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I recently bought an Aster locomotive that has been seating on a shelf for close to 14 years, collecting dust. What should I use to clean all the engine? Also, one of the levers has a little rust, what should I do? I will appreciate any ideas? Thank you.
 

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The canned air like you use to clean electronic equip. is good for blowing off dust. Be careful not to blow it near fire......some are flamable. As a general rule, I am not a big fan of WD-40 but it seems to work well to clean Loco's. I have used it with success to clean the running gear, drivers, etc., (lower parts of the Loco). To get at the hard to get spots, cotton tipped applicators (fancy words for long wood handle Q tips) are hard to beat.
Because live steamers spit oil all over themselves and then when sitting at rest dust settles on this oil film, lets just say that sometimes you have to live with a little dust stuck on the engine.
Did you get the PM I sent you about running trains?
 

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privero:
WD stands for Water Dispacement, 40 is for experiment #40 (took the guy awhile to get what he wated right.) Personaly I would avod it since it contains 15% mineral oil (yuck! - IMHO), 50% Stoddards Clearner and about 25% propellant.

Three previous threads on cleaning, different products (including WD-40) and opinions:

http://www.mylargescale.com/Communi.../1/view/topic/postid/24568/Default.aspx#24963

http://archive.mylargescale.com/forum/topic.asp?ARCHIVE=true&TOPIC_ID=25384

http://archive.mylargescale.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=38663


Dwight:
Might be a subject for our "Helpful Hint" collection.
 

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Here's what I do for really dirty locomotives. First remove the pressure gauge and then the alcohol burner assembly.Fill the kitchen sink or laundry tub with a hottish water solution using Dawn dish detergent ( the stuff that is used to clean up animals who are suffering from being in an oil slick - safe on them so safe on our things ). let the grungy engine sit in this for about twenty minutes. Remove and use a hair dryer to blow off the water and suds. Wipe down using a soft cloth , oil everything up , and then replace the burner and gauge. It will look as good as it ever will and then you can give it a rub down with wax ( the solid kind used on wood floors ) to get a shine on the painted parts. Easy on the wax - just a bit on a rag using your finger to apply.

Jerry Reshew
 

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If it gets really nasty, I rinse it with kerosene first, knock off any build up of residue with a toothbrush, then finish with a hot rinse in the sink. I picked up this method from Kevin O'Conner's article "Getting Started with Frank S." (part 4) on Southern Steam Trains' website http://www.southernsteamtrains.com/notes/franks4.htm
 

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G Guage track, 1:22.5 (maybe 1:20.3) trains, 1:24 models (finding a working engine).
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I am thinking of getting an accucraft ruby. How often must it be cleaned to prevent failure? I don't mean just oiling the joints. I see some of those copper pipes seem pretty thin. I plan to use only distilled water.
 

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I spend about an hour on each of my engines, with soft rags, Q tips for those hard to reach places and get them back to as clean of a condition as I can. Every few steam ups, I put them in my bench top parts cleaning tank and flush all the old oil with its grit and grime out of the bearings and side rods/motion work. This is especially important on Shays and other geared engines. As the grime and grit in the oil acts like a grinding solution and wears out the moving parts much faster. So flushing it out and relubricating with fresh oil/grease helps prolong the life of those moving bits. Many of the second hand engines I have bought showed signs that the owners seldom if ever give the engine a proper cleaning.
 
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