Author Topic: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!  (Read 9721 times)

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PiperguyUMD

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2017, 08:24:22 AM »
0
I was really hoping the surprise was the inclusion of the Baldwin Challengers the D&RGW and WM used... :|

delamaize

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2017, 04:57:25 PM »
+1
As expected, the Z8 ran awesome, sounded great, and only required wheel gauging, and some CV adjustments to be where I wanted it to be. The pulling power is pretty much the same as the previous run of challengers, About 25 cars. That is the one complaint I have, It would be nice to have some more pulling power. Both power trucks have traction tires. They seem to be close to the flanges, So I may try to run those axles slightly wider gauged and see if that helps with the traction. Overall I'm pretty damn happy with it over all. I'll try to get a better review later.

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Mike

Northern Pacific, Tacoma Division, 4th subdivision "The Prarie Line" (still in planning stages)

up1950s

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2017, 01:12:25 AM »
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Nice to hear , and see other roads getting beasts , even if they can't pull as the real ones did .

Anybody have the conversion of scaled down gravity ?

edit
Just got my heads up from Chuck , my UP 3977 is in the mail . I am 71 and I now feel like kid awaiting the Mailman .
« Last Edit: October 17, 2017, 01:37:47 AM by up1950s »

Cajonpassfan

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2017, 11:35:47 AM »
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Even though I probably don't *need* another challenger, especially one in the TTG "Greyhound" scheme, they are just so pretty I couldn't help myself and made an exception to my otherwise fairly disciplined purchasing habits. It arrived last night, looking, running, and sounding great. In my book, this is arguably the best US steam model in N scale, and Athearn hit this one out of the park.
I'm also happy to see other variations of this awesome model being made. I would LOVE to see the original "little" challengers made on the same chassis, with a new tender,  but that's another story...
Otto K.


Nato

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2017, 12:33:32 PM »
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                         :| My NP Challenger is on the way from FRT, yes as others have posted he was testing them before shipping. I would bet the Oil verson in NP will be like the UP since the same tender is used. That means it will have the same modern oil bunker with the polution control gear on it, my biggest complaint with all the Athearn Oil bunker models. Since this part is removeable, unlike on Katos' FEF and can be replaced with coal, Athern or some 3D Print Maker needs to make a drop in old style oil bunker with one or sometimes two fuel fill  hatches. I had several cast in black resin bunker's in the late 1980's maybe made by NHD that I used on various projects. One was to convert a tender on a Nakamura brass Challenger with a open coal bunker (no coal load) to original oil appearence. As for pulling power I have regularly operated both first gen (think RC Remote) and current generation Challenger and Big Boys pulling thirty car trains at train shows. Athern producing an NP/SP&S boiler and cab gives hope that they will do as they have done in HO and do an early UP Challenger. No wait that would require an all, new Semi-Vanderbult Tender, not a recyled tender. Nate Goodman (Nato). Salt Lake, Utah.  :|
« Last Edit: October 17, 2017, 01:37:36 PM by Nato »

robert3985

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #20 on: October 17, 2017, 08:17:48 PM »
0
Even though I probably don't *need* another challenger, especially one in the TTG "Greyhound" scheme, they are just so pretty I couldn't help myself and made an exception to my otherwise fairly disciplined purchasing habits. It arrived last night, looking, running, and sounding great. In my book, this is arguably the best US steam model in N scale, and Athearn hit this one out of the park.
I'm also happy to see other variations of this awesome model being made. I would LOVE to see the original "little" challengers made on the same chassis, with a new tender,  but that's another story...
Otto K.

Yup, that "yellow" TTG "Greyhound" U.P. paint scheme sure is purty!

Too bad the "yellow" paint scheme is incorrect for a late-40's/early 50's TTG U.P. scheme.  The last TTG scheme used "white" striping and lettering as opposed to the yellow striping and lettering.  Actual color was a flat aluminum/silver, but looked virtually white, so employees referred to it as the "white" scheme. Conversion from the "yellow" scheme to the "white" scheme happened quickly, so any "yellow" TTG U.P. engine would have been very rare by 1950.

