which bottomed out on code 83.
  SAR523 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Chicago, IL
2.1mm track would be code 83 (2.1 / 25.4, or mm in an inch). However as noted above, it’s really more the brand’s spike detail that’s the problem.

All I can note is that I can’t run my Lima 38 on my Atlas code 83 track which has a highly pronounced spike head moulded into the ties (sleepers).  I don’t have a lot of experience with other brands so can’t comment.

For the OP; I see a lot of layouts around the US that use either code 83 or 100 track. Once painted and ballasted there’s not a whole lot of difference to at least my eye.
  DJPeters Deputy Commissioner

Rollingstock by Lima you can simply change the wheels in the bogies. You will need the length of the axle and the diameter of the wheel. Do not use a Lima wheel either old or the more modern type to gauge the size of the wheel diameter as both are way oversize just that the later ones have a finer flange depth. Orient made some wheels that can replace Lima wheels although the bogie on Lima Models do vary so you get one bogie that the simply clip in and run freely and the next bogie you may have to by hand drill out the bearing a bit to get the wheels to roll freely. I have done most of my stock that way but unfortunately Orient Express is now out of stock almost of these wheels, I think they are getting more in though.

There is one other method of fixing some Lima rollingstock mainly some freight stock and that is put on better bogies on them it is not hard to do but you will then need to mount couplers on the wagon bodies fixed at the right height. For Kadee couplers you can buy a coupler height gauge to get it correct, other couplers like Lima style you might have to make up a gauge for them. The 8300 brakevan though has good bogies and you simply need to put better wheels in them.

The size you need I think is Disc wheels 10.5 mm dia X 25 mm axle length from memory, any brand wheels this size should work though if they are out of stock though.

Locomotives need the flange turned down on them but test it out before turning them down though as has been said the more recent models from Lima came with lot smaller flanges on them but also as has been said it is the wheel width that is the problem in a lot of cases. Also you might be best to set the wheels to NMRA back to back measurement if you have not already done it, use a NMRA gauge to get that right they are available from a lot of good hobby shops and places that sell model trains.
  Heihachi_73 Chief Commissioner

Location: Terminating at Ringwood
Powerline wheelsets will fit in Lima Commonwealth bogies without modification. Most other wheelsets like Athearn have longer axles which are not even close to fitting in the tight Lima bogies. Note that the typical Lima wheelsets seem to be OO scale (they are used on both Lima's OO and HO scale models) thus are a bit larger than a regular 36" wheel, so if you have fitted Kadees you will need to adjust the coupler height. On freight wagons however, the Lima wheels are actually much smaller than the standard 33" American wheels, let alone the 36" wheels typical to Australian wagons.
  DJPeters Deputy Commissioner

From memory Powerline wheelsets where larger in size than normal wheels on the prototype and they also had semi pizza cutter type flanges on them, not as deep as Lima's but still deep though.  Later Powerline wheels though might be different.

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