'94 Lionel AF Diesel and PostWar AF Switches issue

escape Feb 4, 2024

  1. escape

    escape New Member

    I must be missing something concept-wise? Does newer Lionel brand American Flyer not support inter-working with original American Flyer track and American Flyer switches?

    Pic attached shows my mis-understanding circled in red. The Lionel GP9 doesnt appear to use trucks wheels for electrical pickup, instead has 2 individual track pickups, one for each rail.

    But American Flyer switches (wide variety of year and model numbers) have a plastic piece at end of frog that is wider than the GP9 track pickup.

    The steamers always have one of the wheels on either side of the plastic end-of-frog, no issue loosing electrity. But at slow speeds the GP9 always loses electricity and stops every switch and needs hand-shoved across. At high enough speeds it can get across. But this is a yard I am attempting to model AF-Switch-And-Diesel.png with the GP9, not high-speed running.

    Any ideas about what I am missing concept-wise? Seems I would find some discussion on this topic on train boards but I havent located it yet.

    I have always run AF Steam, but from my n scale got interested in yard operations so setup a large classification yard with dual end ladder and 20 switches with my S gauge. Since AF Steamers didnt have front couplers decided to buy a '94 American Flyer GP9 diesel and its from Lionel.
    Doug Gosha likes this.
  2. escape

    escape New Member

    I finally saw that a pic of a 2019 Lionel AF Great Northern FlyerChief GP-7 (6-44118), with sound, electric couplers and remote control, would not have this AF switch crossing loss of electicity issue as it has 4 total electrical pickups, 2 each rail and spread across both sets of trucks.


    I dont know what year/model Lionel made that change? My '94 AF Great Northern labeled as a GP-9 model (6-48014) only has 2 of the same type of pickups, 1 each truck on opposite rails. You can see from my original pic that truck in that pic only has 1 electrical pickup.
    Doug Gosha likes this.
  3. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    This has me wondering if the later model was redesigned with four, due to learned issues with a previous unit having only two pickups.
    Doug Gosha and Hardcoaler like this.
  4. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

    "Hey boss, aren't these single pickups gonna cause a problem with the American Flyer switches with the plastic-tipped frogs?"

    "Nah. those guys all run their trains at warp speed anyway so, the locos will glide right over the gaps."


    BNSF FAN likes this.

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