Kato' Daylight... or Centralia's Daylight?

Calzephyr Jul 26, 2007

  1. Calzephyr

    Calzephyr TrainBoard Supporter

    Well... the moment of reckoning. Do I still want the Centralia Car Shops "Shasta Daylight' in spite of the new announcement from Kato regarding their 'Morning Daylight' train? I wouldn't be concerned if the sets were significantly different consists... but... just how different are they?

    Both trains are similar... although I'm not too sure how different one is from the other. My understanding is that the windows of the Shasta Daylight cars are larger than the typical passenger car... but... were they different from the Morning Daylight consist?

    Centralia is not doing articulated coach cars... probably because they were not used on the Shasta Daylight... ergo... the coaches on the Shasta must be different from those on the Morning Daylight. But how about the Tavern car... Parlor car... and the articulated dining trio?

    I already own a ConCor GS-4 and I also have PCM E7s... so the motive power for multiple sets is on hand... but... is it worthwhile to spend almost double for the one Centralia set... already plagued by delays or buying two Kato sets for the price of one Centralia set?

    Those of you more versed in the Daylight passenger trains would be a great help to me and others regarding this issue. In the end... I'll probably buy both the Centralia and the Kato sets... but... I'd really like to know just how different the two sets will be.
  2. SPsteam

    SPsteam TrainBoard Member

    Ahhh, but how well does your Concor GS-4 run? If it is anything like mine, I'd buy the kato and sell the concor on ebay!
  3. jagged ben

    jagged ben TrainBoard Member

    I don't know whether this involves the same models you're interested in or not, but I know that the paint colors on some Centralia Daylight cars were waaay off. Like, they were tan and marroon instead of orange and red. An e-tailer I know was quite annoyed with the returns he had to deal with.

    But maybe they have fixed this problem. I don't want to spread bad information, I just advise you to keep asking.
  4. Route 66

    Route 66 TrainBoard Member

    Will The GS-4 Pull the ten car consist?
    Will traction tires be added or sold after the fact?
    Let the speculations begin
  5. Bruce-in-MA

    Bruce-in-MA TrainBoard Member

    The Kato website claims that they will have pre-production samples of the passinger cars on display this weekend at the NMRA National Train show in Detroit. Anyone going?
  6. Calzephyr

    Calzephyr TrainBoard Supporter


    Mine is a bit of a dog too... it runs a little rough. Looks pretty good standing still... It is the Royal Majesty of Shelf Queens. Actually I hardly run it and perhaps it will get better with some break-in time... or it will just totally break-down given enough time... :rolleyes:
  7. Calzephyr

    Calzephyr TrainBoard Supporter

    I'm still not sold....

    That little screw-up has me on the sideline for the majority of the Centralia issues. I really feel bad for IMRC... but... they seem to have some flaws in many of the items they have made over the past few years. It's hard to build customer loyalty and get pre-reservations when your track record is less than stellar.

    I'm sure that the Centralia cars will live-up to the expectations but the one thing that worries me is that the colors may not all match when the set is finished. Each batch of cars may have slight color variations (or bad variations) due to different production times. To some... that would make the set look more realistic... since the prototype cars may have been shopped for repairs or repainting... creating different hues of paint in a consist. I still would rather they all look uniformly painted... the Kato method of releasing a complete set should make that a reality... the Centralia method of releasing one type of car every few months may not.
  8. DocGeoff

    DocGeoff E-Mail Bounces

    But.... years ago, early 90's, when the ConCor steam was made by Kato, they ran like butter... Smoooooooth, great slow speed just creeping down the track. And great pullers, too.
    So maybe we have a new steam player? I would like to know what "DCC friendly" entails for conversion, but alas, I have already contacted Chuck and committed to the whole release,
  9. Calzephyr

    Calzephyr TrainBoard Supporter


    No... not the adult diapers...
    The ad says all drivers and tender wheels pick-up power... so... If I read into that logically... no traction tires because they would not conduct electricity.
    ERGO... I doubt the GS-4 will pull a 10 car consist up an incline greater than 1%. If they include TT... then it should be able to pull up the entire consist... including several articulated coach sets up a 2% grade... but don't hold me to that.
    Of course... if it could pull a full consist up a 2% without TT... then we might have problems containing ourselves:biggrin2:
  10. broadway zephyr

    broadway zephyr TrainBoard Member


    In terms of acquiring both sets...