All of my Athearn Challengers are black, but one of my brass Key FEF's has the correct "white" TTG scheme for the late-40's/early-50's "Greyhound" scheme, so I'll post a photo of it just for a look at the paint:

Photo (1) - Proper late Union Pacific "White" Greyhound paint scheme on a Key FEF-3:


Aluminum painted journal covers on the tender, trailing truck and the centers of the lead truck wheels was required to indicate that "No Waste Oil" was to be used on their non-existent packing since they were equipped with roller bearings on both "yellow" and "white" TTG schemes as well as on black painted roller-bearing equipped U.P. steam engines.

I like the yellow TTG scheme a lot, but...it's not appropriate for your time period Otto, although I guess you could suppose that this particular engine, or engines hadn't been shopped yet and were still wearing the "yellow" scheme.

as usual, JUST SAYIN'...  :D

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore
« Last Edit: November 02, 2017, 03:16:07 AM by robert3985 »

up1950s

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #21 on: October 17, 2017, 08:32:00 PM »
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I thought all the grays were repainted black in 1952 . They were first with silver , but later changed to yellow to reflect the yellow passenger cars .

robert3985

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #22 on: October 17, 2017, 09:08:28 PM »
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I thought all the grays were repainted black in 1952 . They were first with silver , but later changed to yellow to reflect the yellow passenger cars .

Since all my references are packed up still from my move, I can't give you an exact date, but you are partially correct.  The first TTG did have silver as the stripes and lettering, which got changed quickly to yellow.  However, in the late 40's...'46 or '47, the yellow got replaced with the "white" scheme, which was similar to the very first silver scheme, but with a lighter shade of flat silver/aluminum paint. 

When the TTG engines were repainted back to black in '52 or so, they were all wearing the "white" scheme, with no yellow stripes or lettering.

If I remember correctly, I got this information from several sources, one of them being (I think) Don Strack's website http://utahrails.net/

I also corroborated this by researching photos that were dated to see if any TTG engines I would be running in my time period (1947 through 1956) would be wearing yellow, and my conclusion after looking at reliably dated photos was that in my time period (the first part of it), the stripes and lettering would be "white".

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore
« Last Edit: November 02, 2017, 03:34:08 AM by robert3985 »

up1950s

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #23 on: October 17, 2017, 09:24:05 PM »
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I knew you would have more facts than me . Thanks

robert3985

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #24 on: October 17, 2017, 09:58:19 PM »
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I knew you would have more facts than me . Thanks

Truth is, I didn't discover this until last year when I looked closely at a color photo of the 844 pulling out of Union Station in Ogden pulling the "Pony Express" in 1951.  She was wearing white stripes, which surprised me because I thought like you did that the yellow scheme was the most recent TTG scheme.  Also, a lot of modelers and authors think the same, but...the work order date, the paint color documentation and lots of photos show that the last TTG scheme was the "white" scheme.

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore
« Last Edit: November 02, 2017, 03:16:37 AM by robert3985 »

Cajonpassfan

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #25 on: October 17, 2017, 10:51:12 PM »
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...
I like the yellow TTG scheme a lot, but...it's not appropriate for your time period Otto, although I guess you could suppose that this particular engine, or engines hadn't been shopped yet and were still wearing the "yellow" scheme.

as usual, JUST SAYIN'...  :D

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore

Bob, thanks for the treatise, but if you want to get technical, NO UP Challenger scheme would be accurate for my "late" Spring '51 operating period; on the LA Division, the Challengers were gone by then, black, yellow stripe, silver stripe or any other kind. The last two Challengers on the Pass were the 3981 and 3984 in 1949, alternating on the Pony Express. By Spring '51, the only UP steam left were Cajon Pass helpers, TTT, FTT and MacArthurs, one Consolidation, and a couple of Mountains (7019 and 7859).

