New Product Spotlight – H24-66 Train Masters

21 04 2014

When Fairbanks Morse debuted the Train Master in 1953, its massive size, weight and power were unlike anything else the railroads had ever seen – at least in a diesel. As rare as they were immense, the Train Master left a big impression wherever it was seen.

Prototype Background

CP

6-81207 Canadian Pacific 8900 (8903 also available)

Locomotive builders’ order books were filled in the early 1950s. Alco set the new standard at the end of the last decade with their RS series and EMD couldn’t seem to build GP7s and GP9s fast enough. The typical diesel of the day was a four-axle road switcher, weighing in at about 120 tons and producing around 1500 horsepower. By themselves or in multiple unit consists, they could handle any freight or passenger job the railroads had.

CNJ

6-81209 New Jersey Central 2401 (2406 also available)

FM’s Train Master dwarfed its competition. The 66 foot, six axle, 194 ton monster produced 2400 horsepower and a continuous tractive effort of 82,500 pounds. Like its smaller competitors however, the locomotive was capable of handling a multitude of tasks. A pair of Train Masters could do the work of three GP9s on a heavy coal drag in the eastern mountains. Yet the locomotive still had acceleration rapid enough to suit them well in commuter service on the Southern Pacific.

N&W

6-81217 Norfolk & Western 157 (#164 also available)

A locomotive with these capabilities should have been an overwhelming sales success. Only 127 were made in the four year production, with 20 locomotives on the Canadian Pacific being the biggest roster of any road.

Several reasons have been given for the model’s failure to catch on. The unique FM opposed-piston diesel engine is an easy scapegoat. Although the engines had a proven track record in the marine industry, and while some railroads got long and productive careers out of their own, the engine was a maintenance headache. Its design made it more challenging to access and repair in the smaller locomotive shops and unlike an EMD GP9 that shared many parts with earlier models, the FMs needed their own inventory.

Reading

6-81211 Reading 801 (#804 also available)

The locomotives were too big for many lines and were harder on the track than lighter diesels. In many ways, the Train Master was simply a locomotive ahead of its time. Within another decade, the idea of higher horsepower, six axle locomotives would catch on with railroads everywhere.

While most Train Masters were retired in the 1960s, Southern Pacific maintained their fleet for commuter service out of Los Angeles into the 1970s. Today only one survives – Canadian Pacific #8905 at the Canadian Railway Museum in St. Constant. This locomotive was built by FM’s Canadian division, the Canadian Locomotive Works.

Lionel’s Model

The Train Master has enjoyed a much longer history in Lionel’s sales books. Our latest release brings the model up to date with today’s LEGACY control and other great features, including:

Southern

6-81215 Southern 6300 (#6303 also available)

    • LEGACY Control System – able to run on LEGACY, TMCC or Conventional control layouts
    • Odyssey II Speed Control with On / Off switch
    • LEGACYRailSounds including
      • CrewTalk and TowerCom dialog
      • 6 Official railroad speeds
      • 8 Diesel RPM levels
      • Quilling Horn
      • Bell (single hit and continuous)
      • Sequence Control
      • Current speed and fuel dialog
      • Refueling sounds
    • Dual maintenance-free motors
    • Traction Control
SP

6-81213 Southern Pacific 4803 (#4809 also available)

  • Refined Conventional Control mode with lower starting speeds
  • Front and Rear ElectroCouplers
  • Fan-driven smoke with adjustable output
  • IR Transmitter
  • Directional lighting
  • Marker Lights
  • Lighted cab interior with crew
  • Many separately applied metal detail parts including positionable drop steps on the pilots.
  • Metal frame, pilots, trucks and fuel tank
  • Minimum Curve – O31

The Train Master will be available in two road numbers for Canadian Pacific, Central of New Jersey, Norfolk and Western, Reading, Southern (TNO&P) and Southern Pacific. Suggested retail price for the locomotives is $549.99. See your dealer to place your order today!

 

 





New Product Spotlight – American Flyer Norfolk Southern Heritage ES44ACs

7 10 2013

We introduced our American Flyer replicas of Norfolk Southern’s now famous Heritage Series of locomotives in 2012. This year we are completing the run with the remainder of the twenty locomotive fleet including a new-to-S Gauge ES44AC!

