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I ordered my first new train in decades so I have no experience with modern, non-conventional trains and I've never used FasTrack before.  The Lionel Lion Chief set I ordered is missing a section of O31 curve so I can't set it up under my tree.  Another piece of track has a bent pin on the middle rail and one of the power sections of straight track has a rattle in it (not sure what that means).  I don't have any other FasTrack and the nearest dealer is hours away cut off by a closed mountain pass.  I ordered this train online and contacted both the dealer and Lionel tonight when I discovered the problems.

What are my options?

  1. I assume I can't insert a section of tubular track into a FasTrack layout?
  2. Can I set up tubular track and a transformer under my Christmas tree and then control it with the Lion Chief remote?  Or do these trains have a switch to run in 'conventional mode'?
  3. Wait for however long it takes for Lionel or the dealer to send me a piece of O31 curve? 

If you have any suggestions, please let me know.  I'm a little disappointed as I wanted to set up my new train under the tree and run it while also learning about FasTrack and the newer technology.

Thank you for any ideas or suggestions and ...

Merry Christmas!

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#2 will work as stated.  Set the transformer to around 3/4 power and then don't touch it again.  Use the remote.

You can purchase replacements with quick shipping from popular internet sites - certainly in time for Christmas.  A section of curve is like $5.

I am a little surprised that your set came with O31 curves.  I thought the starter sets came with O36.

I used to live in the desert of Nevada, and had to come to Las Vegas for everything…..you can buy 031 track at hobby shops, just buy single pieces you need, plus any of sponsors sell fast track online….if you live in city even better….for a novice using both tubular and fast track may require imagination….buy online, pay fast shipping(one time) be happy

Last edited by Catdaddy

I ordered my first new train in decades so I have no experience with modern, non-conventional trains and I've never used FasTrack before.  The Lionel Lion Chief set I ordered is missing a section of O31 curve so I can't set it up under my tree.  Another piece of track has a bent pin on the middle rail and one of the power sections of straight track has a rattle in it (not sure what that means).  I don't have any other FasTrack and the nearest dealer is hours away cut off by a closed mountain pass.  I ordered this train online and contacted both the dealer and Lionel tonight when I discovered the problems.

What are my options?

  1. I assume I can't insert a section of tubular track into a FasTrack layout?
  2. Can I set up tubular track and a transformer under my Christmas tree and then control it with the Lion Chief remote?  Or do these trains have a switch to run in 'conventional mode'?
  3. Wait for however long it takes for Lionel or the dealer to send me a piece of O31 curve?

If you have any suggestions, please let me know.  I'm a little disappointed as I wanted to set up my new train under the tree and run it while also learning about FasTrack and the newer technology.

Thank you for any ideas or suggestions and ...

Merry Christmas!

where are you located, I have O 31 in a box I will just send you a piece, send me a private mesage



i have to say, this is why people avoid hobby/train people. He asked a simple question and some of these replies are written as is he wanted to know how to build Apollo.

Go Simple or Go Home.

Last edited by ThatGuy

As a few have alluded, are you sure it’s O31 curves? Lionel hasn’t used O31 or O27 in starter set in years. Turn the curved track over, the curve/diameter is encoded in the plastic. If, indeed, it is O31, I’d almost suspect someone switched the track. You state you bought it, but is unclear whether you bought it from a dealer or an individual, whether it was/is a new set.

Steve

Last edited by RideTheRails

As other have pointed out, the type of track doesn't matter,tubular works as well as any other track with running conventional or command control.

I agree with others, check the other curve sections in the set, and look at the bottom , it should say what the diameter is, and likely it is O36. O31 was the standard diameter with O gauge tubular track that came with sets pre fast track.  In any event, in the meantime you can use tubular.

With command control (lionchief , or really any of the command control systems) track voltage is constant (with Lionchief, 18v). If you are using the "wall wort" that came with the set that you plug into the wall, it puts out the right voltage. If you are using a standard transformer, you need to set the control on it so it is putting 18v out. Others have said 3/4 of the way, best way is if you have a meter, measure the voltage when it is hooked up across the outer rail/middle rail.  The good news is if you do it 3/4 of the way, you likely aren't going to have too much voltage on the track and can adjust it as needed.

With lionchief your remote is talking directly to the engine, telling it what speed you want, rather than in conventional where you vary the voltage using the transformer handle. Lionchief + and LC 2.0 engines will run in conventional as well. If you put them on the track and don't address the remote to it, it will respond to the transformer handle the way any conventional engine did.

whether to use fast track or not is really a matter of taste. Tubular is a lot more rugged than fast track IMO, and doesn't have some of the quirks that fast track can have (if you have a bent pin in tubular, you can remove it and replace it relatively easily), also doesn't have the connecting tabs in the built in roadbed that can have a flaky connection. Fasttrack on the other hand looks more "real" than tubular, given the built in roadbed and the lower profile it has, but that really is up to what you want. Tubular of course looks more 'traditional".

The rattle in the power section could be anything from a broken piece of plastic from the roadbed that is inside it,to a piece of metal tab. Unlikely to be anything earth shattering, prob would work fine if you use it.

Chances are he’s assuming it’s 031 because of his familiarity with the older tubular track.  

Like someone else offered, I’d be happy to donate some 036 Fastrack.  I have a ton of it that came with eBay auctions that I don’t use - I have 048 and larger curves.  Send me an email.  

But definitely reach out to Lionel to get replacement pieces.  The extra pieces won’t go to waste.  You can always pick up a switch track and use the pieces on a siding.  👍🏼

Edit, typos.

Last edited by VJandP

Your problem and follow-on solutions offered by FORUM members is proof -- train hobbyists are Santa's unheralded helpers.

Mike Mottler   LCCA 12394

Thank you to everyone who offered suggestions to help me.  ThatGuy and VJandP offered to send me track which is amazing!  As Mike Mottler said above, "train hobbyists are Santa's unheralded helpers". #Truth

With the help of Paul at TrainWorld I found the missing O-36 curve hiding amongst the packaging!  It was there the whole time!!! I looked through the order several times and couldn't find it but in the end it was there.

I was making a video when I discovered I was missing a section of track.  The rattle in the accessory track is at 5:35 in my video.  Both the dealer and Lionel have offered to replace the track.  At the time I just wanted to run my new train!!! Also at the end of the video I gave y'all a shoutout for your help and ideas on this OGR Forum.  Thank you for your offers to help and the many suggestions.  Merry Christmas!

Last edited by Apple & Orange Line

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