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Hi -

I put bright LED headlights on my Mopac engines from like 2005 and also some old Sante Fe diesels from the 50's.  Now I want to do something with my SD9's - first off, I got 1 out of storage and bought

another and neither seem to have working lights. When they do work, I bet there's very little light - my ideal is the old Union Pacific 372's with the bright engine number panels.

1) How do I take my  SD9apart - do I have to take the trucks off, then 2 screws (?) for the body or more?  I'm hoping someone is familiar with them.  I know the lights inside look like those little Christmas tree lights, I bet they draw less that 10 ma, I have the new style switch bulbs that are LED so they don't get hot, I know the 372's use something like that (but get really hot) so I'd like to measure some current and replace the Christmas tree lights with the bigger LED's - if I can get it apart I can show the interior of the 6-48048 body where there's a plastic part that might hold the engine number sign #170- which might not even let light pass - has  anyone retrofitted something like a 48048 to glow like the old 372's?  Essentially, can I put in a new engine number panel that glows when light goes through it?

20210404_135431

20210404_135439

     Thanks

P.S.  I have 6 of these  6-48048's (and 50+ ore cars) and would love to have the engines numbered differently but I guess that's something that can't be done - I think the 372 had a dummy 371 maybe ... perhaps I could replace that (I have 2 372's)

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  • 20210404_135431: side
  • 20210404_135439: front - do panels glow?
Last edited by Rich Melvin
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Nice looking engine, I do not have any of those. The Gilbert 372 and similar GP7's used a 1449 screw in 14V bulb right behind the headlights and number boards. Those shells were held on with two screws, one in the front and rear center of the shell. I do not know if these Lionel versions are the same. Port Lines carries LED replacements for those bulbs.

The modern Legacy and FlyerChief versions of these engines have LED's but they are driven from the control system circuit boards, not directly from track power.

Last edited by Rich Melvin

Interesting action on your part Rich. If you look in the original Gilbert catalogs they call their diesels GP-7's, with the dash included. We Gilbert collectors usually go with the Gilbert catalog naming when discussing their models like a 370 or 371. I try to use the number without the dash when discussing the EMD prototypes but not the Gilbert models.

...and even though it may ride on 6 wheel trucks it still remains a GP7, not an SD9.

Gads Lionel, do it right from the Get Go, or don't do it at all!

Even as a scale oriented S modeler, I have no issues with Lionel's pseudo-SD9 as it was destined to be a model in the traditional American Flyer vein.  Lionel did the same thing to the venerable postwar GP9 in the 1980's to help grow the 3-rail O market to what it's become today.

Now, had they marketed it as a Scale model, that would be a different kettle of fish.

While all Lionel did was to make new sideframes for the GP7 to fit the Flyer PA truck used, the new "SD" sideframes made for a better looking loco than the old Gilbert designed "stretched" Blombergs ever did.

FC GP 05 [2)

Rusty

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  • FC GP 05 (2)
Last edited by Rusty Traque

Hi - no one knows how to disassemble?  I'm always very wary, although I know the trick about putting filings in stripped screw holes and using a soldering iron to "melt" new threads ...  the info

"these engines have LED's but they are driven from the control system circuit boards, not directly from track power" - is helpful, I'll see if I can't pull from track power, also am considering drilling a hole to mount a bright LED headlight .. would be tricky - has anyone changed these number boards - I think mine doesn't let light shine through ...

Here is my recommendation. Go to Carl Tuveson's website, tuveson.com. In the left hand column, near the top is "hints and tips", click on that. Then scroll down the list until you see "links to drawings and parts lists of LTI AF", click on that item. Contained therein are all the online repair diagrams for the LTI AF engines. The one for "GP-7, 9 and 20" engines should work for your engine.

And Rich, if you are reading this post, GP-7, with the dash, is exactly how Lionel titled this official instruction sheet.

The American Flyer model of the Alco PA/PB used a correct prototypical six wheel truck, albeit the "center wheel" was blind, e.i. no wheel.  Lionel could have produced a flexicoil six wheel truck adapting the same concept for "SD" diesel models as well.

That's exactly what Lionel did for the so-called Flyer SD9.  6-wheel siderframes over the PA truck.

Lionel also has a proper 6-wheel truck for the Flyer U33C's, SD70's and ES44's since 2012.

U33C 010712 04 [2)

AF SD70 HR

KCS ES44 011115 003 [2)

Rusty

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  • AF SD70 HR
  • U33C 010712 04 (2)
  • KCS ES44 011115 003 (2)
Last edited by Rusty Traque

So ... does anyone know yet which screws to remove?  Must I remove the trucks - seems like you can't get a screwdriver in there "straight" - I am also concerned about the pickups - there appear to

be 4 screws, but I know some must be for the reverse unit ...  I must have had this one apart (I have 6 now) - note the screws probably aren't even the right ones in the bottom of the truck!

If no one knows for sure I guess it's trucks off and those 4 screws ...

Thanks

20210413_180047[1]20210406_122949[1]Okay so I bought a 6-48014 and was surprised to find it has 2 wheel trucks not 3 wheel ... here is the "engine number" part I want to replace in the preceding picture - do they sell these anywhere?  I've written to Lionel but no response so far ...  I see the 6-48048 is Gilbert American Flyer (blue box) while the 6-48014 is American Flyer Trains in a red box ... oh well  - this is the 3 wheel truck obviously - I wonder which other near-neighbors in the catalog are also 3 wheel?

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  • 20210406_122949[1]
  • 20210413_180047[1]
Last edited by milwaukeeroadtrackman

Here is a possible headlight placement - I'd have to trim the two existing very small headlights off the plastic insert or make my own out of plastic ovals (with unique engine #'s!) - I could make a very slim collar out of brass to go around the base of the LED - better than drilling into the body to recess it (?)

20210413_180129[1]

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  • 20210413_180129[1]
Last edited by milwaukeeroadtrackman

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