Reading

6-42531 – Reading SD70ACE

Shortly after their introduction, these locomotives were turned loose on Norfolk Southern to perform daily chores just like the rest of the roster. They can show up almost anywhere at any time on any train. Several have even made it well off of Norfolk Southern’s rails, being seen as far away as Washington and California. Despite their “regular roles” the locomotives are still required to be washed monthly and crews will often take the extra time to make sure they are in the lead on a consist whenever possible.

CofG

6-42542 Central of Georgia ES44AC

Whether you are a fan of modern era railroading or just like seeing a favorite fallen flag back again, these locomotives have something for everybody. And our American Flyer models are designed to please as well.

Both the SD70ACE and ES44AC models have similar features. Powered and non-powered models of each scheme are available with unique numbers. Powered locomotives include:

NW

6-42552 Norfolk and Western ES44AC

  • LEGACY Control System – able to run on LEGACY, TMCC or Conventional power. The models are also DCC enabled.
  • AF Speed Control with on/off switch for maintaining an even speed through curves and grades
  • LEGACY RailSounds featuring
    • CrewTalk and TowerCom announcements with varying scenarios based on the train’s motion

      Interstate

      6-42546 Interstate ES44AC

    • Eight diesel RPM levels
    • LEGACY Quilling Horn
    • Single hit or continuous mechanical bell
    • Independent volume control
  • Two maintenance-free motors
  • Front and Rear ElectroCouplers
  • Mounting holes and support plate for scale couplers (sold separately)
  • Pivoting Pilot allows for operation on tight curves with better appearance
  • Operating headlight, ditch lights, illuminated number boards and detailed cab interior

    6-42544 Conrail ES44AC

    6-42544 Conrail ES44AC

  • Traction Tires
  • Metal Frame
  • Fan-driven smoke unit
  • Die-cast metal trucks, pilots and fuel tank
  • Separately applied metal details
  • Cab window glass
  • Engineer and conductor figures

Non powered locomotives feature:

LV

6-42548 Lehigh Valley ES44AC

  • Metal Frame
  • Die-cast metal trucks, pilots, fuel tank
  • Front and Rear operating couplers
  • Separately applied metal details
NKP

6-42550 Nickel Plate ES44AC

All locomotives will negotiate S-36 curves. All come with American Flyer wheels but can be switched to scale wheels which will be available separately through Lionel Customer Service. ES44AC locomotives retail for $529.99 (powered) and $269.99 (non-powered.) SD70ACEs retail for $479.99 and $239.99.

VGN

6-42535 Virginian SD70ACE

In addition to the locomotives, separate sale cylindrical covered hoppers are also available decorated in complementary schemes for each road name. Twenty of these would certainly create a colorful consist! Cars retail for $79.99 each.

NS

6-42558 Norfolk Southern ES44AC

If you are looking for colorful modern power for your American Flyer layout, it doesn’t get any better than this. Keep your eyes open for these Heritage Units coming to the rails and hobby shops near you!

SOU

6-42556 Southern ES44AC

Wabash

6-42537 Wabash SD70ACE

PRR

6-42554 Pennsylvania ES44AC

S&A

6-42533 Savannah & Atlanta SD70ACE

6-42560 Monongahela ES44AC

6-42560 Monongahela ES44AC





New Product Spotlight – The Pocahontas

28 01 2013

The Norfolk and Western was above all else a railroad built on two things; coal and engineering. The endless flow of black diamonds from the Virginia mountains to Atlantic ports drove the railroad’s finances and planning. But their quest to engineer the most efficient transportation machine possible didn’t end there.

J 612

6-11414 N&W J stands as one of the most refined steam locomotives ever built.

The N&W’s Roanoke Shops turned out some of the finest steam locomotives ever seen. These fine-tuned machines were not only built for the coal trade but for other freight and passenger roles as well. While each is worthy of note in its own right, the queen of the fleet was the Class J. These 4-8-4s were built to handle the N&Ws premier passenger trains. And while the Powhatan Arrow and the Pocahontas may not receive the fame attached to the 20th Century Limited or the Coast Daylight, the J will hold her own in a beauty or performance contest with any road’s passenger power.

Pocahontas

The Pocahontas will bring a simple elegance to your passenger service.

