Can someone recommend an HO set

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by miktrav2, Nov 16, 2004.

  1. miktrav2

    miktrav2 New Member


    I am about to purchase a steam HO set for my son. I am currently looking at one of the Bachmann Spectrum kits. So far I have not read much good stuff here about Bachmann. Is there an alternate recommendation for a kit that won't cost more than $160?


  2. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    Life Like has some good cheap sets, The Frieght Hauler set is $95.00, comes with a loco(GP-38) five frieght cars a caboose and "Power Lock" track(you can put it on the carpet) in a oval 65"x33" and a bunch of accessories,or check Walthers site ( for other ones that might be more your taste.
    And good luck and lets us know what you came up with.
  3. Iron Goat

    Iron Goat Member

    I have two Broadway Limited loco's ($$$) and two Bachmann Spectrum engines($), and although they do not have the quality of the BLI engines, they are certainly worth the price paid. Do not confuse "Bachmann" and "Bachmann SPECTRUM" (which is their top end product...). As long as the locomotives are "Spectrum" engines, I personally would not fault the train set.

  4. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    I second the motion for Spectrum for a set. You can find them on Ebay for far less than in stores. They're good quality for the price (retail) and GREAT quality for the price if you get 'em on the cheap on Ebay. I usually check and figure if I get it on Ebay for 25% less, I'm doing pretty good. I occasionally get stuff for 50%+ less than trainworld (and their prices are generally pretty good to start with).
  5. RioGrande

    RioGrande Member

    Walthers used to make train sets - at least a few years ago - I recommend Walthers over anyone else if they are still on the market.
  6. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    How old is your son? The best Bachmann Spectrum will be steam powered. If your son is too young to handle a steam locomotive without breaking delicate details off, you need to look at diesels. For a youngster, an Athearn set will be good for about $100.00. Someone mentioned Lifelike. Lifelike makes some sets with P1K locomotives. P1K is the same underneath as P2K, they just don't have as much details on the shell. The Walthers sets are good. Their models are a mixed bag in terms of detail. The FA or Dash8 40b are pretty good, althouh the FA has very little detail. The low nose gp9 has an overly wide hood.
  7. Dragon

    Dragon Member

    I second on the age. If too young, especially if he will be handling the trains, start with a deisel.
    Otherwise, I have the Spectrum 2-8-0, the 0-6-0ST and their three-truck Shay. All engines are very well detailed, and run flawlessly.

  8. rcline

    rcline Member

    Michael, go to , they have a nice starter kit that comes with an F2A diesel with opereating head light and 8 wheel drive. Although it only has 2 cars and a caboose, it does has operating crossing gate, illuminated freightyard tower, bridge with blinking aircraft beacon light, 3 buildings, rail signs, road signs, 2 mountain paper sheets, 1 fuel tank, enough track to make a 48 x 64 elongated double oval layout. And it's on sale for $80.00.
    Good luck on what ever set you buy.
  9. miktrav2

    miktrav2 New Member


    For some reason I didn't see all these replies until I logged in today. I have already purchased a set. My son is just about to turn 4 next month.

    I ordered the Spectrum Keystone Pennsylvania set. Unfortunately it's steam because that's what my son was really interested in. He wanted a train that could actually produce steam but the guy behind the counter discouraged it saying that they had to have the mechanism that produced steam constantly full or it could ruin the train. I plan on supervising him as he plays so we should be OK as far as him ruining the trains. I'll go back and pick up 1 or 2 diesels and cars just in case though. Thanks for the good advice.

  10. hoyle

    hoyle Member

    Talking about sets i bought a set from Athearn Genesis less track and power supply but at a great price it comes with a SD70M BNSF loco and three Auto Max auto haulers for 169.95 now if i bought everything seperate it will have cost a lot more.

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