    I think you know the Kato set will be the gold standard. It will roll freely, be assembled well, have correct paint, etc. But the most important thing about the Kato set is just that---its a set. Look at the variety of cars you get---you get an entire consist.

    Now, I am no expert as far as the Centralia cars go. I know about the problems with the trucks on the early releases. They recently had the paint problem. But here is the most important question I would have: who says Centralia is going to bring out ALL of the correct cars to complete the correct consist? I talked to the design guys at Intermountain a couple of weeks ago about the Sleepers they are producing for other roads, and my questions included "are you going to bring a Diner, baggage, Observation, etc?" He said HE would like to, but that is not green-lighted as of now.

    So you buy your Shasta coaches and Tavern car. Thye finally getthe paint right, and they look good. Now what doyou have? A bunch of coaches with a Tavern car? WHat do you do with that? Let it sit on a siding and look pretty? You may get the rest of the consist, you MAY NOT. And if you do, how long will it take to get it? It could be 5-10 years before they get to that point.

    Thats what is great about Kato. Boom! Its done! I have no good reason to buy this set. I was one hopiong for an eastern train, and The Daylight never went into any of th Chicago terminals---but I will buy it anyway because it will look great running on the layout. And It is just not that expensive at all. I want Kato to do lots more of this stuff. So I will support my favorite manufacturer.

    But think about how long it may take you to complete the Intermountain consist---and the cost. Buy two Katos and you are done---and you saved some money to boot.
  11. Mike Skibbe

    Mike Skibbe TrainBoard Member

    The only car that has not been tooled for the Shasta Daylight is the observation car. Kits have already been released for the Baggage-Mail, News Agent 46 seat Chair, 48 seat Chair, Crew Dorm 38 seat Chair, Triple unit Diner, and the Timberline Tavern. RTR versions of each will be coming down the pipeline.

    The early truck issue has been fixed by the use of MTL truck and coupler assemblies. There was a paint color mix-up on the first batch of Shasta cars, but subsequent runs will be corrected, along with an additional run of the first Shasta cars in the upgraded colors, so that the whole train will match in appearance.
  12. broadway zephyr

    broadway zephyr TrainBoard Member


    Sorry, I didn't realize Intermountain had made an announcement that the other cars were coming down the line in a RTR format.

    I stand corrected.

  13. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Good thing it's someting I don't need... Not to say I wouldn't like to have one..... :)
  14. Rich Businger

    Rich Businger TrainBoard Member

    There is still the price issue. The Centralia cars are almost double the price.

  15. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

    I figure I better jump in here with my two cents.

    A number of years back I did some research on the "Shasta Daylight's", I learned that the train sets although delivered to be train specific and ran as such... for a while. Ended up operating with various pieces of equipment from other sets. In time, the articulated's ended up gracing other SP passenger trains. There are pictures of them passing through Redding, or Dunsmuir, Ca. Yes, they did grace the Shasta Daylight.

    A little history: SP wasn't happy with the performance of these cars as they were difficult to heat and cool and tended to derail. Riders although excited with them at first, ended up complaining about the cars and eventually they were pulled off the name trains. They could be seen in various consists around the San Francisco Bay Area and over Donner Pass. They even graced the Valley Daylight for a short period of time and there are a number of pictures showing them in consist at Tehachapi Loop and down at Caliente, CA. Eventually they were pulled off and either traded in or torched. The actual number of sets ordered and delivered escapes my memory. There is a railfan website where the pictures can be viewed and I'm certain I bookmarked it. As soon as I find the website, I will add it to this post.

    Back in a few!

    Edited Add On:

    I'm back and there's not a lot to offer. One of the pictures was taken in Dunsmuir and I believe comes from a collection of photo's owned by Bob Morris "Photo Bob". Unfortunately, the picture is not currently available on his website. Another source was Shasta Rails, and his website is down.

    I wish I could provide the proof of my words. I hope this helps. Still searching.

    I just found something that might help. "Railfanning Southern California in the 1950's" a excellent resource for SP Passenger trains. If you want to see odd ball equipment in the consist of the Coast or Valley Daylights and the Sunset Trains feel free to check-out this Pentrex DVD or Video. Lot's of variety. You want a hint? You will find the articualted's in consist with smooth side, corrugated, red and silver, various shades of orange and red, pullman green, SP green/silver and two tone grey. Plus as a bonus...grin... a variety of locomotives on the front end. You can be a purist and still mix and match your trains, like nothing done before.

