Author Topic: Pennsy Electrics...  (Read 1506 times)

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VonRyan

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Pennsy Electrics...
« on: August 13, 2012, 04:49:25 PM »
Over the weekend i had a conversation with a dealer at the Greenberg show in Edison, NJ who was selling a couple brass O-Scale PRR electrics. Being envious that there are none to be had (wait for it) we struck up a conversation about the various models of PRR electrics and lo-and-behold, the guy not only is an N scale modeler (more of multi-scale in hindsight) and he said that the was a fair deal of some of the PRR electrics done in brass in N Scale. He mentioned at least Custom Brass as one manufacturer and i believe Key as well... but i didn't write stuff down, so all i can remember is that Custom Brass put some out in N. He also mentioned that one of Kato's Japanese electrics is a very close match for one PRR electric type, which one i don't remember.

What makes me wonder is that i've never seen any of the brass makes on eBay let alone anywhere else for that matter.

I'f anyone has any knowledge as to who made/makes any of the PRR electric locos or something close to, be they brass or plastic as long as they are operating models, i'd much appreciate some sources, insight, pictures, etc. as well as some helpful prototype info in terms of where/when and what they did. Plus what they might go for in price in unpainted, and painted versions.

Thanks for any help anyone can offer!

-Cody F.
Cody W Fisher
Modeling exclusively in N-Scale since Age 3 in 1998.
Modeling the PRR, PRSL, GWR (UK), Irish 3' gauge, and dreaming of modeling Welsh 2' Gauge.

dougnelson

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2012, 05:17:08 PM »
These are the only PRR electrics in brass that I can think of:

- Key did the GG1
- Sunset did the DD1
- NJ Custom Brass did MP54s

Of course MiniTrix and Kato have done the GG1 in mass produced models.  Beyond that, I am not sure of any others done in N scale.  I do not pretend to understand the economics of O scale, but probably all or most of the PRR electric and steam locomotives have been done in O scale.

The numbers of the N scale models are pretty small and they show up only occassionally on Ebay.  I have seen several DD1s in the past year or so and a couple of MP54s were recently sold on Ebay for something like $400 per car.

I have seen people use a Japanese boxcab to do an approximation of the PRR FF2 electric locomotives that they acquired from Great Northern.   

I hope that is of some help.

Doug.

Ian MacMillan

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2012, 08:15:16 PM »
The popular Kato Japan model that people like to bash to US electrics is the EF 15.  I believe for PRR the most likely model is the FF-2?

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mmagliaro

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2012, 01:10:39 AM »
I have  a Sunset DD-1.  It is actually a nice-running engine if you add some extra wiper contacts on the wheels
that do not have pickup (otherwise, it's a stall-happy shelf queen, at least to me).  But with the wipers, it runs
very well.  I even left the original motors and gearing in it.    I bought mine cheaply at a train show
because it had short circuiting problems in it and wouldn't run (they were easy to fix).
If you are a little handy with adding some strips of phosphor bronze to ride on the "dead" wheels and
solder some wires from those to the motors, I'd recommend it.

Oh, and the plastic GG-1 was done by Arnold, not Trix. 

spookshow

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2012, 08:22:04 AM »
In addition to the MP-54's, NJ Int'l also sold powered BM-62's, MBM-62's, and MPB-54's (circa the mid-80's). These were all made by Kumata, and from what I've been told are all pretty terrible runners. As Doug mentioned, they're rarely show up on Ebay. And when they do, they tend to sell for 2-3 times their original retail price.

FWIW, the DD-1 I tested apparently ran better than Max's as I didn't have any problems with it stalling. Overall a very decent runner (albeit a bit noisy).

-Mark
http://www.spookshow.net/trainstuff.html (FYI - every click on an advertisement therein directly supports my efforts)

Hiroe

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2012, 12:47:29 PM »
NJI/CB also offered the MP85 Silverliner II cars in N.
To "call a spade a spade" is to speak honestly and directly about a topic, specifically topics that others may avoid speaking about due to their sensitivity or embarrassing nature. The Oxford English Dictionary records a more forceful variant, "to call a spade a bloody shovel", attested since 1919.

Mike C

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2012, 07:15:29 PM »
That Kato EF 15 is kinda nice :drool:, But wondering what it would cost with shipping. :scared: ....Mike

Ian MacMillan

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2012, 07:25:30 PM »
That Kato EF 15 is kinda nice :drool:, But wondering what it would cost with shipping. :scared: ....Mike

You can buy them in the US (if you are in the States?)... MBK has them from time to time.

Ebay right now has used ~$60 and new ~$100
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Bob Bufkin

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2012, 07:28:24 PM »
BLW also has had them but now out of stock.

