Skip to main content

I have been tempted to order some of the MTH items with the light strings on them. I do have a couple of MTH items with the light strings and they look great. They have engines, passenger cars, 4 pack box cars for the CP Holiday Train and Christmas / Santa trains and all sorts of other freight cars with lighted figures or trees and strings of lights along the sides and buildings with light strings.

In our train club some people have had the occasional problem with the light strings failing on their equipment. And I have seen some issues on the forum with folks having issues. I have been searching on line and can not find a similar type of light string to purchase with the closely spaced bulbs. Evans Designs has some light strings but the bulbs are spaced further apart.

Is there any where that a mini light string could be purchased with closely spaced bulbs like on the MTH trains?  I am reluctant to purchase an expensive set like an engine and passenger cars or make a big investment if I have to worry about the bulbs failing and not be able to find a replacement?

Last edited by kj356
Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

Not as robust to handling ('The claw, the claw!') as other traditional seasonal rail cars.

Ergo, if there will be interactive play with the younger generations...we're talking youngsters, kids, grandkids, crawlers-to-toddlers..., especially as the train races around the Christmas tree at floor level, the somewhat f-r-a-g-i-l-e LED strings could be a problem.

That's an opinion based on returns for repair (LHS) of this genre of cars when they first came out a few years ago.   

Otherwise, they're definitely eye-candy for that holiday train!

And, no...I've not seen commercially available equivalent strings (LED spacing, size, colors, etc.), but they'd sure be popular if someone offered them, I'm sure.



@shorling posted:

I'm really surprised that some enterprising company hasn't produced replacement strings.  It seems obvious there is a demand.  Maybe price point is keeping the product from being produced ?  Can it be a patent issue ?

Anyone producing such a product would have to have a significant volume in order for it to be remotely practical.  Truthfully, this is a pretty tiny market, and certainly reaching even a significant percentage of the people with the problem would be difficult without really expensive advertising.  When the Chinese make such products, they make tens of thousands to keep the prices down.

I'm virtually sure it couldn't be a patent issue, how do you patent a string of Christmas lights?

IMHO, the MTH Christmas Light String cars look great and are an impressive addition to a layout. The only problem I had was with the Santa and Reindeer car with a total failure of the lights. I took the car apart and discovered one loose wire connection which was easily fixed. Rudolph's nose lights again!

The issue is whether or not to allow young kids to handle these particular cars. Frankly, I am reluctant because of the way the LED's are openly exposed. I have a separate 4' x 5' layout for kids and I'm very selective on what cars and engines I allow the young visitors to touch/lift/drop. (The old Lionel Scout is pretty childproof!)

My Christmas trains the kids do not handle, but control through the remote the engine. I set up a huge model Christmas train village at our museum Christmas train event and 2 smaller displays each year. Would break the bank to buy lots of MTH lighted cars.

I did find at Walmart a 24 volt small Christmas light string would just need a full wave bridge rectifier to run it from the AC track voltage. But the string is 41 feet long with 500 bulbs with long leads on the back of each bulb. So not really practical but might take it apart and see if I could cut it into smaller lengths.

Add Reply

This forum is sponsored by MTH Electric Trains
OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
Link copied to your clipboard.