Frequently Asked Questions: How To Oil a Lionel Train Engine?

Frequently Asked Questions How To Oil a Lionel Train Engine.

Lionel trains are popular model locomotives for collectors and those who enjoy tinkering with them. Oiling a Lionel train engine is relatively easy, but there are a few things you need to know before you get started.

This article will introduce the basics of oiling a Lionel train engine.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

Why is it Important to Oil Engines of Model Trains?

Model trains are a cherished childhood memory. But as we grow older, we often need to remember the importance of properly oiling the engines of our model trains. Engine oiling is essential for the model train’s smooth running and preventing engine damage.

Failure to oil the engine will result in overheating, corrosion, and seizing up, causing permanent damage to the engine and making it unusable. This wastes your money while harming your model train.

Oiling the engine is a simple process that only takes a few minutes, but running your model train is important for years to come. If you don’t oil your engine, it will eventually rust and corrode.

Moving Parts in Lionel Engines that Need Lubrication

Moving parts in Lionel engines need periodic lubrication to keep them running properly. The most important moving parts to lubricate are the wheels, axle, side rods, and gears.

Lionel train engine.
Image source: Model Train Forum


First, remove any debris that may have accumulated on the wheels to lubricate them. Next, apply a small lubricant to a clean cloth and wipe the wheels down. Be sure to get into all the nooks and crannies.


The axles also need to be periodically cleaned and lubricated. Remove any dirt or grime that has built up on it. Next, apply a thin layer of lubricant to the axle. Wipe off any excess before reattaching the wheels.

Side Rods

Lubricating the side rods is relatively simple: apply a small amount of grease to the end of each rod.


As for the gears, you’ll need to remove the gearbox cover and apply a generous amount of oil to the gears inside.

Best Lubricants for Lionel Train Engine

If you own a Lionel train engine, you know the importance of keeping it lubricated. A maintenance kit is essential, but with so many different lubricants on the market, it can be hard to search for which one to use.

Oils and lubricants for model trains.
Image source: Model Railway Engineer

Sometimes the oil evaporates. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the three best grease lubricants for Lionel train engines that stays. These products can help you with lubrication and the smooth running of your engine.

1. Labelle Products Oil

Labelle Oil Precision Applicators are specially designed to make machine oiling easier and more precise. It is compatible with plastic and metal surfaces, making it perfect for various uses.

It is a light oil with an ergonomic handle, adjustable flow rate, and a clear measuring chamber so you can see how much oil you are applying. Its precise design controls the oil’s quantity applied for optimal lubrication, reducing the risk of over or under-oiling.

2. WD-40 Specialist Silicone Lubricants

WD-40 Specialist Silicone Lubricant offers superior protection and lubrication. It provides a protective waterproof coating that helps protect against rust and corrosion, and its VOC-compliant formulation ensures it meets the highest safety standards.

The low-friction coating helps reduce wear and tear on surfaces, helping to prolong their life and prevent damage from occurring. Additionally, this silicone lubricant is easy to apply with no mess or cleanup required.

3. Bachmann Trains – E-Z LUBE Fluid

Bachmann Trains offers a track-cleaning electric lubricant to keep your model railroad running smoothly. This high-quality product features E-Z Lube technology, which helps to ensure an even and consistent application of lubricant along the tracks.

It ensures reduced friction between moving parts, resulting in optimum performance and fewer breakdowns. The easy-to-use applicator allows for precise control when applying the lubricant, and it cleans up quickly with water when finished.

How To Oil Lionel Train Engines?

Lionel trains are a classic toy that has been around for generations. If you’re lucky enough to have one, you’ll want to take care of it. Here’s how to oil Lionel train engines:

You’ll need to lubricate the cogs, worm gear, rods, and axle to oil Lionel train engines. The best way to do this is through a needle.

Start by removing the engine from the track. Flip it over so you can access the bottom. Use a small piece of cloth to apply oil to the needle, then insert the needle into each of the holes on the bottom of the engine.

Once you’ve lubricated all the moving parts, put the engine back on the track and enjoy watching it run smoothly!

Final Thoughts: How To Oil a Lionel Train Engine?

In conclusion, oiling your Lionel train engine is relatively easy but important. You will need to purchase the proper type of oil and have a few supplies. Follow the instructions in this article, and your engine will run smoothly in no time.

For more engine-oils-related queries, head over to our blog page.

Frequently Asked Questions