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A few weeks back I started a post asking about the Quality / Level of Detail of the Scale size K-Line Mikado.  I already had a Williams Brass (NYC #5101) Mikado.  After the responses I decided to buy the K-Line (NYC #K3670-1838CC).

I am posting this to help others that may be doing similar "shopping".

The cab number for the Williams is 279, K-Line 1838.  The ruler has 15" of markings.

This is a visual, not a performance comparison.  It should be noted that while the price I paid for the K-Line was more then the Williams, I view them as "competitive" with one another.  The reasoning being, the only electronics in the Williams is the ECRU and constant / directional lighting.  The K-Line is TMCC and has Railsounds, Puffing Smoke and Electro-Coupler.

I want to mention that the K-Line being Die-Cast definitely weighs more, particularly the the tender. The Williams has (4) traction tires the K-Line (2) but they have a tread.

The Williams (as often discussed) has Gloss black paint, the K-Line is Satin finish.  The wheels (not drivers) are Silver on the Williams and Blackened on the K-Line.  The Roof Vents slide on the K-Line they are fixed on the Williams.  The K-Line has firebox glow.

One interesting item is that the Williams locomotive is about 7/8" longer than the K-Line.  The tenders are basically the same length.  I lined up the top back edge of the cab roof.  When you look at the side view picture, the K-Line being closer looks longer, but that is not the case.  About 1/2" of the extra length is behind the drivers.  The wheelbase of the drivers is within 1/10".

Some other differences are the wheel on the trailing truck of the K-Line is significantly large in diameter.  The pilots vary; Williams has a "cowcatcher", the K-Line has "footboards".  The stack on the K-Line is taller.

I need to find information on the prototypes, to determine which is more "prototypical".

The railing, ladders and handrails are much smaller in diameter on the Williams.  In general with the brass construction the detailing is "finer".  Please note I am using that terminology (meaning more delicate) not making a judgement.

So you might be wondering which I like better?  Some things I like better on one, some I like better on the other.  Overall though, think I like the K-Line better.

Please let me know if this post is helpful, and which you like better.

Box2Box1Open K-LineOpen WilliamsOpen Williams2Side View3 Qrt Frt3 Qrt Low2FrontFrt KFrt WCab KCab WCab Bk KCab Bk WCab BackTopBottomBottom AngleBottom SideBottom FrtBottom BackTender TopTender FrtTender Back


Images (25)
  • Box2
  • Box1
  • Open K-Line
  • Open Williams
  • Open Williams2
  • Side View
  • 3 Qrt Frt
  • 3 Qrt Low2
  • Front
  • Frt K
  • Frt W
  • Cab K
  • Cab W
  • Cab Bk K
  • Cab Bk W
  • Cab Back
  • Top
  • Bottom
  • Bottom Angle
  • Bottom Side
  • Bottom Frt
  • Bottom Back
  • Tender Top
  • Tender Frt
  • Tender Back
Original Post

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My preference would also be the K-Line version, mostly because the tender has more detail (water tank hatch, rivets, back-up light to name a few), but also because of the TMCC.  I concur that the ladders are over-sized compared to the Williams, but a good modeler could remedy that, if desired.  Oh, and the difference between "cow-catcher" and "foot boards" could simply be the time period modeled by the builder.


Side by side it's amazing what jumps out at you, well at least me. The head lamp looks toy like and silly on the Williams, when sitting next to the k-line. The use of the word "finer" is perfect. The rails the lamps, it all just looks better.  At the moment I am without a layout, but I am doing display shelves and this has me thinking, what looks good on its own may not look good when side by side.

Thanks for the replies and likes.

Chuck - Thanks for the comment on the front pilot difference.

Peter -  It really was interesting to me seeing them side by side.

I like the Brass I have a lot, been once I purchased a K-Line Die-Cast Hudson it got me thinking.

That is why I wanted to do this direct comparison.  Really hope this helps others.

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