Marx Lumar crane restoration

This page has hierarchy - Parent page: Pressed Steel toys, restoration and collecting

To me, restoration is not always restoring to original specification as tooling used on the toys and models are very rarely available, but getting near to the original is better than not at all.

In some cases you need to be inventive and creative to make parts or see uses in other materials to finish your project, such is the case with the Marx Lumar cranes, besides it’s for me not a  purest collector

In this article we will be restoring  a Marx crane using what I have, plating some of the parts (see Triang crane truck) making new tracks, repairing broken metal jib sections and casting a new white metal hook.

So here we are a sad state of affairs and ready to be brought back to life.


Here is another of my collection and how it should look.


Taking it apart.

One of the common failings are the tags holding the cranes jib arm together, I have three with various degrees of damage to these mountings so will assume by this many others have the same problem, this will need repairing once stripped.


Removing the body from the chassis is easy and is done by straightening six tabs (what I call twist tabs) underneath.


Then hey presto the cab section comes off, at this point take lots of pictures of the workings inside, if for any reason you forget how to re-assemble it the pictures always help, in my case some remain in pieces for months if not longer so the pictures are a good way of remembering the layout.


The wooden peg was seized on the winding pin so had to break it to get it off, I will be saving it as a pattern for a new one later.


Next the base and this is where it gets harder, three parts need removing, the base from the chassis, the spring clip for the raising gear and the locking bar.

The chassis has a turned over edge onto the base and the only way without special tools is to carefully lever up a bit at a time with a screwdriver and pliers.


Don’t rush it or it will snap, take your time and you will be rewarded with easy removal.


The chassis and base now parted.


The rivet holding the spring clip will need drilling out and replacing with either a small nut and bolt or a Bifurcated rivet such as the one’s in the picture below or small set screws and nuts or nuts and bolts, although strictly speaking this could remain in place.


The locking bar will need filing or grinding with a Dremel to remove the raised part of the bar at the rear.


While on the filing and grinding stage, the axles can be removed by removing the raised edge of one end of the axles, don’t cut the axle end just the raised lip.


And again for any other pins on the pully head or jib sections


We are now ready for cleaning and stripping.

The main stripping will be done with caustic soda (see Triang truck article).

The body goes first and left for about 20 minutes, this is then removed with a bent welding rod.


Dip in cold clean water to deactivate the caustic soda, it can now be handled.


A wipe with a rag will remove most of the remaining colour, now you can see the extent of the rust, but the metal is still sound.


Inside is mostly rust free.


A test area was done with the rotary wire brush, this is going to take a while, what look like dents on the top side corner are in fact welding points these to will need filling.



This article will be updated when the next stage is complete, see also, Triang crane truck restoration

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