Brass SD45 Production samples

"Having compared diesel models st the show, Key quality and detail doesn't compare to even OMI which is better in my opinion."

 

Matt, you're fairly new to O scale brass and very exuberant, which the hobby needs. I can remember my exuberant days back in the 80's and 90's and they were great. Having owned maybe 100+ OMI models over the years (pre 2000) and maybe 25 KEY models, I think your statement might be a bit sweeping. I can tell you from personal experience KEY models were built to a higher standard, held their value better and ran better out of the box. Again, this is for 2000 and earlier imports. After that time, OMI went modern and KEY stayed with transition era locos. I've owned new KEY locos imported in the past 17 years, but no OMI. 

When OMI went to the tower drive in the late 90's and offered factory paint, it was a game changer for them and it became a toss-up as to who imported better models. OMI was always more prolific in their offerings back in the Tom Marsh "hey days" during the 80's and 90's.  But their models were know for cold solder joints, loud and problematic drives, crooked number boards and headlights and didn't come factory painted. Sometime in the late 90's I believe they went to factory paint. All except for their 1993 run of the Union Pacific 3 Unit Turbine, which it is one of the most accurate and beautiful models they ever imported.  

In later years OMI only built modern diesels, that are of no interest to me, but I hear they are good quality. But, KEY units have always been built and painted well and ran good. Check out the resale value of OMI and KEY F and E units and the KEY models still bring twice as much and are harder to find.  

So, I don't think it's so easy to label one current day importer better than another, it's what you prefer and it's what they are importing at the time.  

 

Mark has obviously raised the bar with this new SD-45, so we'll see if anyone cares to follow his lead. 

 

Butch

I was actually only qualifying my statement that I compared 2 different models, the Alco PAs in Santa Fe and the E6s in Santa Fe both were made by key and OMI and in my opinion I thought the OMI models looked better. I'm new to O scale brass and I'm trying to learn and I'm asking people things. I know it's not a black or white comparison it's very subjective and people have their loyalties. Right now I have deposits on three locos and have a verbal commitment on two more locos and two cabooses but those are just twinkles in the importers eyes right now. So technically I don't own any two Rail O scale brass. Now at some point I will start buying second hand models and I'm trying very hard to learn about them so when I find a model I like I can be as informed and knowledgeable as possible so I can get what I want. 

I do not want to come off as anti Key, pro OMI or draw a line in the sand as whos the better importer, there are a ton of factors to take into consideration. Now you don't learn unless you ask questions and I'm tlearning about all this stuff with a fresh perspective. I come from a different aspect of the hobby and have a different mentality and I'm going to run everything I buy until the wheels fall off so how they run is just as important to me as how they look. Right now I'm just trying to understand the importers, the generalities of them, how the look, accuracy and most importantly how well they run and then I'll refine it from there. 

Now this is an SD45 pilot sample thread about the new guy in town and I know for a fact the drives in these models will be phenomenal. I saw it run, I even tried to stall it and it wasn't happening so I'm not worried about the stuff I ordered. And for accuracy I'm supremely confident they will extremely accurate and the detail will be second to none in diesels. These new models will blow away the other ones in all aspects and I expect should be a game changer

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

Excellent way to look at the hobby Matt and I didn't mean to preach, just wanted you to keep an open mind. You're going to have a ball hunting for, learning about and acquiring 2nd models...I sure did. It becomes a passion and you sound like you've already caught the fever. Have fun.

Butch 

Bob do you like the Key models better?  On my list of locos I want is a set of PA's and a set of E6's. I just don't know enough about them to say I'll get this one or that one. I know if I get OMI models I will need to get the drive reworked I'm sure. but I'll have to check for accuracy as well. I have a ton of late photos of late PA's from 4 or 5 roads that I can compare to lost of Santa Fe and SP plus I do have snata fe E6 photos some where in the collection to. I'm thinking ill model transition era as this affords me the opportunity to run all the greats but I will have some modern because I grew up on modern. when I finally do get my models I will be relegated to running at the museum for a time until I decide what to do

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

Matt, if Bob doesn't mind I can comment on the KEY E-6's and Bob can comment on both.  The last run 2014-15 (might be the only run) of the KEY E-6's are a knock out.  The Santa Fe units were especially nice and there are photos and videos of them on the internet.  I know Gary Schrader had several videos and you can still see some great photos of this model on the KEY website.  Gary was involved in the correctness of the build, just as he has done on the new KEY AC's, which are incredible.  

OMI imported their E-6's and E-3's maybe in the late 80's or early 90's and they had tank drives. I don't think they repeated this offering again. They were imported in natural brass finish and required paint, lighting, glazing and drive updates.  Highly detailed Samhongso or Ajin models, like most OMI diesels, but required the modeler to finish them.

The KEY E-6's are beautifully factory painted, lighted, glazed and had a new improved drive, designed by Roger Lewis (Wasatch Models). They had illuminated work lights above the trucks and really neat Marrs light plus cab,instrument panel and engine room lights with simulated prime movers (highly detailed and painted brass panels) you can see through the side screening.  They also ran as smooth as any model out there and quiet as a Swiss watch. They are DC only as getting a consensus on which decoder to install was impossible. But adding your own decoder is not that difficult. 

