While preparing my Lionel Florida East Coast E-3 A-A diesel set to run at my annual holiday Open House, I discovered that the underframe detail on my passenger cars is suffering from zinc pest. On one of my cars, the detail plate is severely distorted and on yet another there are signs of a similar fate. This set was produced in 2004 and has been on my shelf along with my other trains. I think I last ran this set 5 years ago. I have just been on the Lionel site and placed an order for 3 underframe detail parts and have my fingers crossed that they will still be in stock. I have previously reported on the problem with the body of the MTH P5a boxcab and that remains unresolved. I have also had problems with Lionel freight trucks, K-line passenger trucks, 3rd Rail freight trucks, and Williams Peter Witt trolley frames and motor trucks. Being a long time collector of vintage trains, I am quite familiar with casting impurities/zinc pest and it comes with the territory. How very unfortunate that casting issues still persist.
Just to end on a positive note. Our Open House was again well received and due to the generosity of our visitors, we were able to collect a considerable amount of donations for the local food bank.
Happy New Year!