Questions about KATO And Atlas Locomotives

SteveN-trainz May 29, 2018

  1. SteveN-trainz

    SteveN-trainz TrainBoard Member

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    Q 1 Which brand do you prefer for locomotives.

    Q2 Which Brand produces high quality/ longer lasting locos

    Q3 Which brand has sturdier side sills for their locos like this is a general question not one about 1 locomotive please tell me your experiences on any loco from these brands you've owned

    im asking q3 because i had a arnold u25c and it was impossible to handle that locomotve with dislodging the sidesills so i would like to know which locos you've owned has sidesills that wont be dislodged that easily and I handled that locomotive like a baby even a little touch would dislodge it i am not over exaggerating just give me some examples of something that isnt like that thank you for reading.

    if you have anything you want me to answer if you dont understand what i wrote just leave a reply and i will expand on it thank
     
  2. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

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    I would say Kato simply because I have had locomotive with Kato produced mechanisms that were running well over the 20 year mark. As far as side sills go when the manufacturers started using finer separately applied hand rails the issues started with loose handrails and losing hand rails. A simple solution to that is the remove the handrails and apply a small touch of glue to the mounting holes.
     
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  3. SteveN-trainz

    SteveN-trainz TrainBoard Member

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    thank you so much for the info have a great day/night from where ever you are from
     
  4. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Steve, both are quality manufacturers and have a lot more positives than negatives about them. Kato's motors tend to run at higher speeds, and IMHO have better "fine adjust" with voltage. I prefer them, but that is simply a PREFERENCE. With correct setup, one can run Atlas and Kato together without concern of make, and they both look great.

    Neither has the fine detail of some of the newer models coming out (Scaletrains, newer IMRC, etc), but are both perfectly fine. As John already noted, the more fine detail, in n-scale, the more our handling can cause issues. But, that is what we want.
     
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  5. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

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    I have to agree with John and Rick. EXCEPT for Ricks last sentence. Not everybody wants all that super fine detail...for the very reason the OP posted. JMO.
     
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  6. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    True, especially anytime I break something, then I am like "why do they put these #$(@)$& fine details on these!"
     
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  7. Rich_S

    Rich_S TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Steven, I agree with the above posts. I have both Kato and Atlas locomotives and both brands are well built and good runners. Some of my Atlas and Kato locomotives are a over 20 years old and still run great.
     
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  8. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    SteveN-trainz, it may be worth noting that Kato actually built many of the locomotives sold by Atlas in the 1980s and 1990s.
     
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  9. Rich_S

    Rich_S TrainBoard Member

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    This is true, I have a couple of Atlas GP35's, that were actually built by Kato.
     
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  10. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Me too and they are probably my favorite units. I've never had a second's trouble with any Kato-built locomotive from any era.
     
  11. SteveN-trainz

    SteveN-trainz TrainBoard Member

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    oh yes back in the 80 to 90s kato used to build some locos for atlas that i am aware of. thanks for reminding me though!
     
  12. MK

    MK TrainBoard Member

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    And if you are going DCC, Kato, in general, are much easier to install decoders in than Atlas. No need to loosen the frame halves.
     
  13. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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    In all honesty, add the Walthers GP20 into the list of great running locos. My GP20 is my best running DC loco at slow speeds. I was given it as a basket case and it was easy to repair
     
  14. DarylK

    DarylK TrainBoard Member

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    Fox Valley Models outshines both Kato and Atlas.
    Daryl
     
  15. Rich_S

    Rich_S TrainBoard Member

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    This brings up another point, it depends on what era you are modeling. Since my favorite era is the 1960's and 1970's, it seems Atlas and Kato have produced a number of locomotives that fit my modeling era. Except for their steam locomotive, Fox valley has produced a number of excellent locomotives that fit in the 1980's to present day time period.
     
  16. Rich_S

    Rich_S TrainBoard Member

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    I have two Walthers / Life-Like GP38-2's that are very good runners and are nicely painted and detailed. With a little bit of surgery using a Dremel with a cutoff wheel, I was able to add the TCS CN decoders to both locomotives.

    DSCN0455.JPG

    All it took was a couple of notches in the front of the frame and the front half of the decoder slide right in. These are not Plug-n-Play decoders, they have to be hard wired to the motor, but I found the install to be pretty straight forward.
     
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  17. SteveN-trainz

    SteveN-trainz TrainBoard Member

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    THANKS FOR THE HELP IIN THE END IGOT A KATO ES44AC and i a very happy
     
  18. scottryan

    scottryan TrainBoard Member

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    This is a rather silly question. You can't model anything real without buying several brands of models since not every company makes every model of locomotive ever produced.

    Example: If you model the 1980s to the present, you will need SD60s and C40-8s. The only company to ever make those, to date, is Atlas.
     
  19. SteveN-trainz

    SteveN-trainz TrainBoard Member

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    im not trying to mode anything im just trying to have fun...
     
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  20. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

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    Kato and Atlas are very good. Fox Valley can be hit or miss from what I have seen. Not a knock, but had a lot of problems.

    I know there are others, that are hit and miss like some of the Bachmann.
     
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