Asking for information

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by Floyd, Nov 22, 2007.

  1. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    Since I am not familiar with many of the HO manufacturers I am seeking information from you experienced railmen/women. There is an up comming estate auction near me and the ad states that some of the HO brand names included are Overland, Sunset, Key, Hallmark, United, Balboa, Precision, Con-cor, Tempo plus others. Are you familiar with these manufactures? If so, can a person tell by the brands listed wheather they are generally low, medium or high priced items? I would like to bid on some but I don't want to bid on something that others may have bad experiences with. Also, there are several Locomotives and cars in brass. Are brass items usually higher priced than others or are there also low quality and well as high quality in this group? I realize that one would have to take a look at the items to see the condition of them so I am asking for generalizations....if there is such a thing. Thanks in advance for any information.:thumb:
  2. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    Hi...All the brands you name, excepting Con-Cor, are brass manufacturers, all very much in the high end of the price spectrum. Tempo I've never heard of. Your "basic" run-of-the-mill brands would be Athearn, Atlas, Life-Like, Roundhouse, Bachmann and some others. Brass stuff is pretty pricey since there's not that much around. Check out ebay for brass offerings there. Good luck...
  3. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    And just because it is brass, doesn't necessarily mean it is better. Often it is the detail that is better, but running... that can be a crap shoot. And even the newer plastic has detail that rivals the old hand-built brass.

  4. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    Andrew and Gus....Thanks for your replies. I have been looking at Google under the various makes and I was surprised at the high cost of some of these items. Do people actually run these high priced engines, etc. or do they mostly sit on shelves as collectors item? I am anxious for the auction to come up but I doubt that I will be able to afford any of these engines. Since I am fairly new in the HO hobby I am sure that just going there will be interesting. I am trying to see if a viewing of the items is approved prior to the date of the sale. That way, I will be able to try to look them up and price them.
  5. wpyr

    wpyr Member

    The pnly brand I own is Con-cor. I like Con-cor I would recamend it!
  6. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Floyd: that is the $64 question. "Brass" was generally limited-run, largely hand-made material from the far-east, first Japan and then Korea. They specialized in doing specific locomotive classes that would not be done by the mass manufacturers (back when mass manufacturers meant metal boiler castings and frames) and having detail and dimensions that you couldn't get from anyone else.
    The downside was that many models sold before they arrived. A lot of them gave disappointing performance. And lots of them were bought but never run, either intentionally or because buying got ahead of layout building.
    If the models have descriptors like "mint" or "like new", "unpainted", they may have been bought as a collection (steam locomotives of the Santa Fe) or been disappointing runners. They may not have. If they've been painted and run, they may be prime candidates for your layout, unless they're worn out.
    Is there a name on the estate?
  7. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    David I appreciate your comments. The flier states that it is the estate of Warren E. Reese.
  8. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    So models from Mr. Reese's estate would be Reese's pieces? :p:-D

    As previously noted, some brass models run well and others not-so-well, but all can be made to run well if you're willing to put some time and effort (and possibly some money) into them.
    My only brass loco is this little B&M Mogul. I liked the looks of it and was able to get it for $90.00.

    Unfortunately, it was a very poor runner, but since I bought it without trying it out, I decided to fix it. Even though the running gear is very simple, there were several binds in it that contributed to the poor running characteristics. With these cleared up, I found that the motor, an older open-frame design, did not run well even hooked up to test leads on the workbench. I replaced it with a can motor which was wider than the old motor, requiring that I mount it in the boiler, rather than on the frame. A few new U-joints and some driveshaft material, and I ended up with an extremely sweet-running loco. Total cost was an additional $30.00 or so, but for that money, I also acquired a few new skills that have since proven useful in other modelling endeavours. :thumb:
    Even worn-out models can be rejuvenated: you need either the skill to do the work yourself, or the money to hire someone to do it for you. ;)

  9. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    Wayne....Reese's pieces?? Never thought of that one:mrgreen: I like the looks of your brass loco. Since I have never taken an engine apart I wouldn't know how to start a repair/modification of any of them. Never gave it a thought that I might have to work on one sometime. Sounds complicated to me:confused: But I think I know who I would ask for help:yep:
  10. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    I have 2 brass engines, a 4-6-2 and a 0-8-0. I painted & lettered them for my LC&P. The Pacific runs quite well, but the 0-8-0 was not so nice...I had to replace the gear "tower" and now it kinda "woobles" down the track..I probably threw a couple of wheels off quarter, so I'll have to take care of that now....wall1

    Attached Files:

  11. green_elite_cab

    green_elite_cab Keep It Moving!

