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Hey everyone trainfam here,

I need some help on fixing a Ives 25 motor spring. The spring In question is pictured below.


the spring circled above is supposed to hold up the switch that changes the motors direction from forward to reverse. The problem here is that this spring is no longer holding up the switch, thus making it impossible for the motor to work forward. Does anyone know how I can fix this issue and get my engine running forward again?



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  • B4E50160-A5C3-4796-A554-0D38358A9171
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It would be easy for a clock maker to fix or replace the spring as they came in many sizes for antique spring driven clocks which i own a few.

Clockmaker should be able to replace that spring that you circled what the cost would be is anyones guess. You may be able to replace that spring yourself but please make sure that the mainspring has all tension released as they hold a tremendous amount of tension.

Last edited by Dieseler

Are you saying you assist the spring a little and then it holds the switch the way it is supposed to?  If so, shorten the spring just a little and see if that works or works a little better.  If a little better but still not there, shorten it a little more.  It can't hurt at this point.  I am certain someone has been playing with that spring as there is no way it is original with all the little bends in it.    Jp

Failing to find this spring on the Tinplate forum, you can get an assortment of extension springs on Amazon for $10-$15.  Measure the compressed length and diameter of the spring.  If it is one of these dimensions, it is in the assortment: 9/32’’ x 1/2’’, 13/64’’ x 13/16’’, 3/8’’ x 5/8’’, 5/16’’ x 1-1/8’’, 1/4’’ x 13/32’’, 7/32’’ x 1’’, 3/8’’ x 3/4’’, 7/32’’ x 11/16’’, 1/4’’ x 7/8’’, 5/16’’ x 1-27/32’, 11/32’’ x 1-27/32’’, 5/16’’ x 1-3/4’’, 9/32’’ x 2’’, 5/32’’ x 3-1/8’’, 23/64’’ x 1-3/8’’, 3/16’’ x 1-3/4’, 7/32’’ x 1- 1/2’’, 9/32’’ x 1- 1/2’’, 9/32’’ x 3/4’’, 11/32’’ x 1- 7/16’.

A clockmaker, if you can find one, wouldn’t have this type of spring.

Hey everyone,

@JPLoco here’s a more in depth description. The only way I can get the spring to work is if I pull the switch up way high. If I let go of it, the spring will not work at all. The spring has most likely been tempered with so I’m not too afraid to mess with the spring. If the spring doesn’t work after I mess with it I’ll bring it to a clock guy or @WindupGuy here on the forum.


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