Well, I finally got around to further delving into the "mystery" of this rare linkage and interesting frame of this #392E. I have disassembled the entire unit and took plenty of pictures in the process for documentation.
First off, here is a picture of the entire engine. It was missing the cab roof when I purchased, but that is an easy replacement:
Here is a close up of the valve gear: (note-the sliding piston off of the steam chest is missing a part)
When I removed the linkage on both sides, I discovered that one "piston" seemed to be missing a part. Does anyone know of a replacement part? It looks like it will still work without the missing piece.
I don't know if this is normal. The wheels are original and have the "The Lionel Corp. New York" on the inside rim, but they seem to be made of brass and specifically fitted to take the eccentric crank as well as a regular screw. In this picture, you can also see the "nub" the juts out from the frame above the first driving wheel. This is for a screw to keep the upper part of the linkage in place. (Notice it too seems to be made of brass!)
Here is where things start to get REALLY interesting:
Once I removed the piston bars from the steam chest, this piece was revealed and also seems to be made of brass:
Once I removed everything off of the frame, I wanted to know if this piece was "molded in" like the "nub" or was it affixed to the frame:
The answer seems to be the latter as you can see two "tabs" on the inside of the frame:
As I stated in my original post, I am fairly new to the "standard gauge" part of the hobby, but could tell this was something a bit out of the ordinary. (Other than pictures on-line, I have no other 392e with which to compare LOL!) If anyone has further information on this piece or needs to correct my discoveries as I may have misspoken, please let me know. I am having a blast restoring this beauty and can't wait to get it running!
Thanks in advance for your input.