But for my "early" Spring '46 period, the other end of my five-year timeline bracket, ahh, mainline UP steam was still very much in existence, and the timing of the striping change is not as clear. If you have specific repaint dates, I'd appreciate the info. Some years ago, I actually  relettered and restriped the esthetically cleaner silver/gray Key 844 (the same one you have I believe) to yellow trim based in information available at the time, see below. Now, having done a lot of research, I'm not so sure.
Otto K.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2017, 11:10:16 AM by Cajonpassfan »

robert3985

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #26 on: October 18, 2017, 05:27:43 AM »
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Bob, thanks for the treatise, but if you want to get technical, NO UP Challenger scheme would be accurate for my "late" Spring '51 operating period; on the LA Division, the Challengers were gone by then, black, yellow stripe, silver stripe or any other kind. The last two Challengers on the Pass were the 3978 and 3984 in 1949, alternating on the Pony Express. By Spring '51, the only UP steam left were Cajon Pass helpers, TTT, FTT and MacArthurs, one Consolidation, and a couple of Mountains (7019 and 7859).

But for my "early" Spring '46 period, the other end of my five-year timeline bracket, ahh, mainline UP steam was still very much in existence, and the timing of the striping change is not as clear. If you have specific repaint dates, I'd appreciate the info. Some years ago, I actually  relettered and restriped the esthetically cleaner silver/gray Key 844 (the same one you have I believe) to yellow trim based in information available at the time, see below. Now, having done a lot of research, I'm not so sure.
Otto K.

Otto,...haha...not quite a "treatise" since I can't quote my sources because they're all in a box somewhere!  It wouldn't be too unheard of for a Challenger to roll through the LA Division after 1951 since all the facilities were there for an oil fired steam engine, but it'd be in a "white" TTG scheme.

As for your "early" Spring '46 period, if memory serves me, the "yellow" TTG scheme would be correct, as I don't believe re-painting started until later that year when the engines were shopped.  I didn't know you had an "early" period OR that Challengers weren't running on the LA Division later than '49.  Quite the opposite was the case in the Wyoming Division with steam persisting there in both coal and oil-fired versions until 1959, with the Big Boys moving to Cheyenne in March of 1954 as coal operations shut down between Ogden and Green River.  Oil-fired 3700 class Challengers were shoving on the rear of every priority or extra freight until 1958, but had been doing so as early as 1954 along with UP's ubiquitous TTT's.

Anyways, looks like you're okay with your "yellow" TTG Challengers for your "early" period.

Cheerio!
Bob Gilmore
« Last Edit: November 02, 2017, 03:17:13 AM by robert3985 »

up1950s

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #27 on: October 19, 2017, 01:26:14 AM »
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Got it , was there supposed to be anything in the larger foam cutout on the left side ?

1 As an add on I was wondering if any grays made it to 1950 .

2 We were told that in 1959 the stripes were changed in the paperwork from yellow to lettering gray .

3 So then were all changed in that year ? If not did any make it to 1950 ?

4 We were told that in 1952 all were black .

5 I found this shot while looking into this .
   This is 3977 , oil , and wings at North Platte in the summer of 1951 . All black and dirty enough to have been black for some time even though burning oil .

« Last Edit: October 19, 2017, 02:21:23 AM by up1950s »

peteski

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #28 on: October 19, 2017, 02:49:11 AM »
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Got it , was there supposed to be anything in the larger foam cutout on the left side ?


I believe that this is a leftover from when Athearn sold their models with MRC sound decoder. That cutout held the remote control for the decoder.  They are simply using the same die-cut foam insert. Now (at least in the model I have from the previous run), it holds a bag of desiccant.
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up1950s

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Re: New Run of Athearn Challengers, Surprise!
« Reply #29 on: October 19, 2017, 03:09:16 AM »
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I believe that this is a leftover from when Athearn sold their models with MRC sound decoder. That cutout held the remote control for the decoder.  They are simply using the same die-cut foam insert. Now (at least in the model I have from the previous run), it holds a bag of desiccant.

Thanks Pete