Poll: Which is better Atlas or P2k GP7 ?

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by MilesWestern, Jul 12, 2006.


Which is superior? The Atlas or P2k GP7's?

  1. The Atlas is WAY better than that lifelike stuff...

    0 vote(s)
  2. The Atlas geep is marginally better...

    0 vote(s)
  3. They are equal!

    0 vote(s)
  4. The Lifelike Proto 2000 is marginally better

    0 vote(s)
  5. The Lifelike Proto 2000 is far superior to that Atlas loco...

    0 vote(s)
  1. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    I would like to know before I decide to purchase one or the other.

    Things to take into account while choosing:





    Which is better, Life like or Atlas GP7's?
  2. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Oh, and please explain WHY you think one or the other is better please!
  3. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    Can't say anything about Atlas, I don't have one. But I do have a P2K GP7. Bought it at a show cheap(Used in a box lot). Sat on a shelf for almost three years without running it once. Just recently ran it....Started and ran with no problems, no cleaning...lubing or anything.
    But still.....I'm an Athearn man.
  4. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Is it for sale?
  5. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Actually the Atlas is superior as far as the drive train but,lacks lift rings.The P2K Geep has finer details over all.Now the P2K GP7 suffered the well known crack gear problem which is easily fixed by replacing the gears with Athearn gears or a newer P2K gears.
    Either GP7 is a sure winner.:thumb:
  6. Gil Finn

    Gil Finn Active Member


    Bachman is good and not expencive
  7. green_elite_cab

    green_elite_cab Keep It Moving!

    I'd probalby go with the Atlas one if the drive is supposedly better. the P2k stuff seems more expensive. details like lift rings can easily be added yourself as long as you know where they go. just order lift rings ( they can't be more than $2 a bag), a Pinvise, and a #80 ( .135 in) drill bit. Its all you need. most details can be cheapply and easily be added to your model. all you need is alittle research.
  8. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Brakie: Yeah I own a P2k GP7 which had liftrings (mostly missing due to handling) and it has the aforementioned cracked gear problem! :curse: :rolleyes:

    Overall it wasa the drivetrain I was most interested in, because the P2k's served me so well... :rolleyes:
    88fan1: You are very VERY lucky, you are the first person I've heard of who didn't encounter that problem...I wish I was in that club too! :rolleyes:
    Gil: Bachmann doesn't make a GP7 and he he he... :D
    GEC: lift rings are something that usually becomes damaged with the amount of handling I need to have for my layout :(

    Thanks so much guys...and the verdict is......... ATLAS!!

    Now WHERE can I get a good discount one one, any ideas?
  9. green_elite_cab

    green_elite_cab Keep It Moving!

    my SD7 lasted me, until i dropped it onto the concrete floor of my basement. Even then, it survived. It only need a few new detail parts, and a slight touch up. it all still works, thank god. Just need to get around to it. I might repaint it in Conrail, ( i have the UP one). Apperently it was their first run of SD7s to. It sure seems like they last!

    did they make one a long while back? it was one of those low quality low nose ones.

    well you can order them made out of preformed wire. It will usually hold. Just use CA glue in the shell, and if it bends, just break out the needle now pliers.
  10. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Model power, Walters (Cox) both make low nose GP9's, but bachmann only went as far back as the GP30.

    Not a bad idea about those lift rings.

    My southern pacific SD7 runs (and looks) great, no porblems to date with it...(watch fate strike and have it make me eat my words... :curse:)
  11. green_elite_cab

    green_elite_cab Keep It Moving!

    *Sudden inexpicable explosion*

    actually, that did happen to my SD7, but i think it was a result of me dropping it one to many times ( i think it survived 5 falls from tables before i couldn't find the parts that flew off). I assume it happened because i didn't reassemble the drive train completely. there was a big pop, my model shuddered, and the shell came loose on the long hood. front trucks kept going. It freaked me out for a second.