    I have on Brass Electric, and it is a crappy runner, although this has more to do with it's age in my opinion ( the motor lookes like a brass and steel brick). Thats another thing you have to watch out for. With ALL older models, be prepared to do some work to bring them up to speed. This can start costing money (it cost atleast $110 per unit to repower my old E60CP kits by American GK). I'd only grab old stuff or brass if that is the only way you'll get that model (ie they don't make it anymore, or it is so rare that you won't find it again)
  12. ed acosta

    ed acosta Member

    I would expect that you would be satisfied with Overland, Hallmark, Balboa, Sunset and Key. These are good running locos, although some of the very early ones had open motors that were a bit noisy. Can motors are much quieter. In any event, assume that these locos have not been run in awhile, so before you put power to them, make sure you lube the gears with light grease and put a micro-drop on each axle joint and each link of the side rods and valve gear. Clean the tires to ensure good electrical pickup.

    Brass locos are great 'pullers' due to their weight and also because nearly all of them have sprung drivers which puts pressure on each drive wheel.

    Please let us know what you find.

  13. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Floyd, I just asked about the name in case it was a well-known modeller, but I don't recognize him.
  14. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Gus, That is one of the most beautiful 4-6-2's I've EVER seen, what's it's prototype? (ATSF?)

    That 0-8-0 is impressive as well!! WOW! What's it's prototype?
  15. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    Again thanks to everyone for their feedback.:thumb:
  16. tetters

    tetters Rail Spiking Fool!

    Why is it everytime I see a picture of a nice steam engine I start making chug, chug, chug, wooo...wooo....noises???

    Sorry...what were we talking about?
  17. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    Hi...Miles, the Pacific is an AT&SF class 3160. It really is a beautiful engine. It is very LIGHTLY weathered, but I see in the pic that the valve gear and rods need a little work....:mrgreen:
    I don't recall the prototype for the 0-8-0, I'll have to dig up its box to see what it is.:cry:
    The 0-8-0 type is a favorite of mine since I received one back in...well, never mind. An S-gauge AF set that I still have. I have 3 in HO: this one, a PK2 which runs beautifully, and a converted B'mann Mike which runs like a pig....wall1
  18. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    ed acosta....Went to the auction and I can't believe that one person could have so many HO Train related items. My two grandsons, one will be eight soon and the other turned 10, and I saw more than we have ever seen at one place. It was neat to see the two boys going around the tables and jotting down lot numbers for items they would like to bid on. Anyhow to make a long story short we bid on and received paints, sceinery items, rubber molds, tons of track and trackbed, a control panel for $1.00 and a new large turntable for $5.00, two oak wall display cases and another items but most were train engines and rolling stock or all kinds. Guess the previous owner passed away 15 years ago and was stored ever since. Anyhow, here are some pictures of some of the trains, mostly engines. I did get a brass loco and tender but did not get a picture of that yet. As of now, I don't know the manufactures of many of the train items.

    Any help in identifying any of these would be greatly appreciated:thumb: Sorry for such a long post but we had a blast there.
  19. Floyd

    Floyd Member are some more photos of items purchased

    Again, any help in identifying these would be appreciated.
  20. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    From the very top to the very bottom:
    -Diamond Scale turn table
    -Atlas Alco C425
    -Atlas Alco C425
    -Athearn F-45
    -P2k EMD GP7
    -P2k EMD Sw1200
    -P2k EMD GP9
    -Atlas Alco Rs-2
    -Atlas Alco RSD-4/5
    -MDC Boxcab Locomotive (Could I buy that off you please?!)
    -Athearn Alco PA-1
    -Assorted Athearn Daylight Passenger cars
    -Athearn GP-9
    -Athearn GP-38-2
    -Athearn PA-1's, an F7B and Bachmann GS-4 Tenders (could I also buy the tenders off of you?)

    PM me if you want to sell the boxcab or the tenders, I REALLY need them for a kitbash I'm planning. :)

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