stay away from the older Hornby stuff with tender drives. The new stuff with loco drive has far more torque, and controllability. Bachmann stuff isn't too bad, but try to have the shop run it for you, watch for wobbles, and horrible sounds - the same applies to Hornby. The good news is both manufacturers have a good reputation for replacements, and repairs so enjoy. If you prepared to tinker a little bit you can really get some exception running with both.