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Well my christmas just came early with this model of the Great Northern S2 by Precision Craft. This was previously available as a BLI brass model and is now being issued by popular request as a regular metal body loco. It looks pretty good.

Price: $399.99
Product ID: PCM-023

The pictures shown are of the brass model, however the level of detail on PCM models is pretty good and should be similar.



Features:

Beautifully Detailed, Accurately Modeled Locomotive and Tender Body
Authentic Design, Paint and Color Schemes
Authentic Sounds (Sound Equipped Units Only) and Prototypical Operation
Many Separately Applied Details Including Brass Bell / Rails
Detailed Backhead
Operating Cab-roof Vents
Constant Intensity Directional Lighting
Lighted Number Boards
Factory Installed painted Fireman and Engineer Figures
Seuthe Smoke Unit Ready
Traction Tire Equipped for Maximum Traction
Locomotive Composition: ABS with Die Cast Chassis
Tender Composition: ABS with Die Cast Chassis
Locomotive Length: 8.75 in
Tender Length: 5 in
Total Coupler-to-Coupler Length: 13.75in
Motor type: 5-Pole Can with Skewed Armature & Fly Wheel
Couplers: (2) Operating Kadee Compatible
Compatible Tracks: Code 70, 83, 100 Rail
Recommended Minimum Radius: 18 in
"DCC & Sound Upgradeable" Units denoted as DCC & Sound Upgradeable are units that are not sound equipped and function only in DC. Modelers may choose to purchase an optional Sound & DCC upgrade kit, specifically tailored to the prototype which will add DCC and sound functionality. Upgrade kit works only for PCM models with PCM motherboards.



In March and April of 1930, the Great Northern Railway received fourteen 4-8-4's from Baldwin and assigned them to the S2 class, numbering them 2575 through 2588. The S2's were assigned to the Montana division for service between Williston, North Dakota and Havre, Montana, and the Spokane division for service between Spokane and Wenatchee, Washington.



One Great Northern S2, number 2584, still survives and is on display at the Havre, Montana depot.



I really wanted one of the brass ones but was too tight to fork out for it so I will defintely be getting one of these!
 

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QUOTE If only we could get British outline of this quality!!!

There is British outline of this quality. A number of British kit manufacturers offer models in ready to run form if its a metal body you are after or metal detailing parts.

As long as you are prepared to pay the £250 asking price or whatever the figure is the quality is available.

I don't know about the DCC side of it though however if you want it fitted to a quality loco I am confident that there will be retailers who offer a fitting service to give the quality loco the DCC bits and bobs offered by Precison Craft.

One thing though. Quality is in the eye of the beholder so what would make this loco a "quality" loco relative to one that is not?


There is already an admission above that the brass bodied version was desirable but not affordable (or considered value for money?) and so this lower priced plastic version will be purchased.

Just curious as to be honest I don't see an aweful lot that is not currently specified or cannot be fitted (if the desire is there) in the latest Hornby and Bachmann models. The model above has a lot of detailing but surely that is because the original had all that Amercan plumbing and other bits and bobs that make American locos American locos! British model locos are twee and neat because of their lack of all this detailing which is not necessary because they don't need it!

So what is a "quality" model and how do you define it?

There are those who say that Wrenn offered quality models however in terms of detailing and accuracy they are not brilliant.

Happy modelling
Gary

PS I also note the use of traction tyres as per the model specification. Shock horror in a quality model!!!

PPS I do think its a great model so if it lifts your skirt or floats your boat then it is a bargain for the money being asked. Its the "quality" comment in relation to British models that has bemused me as I cannot see how this can be improved without a serious price increase and a much greater use of metal body and detailing parts. And this cost increase would be a concern.

PPPS The sound equiped loco and DCC is extra to the $399 asking price.
 

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QUOTE There is already an admission above that the brass bodied version was desirable but not affordable (or considered value for money?) and so this lower priced plastic version will be purchased.

Apologise to Neil as I missed the fact it has a metal body and no doubt metal detailing parts. It has to be an absolute bargain!

Still maintain though that the market for UK outline products in the UK is not large enough for the mass market Hornby and Bachmann to get involved in poducts with all metal components.

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Couple of points to add to the above;

Tony's trains are selling this for $299 which at the current exchange rate is 150 quid!

It comes with a Loksound 3.5 sound decoder, if you want a stealth one (without a decoder) it's cheaper at $224 or 112 quid.

I have also found out that you have to order this in advance as PCM and BLI models are now limited runs. From what Tony's website says you have to order in advance or you have virtually no chance of getting one. I couldn't take the chance so I ordered one.

As regards the quality I recently bought PCM's Y6b and the quality of the loco is very good. Well packaged for protection in transit, good detailing, metal body. The Yanks are very particular about scale accuracy.
 

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Thats amazing. How do they do it for the money?

(Maybe the answer is a limited run in the USA is the same as a standard run in the UK. We must not forget how small the UK market is relative to the German or American markets and prices in the UK do reflect relatively small production runs. From an American perspective every UK model is a limited edition!)

If this is your thing then you must absolutely order one!

For not much more than the the price of a sound decoder you get a whole loco!

Happy modelling
Gary

QUOTE Well my christmas just came early with this model of the Great Northern S2 by Precision Craft. This was previously available as a BLI brass model and is now being issued by popular request as a regular metal body loco.

PS Neil. According to the spec the loco has an ABS body not a metal one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I had assumed it would be metal as the Big Boy and Y6b were. No worries I'll still be ok. The BLI ones had plastic bodies and they were ok.

I guess It's cheap because of the bigger production runs they do and also because the dollar is low against other currencies at the moment..
 

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I'd say yes the American mass market is a lot bigger. The NMRA, National Model Railroad Association, has around 25,000 members and estimates that around one in hundred have or do model railways. In a population of around 301million that's a fairly big market. The US is split into modellers and collectors and the collectors collect brass models simillar to the GN s2 illustrated in Neil's post. The brass market is and has been renowned for it's quality, attention to detail and run ability of the models produced. Untill recently very few RTR models of steam locos were available so if you wanted steam models you bought brass. I modelled Chesapeake and Ohio and models of C&O locos were only available in brass and were expensive. Now many of these models were made by Japenese, late fifties to late sixties, or Korean craftsmen, late sixties to late eighties, in fairly small quantities, most production runs only totalled up to 500 models. Some runs were as few as 10 models. Specalist Crown series models refelect this as some models were fetching US$15,000 for a Toby Crown model, handbuilt, N&W J class 4-8-4. But these models are an exception for the norm expect to pay US$1000 for most models. In RTR Proto2000 from Walthers\Lifelike are all limited run models. Bachmann used to easily available but they are getting into the limited market, Athearn with the Genesis series do the same.

ozzie21

QUOTE (Gary @ 18 May 2007, 17:10) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Thats amazing. How do they do it for the money?

(Maybe the answer is a limited run in the USA is the same as a standard run in the UK. We must not forget how small the UK market is relative to the German or American markets and prices in the UK do reflect relatively small production runs. From an American perspective every UK model is a limited edition!)

If this is your thing then you must absolutely order one!

For not much more than the the price of a sound decoder you get a whole loco!

Happy modelling
Gary
PS Neil. According to the spec the loco has an ABS body not a metal one.
 
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