Question by : How do you set up the Lionel Polar Express Train Track?
I don’t remember how to connect the wire on the transformer to the track. PLease help. Merry Christmas also!
Answer by jesteele1948
I’m going to assume this Lionel set is like others I have used.
I don’t have a Polar Express set.
Most transformers have 4 “posts” to attach wires to. (protruding screws on the back)
They are in pairs;
1 pair for accessories (not all have this), and
1 pair for power to the train track.
To tell them apart, the first pair is usually marked AC and
the second pair is usually marked DC or something like + and -.
The second pair must get attached to the special “terminal” track that has 2 little screws on its edge.
Using the double wire supplied, attach the DC connection to the terminal track screws, one wire in the pair to each screw. Do this with the transformer UNplugged from the wall.
Of course the double wire supplied must have a little copper exposed at each end for each wire conductor. If that has broken off, or can’t be seen, strip a little of the insulation off the appropriate conductor, about 1/2 inch. Use a knife. If you’re a kid, leave it to an adult. Pressing too hard can cause you to lose some of the copper, too, and that’s not good.
The two exposed copper wires at each end do not have to match up perfectly, but if they are about the same length then connecting them to the transformer or the track is easier.
Attach each copper wire to one screw at either the transformer or the terminal track. Loosen the screw that’s going to hold the copper wire just about one full turn. Wrap the wire ALWAYS IN A CLOCKWISE FASHION around the screw so the you can see almost none of the copper because it’s all under the head of the screw. To make the wire follow a clockwise curl, hold the insulated part on your left, and make the copper run OVER the screw right in front of you, and down and around the right side of the screw and then up the left side of the screw, the same direction hands on a clock move. After the copper is snugly around the screw, WITHOUT PULLING ON THE INSULATION, tighten the screw ’til it won’t turn any more, and then the wire should be held well enough so you can pull it gently and it stays on the screw. (Some transformers have a knurled nut on a screw post, instead of screw; it makes no difference.)
One copper wire conductor from the double wire should NEVER touch the other. If they are very close, bend them away from each other.
Do this at the other item that is part of the circuit, the track or the transformer, depending on which you started with.
Put the engine on the track; make sure the speed control of the transformer is at zero or Stop; if the transformer has a direction switch (forward or reverse), set it to forward; plug the transformer in. Nothing should happen.
Gently move the speed control to the right (or clockwise) a small amount. Either the engine will move or it will make some quiet noise. If the wheels are moving in the correct direction, you’re done. If the wheels are moving in the wrong direction, reverse the pair of copper conductors on either the track or the transformer, but not both.
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