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Model Information: Life-Like introduced the SW9/1200 model in 1997. In 2003, they added the SW8/600/900 which is a very similar model which uses the same mechanism. It is fairly high quality and runs well when it can get good pickup. It is prone to stalling, however, whenever it has slightly dirty wheels, encounters slightly dirty track or runs over a turnout. For this reason, they are best run in pairs or at high speeds.
For the older models, the reason for the stalling is due to the fact that it is simply a small, lightweight engine. Even though the chassis is all-metal and split-frame with a free-floating weight inside the cab, it just doesn't weigh all that much. Without enough heft, it is hard to keep conductivity with the track. The motor is s 5-pole skew-wound job. All eight wheels provide pickup and drive. Directional lighting is provided by an LED-equipped PC board mounted to the front of the chassis. The model uses chemically blackened wheels. Early runs used body-mounted Rapido couplers. Later versions feature Accumate or MTL couplers. The couplers are held in place with a plastic clip to permit easy swapping with the couplers of your choice.
In 2017, in cooperation with Micro-Trains, this mechanism was overhauled to create a smoother running, fully DCC-Ready version. Walthers supplies the mechanisms for the latest 2017 DCC-Ready version to Micro-Trains which uses its own shell for their switchers.
DCC Information: For the older versions of this model, there is no specific support for DCC on these models, but installing a decoder in the cab is a usual solution. A wired DCC decoder installation for this model can be found on the following: Brad Myers' N-scale DCC decoder installs blog. André Kritzinger's Chessie System in N scale website.
For the newer versions of this model (2018+), the mechanism supports drop-in decoders. TCS Both the TX MT1500 or Digitrax DN-126M2 decoders will work.
737 examples of this locomotive model were built for American railroads, 287 were built for Canadian railroads 4 were built for Brazilian Railroads, 25 were built for a Chilean Industrial firm, and 3 were built for the Panama Canal Railway. A cow-calf variation, the TR12, was cataloged, but none were built. A few units were built with dynamic brakes, featuring large square box with a fan on top of the hood, right in front of the cab.
An SW1200RS is a variation of the standard SW1200 that featured large front and rear (on some units) numberboard housings, EMD Flexicoil B-B trucks, and larger fuel tanks for roadswitcher service. The majority of the Canadian National and Canadian Pacific SW1200 fleets were purchased as SW1200RS units. The Sandersville Railroad Company EMD SW1200 road number SAN 1200 formerly SAN 200 was originally built with the V-12 EMD 567C Prime Mover but it was replaced with a V-12 EMD 645 Prime Mover, the two both produce 1,200 Horsepower, even though the same motor in the EMD SW1500 produces 1,500 Horsepower. The SAN 1200 also has EMD Flexcoil trucks instead of the standard switcher trucks found on other EMD SW1200s.
Road Name History:
Burlington Northern operated between 1970 and 1996.
Its historical lineage begins in the earliest days of railroading with the chartering in 1848 of the Chicago and Aurora Railroad, a direct ancestor line of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad, which lends Burlington to the names of various merger-produced successors.
Burlington Northern purchased the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway on December 31, 1996 to form the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway (later renamed BNSF Railway), which was owned by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corporation.*
Read more on Wikipedia.
It was founded in the 1950s by a company that pioneered extruded foam ice chests under the Lifoam trademark. Because ice chests are a summer seasonal item, the company needed a way to keep the factory operating year round. As model railroading was becoming popular in the post-war years, they saw this as an opportunity and so manufactured extruded foam tunnels for model trains. Over the years, Life-Like expanded into other scenery items, finally manufacturing rolling stock beginning in the late 1960s. At some point in the early 1970s, Life-Like purchased Varney Inc. and began to produce the former Varney line as its own.
The Canadian distributor for Life-Like products, Canadian Hobbycraft, saw a missing segment in market for Canadian model prototypes, and started producing a few Canadian models that were later, with a few modifications, offered in the US market with US roadnames.
In 2005, the company, now known as Lifoam Industries, LLC, decided to concentrate on their core products of extruded foam and sold their model railroad operations to Wm. K. Walthers.
Read more on Wikipedia and The Train Collectors Association.
Item created by: Alain LM on 2017-06-10 06:43:55. Last edited by gdm on 2018-03-27 14:21:46
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