Lubricators on Aristo craft mikado, were there any?

Steve Lee

Registered
25 Jan 2021
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Washington State
Any info on Aristo craft Mikado lubricators? Where is it hidden? If it has one. Looking at one on EBAy but no sign of a displacement lubricator...worries me. I have them on other stock and have seen them on any live steamer I have looked at. Any one have some info on this? She has been run by the pictures...I would hate to think she had been run without oil.
Help! Thanks from a Newbie.
 

dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
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St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
That is well hidden! Not like the ones on my engines
Luckily US big engines have all sorts of cylinders and things that can be used, very well in this case.
 
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Steve Lee

Registered
25 Jan 2021
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Washington State
This is it Steve. It's comparatively well disguised :) View attachment 279547
Fantastic photo! Sharp looking Mikado. Jealous. The air tank I have seen used for a whistle on my friend's 7.25 inch Mike, scratch built in under two years, while moving and etc! I would not have thought a horizontal tube would work very well as a displacement lubricator...I am tempted to go after the one on ebay asking $1900.00
Opinions would be appreciated! Are you running with the original R/C? Is it satisfactory? Now I put my foot in it.
Thanks for any advice and good naturered chaffing. Steve
 
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dunnyrail

DOGS, Garden Railways, Steam Trains, Jive Dancing,
25 Oct 2009
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St.Neots Cambridgeshire UK
Fantastic photo! Sharp looking Mikado. Jealous. The air tank I have seen used for a whistle on my friend's 7.25 inch Mike, scratch built in under two years, while moving and etc! I would not have thought a horizontal tube would work very well as a displacement lubricator...I am tempted to go after the one on ebay asking $1900.00
Opinions would be appreciated! Are you running with the original R/C? Is it satisfactory? Now I put my foot in it.
Thanks for any advice and good naturered chaffing. Steve
I would imagine that the tube will work just fine. If you do not know, the principle is that a small hole in the steam line lifts out a small charge of oil with over time a drop of water being left which the oil floats on thus maintaining the integrity of oil pickup. So long as the pipe is towards the top of the reservoir then it should work just fine. The attached rough sketch shows in principle how the system works, the red arrow pointing to where the hole would be. In practice things will be much neater than this!
73F85E50-8252-4BEC-9C47-7C86D39E10CC.png
 
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DGE-Railroad

The Orchard Line
26 Jan 2020
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Fantastic photo! Sharp looking Mikado. Jealous. The air tank I have seen used for a whistle on my friend's 7.25 inch Mike, scratch built in under two years, while moving and etc! I would not have thought a horizontal tube would work very well as a displacement lubricator...I am tempted to go after the one on ebay asking $1900.00
Opinions would be appreciated! Are you running with the original R/C? Is it satisfactory? Now I put my foot in it.
Thanks for any advice and good naturered chaffing. Steve
Thanks Steve!
Using an air tank for a whistle is a genius idea. If I knew of anyone with a 7.25" MIke near me I don't think they'd be able to get rid of me. I'd be permenantly camped outside their door asking if we could run it! Scratch building it in 2 years whilst moving is phenomenal. They obviously know their way around a workshop :)

They don't come up that often and a nicely made with pretty long runtimes. They have a few peculiarities such as the lubricator, sound effects and the fact the safety vents under the loco (done for safety reasons I've heard, as these were Aristocrafts attempts at weaning some sparkie-runners over to live steam. Part of the approach seemed to be to make the loco seem as conventional as possible).

The fact that they are butane-powered with the tank in the tender means it needs to sit in a warm water bath to keep the gas flow. Some owners have used a steam feed from the loco to keep the bath warm as the warm water cools down quite quickly.

They also have some regulator on the tank which can cause a few issues. You may well find it has been removed or gutted by the previous owner in order to make it more reliable. Operation seems unaffected by this 'modification'

The lubricator does seem strange but it's functioning just the same as any other as JonD describes, it's just long and shallow instead of narrow and tall :)

I'd take up Gregs kind offer of the manual. There are some useful pointers in there and one in particualr is that the engine should be pushed forwards to prime the lubricator.

I dumped the transmitter and sound effects. I already used a 2.4GHz RC system for another engine and wanted to standardise, so I bypassed the Aristocraft receiver and spliced in a 2.4GHz one to the valve and regulator wiring. This meant I didn't need to modify the loco in any way.

If you haven't joined, I'd recommend joining the Aristocraft owners forum. There's a live steam section there with a wealth of information. It's pretty slow paced these days in terms of activity but there are still a few regular contributors :)

It's a great way to get a large live steam loco. Keep up posted if you decide to take the leap. We'll want pictures and videos :D

All the best
Darren
 

Greg Elmassian

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www.elmassian.com
Yep, the #1 mod is gutting the regulator, has been problematic for virtually everyone who has owned the loco.

Some sort of water bath is probably the second most often applied mod.

There are good threads on the mods to this loco on LSC and MLS. (which you should join if you haven't already), also some info on the Aristo forum itself.

Greg
 

Steve Lee

Registered
25 Jan 2021
4
2
64
Washington State
Gentlemen: Thank you for the advice and info. My friend restored several prototype locos and drove them thousands of miles in aggregate. A Shay, a Heisler, Consolidation, several switchers, and drove Doyle McCormack's 4449 over Stampede Pass in Washington State on a lengthly fan run. He had the needed steam AND track certification. I got him away from lokies to steam launches. I restored a 2.5 by 5 by 4 compound marine engine in a 26 foot mahogany launch...that is another story. I have driven his Consolidation 7.25...she is a high baller! When Train Mountain in Oregon reopens...he and I have a date for a week there...28 statute miles of track!

Any thoughts on what is a reasonable price on the Aristo Mike? I will take the offer of the manual ASAAP
Best regards, keep it down in the corner. Steve