VonRyan

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2012, 09:34:13 PM »
I have  a Sunset DD-1.  It is actually a nice-running engine if you add some extra wiper contacts on the wheels
that do not have pickup (otherwise, it's a stall-happy shelf queen, at least to me).  But with the wipers, it runs
very well.  I even left the original motors and gearing in it.    I bought mine cheaply at a train show
because it had short circuiting problems in it and wouldn't run (they were easy to fix).
If you are a little handy with adding some strips of phosphor bronze to ride on the "dead" wheels and
solder some wires from those to the motors, I'd recommend it.

Oh, and the plastic GG-1 was done by Arnold, not Trix. 

How much constituted "cheaply" and i envy your luck. Train show pickin's in Jersey tend to be made up of junk in terms of used or old stock (some WAY overpriced by one dealer in particular...), but a good supply of new B-mann and Kato with a splash of Atlas and MT.

The popular Kato Japan model that people like to bash to US electrics is the EF 15.  I believe for PRR the most likely model is the FF-2?



That might be the one kato model that the guy mentioned, but i cannot be sure. Once again i regret leaving my little moleskine pocket-notebook at home...

-Cody F.

Cody W Fisher
Modeling exclusively in N-Scale since Age 3 in 1998.
Modeling the PRR, PRSL, GWR (UK), Irish 3' gauge, and dreaming of modeling Welsh 2' Gauge.

spookshow

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2012, 10:18:33 PM »
The DD-1's show up on eBay relatively frequently - usually in the $150-$250 range, IIRC.

-Mark
http://www.spookshow.net/trainstuff.html (FYI - every click on an advertisement therein directly supports my efforts)

mmagliaro

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2012, 11:05:48 PM »
How much constituted "cheaply" and i envy your luck. Train show pickin's in Jersey tend to be made up of junk in terms of used or old stock (some WAY overpriced by one dealer in particular...), but a good supply of new B-mann and Kato with a splash of Atlas and MT.

That might be the one kato model that the guy mentioned, but i cannot be sure. Once again i regret leaving my little moleskine pocket-notebook at home...

-Cody F.
Heh, I thought nobody would ever ask.  He wanted $185.  I got it for $125. 
The engine ran a little, spit a puff of white smoke out one end, and then wouldn't run.  I asked if he would sell it
to me as a problem child, and he agreed.  I figured even if the problem was the motor, no big deal, since
it's a big open cavity in there, and motor replacement would be easy (i.e. almost any motor could be made to fit.

As it turns out, the problem was just the wiring.  Those models were made in the early 1980s, with wire whose insulation
gets very brittle with time.  When I opened it up, I found that the insulation had completely fallen away in places,
and the headlight wiring was shorting to the brass body.  I replaced it all with nice new flexible wire, and it ran.
Then, I made some extra phosphot bronze wipers for the other wheels that were electrically "dead", and it
ran VERY well indeed.   A few little paint accents, and some whatchamacallit... that white liquid window glazing stuff...
in all the windows, and that was that.  (The windows are just open with no glass in them on the stock model... hence the glazing).


VonRyan

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2012, 02:01:35 PM »
Heh, I thought nobody would ever ask.  He wanted $185.  I got it for $125. 
The engine ran a little, spit a puff of white smoke out one end, and then wouldn't run.  I asked if he would sell it
to me as a problem child, and he agreed.  I figured even if the problem was the motor, no big deal, since
it's a big open cavity in there, and motor replacement would be easy (i.e. almost any motor could be made to fit.

As it turns out, the problem was just the wiring.  Those models were made in the early 1980s, with wire whose insulation
gets very brittle with time.  When I opened it up, I found that the insulation had completely fallen away in places,
and the headlight wiring was shorting to the brass body.  I replaced it all with nice new flexible wire, and it ran.
Then, I made some extra phosphot bronze wipers for the other wheels that were electrically "dead", and it
ran VERY well indeed.   A few little paint accents, and some whatchamacallit... that white liquid window glazing stuff...
in all the windows, and that was that.  (The windows are just open with no glass in them on the stock model... hence the glazing).

$125 sounds like a decent price for N scale brass, but anything over $65-90 is pushing the "Expensive" boundaries a bit beyond reality in my case. Course if some Pennsy N Scale brass showed up at a local train show, i think i'd start liquifying some assets just to get my hands on it if it is under $200.

-Cody F.
Cody W Fisher
Modeling exclusively in N-Scale since Age 3 in 1998.
Modeling the PRR, PRSL, GWR (UK), Irish 3' gauge, and dreaming of modeling Welsh 2' Gauge.

nkalanaga

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Re: Pennsy Electrics...
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2012, 03:31:49 AM »
The EF-15 wheel arrangement is the same as the FF-2, formerly GN Y-1, but  the loco is considerably smaller.  It does make a good looking boxcab, and would work better for the PRR than for the GN or MILW, as the Pennsy's wires were lower.  Getting a scale pan to reach the western wire height is difficult.
N Kalanaga
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