    Have fun.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 26, 2007
  16. Calzephyr

    Calzephyr TrainBoard Supporter

    Well... sit-back, crack open a brew and let me tell you about my experiences with Espee Daylight model trains.

    Back in day... 20 years ago m/l.... I acquired a ConCor/Kato PA in Daylight scheme and not long after that I scored a ConCor/Kato E8 A/A Daylight for a steal $25.00, at an open house, from a now defunct hobby shop. Unfortunately... I could not get the ConCor/Riva set of Daylight passenger cars because they were not available/sold out. One day I found a SP Daylight dome car (don't think they actually had any) and bought it. For several years those were the only Daylight items I had. In the early-mid 1990s I was not in 'financial order'... and as luck would have it Kato made smoothside sets of the Daylight and nice E8 units. I scrounged up some dough when they were released and went to Tex-N-Rails... only to be told that Kato had short run the Daylight and many of their customer who had reserved them were not getting one. Upon that news... I went home and decided to get rid of all my Daylight stuff on the Tex-N-Rails auction. I actually did pretty good in their auction... got much more for those items than they cost me. I decided that the Daylight was just too much trouble and didn't bother to buy any more Espee Daylight stuff until the Centralia Cars were announced over a year ago. When the Shasta Daylight was announced... I decided to buy both the PCM E7 A/B (I wanted to hear the sound). I later bought the ConCor GS-4... because the reviews were NOT totally unfavorable. So... what happens... the first run of the Shasta cars are not painted correct... and all of the releases are pushed back as a result. My first impression was... here we go again... no luck with the Daylight. I almost decided to sell off my PCMs and ConCor GS-4 Daylights and forget them.... but... chose to wait for the next run of Centralia cars... in hopes that I would finally get a full Daylight set. A couple of months ago a guy from BP&S club asked me if I wanted to buy or trade for his ConCor/Riva Daylight cars... which now I really didn't care for... but he was willing to take an old ConCor PA I had in exchange. So... I have a truncated... incorrect 5 car Daylight consist... which I can't wait to get rid of... once I get a correct consist.

    This announcement by Kato could pretty much cast-away all of the demons associated with my Espee Daylight experiences... hopefully... nothing will go wrong between now and January 2008. If some of the Centralia cars are NOT released before the Kato consist is out... I may not get any of them.
  17. Charlie Vlk

    Charlie Vlk TrainBoard Member

    Excuse me if a quick read of the posts on this subject already covered this...
    The Shasta Daylight cars have larger windows and are smoothsided as compared to the Coast Daylight trains which have PS corrugated sides and conventional sized windows . Thus there is no conflict between the Centralia cars and the Kato. The Kato trucks will no doubt find their way underneath Centralia cars to get the correct prototype... although the Centralia trucks can be made to operate properly with a little work (squaring the sideframes and bolster and heat staking them together; body mounting the couplers to avoid the droopy talgo coupler mount....and maybe a set of Fox Valley 36" wheels for good measure).
    Even the prototypes didn't match colors after they rolled out of the shop (some batches of cars were painted with different brands of paint due to some corporate purchasing politics!!!) so, while some colors may be off, don't get all wound up with cars that might look good by themselves but are different from others... it is prototypical!!!
    Charlie Vlk
  18. umtrr-author

    umtrr-author TrainBoard Member

    There's no conflict if you want to model both trains as accurately as you can. Clearly they are different as described.

    There is a decision to make if you want "a Daylight" or "a nice looking Southern Pacific passenger train".

    For modelers who are thinking more generically, and let's not pretend that those folks aren't out there-- I see the first to market with the entire train as being the leader and the winner of the majority of the business.
  19. Calzephyr

    Calzephyr TrainBoard Supporter

    Thanks Charlie!
    Well... maybe the demons of Daylights past will be slain with two great Daylight sets.

    George... I have to agree with your statement about the 'first' out of the gate with a full train will get the majority of the business... and the other will get whatever is left over.
  20. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

    Grandpa Joe and all tuned in,

    Your collection of SP equipment sounds like mine. Hodge podge of Rivarossi, Atlas, Rivarossi built for Atlas, Aurora, ConCor and I have an odd ball or two. Recently, I purchased a Kato. four car set of two tone grey in the Lark paint scheme. Looking forward to Centrailia's and Kato's new contributions.

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