What is a Good Lionel Steam engine for around $1000?

So I just looked at my collection and realized that I had 3 diesels and 1 steam locomotive. So I am deciding the next engine I will buy is going to be a steam. But I don't want to be spending $2000 because I'm only 14 so don't make a sufficient income. Let me know and I do want it to be a more modern engine

Original Post

Most, if not all current Lionel larger steam locomotives are running in the $1200 (Mikado's) range and up.  The Lion Chief plus with Bluetooth operation are in the $400-$500 range.  You may be able to do better through your local or favorite internet dealer.

Check out the latest Lionel catalog.

Brian

President, Chief Executive Officer

Penn American Railroad

"Serving the Basement"

 

Northern Central High Railers

Tri-State HiRailers

 

Eat, Sleep, Run Trains, Repeat !

I second the secondary market; in fact that is where I would go should I need something new. It does help if you know a bit about the mechanics or electronics as sometimes a non working engine is real cheap and an easy fix. The flip side of that is the engine is actually a basket case and needs a funeral. I got a great almost new post war 736 with the wheels jammed; it was a carpet tack.

At the age of 14 one could also consider you have many options coming your way, AND the time to be picky. Happy hunting.

Ernie

First as you didn't say do you want Lionel or MTH od doesn't matter. As said above a lot of nice engines even on Ebay used are a lot cheaper. And what are you looking for. I saw a K-Line Allegheny ( Virginian road name ) for $795 or best offer. goto Ebay click on price and shipping the most first. Avoid looking at the one for $500 as he has like $23500 shipping.  Basically goto the 2nd page then continue to find what your looking for

Bill

Brian gave you some great advice about the Lionel LionChief+. That appears to be Lionel's upcoming technology. Great deals can often be found in a break-out sale. Folks buy a RTR set and then sell off the individual components. There's a bunch on eBay right now; all under $500.

Go secondary unless you prefer all the fancy electronics. I haven't bought anything new since I was 12, and in the 6 years since have had plenty of fun with old postwar and prewar trains.

The Local O Gauge Nut, confined to the attic of the insane asylum known as the family home.

Round House,

    If you are looking for some new Legacy Steam engines that you could purchase for $1000 or under you may want to take a look at the Mikados in the 2017 Signature catalog. List price is $1300 but if you find a dealer that gives a 20% discount your right at $1040. The issue you will come up against is the built to order date has passed along with the BTO discounts. Try some of the forum sponsors they maybe able to help you out.

    Another engine that should be shipping soon is the Moguls in the 2016 V2 catalog. Listed for $900 you maybe able to get one for around $720. I have a TMCC Mogul and love it.

   As some have suggested looking at the For Sale forum is a good idea. There are currently Legacy Norfolk & Western Y6 and a Legacy SP Northern up for sale both for under $1000 (well under)

Good luck let us know what you end up with.

JohnB

You have left your future plans undefined, but permit me to make some suggestions based upon the pictures attached to your profile. As others, I suggest looking in the secondary market. There are a number of excellent scale-sized Lionel steam engine offerings from the past decade that have RS5 and TMCC that are at about half their original purchase prices. A TMCC engine, by the way, is likely to a better investment than a new LionChief engine over the long haul if you figure that Legacy is in your future. An M.T.H. selection could be run nicely in conventional mode with the option of taking up DCS in the future.

Have fun!

Bob

While I can easily afford it, I could never justify spending $1000  for a Chinese toy engine.  I've never spent more than $500 for an engine and that was years ago for the two 5340 Lionel scale Hudson's in my collection.  Most of my engines cost $225 or less  but I run 100% conventional operation and must have rock solid reliability.  If you wish to go this route you can run on a small budget. If you like remote operation gadgets ( as many do) ,  then be prepared to spend quite a bit more.  It all depends on what type of layout operation you wish to run. 

Builder of the Hill Lines ( New Delta Lines). Recreating history for the model RR community.

You can find really nice TMCC engines these days for excellent prices under $1000. Then for about $100, add the Super Chuffer, Chuff Generator from GunRunnerJohn, and tune up the smoke unit. You will have an awesome "Legacy like" steam engine for hundreds left.

Keep an eye out on the For Sale threads here to.

 

Ditto, most of my engines are second hand, and I've upgraded the way Laidoffsick has stated.   The word is patients.   Every engine eventually ends up on EBAY or right here for hundreds off list.   There's no reason to buy retail when in time you can have it for far less.

Buying trains today is like buying a car.  In this case the minute you pull it out of the box the depreciation can be huge.

New, Legacy Heavy Mikados are available at different places such as Nicholas Smith Trains and eBay for $930 or so.

I had two of the Legacy Light Mikados .... and I was very happy with them. Don't know if there are differences in the two models' running characteristics.

Good luck.

Matt Ryan

Denville, NJ

What's a "good" Lionel engine for a grand? Baby, at that price they ALL should be good. You can upgrade some other company's engines (like William's") for far less if you just can't live without all the fancy electronics junk in it. Don't be in a rush to spend the big bucks.

"You have to grow old. You don't have to grow up". Ray Bradbury

RoundHouseRails posted:

So I just looked at my collection and realized that I had 3 diesels and 1 steam locomotive. So I am deciding the next engine I will buy is going to be a steam. But I don't want to be spending $2000 because I'm only 14 so don't make a sufficient income. Let me know and I do want it to be a more modern engine

Young man, try this fella Tom...wrawroacx@windstream.net

I have a Lionel Legacy C&O berkshire in like new condition listed on the For Sale forum priced at $625 plus shipping.  That is a Legacy engine by the way!

Lots of good deals around if you take the time to look.

