Quick Hits

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Hello, and welcome to the first edition of the 2024 Quick Hits! Last year was filled with goodies from every scale imaginable, and this year isn’t going to be any different. With a slew of new releases coming this year from powerhouse manufacturers like Lionel and MTH, it only makes sense that we keep the show going. This week I’m featuring the revival of a Pre-War icon for you O-Gauge runners and some Santa Fe fun for you HO lovers. So sit back, grab some hot chocolate because it’s cold out there, and get ready for another round of Quick Hits!

Lionel 6-11218 Vision Line NYC Hudson Engine Gunmetal Grey #5331

It’s the start of a new year, and if fireworks at midnight weren’t enough on the 1st, don’t worry – we’re coming in with an even bigger bang! For those of you that have been around the block, you may recognize this engine from its days in the Pre-War era. That’s right, it’s the re-imagined legendary Hudson 763E back in modern glory and ready to take over layouts all over again. 

For those of you unfamiliar with the iconic Pre-War steam locomotive, Lionel originally released the Hudson 763E in its gunmetal gray paint job all the way back in 1937. We’re not at the century mark yet, but hey, who says we can’t have an 87 year anniversary? Lionel had the same idea but with a 73-year anniversary special with the 2010 release of this iconic steam engine. 

The last release of this modern O Gauge 763E came way back in 2010, and to my knowledge there aren’t any plans for the near future – probably saving it for the 100 year anniversary is my best guess. So where do we start with this O-Gauge steam locomotive? Lionel included this 763E in their Vision Line series, adding to their impressive catalog of Vision Line Locomotives

The re-imagined Hudson 763E comes with a slew of technology and upgrades from authentic sounds to illumination – all of which we’ll go over shortly. One of the biggest features off the bat is the inclusion of Legacy RailSounds – Lionel’s trademark sound package, and boy oh boy can I tell you the sounds are crisp and clean coming from this locomotive – yes, I do play with some of these engines before I feature them (perks of the job). 

Moving forward we’re also looking at a locomotive packed with tons of TruRail features (steam, chuff, etc) all of which go a long way with providing an incredible operating experience. The access for the smoke fluid is easily accessible making the maintenance on this steam engine fairly simple and straightforward. The inclusion of the firebox and ashpan glow are just nice little operational touches that make this steam engine that much more fun to run, especially with the lights off to really savor that glow. 

Lastly, I’m thoroughly impressed with the Odyssey II speed control built into the engine. This Hudson rounds track and handles tight corners like a champ! I’m a little blown away at the handling by this O-Gauge giant. It’s obvious Lionel treated this 763E like their baby, and made sure it grew up to outclass all of the other locomotives released on the O-Gauge market that year. 

If you’re blown away by this revitalized Hudson like I am, I have a link for you here where you can take a closer look for yourself. Got something else on your mind? No worries, we’re always expanding our inventory and I’ve got plenty of O-Gauge Locomotives for you to check out back at HQ. 

Product Info:

Manufacturer: Lionel

Model Number: 6-11218

Road Name: New York Central (NYC)

Scale/Era: O Modern

Model Type: Steam Loco

MTH 80-2117-1 HO Santa Fe F7 A/B Unit Diesel Locomotive Set w/PS3 #39A/L

I’ve got more HO than I can handle these days, and that’s a great problem to have. The showcase for HO was not an easy one to pick this week with so many goodies coming in from all over the country. Luckily I was able to make up my mind, and decided to go with some HO from MTH. You may recall earlier in the introduction that I’d mentioned we’ve got some Santa Fe magic, and here it is! 

This awesome HO set from MTH is not something we see often from the predominantly O-Gauge manufacturer. Another set released coincidentally in 2010 (must’ve been a good year for model trains) is a great candidate for the lead locomotive spot on your layout. Cheap to maintain, this HO-Scale set of F7 diesel engines is as easy to maintain while also boasting great reliability. Plus, they’re coming packed with the latest edition of ProtoSound 3.0 making this one of the best locomotives with ProtoSound on the market! 

These locomotives also boast a much sought after track versatility, being able to fully operate on  2-Rail track systems provided by Atlas and Bachmann. I’ve got the listing posted here if you’re looking for a more in-depth look at the set, and a ton more HO locomotives ready to run in our inventory. 

Product Info:

Manufacturer: MTH

Model Number: 80-2117-1

Road Name: Atchison Topeka Santa Fe (ATSF)

Scale/Era: HO Scale

Model Type: Diesel Loco

Lionel 238E VIntage O PRR Gray Torpedo Streamlined Steam Locomotive -Box Only

So the midway selection this week is going to be something a little out of the norm. It’s an empty box. Yes, that’s right, just an empty box. But, unlike other hobbies, empty boxes go a long way in the world of model trains. Now and again, we manage to hit the jackpot for collectors that need that old box for their vintage piece, and I’ve got a desirable one here. This Pre-War box is the original PRR Gray Torpedo steam locomotive – a piece I get so often without the original box. 

It’s obviously going to be a big ask to get a perfect condition Pre-War or Post-War box, but it is something that a serious collector is always going to want. With vintage Lionel boxes becoming increasingly hard to find, we here at Trainz.com try to do our best to preserve and offer as many as possible. If you want to see what boxes from the mid and early 20th century looked like I have a ton available here. Oh and if you have that 238E, and need the box – I got your link right here

Product Info

Manufacturer: Lionel

Model Number: 238E

Years Manufactured: 1936 - 1938

Road Name: Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR)

Scale/Era: O Prewar

Model Type: Steam Loco

American Flyer 6-49809 S Scale Checkerboard Bubbling Water tower #772

Ok, so there’s some bias when it comes to the accessory pick this week. You see that red & white checkerboard pattern? Some of you may not know, but I am originally from Croatia, and we love that checkerboard pattern – so much so we put it on our flag. So naturally when I saw this bubbling water tower from American Flyer, I had to go for it. 

Of course, that’s not the only reason for my selection of this tower. The first big one is the fun animations! It’s a bubbling tower that features illumination and brings that little corner of your layout to life. This particular piece saw a 2002 release, and is a wonderful reproduction of the vintage American Flyer accessories that were so popular during the 1950s. 

I’ve got a ‘like-new’ listing here for this near fifteen year old tower here, and plenty more S-Scale accessories back on our website! 

Product Info:

Manufacturer: American Flyer

Model Number: 6-49809

Years Manufactured: 2002 - 2002

Road Name: American Flyer Lines

Scale/Era: S Modern

Model Type: Accessories

Lionel 6-7509 O Gauge Kentucky Fried Chicken Reefer Car

We’re finally at my favorite pick of the week – the budget pick! This week’s selection is a delicious one that I don’t get to enjoy as much these days, but still get to indulge every once in a blue moon. I love when Lionel branches out and decides to obtain licenses for non-railroad related companies, and this Kentucky Fried Chicken reefer is too finger lickin’ good to pass up on. 

Originally released in 1981, this KFC reefer was originally part of a whole fast food set. The original set included:

  • 8160 Burger King GP-20 Diesel 
  • 7509 KFC
  • 7510 Red Lobster
  • 7511 Pizza Hut 
  • 7512 Arthur Treacher's 
  • 7513 Bonanza 
  • 7514 Taco Bell Refrigerator Car
  • 9449 Wendy's Caboose

Obtaining a complete set has been nearly impossible nowadays especially since that Burger King GP-20 diesel just doesn’t seem to be in circulation too much. For me personally, this whole fast food set is a jewel from the MPC era and doesn’t get the recognition it deserves. I’ve got a couple of the KFC reefers here, and some more of those delicious boxcars back on our website!

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