Lionel 6-14251 wheel sets

What's the story with Lionel 6-14251 roller bearing wheel sets. I have about 20 sets. The couplers don't work, don't work, don't work and then they break and never close again. I like the looks of these wheel sets but they hamper operations when the couplers don't work.

Original Post

Is it still the case that the couplers are prone to failure on these? I would like to replace the plastic trucks on a flat car that tends to derail backing through switches, but don't want to introduce a new problem while resolving a different one.

DavidR: Reading the OPs post, I really don't understand what his issue was and how he arrived at that conclusion.

The 6-14251 is my "go to" Lionel truck; it is used on most all the scale cars Lionel has done over the past ten years including the PS1 boxcars/PS2 covered hoppers/PS4 flat cars and PS5 gondolas. Mine have all worked extremely well with no failure issues to report. These couplers generally take the least amount of force to couple together nd remain closed until the hidden push-tab is activated or while over an electric uncoupler.

Thank you for the information. Since you are using these, I thought I would ask a question. According to Nicholas Smith Trains, these won't work with post war rolling stock. This seems strange, but I thought I'd better check with someone who uses them. Will they attach to more recently produced rolling stock? If so, is some sort of adapter needed?

DavidR posted:

Thank you for the information. Since you are using these, I thought I would ask a question. According to Nicholas Smith Trains, these won't work with post war rolling stock. This seems strange, but I thought I'd better check with someone who uses them. Will they attach to more recently produced rolling stock? If so, is some sort of adapter needed?

Post War trucks were built to an entirely different architecture and rolling stock design than any of the modern, "low-bolster" trucks, regardless of brand. They aren't related in design in any way, except for the large flanges. You could engineer a mount for PW cars, however. Key word: spacers.

Lionel did produce tons of nice die-cast freight trucks in the modern era that have the PW proportions (high truck bolster) and look just fine on PW cars, but the mounting technique is different, so a little model railroading will be needed. These trucks can be found on eBay, etc. 

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