All in all, a real home run of a model.  Due to limited years of prototype operation I've seen them on the secondary market, brand new, for much less than they cost the original owner. But, you'll still spend $1000-1250 per unit.  In the long run these are the models you should shoot for.  More expensive that OMI's, but your buying a 21st century designed and built model in all respects. 

Hope this helps.

Butch

I cannot comment on the E-6.  I do not like the shovel nose, and prefer the E-7.  I love the lines of the PA.  And believe me, I am far from a nit-picker, preferring sand cast PAs to almost anything else.  here are a couple shots:Nose DRGWNose crop 2

Attachments

Photos (2)
bob2 posted:

Top is obviously prototype, and stolen; bottom is CLW sand cast, Lionel (best, in my opinion), Overland, and MTH in nickel silver, and yet to be finished.  You tell me if Overland looks correct?

OK, not a problem!

OMI Windshield looks the best to me, Lionel windshield is second. The other two are abominations. OMI is best overall

Simon

Matt Makens posted:

Bob do you like the Key models better?  On my list of locos I want is a set of PA's and a set of E6's. I just don't know enough about them to say I'll get this one or that one. I know if I get OMI models I will need to get the drive reworked I'm sure. but I'll have to check for accuracy as well. I have a ton of late photos of late PA's from 4 or 5 roads that I can compare to lost of Santa Fe and SP plus I do have snata fe E6 photos some where in the collection to. I'm thinking ill model transition era as this affords me the opportunity to run all the greats but I will have some modern because I grew up on modern. when I finally do get my models I will be relegated to running at the museum for a time until I decide what to do

Matt,     Do yourself a favor and get PROTOTYPE photos of the stuff you want to buy. Study them and make your own decision because YOU are the guy you have to please.  Most all of this stuff varies by BUILDER, and even locos within the same run can have slight differences because different individuals have worked on them. Goes with them being hand made. Beauty, as they say is in the eye of the beholder. Choose carefully.

Good Luck!

Simon

Stubby? The modern CLW is indeed stubby and not tapered.  These are all considerably longer and tapered.  My quarrel with Overland can be seen by comparing the part above the windshield and below the roof with that in the prototype photo.

Yes, some find the sand cast models abominable.  There are many who appreciate them for their historical connection to our hobby.  It really does take all kinds - not all of us are serious enough about trains to spring for a $3000 Diesel model.

Man I prolly have 500 pictures of Alco PAs that my dad took back in college so that's not an issue. I do I'm quite a ways away from buying 2nd hand models. I got an email today from Erik saying he will be opening orders for the sd40-2 and requiring deposits. He's making a limited number of premium models and those are first come first served basis. The 45 will be here in a year and the -2 hopefully the next year so that's where my money's going

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

Where does one even buy Key Models? There is no contact info on their website  and no dealer listing. Im considering some F-units on their next run but have no idea  where to get order them

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

Matt Makens posted:

Where does one even buy Key Models? There is no contact info on their website  and no dealer listing. Im considering some F-units on their next run but have no idea  where to get order them

Weren't you at the Chicago meet?  Didn't talk to Roger at the Key tables? 


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

I was at the march meet but I didn't talk to Roger as Key didn't have anything I was interested in. Then after the meet they announced the F units

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

Matt Makens posted:

I was at the march meet but I didn't talk to Roger as Key didn't have anything I was interested in. Then after the meet they announced the F units

A missed opportunity............to talk to someone regardless of what Key had on the table at the time......and to get their contact information.

One of the great things about the March Meet are the opportunities to meet people.....


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

Thanks HIBAR, that's what I was looking for. Santiago, I'm sure you're right but I just recently started to pay attention and by recently I mean Sunday. Ive been a bit busy with other stuff.

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

That sd40-2 premium version is going to be an amazing work of art

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif   There is also the proposed  ''Premium''  DD40AX for those of us who like very large locomotives. I must have at least one!         

Yeah, I think NIKKORMAT was trying to post with a quote but didn't know how since it's not all that obvious how to do it. NIKKORMAT, you have to go to the original post and use the actions tab to reply with quote. 

As for the DD40 premium model, Erik needs 30 more reservations to make that a go and they'd be like 6k. So if you're interested, email him and it'll get there faster.

Now I had aaked him about doing some older diesels like E units and F units and his hope is to get to do 2 projects a year. One in modern and one older like transition era diesel per year. F units would be at the top of the list along with E units. So he's planning on doing that stuff too.

My focus will be transition era circa 1955 give or take 5 years so I can run all the great stuff and have my favorite passenger trains. But I'll supplement with some modern stuff. And a DD40 cuz they're just cool.

Right now I'm just working on streamlining my transition from 3 rail to 2 rail and not obtaining any more projects.

 

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

I dunno, I'm in on the SD45 and SD40-2 projects as those are my favorites but then I'll cool my heels a bit and concentrate on the era I want to model in and start selling off my 3 rail and converting what I want to keep

MTH Authorized Service Tech

President Chief Operations Officer, The Lenny Lines

 

I love my trains!!!

 

http://www.netanimations.net/Moving-picture-steam-locomotive-running-animated-gif.gif

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