A roll of the dice for 2slim

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by 2slim, Oct 6, 2004.

  1. 2slim

    2slim Member

    Hi guys,
    Just got the November Model Railroader and saw this guy in the Bachmann ad:


    I'm going out on a limb and ordering a AB set of these because they have DCC decoders installed and they are in the Orange and Silver paint. But the real reason is I have no time to paint a set of Stewarts :D :D I'm not expecting Stewart quality for $86 but if they run as good as Athearn standard line locos I'll do a cart-wheel! They are just shipping The A's so I will do a 'field test' and report my findings.

    2slim :D :thumb: :D
  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I think mechanically those are Bachmann Plus, they should run decent, have can motors, and have about the same level of detail as a "blue box" Athearn, Lifelike P1k, etc.
  3. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    It's been a long time, maybe 8 or 9 years, but I bought an AB set of Bachman F's back then, they ran somewhat intermitantly, until I hard wired the power oickups. As I recall, the motor sat on a phosper bronze strip which was one of the power points. Soldering wire instead made a huge difference, and the locos pulled well. The other difficulty was installing Kadee's, they make a special kit for these locos, if I'm remembering correctly I had to trim some of the plastic of the clip that holds the truck sideframes on. Or live with the couplers sticking out too far.
  4. RioGrande

    RioGrande Member

    I've seen these advertised on Ebay for months now. FT's are too early for me and any F units I do have are Stewarts or Genesis. It's too bad Stewart doesn't to yellow/silver Grande FT's since they look so much better than the original black scheme.
  5. petey

    petey Member

    Gary, The F-7s you speak of were Bach Plus, and the couplers mounts are as you described. I recently purchased an ABA unit on eBay, as I recall they ran OK. Previous owner had broken some of the coupler mounts, and the replacements had to be trimmed in order to fit. I believe "short" shank couplers could be used to improve the inter-unit spacing. I bought a FT in Canada in 2001, heavy, and a smooth runner, and much less expensive than the old Plus line. Since then, the discount price has gone down, and then back up, but still a good buy.
  6. Lighthorseman

    Lighthorseman Active Member

    I Have Some, Too!

    I have the Bachmann Plus F-7 AB units. Got them at a fire-sale price on a closeout. The only complaint I ever had was that the couplers were super hard to convert, and I wound up making drawbars to connect the units. I ran the powered ABs with a pair of dummy ABs from Athearn. They run very smoothly, and are nice, heavy locomotives. I personally have no serious gripes with them, other than the couplers. Here's a shot of them, (first two from the left) stripped from the original Pennsy colours, and repainted to CN stripeys. The third from left (dummy B Athearn) was repainted as well, and the last one is an out-of-the-box Athearn dummy.

    Attached Files:

  7. RioGrande

    RioGrande Member

    I read the reviews of Bachman plus when they first came out. Some comments I remember from the reviews:
    -F7 has an odd mix of phase 1 and phase II details not normally seen on most F units
    -F7 pilot was too high including the batten strip.
    -F7 shell sat high off the rails, noticably higher than the B unit (correctable)
    -Couplers were near impossible to convert to scale close coupling
    -Mechanism ran fairly smooth (on the up side)

    I don't really care for anything Bachman makes in the diesel department, but if anyone is looking for nice low cost F units, I'd take a close look at Proto 1000 F3's - they almost look like Stewart's, and run very smoothly, and cost similar the the Bachmann Plus.

    If you can afford a little more, Stewart F units can be had for attractive prices with all the Athearn Genesis and Intermountain Regal F units on the market. Stewart F's have the best smoothest running chassis I've seen, better than the 2 more expensive makes, and the shells have nice proportions and come in many phases of F3 and F7. Kadee makes an easy kit #450 to convert Stewart F units to scale 3' close coupling and they look nice. My 3 cents worth.

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