Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by curmudgeon, Dec 6, 2008.

  1. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    Hi all -

    I'm familiar with Athearn, of course, and Samhongsa as a brass maker.

    I've been offered a reasonably priced plastic UP #2450 2-8-2, labled on the bottom:
    Manufactured exclusively for Athearn
    By Samhongsa Korea

    Didn't know Samhongsa made plastic, and it's not currently listed by Athearn online.
    Anyone tell me when made, approx. retail new?

    Pretty well detailed, nicer than Spectrum I think.
    Comparisons w/other brands (running qualities, power, longevity, etc.)?

    Any info appreciated.



  2. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    Is this the Athearn "Genesis" 2-8-2..?? I've heard its finicky at best, and suffered, as I recall, from gear problems. I have no experience with it. I do have a Spectrum YS 2-8-2 and it's a beauty, although too light, so its pulling power is limited.
  3. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    Hi steamhead -

    By "familiar w/Athearn" I mean I've known about 'em for years.
    But I'm not familiar with the Genesis series.
    This may be one, but not current.

    I have Spectum too, and while I have a soft spot in my head :)mrgreen:) for the old Rivarossi, the Spectrum are way nicer looking than most of what was available before.

  4. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    The loco you have is indeed an Athearn Genesis.

    Athearn (now Horizon Hobbies) seems to have made them and their sister 4-6-2s into orphans, as I don't think they supply any repair parts for them. I believe that they're coming out with a new and improved version of both locos, though they won't share much, if any, in the way of parts.
    The locos suffered from split or broken gears and were, as Gus notes, not very good pullers. I bought two of the Mikados, new, and when I found out how to improve their pulling power, bought two more used ones. I've had no problems with the gears, although I have repaired a couple for others when Athearn was still supplying replacements. NorthWest Short Line now carries replacement gears for these locos (the same part will fit either the Mike or the Pacific).
    These are very smooth-running locos, and can be made even better by adding tender pick-up. The usual service for mine is double-headed on a 100 oz. coal train, and they perform the task well. They also doublehead well with my Bachmann Consolidations.

    Here's a LINK to a thread showing how to improve the pulling power and also tips on adding tender current pick-up.

  5. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    Thanks Wayne, you're a treasure!
    That is the engine under consideration.
    Excellent how-to also.

    And that pigtail looks like H--l.:oops:

    Is the original boiler weight Zamac or such?
  6. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    BTW -

    What was the new price for these?

  7. WReid

    WReid Member

    If I remember right the price was around $150 to $175 US ( street price ) when they first come out. I have seen new in the box ones sell on E-bay for around $60 to $100 US in the last few months.

    I bought 6 of them off E-bay last year in three groups of two. I paid a little over $90 Cdn for all six. I believe the seller had bought them from Athearn's yard sale they hold once or twice a year. A few of them were missing a few detail parts but that was okay as I planned on kitbashing a few of them.

    All had cracked axle gears. I ordered some gears from NWSL and replaced them and requarted all the drivers on each locomotive. After that they all ran very well. Out of the six I sold the three that had all their details parts intact. In the end the three I sold made me back the money I paid for all six and and the six replacement gears and a little cash for my time fixing them all.

    The other three are awaiting to be kitbashed into CNR locomotives. I am hoping to start working on one real soon but my brass CNR N-5-d 2-8-0 project is still on my work table. I am still waiting for the " Fuel Oil " decals for its tender. :eek: I am really starting to wish it had a coal tender instead of an oil tender. I would have had it finished a month and a half ago. wall1

    Wayne R
  8. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    ...and we've been sitting here biting our fingernails waiting for the final pictures....:twisted:
  9. WReid

    WReid Member

    I know I wil be glad when I can take the final pictures and know the locomotive and tender are ready for use. If I would have known a small thing like some missing Fuel Oil lettering would hold things up for so long I would have held off posting until it was done. wall1 To top it off the decal maker has not been very good at replying to emails which make for a rather frustrating wait. Last I heard the missing lettering was to be shipped to him the last week of November. Seeing as he lives in Canada as well I would hope to have the final decals this coming week. Unfortunatly I am starting to think Christmas has a better chance of getting here first. :curse: :eek: :mrgreen:

    Wayne R
  10. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    Well, I got the darn little lovely - perhaps foolishly (THANKS Wayne R & your $15 locos!! :curse:).

    Oh well!
    Not the first, nor the foolishest, nor (hopefully) the last I'll make.

    Applying power to the drivers, it runs fine & heavy thumb-load on one of them caused no slippage, so at least the gear is good for now.

    But to business:

    I'm hoping one of you mavens can tell me (in one syllable words?) how to get rid of the pigtail.

    While drwayne's how-to contains a method, after getting partway thru the dissasembly process, I chickened out - you said "tight fit" on the upper boiler, but I was SURE I was gonna bust SUMPIN' just trying to get the rear high enough to clear the motor!

    I'm not interested in the DCC, & examining the PC board, it *appears* only 3 of the wires (blk, yel, wht) in the pigtail are connected to the circuitry (I am, among many other things, no electronics nechtician).
    And of those 3 the yel, along w/pur & grn, are cut where they go in under the cab, tho' the inner ends aren't visible, so that may be how it's made.
    Or a previous owner has worked his own magic upon it.:eek:

    In any case, can the pigtail simply be cut & wires reconnected in any fashion so the motor will run w/o the PC board/connector?
    I tried various jumper combinations in the female connector w/the board removed, but no luck.