Good luck on your search and happy railroading,

Don

Counting this post back up 3, and check out the Union Pacific Legacy Big Boy that Tom Jr. has for sale, and I believe he has dropped the price more since the last time that I looked, it was about $900.00 dollar range then!............

 

Bunches. $1000 will get you a lot of loco from Lionel, even a new one, but I would definitely go second-hand. I do. "Second-hand" can mean used or all the way up to NIB. Nothing wrong with used. 

1K can also get you 2 great $500 locos.

Which one(s)? I don't know what you like.

Rocky Mountaineer posted:

Young man, if you have $1,000 burning a hole in your pocket and you're interested in a brand new Lionel Legacy streamlined NYC Hudson #5426 with J3 tender, Charlie Ro currently has L-82537 on sale for $999.95.  The pre-York sales are starting already!!! 

David

...... good thing I preordered that.......for...... alot more.....because.... I didn't want to miss out.....................never again

BTO shmee...t...o

(of course the spoked drive set that should have been boxpok was a nice insult to injury)

Laidoffsick posted:

You can find really nice TMCC engines these days for excellent prices under $1000. Then for about $100, add the Super Chuffer, Chuff Generator from GunRunnerJohn, and tune up the smoke unit. You will have an awesome "Legacy like" steam engine for hundreds left.

Keep an eye out on the For Sale threads here to.

Why bother.....hunt flea bay out here...the legacy Atlantic or 0-8-0 come up often...

Be patient...

Round House,

    I forgot to mention the Legacy Consolidations that were in the 2015 V2 catalog. They were not the most prototypical engines but they got a very good review from Eric's Trains. Good sound, great smoking whistle list price was around  $800 they should be in stock at some of the bigger Lionel Dealers like Nicholas Smith or Roe my guess would be $700.

JohnB

RoundHouseRails posted:

So I just looked at my collection and realized that I had 3 diesels and 1 steam locomotive. So I am deciding the next engine I will buy is going to be a steam. But I don't want to be spending $2000 because I'm only 14 so don't make a sufficient income. Let me know and I do want it to be a more modern engine

This whole discussion in a nutshell shows why the whole hobby of 0 gauge railroading is becoming extinct as hobbyists get older and older and anyone younger is simply priced out. Two thousand dollars for an engine is a joke as is $1,000.  I wonder how much of this stuff is mass produced some where in the far East and then sold for many times its original cost to the shrinking few who can afford this stuff.

John F posted:
RoundHouseRails posted:

So I just looked at my collection and realized that I had 3 diesels and 1 steam locomotive. So I am deciding the next engine I will buy is going to be a steam. But I don't want to be spending $2000 because I'm only 14 so don't make a sufficient income. Let me know and I do want it to be a more modern engine

This whole discussion in a nutshell shows why the whole hobby of 0 gauge railroading is becoming extinct as hobbyists get older and older and anyone younger is simply priced out. Two thousand dollars for an engine is a joke as is $1,000.  I wonder how much of this stuff is mass produced some where in the far East and then sold for many times its original cost to the shrinking few who can afford this stuff.

I respectfully disagree with you. First off I would like to say that I know many young people in this hobby and see that number grow. As far as mass production goes, if you don't like that. Simply don't buy that! The great thing about of hobby is that there are brass models and custom models available. I love Lionel as well as custom models. I think that a $2,000 model is expensive, but it's that buyers money. I hope you get another perspective, but I do agree that there needs to be cheaper locomotives, but I'm glad to see very high end models as well

RoundHouseRails posted:

So I just looked at my collection and realized that I had 3 diesels and 1 steam locomotive. So I am deciding the next engine I will buy is going to be a steam. But I don't want to be spending $2000 because I'm only 14 so don't make a sufficient income. Let me know and I do want it to be a more modern engine

Scale or Lionmaster?

I have the latest legacy Big Boy, Class A and Challenger in the Lionmaster line and they are pretty nice for the price they go for.

 

SDIV Tim posted:
RoundHouseRails posted:

So I just looked at my collection and realized that I had 3 diesels and 1 steam locomotive. So I am deciding the next engine I will buy is going to be a steam. But I don't want to be spending $2000 because I'm only 14 so don't make a sufficient income. Let me know and I do want it to be a more modern engine

Scale or Lionmaster?

I have the latest legacy Big Boy, Class A and Challenger in the Lionmaster line and they are pretty nice for the price they go for.

 

Scale. I think I'm going to get a shay next. I'm not sure 

It's inappropriate to suggest any engines without knowing what kind of layout you have, what size curves it has, etc. All those things dictate what kind of engine will work for you.

Personally, I think it's foolish for you to blow $1000 on a steam locomotive at your age. In a couple of years, your focus is probably going to completely change, to cars, girls, and a lot of other things. An expensive engine is not a wise thing for you to blow your money on right now.

I think it would be best for you to be looking at a LionChief Plus steam engine, and spend less than $500. Put the remainder you have into savings. In a few years, you'll be very glad you did.

It's Fantastic to see Young Pioneers interning this Wonderful Hobby of Model Railroading....I would read OGR MAGAZINE and CLASSIC TOY TRAINS, get oodles and gobbs of ideas, read the train adds and go from there....Also mentioned above by DGJONES, his 2696 C&O Berkshire in Legacy Steamer as it is awesome in Sounds and Legacy Operation at a very affordable price.  IMG_7944

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breezinup posted:

I think it would be best for you to be looking at a LionChief Plus steam engine, and spend less than $500. Put the remainder you have into savings. In a few years, you'll be very glad you did.

I second this. Check out the Lion Chief Plus line of locos. There are several very nice steamers available in a variety of road names. With LC+ you can run the locos with the supplied remote control or conventionally.

All for much less than $1000.

 

TCA, LCCA

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