I recently acquired a NOS 1999 Lionel Amtrak TMCC Dash 9 with a fan driven smoke unit (6-18252- doesn’t show up on Lionel’s website except to register products, but that’s besides the point). It has a 27 ohm fan driven smoke unit. 

Here’s the short of it(more background info is provided after the picture): Can I use the pictured MTH smoke unit batting instead of Lionel smoke batting. Picture below:

C1CE7262-DB92-48A3-9357-754B965E01D0

I watched Mike Reagan’s video(and many others) on TMCC fan driven smoke units and followed his advice. I removed the wick/sleeve around the electrical contact so it isn’t covered anymore. I also noticed the batting(the material that absorbs the smoke fluid) was discolored so I want to replace it. It looks like insulation or fiberglass. I went to a train store nearby and explained the aforementioned. I mentioned I removed the wick and the gentlemen assisting me said I should put the wick/sleeve back on until I said about Mike Reagan’s video to which he responded “ah, ok, yeah definitely go with what he says”. Hence why I am questioning if I should use this batting Which he provided:BAD7EC14-7827-4F0D-9E43-3A2332A56CA6

He said that it’s the batting used in MTH smoke units but that it would also work w/ the TMCC Lionel smoke unit. As it was cheap, I just bought it. He said to take the old ballast out and just take as many strands I need to fit in to the smoke unit and I’d be good to go.

Some pictures of the smoke unit batting on Lionel’s website look like this material. 

So, can I proceed with this material instead of Lionel’s?

 

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@bluelinec4 thank you! That’s all I needed to know. Resistor is the word I was looking for when I said electrical contact. I’ve been satisfied with the smoke output and running TMCC(it’s my first TMCC engine) which is why I wanted to replace this batting and do so with the proper material. Again, much thanks for your help.

 

Steve

 

Funny story   Every year our club has an open house right before Christmas.   One of our members dresses up like Santa Claus  A few weeks after this open house I changed the batting on one of my engines.  Our Santa Claus came in a few days later and asked if anybody saw the eyebrows for the Santa Claus suit that he left in the office.  Eyebrows??  I think my Pennsy Q2 stole them because thats what it has for batting now

FWIW, I replace the wick in Lionel smoke units with shredded braided wick and also replace the 27 ohm resistor with a 20 ohm unit, I get plenty of smoke from most Lionel fan driven smoke units.  It's possible to get very decent smoke from Lionel units, it's just easier to get good smoke from the MTH smoke unit.

While MTH has two smoke resistors, the actual power dissipated in the smoke unit is similar to Lionel smoke units, it just has a more effective delivery system to the wick in the form of sandwiching the wick between the two resistors.  If you repack the Lionel smoke unit, replace the resistor (for 27 ohm units only!), and make sure the resistor is firmly in contact with the wick but NOT totally covered, you'll get very good smoke.  For smoke units in TMCC with the voltage regulator, or any Legacy smoke units, DO NOT change the value of the resistor!  The one exception is if you find a 6 ohm resistor in TMCC or early Legacy units with the voltage regulator, change that to an 8 ohm resistor, the regulator will have a longer life.

Some other tricks with the Lionel unit is enlarging the intake hole for the fan, and what I find equally important is enlarging the stack hole as much as possible.  I also make sure the resistor is positioned near the stack hole, but in the airflow between the fan chamber and the stack.  Finally, insure that there is a good clear path from the fan chamber exhaust, across the smoke resistor, and out the stack.

@bluelinec4 I saw that same post when I was doing my research on this subject and put 2 and 2 together. I’ll check the storage closet for a Santa costume haha. Thank you again for your help!

@gunrunnerjohn thank you for your added insight. I did enlarge the intake hole- though I only did 50% of what I’m guessing you mean regarding enlarging. I only used an exacto knife to make the circle of the gasket(referring to the thin almost rectangular part that fits between the smoke unit Board and the chamber/fan. Eventually, I do plan on enlarging the hole in the board itself.

Another question, because it’s tangentially related to the smoke unit but I might make another thread. I noticed that smoke was coming out the back of my engine a few days ago and again last night(culperate already identified in next sentence). While the body and frame fit together perfectly at the front of my engine, in the back the chassis extends a minimal amount over the shell, it can still together without issue, but smoke is seeping out of the rear due to the lack of a snug fit. I did install a 9V battery and had to deal with moving the wires but that’s at the front of the engine.

Anyone ever encounter a situation in which their engine’s shell is too short for the body/chassis and does not fit snuggly/align?

StevefromPA posted:

@bluelinec4 I saw that same post when I was doing my research on this subject and put 2 and 2 together. I’ll check the storage closet for a Santa costume haha. Thank you again for your help!

@gunrunnerjohn thank you for your added insight. I did enlarge the intake hole- though I only did 50% of what I’m guessing you mean regarding enlarging. I only used an exacto knife to make the circle of the gasket(referring to the thin almost rectangular part that fits between the smoke unit Board and the chamber/fan. Eventually, I do plan on enlarging the hole in the board itself.

Another question, because it’s tangentially related to the smoke unit but I might make another thread. I noticed that smoke was coming out the back of my engine a few days ago and again last night(culperate already identified in next sentence). While the body and frame fit together perfectly at the front of my engine, in the back the chassis extends a minimal amount over the shell, it can still together without issue, but smoke is seeping out of the rear due to the lack of a snug fit. I did install a 9V battery and had to deal with moving the wires but that’s at the front of the engine.

Anyone ever encounter a situation in which their engine’s shell is too short for the body/chassis and does not fit snuggly/align?

How about photos.  No way to picture in the minds eye exactly what you describe. The smoke should NOT be filling the cab of the loco. Sounds like your smoke unit output is not  aligned and sealed against the bottom of the stack.          j

Another question, because it’s tangentially related to the smoke unit but I might make another thread. I noticed that smoke was coming out the back of my engine a few days ago and again last night(culperate already identified in next sentence). While the body and frame fit together perfectly at the front of my engine, in the back the chassis extends a minimal amount over the shell, it can still together without issue, but smoke is seeping out of the rear due to the lack of a snug fit. I did install a 9V battery and had to deal with moving the wires but that’s at the front of the engine.

Anyone ever encounter a situation in which their engine’s shell is too short for the body/chassis and does not fit snuggly/align?

That could be caused by a loose fit between the fan housing and the batting/fluid reservoir.  The rubber gasket between the 2 might not be snug.

jpnrc posted:

Gunrunner, what do you mean by "shredded braided wick"; where do you get it or what do you make it from?  Also, what is a good source for 20 ohm resistors?  Thanks in advance.  John

Actually, I got it on eBay some time back, but it's the same as the Lionel braided wick, just cheaper.  I pull it apart and make it into something of a "birds nest".  I get my 20 ohm resistors from Digikey, I actually use this 5W Ceramic Resistor, if you just take it and place it in a vise at a 45 degree angle and tighten a bit, it cracks the ceramic away and leaves a perfect smoke resistor.

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