N&W built the first five J’s in 1941. Six more came during the war without streamlining or light-weight siderods (all were retrofitted with these later). N&W built the final three, nos. 611-613 in 1950. They were the last passenger steam locomotives built in the United States. The J was also the most powerful Northern type ever built. And despite relatively small 70″ drivers, they could easily maintain speeds in excess of 90 mph. On tests on the Pennsylvania, No. 610 regularly cruised at 110!

J 611

Leading our set is the most famous of the J’s, No. 611.

More impressive than their speed was their efficiency – a term normally used very loosely with steam locomotives. Despite having only 14 of the class, the J’s held down 80% of the N&W’s passenger schedule. They were able to log 15,000 miles / month and were so well balanced and lubricated that two men could push the 494,000 pound locomotives with ease on level track.

611

Lionel’s model remains faithful to its powerful prototype.

The J’s look complimented the railroad’s passenger trains. Sleek and stylish, nothing flamboyant, but classy from the pilot to the tail car. The premier trains ran from Norfolk to Cincinnati and Columbus. There were also trains on other routes and operations run in conjunction with neighboring railroads to other cities.

Now you can bring these classy trains home to your railroad. Lionel is bringing back the N&W J with LEGACY and RailSounds individually and as part of a new set.

The J locomotives feature:

  • LEGACY Control System equipped – able to run in LEGACY Control mode, in TrainMaster Command Control mode, or in Conventional mode with a standard transformer
  • Odyssey II Speed Control with On/Off switch
  • LEGACY RailSounds system featuring:
    – CrewTalk dialog and TowerCom announcements, each with different scenarios depending on whether the locomotive is in motion or stopped
    – Six official railroad speeds with Crewtalk dialog
    – DynaChuff synchronized with 32 levels of intensity as the locomotive gains speed
    – LEGACY “Real-Time Quilling Whistle” control with instant response for realistic signature ‘quilling’ and correctly timed warning signals
    – Single hit or continuous mechanical bell sounds
    -Sequence Control plays the sound effects of an entire trip, including warning sounds and announcements, based on the movement and speed of the locomotive
    -Current speed and fuel dialog, refueling sound effects
  • Powerful maintenance-free motor with momentum flywheel
  • Wireless Tether connection between locomotive and tender
  • ElectroCoupler on rear of tender
  • Directional lighting including operating headlight and back-up light on rear of tender
  • Illuminated classification lights on the front of locomotive
  • combine

    The combine was a common fixture at the front of N&W consists.

    Traction tires

  • Fan-driven smoke unit
  • Adjustable smoke output
  • Interior illumination in cab
  • Die-cast metal locomotive body, pilot, and frame
  • Die-cast metal tender body and trucks
  • High level of separately applied metal details
  • Separately applied builder’s plates
  • Authentically detailed cab interior
  • Flickering firebox in cab
  • Cab glass windows
  • Engineer and fireman figures

The set also includes a combination coach-baggage, two coaches and an observation car all finished for the Pocahontas passenger train which ran between Norfolk and Cincinnati. The cars all feature:

  • Die-cast metal sprung trucks and operating couplers with hidden uncoupling tabs
  • coach

    Two individually numbered coaches are included in the consist

    18″ extruded aluminum body

  • Operating end vestibules with flexible diaphragms
  • Realistic interior and exterior lighting
  • Separately applied windows with painted frames
  • Separately applied roof vents and grab handles
  • Separately applied metal underframe details
  • observation

    The observation provides a proper end to this distinguished train.

    Opening doors

  • Metal frame
  • Authentically detailed and painted interior
  • Overhead interior lighting with On/ Off switch
  • Passenger and train crew figures
  • Illuminated marker lights and end light on observation car
  • Illuminated drumhead on observation car

Let the engineering of the N&W impress the passengers on your railroad! The individual sale J (No. 612)  is scheduled to ship next month. It retails for $1299.99. You can pick up the complete set later this year for $1949.99. All will operate on an O-54 curve.





New Product Spotlight – SD40-2s

11 06 2012

Not only was EMD’s SD40-2 one of the best-selling diesel locomotives of all time, it virtually defined the face of railroading for nearly two decades – much as the “covered wagon” had done a generation before. Lionel is proud to bring back this landmark locomotive with LEGACY and non-powered versions to boost your roster.

