Bronze prototype or not of the post war Lionel turbine?

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  • Item Category: Toys, Dolls, Games & Puzzles
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Apr 12, 2011
  • Channel: Auction House

One day a man in his twenties came in and asked if we bought used Lionel, and I answered in the affirmative. He said he a brass Lionel loco. I told him that this was unlikely, since Lionel had not made brass models since the WWI era. He insisted, and I told him to bring it in. I thought no more about it, until he returned several days later, with a package under his arm, and said he had the brass Lionel loco that we talked about. I had visions of a Number 1, or an early trolley, but when he opened the package, my heart sank. Not another Turbine!

I looked at it, and thought that maybe someone had painted it brass to resemble an HO import. I told that this was not in good shape, and would be useful only for parts. I offered him a very low figure, since as I told him; in addition to the condition Turbines were not particularly scarce. After a protest, (I was ready to let him walk) he relented.

I took the loco down to my shop, and put it on the pile a month or two later, I took the loco to my workbench and was puzzled to discover that the ‘paint’ wouldn’t come off. I took it apart, and noticed that the inside looked handmade, with screwed together frame pieces and other oddities: the smoke chamber was an aluminum tube, the apron (rear ladder) was screwed on rather than peened over, the E-unit lever was over the drivers,
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