Metal Wheelsets

ModelRailroadForums.com is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.


sushob

Entrepreneurial Teen
I'd like to replace the plastic wheels on some of my models (HO frieght cars) with metal wheelsets. What manufacturer and/or model do you recommend? Thanks in advance!
 

abcraghead

Mmmm, turbos
Major manufacturers include:

Kadee
Intermountain
Proto 2000
Atlas
JayBee

I've used Kadee, P2k, and Atlas before. All are decent. The flanges on the Atlas wheels sometimes are a bit too shallow for shall we say "realistic" trackwork. I've settled on Kadee. Good, solid, reliable, and USA made. No, they're not the cheapest, although theya re only marginally more spendy than P2k at the local hobbyshop.

If you're looking to replace a lot of cars wheelsets, look in the Walthers/Terminal Hobby Shop sale flyers for when they go on sale.
 

sushob

Entrepreneurial Teen
Thanks guys! I'm hoping I can get them a little cheaper (I have some connections <insert mafia laugh here>) :D
 

mushroom2

Non Rivet Counter
I use Intermountain, but I would recommend any all metal wheelsets, including a metal axle. The extra mass make a better rolling wheel than a metal wheel on a plastic axle.
 

kenw

5th Generation Texian
Mostly I use Intermountain metal wheelsets, although I have a few of almost everyone’s on the layout somewhere. IM pretty much won on cost, I can get them in bulk thru a local dealer.

The Intermountain (IM) sets work well in my stock truck frames (mostly Athearn and MDC/Roundhouse as is. This keeps the costs down, meaning I can just swap the wheels and leave the frames alone until later. Then, if/when I upgrade to sprung truck frames, I buy the trucks with plastic wheels (less $) and add my existing IM metals to them.

Some of my favorites also have Old Pullman frames with IM wheels or OP wheels, they seem fairly interchangeable.

My preferred truck is the old Lindberg/Kilgore sets that you can get from J&B something somewhere out there. Nothing runs better.
 

HaggisKennedy

Coal Shoveler
I use mainly P2K, but there's a sprinkling of Intermountain. There's also the odd Reboxx, but that's mainly if the truckframes are too narrow for the formers.....

Kennedy
 

mushroom2

Non Rivet Counter
Speaking of Reboxx, before you start swapping out wheelsets, get one of the Reboxx reamers to clean out the bearings. Even if you're not planning on swapping wheelsets, get one. It makes quite a difference in even the worst rolling trucks.
 

mushroom2

Non Rivet Counter
That's where that was, I couldn't remember where we discussed this before, and I hadn't gotten around to doing a search.
 
M

Mountaingoatgreg

Guest
HEY don't forget LBF out of Roseburg Oregon. The wheelsets are already brown and are ALL metal not the crappy metal plastic mix. They are insulated and look like the old Intermountain wheels without the nickle-plating. Wheelsets are 33" and 36" and roll as good or better then anything on the market. I would also recommend getting "THE TOOL" which reams out the journals and makes the wheelsets roll even better.

Be Wise Beware Be Safe
"Mountain Goat" GREG
 

RCH

Been Nothin' Since Frisco
Mountaingoatgreg said:
HEY don't forget LBF out of Roseburg Oregon. The wheelsets are already brown and are ALL metal not the crappy metal plastic mix. They are insulated and look like the old Intermountain wheels without the nickle-plating. Wheelsets are 33" and 36" and roll as good or better then anything on the market. I would also recommend getting "THE TOOL" which reams out the journals and makes the wheelsets roll even better.

Be Wise Beware Be Safe
"Mountain Goat" GREG
I heard, and of course this could be from the usual crew of Becker Bashers, that the LBF wheelsets were pretty inconsistent. Of course, none of my LHS stock anything by LBF, so I've never actually seen them. I've always wanted to pick up one of their Trinity hoppers, which even though they're pretty much out of the era I model, I'd love to have for curiosity's sake. They really looked like incredible models when they were released.
 
M

Mountaingoatgreg

Guest
Well usually out of a bag of 100 there are usually 103 wheels and about 2 are of the axles or not good. So you get some free scrap details. I have always had great luck with them and usually the problem is they are sold vefore I can get more.

Be Wise Beware Be Safe
"Mountain Goat" Greg
 

B_Kosanda

Member
Walthers had a speacial on P2K a couple months ago, so I finished upgrading the rest of my fleet with those. I think they were $5.98 for a package of 12.

Bill
 
I would also recommend getting "THE TOOL" which reams out the journals and makes the wheelsets roll even better.

Just wanted to say thanks for posting about this little gizmo. I bought one and its great.This is one tool every model railroader needs on their workbench.
Mark
 




Affiliate Disclosure: We may receive a commision from some of the links and ads shown on this website (Learn More Here)


ModelRailroadForums.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com

RailroadBookstore.com - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section.

ModelRailroadBookstore.com - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.

Top