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Steam Engine Lubrication and Tune-Ups

Peter writes:

“Wondering how often I should tune up/lubricate my 2 N scale steam engines? What are the telltale signs they need doing if any?”

You can add or read the comments from others below.

2 Responses to Steam Engine Lubrication and Tune-Ups

  • Morgan BIlbo says:

    Steam. Hmmm! All you can do on them is: When new, make sure the side rods and any movable parts are lubed with light oil. Some people do a lot more. They actually take the loco apart to lube with light grease or heavy oil the gears. I don’t. Because I run them periodically. If you let them sit for a long time, then you should take them apart. That’s about all. with diesels, it’s different. Also, even though you didn’t ask. You should clean the wheels. Set the loco upside down in a foam cradle, Hook up power to get the drivers rolling. Clean with Mineral Spirits, a Q tip is OK. The non driven wheels can be done with the Q tip . Others should tell more.

  • Joe Graffi says:

    I use SYNTHETIC automatic transmission fluid. It doesn’t ‘sling-off’. is safe for plastics and takes VERY little! I purchased a “needle oiler” for dispensing but I run HO. I would use the end of a toothpick for placing the smallest amount.
    You will NEVER have to buy any other lubricating oil as long as you live!
    I use it on axles, gears and motor bushings and anything else that needs a good lube.
    But, like I said, start with a drop on the end of a toothpick. It is easier to add a little more than to remove excess, especially with N gage.

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