Skip to main content

I've been in the hobby 20 plus years and feel comfortable with engine maintenance and lubrication. I want your opinion on consist lubing. I have read to just put your cars on and run them. Thus, I've never lubricated cars. Your opinion please? Running 3 rail, MTH, DCS, not that it matters. Thanks

Original Post
@Train Nut posted:

Plastic trucks - no oil.

Metal trucks - A drop of oil on each wheel. 

By plastic, I assume you mean the needle point axles- plastic journal boxes and metal wheels and axles. No oil on those. For post and prewar I put a dab on the inside of each wheel where it meets the axle and spin them until they spin freely. They can get gunked up over the years and create a lot of drag in a consist of any length.

Atlas also offers a lightweight conductive oil, item ACT-3003PL.  I use it for the center rail rollers and on PW axles at the wheels....

Conductive Oil

As others have said....SPARINGLY...a single drop will usually do the trick for a long time.

But it's really important on very old cars to check for dirt/dust accumulation in the bearing areas.  Adding another drop to an already-gunky bearing point is, well, somewhat counterproductive.  Worse, in fact.


Last edited by dkdkrd

I oil all raw metal.

It keeps ALL FAST ANGLE needle tips rust free and that keeps them smooth which won't wear out plastic.  Even tiny amounts are abrasive.

Use light plastic safe oil. (mobile 1 is containers)

Sparingly, soak excess off with rag/PT.  Ideally set on a rag for hours/overnight then wipe wheels again, then run.

Oil raw metal like you would a rifle.




Edit in Bold Goofle Auto Spellwreck




Last edited by Adriatic

I use Bachmann 99981 conductive lube for all of my pickup rollers. It is a very thin oil. I add one drop on each end of the roller and one drop on each hinge pin. I do lube the axle ends on my metal trucks with HL653. It's the same oil I use on my loco axle shafts as well. One drop on each end and your good to go for a while.

My favorite was Labelle light oil, but my LHS no longer carries it, so I now use Excelle light oil, which has been fine. Totally agree with sparingly, and I apply only one drop on each side of the wheel between the wheel and the axle.

Doing the above makes a huge positive difference when running a long consist of Postwar operating cars; then, they glide along the rails smooth as silk. Arnold

 You have to look at each axle end where it goes into the truck side frame, if you see the axle in black plastic (Delrin) no oil, if you see a brass bushing lightly oil. If no bushing in metal trucks (postwar type) oil lightly. If Weaver plastic truck no oil. If old Atlas Pola plastic truck, lightly oil.  I use automotive oil.

Add Reply

OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
Link copied to your clipboard.