Lionel Electric Trains Identification Guide Sub-Title Bottom of Page

This Identification Guide for Lionel Electric Trains covers the "Post-war Era" only from 1945 until 1969.

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Lionel Trains F-3 AA Unit Diesels LIONEL TRAINS SANTA FE F-3 DIESEL No. 2333

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Lionel Trains Santa Fe F-3 Diesel No. 2333 Variation A
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Lionel Trains F-3 AA Unit DieselsThe Lionel Santa Fe EMD F-3 No. 2333 was a big hit when it was first introduced in the 1948 catalog, although evidence has surfaced that this diesel didn’t reach Lionel dealers until February of 1949. It was available throughout this year and was replaced by the No. 2343 in 1950. This version did not have Magnetraction. Lionel had a problem with the SILVER paint adhering to the BLACK plastic body and they would experiment with a number of different manufacturing techniques with this diesel that resulted in six different variations.
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This version has the screens on the roof vents, portholes with lenses, front grab rails, side ladders, electronic couplers on the front ends, and solid rear couplers. This diesel was equipped with a horn that was operated by a D Cell battery, and a three position directional unit whose control lever was adjustable from underneath the chassis. The dual horizontal worm drive motors powered each axle...and they make a neat "growling" sound when operating! There are six variations:

No. 2333T Dummy A Unit Early Classic Box End

Variation A: Convex celluloid porthole covers that are often missing, rubber-stamped lettering, and has rear steps that are chrome plated. Early 1948 Production.
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Variation B: Same as Variation A except this variation was produced with chemically blackened rear steps and the RED/WHITE GM decals are located above the "BUILT BY / LIONEL" lettering on the rear of the engine. In early 1948 some of this production variation were made on No. 2333 NYC bodies. 1948 Production.

Variation C: Same as Variation A except the GM decals are moved to the door panel in front of "BUILT BY / LIONEL" inscription.
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Variation D: Same as Variation C except for the lettering that was applied with a heat-stamp. 1948 Production.
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Variation E: Was produced with a clear plastic body and may have been issued with a display track that would show the engine running on a static display. Possibly these were pre-production issues that were used by Lionel sales personnel to promote the sale of this diesel. Very difficult to find.
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All of the Lionel F-3’s are designed to work on the larger radius of O Gauge track. When used with O27 Gauge track this diesel will scrape the switch machine housing on the early version of the No. 1122 O27 Switches when passing through the curved turnout. Evidence of scrapes on the fuel tank of these diesels is a sure indication of operation on O27 track.
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No. 2333 Front View
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