    The P2K SD7 is actually a pretty tough model. one time, just about everything flew off of it, i thought it was done for. when i collected all the parts, i ended up having it good as new in 15-25 minutes. only this last time it wasn't carpet, it was concrete, so now it got really banged up.
  12. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    :eek: What causes all those trips to the floor? :confused:
  13. green_elite_cab

    green_elite_cab Keep It Moving!

    most of the time i had it sitting on my computer desk, and i'd reach for soemthing, and either knock it off, or bump somethign else which in turn knocked it off. the last time i actually had it sitting on my control panel on my layout. I forgot it was there, and tried to shoove the layout alittle farther from the wall, which caused the SD7 to fall off right onto the concrete. this time parts of the nose flung off and i haven't been able to find the pieces, but i assume when i get around to it, that I can buy these parts seperately from some manufacturer. It all still runs perfect, just needs to be touched up.
  14. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    Cab is right about those lift rings.. The Detail Associates #2206 eye bolts are appropriate for rooftop liftrings found on EMD hood units, and these are almost impossible to break off if mounted properly.

    Use a pin to punch a pilot hole in the exact location desired (the pilot hole is necessary so the drill bit won't "wander"), drill the mounting hole using a #80 drill in a pin vise, insert the painted eyebolt, and secure it in place by putting a drop of super glue on the end of the eyebolt wire from the inside of the shell. Voila.
  15. caliban

    caliban Member

    I voted for P2K!

    Overall Atlas is great and I'm a Atlas fan! I've one GP7 from Atlas (2000 run) and a late P2K GP7 (DCC ready). I never had any problems with my P2k's.
    Overall detailling is much better on the P2k, not only the lift rings.The rivet detail and paint job is better on the P2k. Running quality is about the same. Mostly Atlas is better or equal in detailling and better in running quality, with only Kato superior in running quality. The GP7 is part of the "Atlas Classic" series, not of the top "Master" series.
    Atlas offers cheap lift rings made of acetal plastic as spare part in their online shop, as well as a lot of other parts for different locos. Best of all, they're cheap on spare parts not like others.

  16. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Hmm, cool! Thanks for the info! I just bought the Atlas GP7 today (w/ dynamic brakes) undecorated. The paint job wont be a problem!

    Btw, what do dymanic brakes do? I know that they convert rotational energy into electrical ebergy, but how does this help the locomotive slow down, and why does the dymanic brake blister have to be so large to accomidate all those resistors?
  17. green_elite_cab

    green_elite_cab Keep It Moving!

    In dynamic breaking, the traction motors become generators. It is MUCH harder to turn traction motor in generator mode, and since the wheels are geared to the traction motors, they don't turn well either. In order to get rid of the electricity, its run through the reistors and converted to heat energy, with some elctircity being stored if needed, or it can use the heat to keep the internal stuff warm.

    With a locomotive and train, you'd obviously need alot of resistors to disiapate so much electricity produced by the momentum of the train forcing the locomotive forward.

    trains without dynamic breaks use just regular air brakes. when a train does have Dynamic breaks, it increases the life span of the Air brakes and wheels since not all the energy is going into the pads and wheels ( and therefore causes less wear and tear), and the energy is released as heat from electricity.
  18. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    So, it's a smart choice for a shortline's only diesel road engine (to date) less maintenence? Is it economical? It there a steep head-end price for dymanic brakes, does anyone know?
  19. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    Sometimes it depends on the terrain the railroad's routes passes through. If the railroad's routes are through hilly terrain, then it would most likely buy locos with DBs for its added braking power. If a railroad's routes are mainly through level terrain, their motive power tend not to have dynamic brakes.

    For example, railroads such as DRGW, SP, BN, etc. would buy units with DB because they run through mountains. Roads like MoPac, Rock Island, etc. with their routes in the flat American Midwest tend not to have dynamic brakes on their locos.

    hope this helps!
  20. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    It depends on what terrain the locomotive will be used in whether it has dynamic brakes or not. The Santa Fe used dynamic brakes on all of the gp7's & 9's that were used in mountain districts, but the ones used for passenger service on the surfline, and the ones used up in the San Juaquin Valley, or in the midwest would not be equipped with dynamics. Later when the Gp7's & 9's were replaced by newer more powerful locomotives in mainline service, the Santa Fe rebuilt them with chopped noses and Topeka cabs, and put them in yard switching and local service. When they were rebuilt for that service, the dynamics were no longer needed, so if you look at a chop nose "jeep" that hads dynamics you will see that the dynamic brakes have been removed, resister banks are gone, and the grilles are plated over with sheet metal.

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