Whistle options??

Discussion in 'G / O / S Scale Model Trains' started by djtommye, Dec 28, 2005.

  1. djtommye

    djtommye New Member

    I'm fairly new to the model railroad community (although I did have some HO scale trains when I was alot younger).

    I've just completed a track in my three-year old's room, on a shelf about a foot below his ceiling. My brother got him an O-Scale "Thomas the Tank Engine" kit and he's loving it!

    Basically, I have two questions.
    Firstly - it came with a simple Lionel transformer that works great in this situation. No frills, e.g. Reverse, etc. I'm installing a switch where he can just turn on the train and it goes, and I'm putting the transformer up high and out of reach.

    I've also acquired some accessories, such as crossing signals and beacons, and was wondering how to power them. Is there a simple transformer (on/off) I can use to do that, instead of replace the train transformer with a more sophisticated model?

    Also, I'd like something that can reproduce a steam whistle, and maybe even the locomotive sounds (chug-chug-chug). Any suggestions?

    Thank you!
  2. FiveFlat

    FiveFlat Member

    Your accessories can be powered by that same transformer. (the assy. leads).
    Doesn't the Thomas engine have a whistle? I want to buy my 4 year old son that engine too.
    You might be able to find a tender on ebay that has sounds, but Thomas is a tank engine, so a tender wouldn't look right behind him.
  3. djtommye

    djtommye New Member

    No - the transform just has two terminals on it, no accy lead.

    Okay - so I'm stupid - just what is a "tank engine" (I've always wondered that).
  4. Steamtom1

    Steamtom1 Member

    You guys want to hear some real whistles. Try this site...


    One small hitch. Your locomotive has to be live steam, but that shouldn't be a problem.
  5. djtommye

    djtommye New Member

    Hmm - well, I'm sorry to say that this is NOT a live steam loco - just an electric train set.
  6. FiveFlat

    FiveFlat Member

    Tank engines have their own tender. If you look at Thomas, the coal is on the engine - not on a tender behind it. (If I'm wrong, I hope someone will correct me)

    As far as your transformer goes - that's odd. I thought all Lionels sets came with the CW-80 (1 set of leads for the track, and 1 set for assy's). I'm new myself to this hobby, so I could be wrong. Might be worth calling your dealer that you bought the set from and ask them why you didn't get the CW-80.
  7. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    Sounds like your transformer that came with Thomas is a very small one for running Thomas and friends only. You might check to see what the power rating is on it. In any case, you will probably want a second small transformer to run the accessories. Can be used or new. The most common problem with old transformers is that the power cord that plugs into the wall has brittle or missing insulation, and needs replacement of the power cord.

    An accessory that Lionel used to make (and I think they still do, but if not you can probably find one used) is a "Whistling Train Shed". It's a small lighted station or building with a whistle inside it actuated by a push button. It's what I use for my Lionel General locomotives almost none of which came with whistles. My kids love it! I have the diesel horn version, as well.

    Hope this helps.
  8. Steamtom1

    Steamtom1 Member

    Careful! These things start innocently enough, but have been known to get out of hand.

    Witness a live steam Thomas, in gauge 1...

  9. TR-Flyer

    TR-Flyer Member

  10. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    It's called a tank engine because it has water tanks on the engine -- those square boxes beside the boiler in front of the cab. Also carries its own coal in a bunker behind the cab.
    Ask your son ; he knows if he's been watching Thomas on television. (FYI Percy and Duck are also tank engines -- and different types than Thomas.)
  11. FiveFlat

    FiveFlat Member

    Thanks for the correction 60103! Where are the water tanks on a regular steam engine that pulls a tender?
  12. Steamtom1

    Steamtom1 Member

    Both the water and the fuel are carried in the tender.
  13. Chief Eagles

    Chief Eagles Active Member

    The statement above about the CW80 is true. You should have that and it has posts for acces. [I just bought one for a Greatnephew and it had a CW80]. CW80 [some have been a problem] should run the train and some acces. It does have a crazy way of setting acces. voltage. You have to read the manual. There are several sound activating devices and several sound "boards" available from companies. The whistling shed and billboard is the easiest. Go tothe hobby shop and buy Classic Toy Train and OGauger magazines. Look in the adds.

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