    Or am I simply beyond help? :p

  11. WReid

    WReid Member

    The boiler shell can be real stubborn to remove. When I stripped down mine for repairs I was afraid each time something would break as I removed the upper boiler shell. In the end they all came off with a little bit of verbal coaxing. :eek: :mrgreen:

    I do not have one of mine in front of me but you may be able to hook the wires needed to run together on DC power and tuck them under the cab. The wiring is as follows or DCC.

    Red is power from the right rail ( engineer's side )
    Black is power from the left rail ( fireman's side )
    Orange is the positive motor connection
    Gray is the negative motor connection

    Wiring the the orange wire to either the black or red wire and the gray wire to either the black or red wire will hook the motor to the track power. You will have to experiment to find the proper combination so the loco runs forward with you throttle set for forward.

    Blue is the postive lead ( common for DCC ) for the headlight
    White is the negative lead for the headlight.

    Hooking these wires to the red and black wires will give power to the headlight. But BEFORE doing so you WILL have to add a resistor to the headlight LED as the little circuit board that plugs onto the end of the pigtail has the needed resistor to stop from blowing out the LED. Another option would be to replace the LED with a 12 volt bulb. The stock LED is actually to yellow for a headlight. But be careful as the bulb may get hot enought to melt the plastic headlight.

    As for the other wires in the pigtail they do not connect to the locomotive and can be removed.

    Hope this helps.

    Wayne R
  12. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    Wayne, I forgive you for your buying acumen. :mrgreen:

    That's just what I hoped for.
    Red/orange, black/gray works great.

    I've found further that the headlight is a jewel - as in faceted, not superb.
    2 black wires behind the smokebox cover are also cut.

    Oh, well - I can fix that when I get up the nerve to disassemble it. :cry:

    Thanks a heap!:wave:

  13. WReid

    WReid Member

    Glad to be of help.

    To fix the headlight all you sould have to do is unplug the two black wires behind the smokebox front from the small circuit board they plug into. No need to take the locomotive apart to do so. Then wire your new headlight bulb to the two plugs and plug them back in.

    Wayne R
  14. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

    As a final note:
    I steeled myself & took it apart.
    Actually, I had to.
    I pulled a motor wire loose during rewiring.:oops:

    You guys are right - nothing broke!

    However, one item overlooked in the disassembly sequence in drwaynes how-to:
    The throttle just under the forward end of the rightside walkway must be removed - it was what caused the jam that concerned me so at my first attempt.
    After clearing that, all went smoothly.

    Thanks again, guys, for all your advice.

  15. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Sorry about that. :oops: That's the damper control, I think. :p:-D:-D

  16. curmudgeon

    curmudgeon Member

  17. gna

    gna New Member

    I have been reading this thread, and Dr, Wayne's how-to with great interest (and chagrin). I recently purchased an Athearn Genesis Mikado from an auction site, and it came damaged in shipping. The pilot is broken and bent and one of the boiler stays is broken. I origianlly thought the pilot truck was bad as it kept derailing, but the wheelset was way out of gauge. (It's also too small--scales out to about 30" instead of the 33" a light mike should have). I was hoping to get some repair parts from Athearn, but that doesn't seem likely.

    Also, I thought I would try to take out the front screw that goes through the cylinders and remove the pilot, but imagine my surprise when it turns out there was no screw--only a piece of plastic tubing! Dr. Wayne, do you have any of those screws left?

    Any advice on how to fix the pilot or what to replace it with?
  18. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Hmm, it's been a while since I worked on mine, but, as I think I mention in the re-build thread, I didn't use that screw on the modified locos - they're probably around here somewhere. It would help if you could post a picture of the damage. The pilot brace could be re-done with brass wire of a suitable diameter, but repairing the pilot may be difficult, as that plastic doesn't glue very well. There are lots of replacement pilots available from Cal Scale, Precision Scale, and others, but most would need to be modified to accept a working coupler. Then there's the problem of mounting it securely enough to stand up in service - glue of any kind is unlikely to work, so this will depend a lot on your modelling capabilities.
    My suggestion is to write a letter to Horizon Hobbies outlining the problem. They may do nothing, but, if you don't try, they will do nothing. :rolleyes: I'm speaking about a real letter, too, not e-mail, which is too easy to ignore.

    I have an address for a Sales Representative as follows:

    Horizon Hobby.
    Consumer Sales - Attn. Amanda
    4105 Fieldstone Rd.,
    Champaign, Il 61822

    or, you could try calling them at 1-310-7140, Ext. 123 This is the number for Customer Support for Athearn parts

    Send me a PM concerning that screw. ;):-D

  19. jeffrey-wimberl

    jeffrey-wimberl Active Member

    I had one of the Genesis 4-6-2's that was made by Samhongsa and I have to say I was very displeased with it. I replaced the main drive gear in it three times and it busted the gear again two times under a light load. After putting in the third one it stayed on the display shelf until I traded it for a Pennsy K4 that now resides in my park.
  20. gna

    gna New Member

    Thanks Dr. Wayne.

    I sent Athearn parts an Email a couple of weeks ago inquiring if parts were available for the Mikado, and mentioned that I needed the brace and the road pilot. They responded a week or so ago that they would check and see if parts were available. I hadn't heard anything, so I was very surprised when I got home from work today and found a small box from Athearn containing a road pilot.

    So that problem is solved. I'll just use some wire for the boiler stay. Here's a poor photo of what it looked like:


    I want to add tender pickups, but the wheelsets are insulated on both sides, so I replaced them with some 33" Rivarrossi wheelsets I had, freeing up a 33" wheelset to use as the pilot truck.

    I still want to try to add weight to the front; I'm just a little uneasy to do everything Dr. Wayne did.

Share This Page