Prototype Background

6-34788

6-34788 Chicago and Northwestern

The SD40-2 emerged almost as a step-down model from EMD’s brutish SD45 designed in 1965. The 3600 hp SD45’s were good pullers, but that 20-cylinder engine had a hungry appetite for fuel. Problems with crankshaft failures also haunted the giants. With fuel costs rising in the 1970s, the added fuel consumption combined with higher maintenance costs per unit caused a shift in railroad thinking and purchasing. Operational efficiency had to be redefined as more than just squeezing every bit of horsepower you could out of a single locomotive.

6-34779

6-34779 CSX

The 3000 hp SD40, also introduced in 1965, offered such a platform. Seeing the potential in this locomotive, orders began to rise towards 1970. When EMD introduced its new “-2” upgrade package in 1972 and added it to the SD40, they created the reliable, efficient and powerful locomotive the railroads demanded. And the railroads responded with more orders than EMD had ever seen.

6-34776

6-34776 N&W

Over the course of its production, the SD40-2 saw several design revisions and buyer options. From dynamic brakes to high short hoods, to varying sized fuel tanks, trucks, cabs, lights and smaller details, all 3,982 SD40-2s were far from identical. Perhaps the most common characteristic of nearly all the SD40-2s was the long “porches” on the ends of the units. The SD40-2 shared the same frame as the SD45-2, not the SD40, which created several feet of extra space beyond the hoods at each end. This was done to accommodate the new HT-C trucks, although some roads ordered SD40-2s with the older Flexicoil trucks anyway.

6-34791

6-34791 MKT

Despite the introduction of the SD50 in 1981, SD40-2 production remained strong for North American railroads into 1986 and orders for more distant countries lasting until 1989 – four years after production of the SD50 ended! The longevity of the SD40-2 went way beyond initial construction and continues today. Beginning in the late 1980s, many railroads began upgrading SD40s with -2 packages. Others began downsizing their SD45s to SD40-2s. Rebuild programs continue today, with some roads converting SD50s into what are essentially modern SD40-2s.

Now 40 years after production began, many SD40-2s are still going strong. While their numbers are certainly declining, the distinctive classic carbodies show no signs of disappearing any time soon. The final chapters are still being written on these locomotives.

Lionel’s LEGACY SD40-2

If your railroad interests cover any time after 1972, your layout just wouldn’t look right without at least one of these ubiquitous units! With the addition of our LEGACY systems, these locomotives should be just as popular on your line as the real ones were with most crews.

This latest release comes with LEGACY powered locomotives in two numbers for each roadname and an additional non-powered number to recreate those typical 3-unit SD40-2 lashups that exemplified railroading for a generation. LEGACY versions retail for $529.99 and non-powered $239.99. All will negotiate an O-31 curve.

Legacy Features:

      • LEGACY control – capable of running on TMCC and conventional as well

        6-34786

        6-34786 SLSF (Frisco)

      • Odyssey II Speed Control for 2 Maintenance free motors with momentum flywheels
      • LEGACY Railsounds including
        • Crewtalk and TowerCom communications
        • Six official railroad speeds
        • Eight diesel RPM levels
        • Quilling Horn along with appropriate warning sounds
        • Bell with single hit or continuous sounds
        • Sequence Control to narrate an entire trip
        • Fuel and speed announcements and refueling sounds
      • Fan-driven smoke unit with adjustable output
      • Lighting Effects including
        • Directional LED headlight and back-up light
        • Marker lights front and rear
        • Number boards
        • Cab interior
      • Traction tires
      • Die cast metal pilot, trucks and fuel tank
      • Detailed cab interior with window glass and engineer and fireman figures
      • Loads of separately applied details
      • ElectroCouplers on front and rear
      • MSRP: $529.99

Non-Powered Locomotives Feature

6-34782

6-34782 Burlington Northern

    • Die cast metal pilot, trucks and fuel tank
    • Detailed cab interior with window glass
    • Select separately applied details
    • Magnetic couplers on front and rear
    • MSRP: $239.99

These locomotives are on their way to dealers now, so don’t wait to catch your iconic piece of railroading! See more now on our Customer Service new product video.