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Picked up my new Lionel PRR Decapod from my local dealer.  I noticed after a very short time running, there seems to be some serious noise coming from the drive train.  Of course, it is most noticeable with the sound turned off.  Does not seem to be present at slow speeds.  But is present in both forward and reverse.  Should I have lubed the locomotive before using?



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Yes on the lube. Lionel has been putting very little grease in the gearbox from the factory.

There are multiple threads on how Lionel did a poor jobs on these gearboxes, which are identical to the L1 mikados. They are also problematic.

If your engine is jerking or stalling. You may have to send it to Lionel for repair. If it's running O.K. and just noisey, put.2.0 ml of grease in the gearbox and see if it starts to quiet down with some run time.

Last edited by RickO

The story continues.  Returned to Lionel for resolution.  Got back a few days ago.  Communication from Lionel stated that the motor was replaced.  Seemed ok. Last evening it stopped moving after running for 20 minutes or so.  Moved it around by hand and got it moving again.  Tonight is the same story, ran for a while.  Stopped moving while in operation.  Headlight is out, but sound system is still in idle mode, compressors and other noises.  Does not respond to my Cab2.  Also will not move  under conventional transformer control.  My old non legacy PRR J1a responds fine to my Cab2.  This is my first and perhaps last new locomotive purchase from Lionel.

Thanks for listening guys.


One of my L1s has developed a sketchy antenna problem. I played around with the handrails up around the junction box/boilertop handrails and got it to work for a while but it's acting up again. This could be affecting your Dec as it's pretty much the same arrangement. I need to figure out exactly what's going on with mine some night. There's a little piece of heatshrink jammed in the junction box for some reason. The antenna seems isolated correctly but something is making it unhappy. The first time the antenna crapped out on me is when I had on the bench for motor shimming.

If you can run the LC app you can at least gain control of it and have cruise again until you fix the antenna.

@rdg_fan posted:

Dumb question: How do you get to gear box to lubricate? Thanks!

The easiest way is to remove the small screw on the bottom. The word GREASE is cast into the frame where it's located. Be careful because it's a small screw with a tiny washer. Get yourself a syringe from a drug store. Fill the syringe with a good grease (I use Super Lube with ptfe) and then inject it into the hole. I put in 2-2.5 ml. The other way is to remove the shell and remove the gearbox cover. This isn't necessary unless you really are curious about what the gears look like.



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Last edited by Stinky1

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