Top positive review
14 people found this helpful
on November 15, 2013
I bought this train set to enhance the holidays for my daughter and found myself caught up in the nostalgia. I added 6 10 inch straight track sections and screwed it down to a christmas village display I made. There are tabs under each track if you want to attach additional wires for an even spread of power throughout the track. You can solder these or use connectors you can buy at home supply store like I did. There is absolutely no power loss from additional track as others indicated. I will though upgrade in the future to a higher output transformer as I add more accessories and use the 40cw it comes with for auxiliary needs. The box car plays random short clips of Xmas music but the speaker is a little loud. Yes you need to turn it upside down to switch it off and on but I just choose to leave the car off the main track and place it a small section of auxiliary track for display and not worry about. I also bought a chessie locomotive with crew sounds and caboose and these run great too with this transformer. The whistle is a bit weak at slow speeds but the faster you go the louder it seems to get. Kinda like a whistle in the distance. Smoke is also low output at low speeds and not much better at fast pace. Don't keep the smoke switch on unless drops of fluid are in the reservoir or it will ruin the smoke box. A bit pricey but very cool addition and should last a long time with care. The track can be cleaned with a lionel clean and lube kit or you can clean it with some rubbing alcohol. Same with the train wheels. Don't forget the gears and axles need periodic oiling. There are many videos online to assist with the maintenance. Buy with confidence it's a great product.
Update: I fixed the low out put whistle as any train set apparently with ages 8 and older has a federal restriction on decibels thus the whistle being so low. On the lionel website they have a fix in which you unscrew the tender car screws and remove the top. Then you clip the capacitor and solder back down. It took me 5 minutes and voila the whistle was louder or a normal decibal in my opinion. The numbering on the fix I does not Match the circuit board but the picture is almost identical and easy to figure out. If you try it you will know what I mean. Go to lionel website and look up this train and you will see the troubleshooting PDF on the side. Additionally, I don't believe the made in china inferior product as many have claimed on new lionel trains. I have a 1974 USA made chessie system locomotive with die cast trucks that is inferior to my made in China 2010 merger chessie loco. And this was a limited edition item. The detail is a notch above in the china model and the sounds are superior also albeit the trucks are not die cast but the wheels are. Yes I would like this train set to be made in the USA but it is not inferior to any of the USA lionel products I have.