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  • Item Category: Toys, Dolls, Games & Puzzles
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Dec 08, 2011
  • Channel: Auction House

Thisno reserve auction is for an original Lionel 2341 Jersey Central FM Trainmaster diesel engine. Lionel produced the 2341 in 1956 only when it was the motive power for cataloged set 2270W.

This engine is authentic and completely original in every way. It shows signs of limited gentle use. The pickup rollers show almost no wear. There are certain things that must be examined in determining the authenticity of the Lionel #2341 Jersey Central. All the lettering on this Lionel #2341 is heat stamped. The spacing between ‘ Jersey ' and ‘Central' differs from one side to the other. Also, depending on the way the engine was produced, the depth of the heat stamping may vary causing there to appear ‘hook' like mark off some of the letters in “ Jersey ”. The hook on the bottom of the J is particularly common and clearly visible in the photographs. The orange stripe around the locomotive is “scooped” under the head lights. There are two blocked vents in the grill on one side of the 2341 FM's long hood. "Built 4-56 by Lionel" is obviously heat stamped and poorly done, indicative of the authenticity of the original Jersey Centrals. Note the filled in "B" and the filled space between the "N" and "E". On this #2341, the "BLT 4-56 by Lionel" is off-centered to back of the engine. Also, note the fuzzy area between the blue and orange stripe. Not razor sharp as on repros. The decal is yellowed showing its proper age. This is normal for a 50 year old decal. On reproductions, the FM decal with a bright white circle is a warning sign. Also the outer white circle is thinner on this piece when compared to the same on a modern FM decal. The transition between the unpainted blue plastic body and the orange paint is fuzzy and even sloppy. A close inspection of the underside of the cab reveals that there is orange overspray near all the openings, another indicator of an original piece. The battery cover has the appropriate black label. Original black tape covers both motors. I have done the best I can to provide meaningful photos of the authenticators referenced above.

In terms of flaws there are very few. There is a very small scuff above the engineer's cab and a tiny nick in the middle of one long side near the base. The railing on one end shows some spots of rust. There is no screw crack on one end and a very faint hint of one on the other end that is only visible under bright lights and magnification. I have taken close up photos of the ends under bright lights for your review.

The battery compartment is as clean as a whistle. The engine has been tested in a very brief run and worked like a charm in forward, neutral and reverse.

The 2341-15 box is complete with all flaps an insert and even the original Lionel logo wrapping paper. One end is still factory sealed. The manufacturer's certificate identifies St. Joes Paper Co. It features a 6 at the bottom indicating 1956 which is correct. There is a stain visible on one side. The 1” die-cut strip on one end is not present and is just holding on at the other end. The original wrapping paper has many cuts from being wrapped around an engine for many years. A portion of it is torn off but it still is effective at protecting the engine inside the box. The instruction sheet is complete with blue lettering on cream colored paper. It is properly dated 6-55. As an added bonus, the vintage Eveready D-Cell battery is also included. There is no hint of leakage.

This piece is not absolutely gem mint perfect, but it is one of the stronger Jersey Central FMs that I have seen in my years of collecting and will undoubtedly make a great display piece. Please see the photos for more descriptive detail. I have done the best I can to show you the flaws noted above. If you would like any additional photos I would be glad to provide them.

Buyer pays $29.75 for S&H plus the cost of insurance as quoted by USPS. Please wait for an invoice prior to submitting payment. I will gladly refund excess postage if the amount listed is $1.00 or more above the actual postage...