Gear problem on an old, cheap tyco

Discussion related to everything about model railroading, from layout design and planning, to reviews of related model tools and equipment. Discussion includes O, S, HO, N and Z, as well as narrow gauge topics. Also includes discussion of traditional "toy train" and "collector" topics such as Lionel, American Flyer, Marx, and others. Also includes discussion of outdoor garden railways and live steamers.

Moderators: stilson4283, 3rdrail, Otto Vondrak


Gear problem on an old, cheap tyco

Post by jimsimm » Sun Mar 21, 2004 1:47 am

I have a 30 yr. old Tyco Chattanooga 638 with the motor and drive wheels in the tender. I got it out of storage for my son. After a good cleaning and lubrication, I got it running pretty good for a couple of days. Then, the gears started slipping in forward, it goes backwards perfectly so I took out the motor/wheel assembly and turned it around so that it can now go forward -- at least we get some use out of it this way.

BUT my question is, if the gears are WORN I can understand them slipping and not catching, however, why would it just not work in ONE direction? On the bench, with the car turned on its side, the wheels will spin great, but once I put a little pressure on the rear drive wheels, they stop spinning, the front drive wheels still spin fine with pressure though. Obviously the train isn't worth anything but it is the one that my son picked out of my collection to have so I'd like to try to get it working. Any suggestions?? Thanks.


Roger Hensley
Posts: 400
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 8:07 am
Location: Anderson Indiana

Post by Roger Hensley » Sun Mar 21, 2004 7:46 am

Those gears take on a wear pattern. In other words, they're worn out in the one direction that you used to run it. It will soon wear out in the other direction as well.

That said, the model is nice for it's day, so to preserve the one that we had, I put an Athearn SW 7 modified chassis under the tender, painted the ends of the chassis black and went ahead running it. It is, however, much slower. :-)
Roger Hensley - KC9EJI

ECI HO Scale RR -" onclick=";return false;
Railroads of Madison County -" onclick=";return false;


Post by Bartoli » Tue Mar 23, 2004 11:54 pm

One thing that would happen to me with the Tyco truck drives is that the small metal gear on the motor shaft would start to slip and cause a similar complaint to yours.

I've used super glue gel several times to secure the gear to the shaft so that it doesn't spin. One drop worked for me.

Otherwise, you can go the Athearn SW7 route, or go to any train show and swap meet and buy some old Tyco locomotives that you can pillage for parts.


Tyco 2-8-0 Tender Drive

Post by denis » Sun Mar 28, 2004 12:29 pm

This is great. My third password and username for this site. It's annoying having to do this each time I bring it up. Reminds me of the boyhood secret password ritual. :(

I may have a better drive available. If you are interested, please contact me at: :)

Return to “Toy Trains, Model Railroading, Outdoor and Live Steam”