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LTI MOPAC PA1s Return From Overhaul......

Back in May of this year, Charles Ro had a sale on the recently released Legacy PA1 sets. The cheapest set in the sale was the New Haven set, so I ordered a set to retrofit my 1990 LTI MOPAC PA1s from set # 49601. The actual powered and dummy units were numbered 48112. For almost 30 years ago, the LTI units were "state of the art" for LTI and their Flyer line. The powered unit had two truck mounted motors that drove spur gears to transmit the power to the wheels. These units were noisy and became under-powered when the add-ons to this set accumulated over the years. Their low speed performance was also underwhelming to say the least. The original electronic e-unit had failed early in life and I replaced it with a Dallee unit.

My plan was to swap the new Legacy equipped chassis with the original shells from my set. While Lionel did produce a new MOPAC PA1 set in their new release, checking around the community and seeing actual pictures of the new release proved the paint on the new release was nowhere near a match to the original 9 cars & Railsounds "B" unit from LTI, so my plan was put into action with the receipt of my new diesels from Charles Ro.

The swap is a sweet one to make as things just "fell into place" for the swap. The steps included;

1) Remove New Haven shells and unscrew the new body mount stand-offs (4 each). Screw into original MOPAC shell.

2) Remove Legacy antenna from New Haven shell and re-mount into rear roof area of the MOPAC shell. I used silicone to hold mine and it works well.

3) Remove New Haven headlight LED/PCB assembly and swap into MOPAC shell. It just pushes back into the shell for removal. You now have "Rule 17" lighting effects as well....

4) Drill out exhaust port on the shell roof of the original MOPAC shell to allow smoke exit - yes, you now have smoke...

5) Remove smoke gasket from roof of New haven shell and re-use in the MOPAC shell; silicone to the rescue again to mount.

6) Re-paint the black New haven truck sides to silver to match the MOPAC Eagle's. I airbrushed mine with some Testor's #1181 Matte Aluminum paint I've had sitting around for years; it proved to be a good match to the LTI original paint.

Attached are some pix of a set that has been literally transformed into a viable, good running set with good speed regulation, bright headlights (directional when set up as a TRAIN), smoke, AND electro-couplers. Also new is the latest RailsoundsLite package for sound to go with the original Railsounds in the 1990 "B" unit.

I am also including some pix of the original passenger cars that I modified two years ago with GunrunnerJohn's constant lighting power supplies for LED lighting; no more "burn-spot" in the center of the car where the old incandescent light bulb sat trying to burn your retinas....IMG_2265IMG_2266IMG_2267IMG_2268IMG_2269IMG_2270IMG_2271



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Last edited by D&H 65
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