Walthers' yearly name trains...

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Amtrak207
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Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Amtrak207 » Fri Jul 23, 2010 6:52 am

It was brought up in the 2011 Walthers PRR Broadway Limited thread regarding how some modelers would like to see other name trains produced in the future, after thinking about it, I believe that that idea deserves its own thread and discussion.

For starters, a quick look back reveals the following series from Year 1.

2006 - The Super Chief - Santa Fe Railroad
2007 - The Empire Builder - Great Northern Railway
2008 - Twin Cities Hiawatha - The Milwaukee Road
2008a -Twin Cities Hiawatha - The Milwaukee Road - UP colors
2009 - The 20th Century Limited - New York Central Railroad
2010 - City of Everywhere - Union Pacific Railroad
2011 - The Broadway Limited - Pennsylvania Railroad
2011a - The Super Chief - Santa Fe Railroad (Version B - metal plated finish, new "Regal" 4-4-2 sleeper
2012 - ???????

From the LHS I go to, when they spoke to their Walthers rep. regarding these passenger trains, he remarked that the idea was to do the Super Chief, and see how the sales were, with the Empire Builder train on reserve as a possible "year after" follow up, if sales weren't up to par, it would end with the Super Chief. Well we saw how well that did, hence the Empire Builder introduction, that pushed sales even farther; and the decision was made to continue a "series" of yearly famed passenger trains.

Last time I personally spoke to Walthers via e-mail to their Customer Service Department, (I am not sure if I am allowed to post first names here, so I won't out of respect for her privacy), but the female that replied stated that the yearly passenger train success surpassed Walthers' expectations in regards to popularity and revenue, and that rest-assured, the annual passenger train series will be in production for quite some time.

With that in mind, some modelers have noticed that Walthers seems to be alternating the geographical region of the last few years name trains starting with the Hiawatha (Midwest), 20th Century (East), UP Cities (West), Broadway (East)...

2012 should be an interesting year for the name train, I would be money that you will see a SP Sunset Limited, as a Florida train has not been done yet, or anything in the Gulf region.

Possible future runs....
The Panama Limited - Illinois Central
The Capitol Limited - B&O
The Silver Meteor - SAL
North Coast Limited - NP
Crescent Limited - Southern RR
Phoebe Snow - DL&W
The Lake Cities - Erie / EL

While I would LOVE to see a Phoebe and Lake Cities, I strongly think you will most likely see the Panama Limited, North Coast Limited, Crescent Limited, and especially an SP Sunset Limited train.


PS... Walthers never said it had to be a train in the streamliner era now did they? Maybe an Auto Train ? (no no, not Amtrak, but the actual Auto Train Corp.)

Will I have just touched on a few points, feel free to chime in.

I believe that the annual train idea is one of the best, if not the best, idea Walthers has going.

-Tom

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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Mirai Zikasu » Fri Jul 23, 2010 11:30 am

I've got an idea. Their 2012 named train should be...

"THE NORTHEAST REGIONAL."

Retool the Amfleet Is so that modelers can get an accurate model of one of the most prominent modern coaches for the first time in 30 years, commission Atlas to make new AEM-7s (or possibly an updated AEM-7AC) as the things are ridiculously difficult to find anymore even secondhand, and finally release some single-level cars in a modern Amtrak phase. (It'll have been a nine-year wait for Amfleets in that phase by then.)

conrail71
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by conrail71 » Fri Jul 23, 2010 12:17 pm

I think an Amtrak "Lake Shore Limited" would be cool! It would kinda tie in with the 20th Century Limited.
Mike
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Ken S.
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Ken S. » Fri Jul 23, 2010 4:15 pm

Mirai Zikasu wrote:I've got an idea. Their 2012 named train should be...

"THE NORTHEAST REGIONAL."

Retool the Amfleet Is so that modelers can get an accurate model of one of the most prominent modern coaches for the first time in 30 years, commission Atlas to make new AEM-7s (or possibly an updated AEM-7AC) as the things are ridiculously difficult to find anymore even secondhand, and finally release some single-level cars in a modern Amtrak phase. (It'll have been a nine-year wait for Amfleets in that phase by then.)
Which would raise the price about $50 and cause more Bachmann Amfleets to sell despite the visual and mechanical flaws (the wheels tend to squeal horribly after a few months or so and cause the cars to become heavier then normal).

Amtrak tends to be among the second tier roadnames issued for the Name Train cars and don't really sell well. I've picked up Amtrak versions of the Original Super Chief's Dorm Lounge and the Empire Builder's Great Dome (the scheme I got it in might be the exception to my comment above since there's only 1 in that scheme and the prototype is known to roam around the country) at discounted prices from MB Klein.
2006 - The Super Chief - Santa Fe Railroad
2007 - The Empire Builder - Great Northern Railway
2008 - Twin Cities Hiawatha - The Milwaukee Road
2008a -Twin Cities Hiawatha - The Milwaukee Road - UP colors
2009 - The 20th Century Limited - New York Central Railroad
2010 - City of Everywhere - Union Pacific Railroad
2011 - The Broadway Limited - Pennsylvania Railroad
2011a - The Super Chief - Santa Fe Railroad (Version B - metal plated finish, new "Regal" 4-4-2 sleeper
2012 - ???????
To add to the list
2007a - The Empire Builder - Great Northern Railway - Big Sky Blue
2007b - The Empire Builder - Burlington Northern

I wouldn't mind seeing the IC's City of new Orleans for the 2012 train. A Midwest train would break the east/west trend that seems to be developing.

p42thedowneaster
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by p42thedowneaster » Sun Jul 25, 2010 12:09 am

How about:
*The Alaska RR (old or new)
*D&RG Ski Train
*American Orient Express

Ken S.
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Ken S. » Sun Jul 25, 2010 12:40 am

p42thedowneaster wrote:How about:
*The Alaska RR (old or new)
*D&RG Ski Train
*American Orient Express
Bachmann is producing the ARR CRC Domes.
Walthers seems to be pushing the P2K engines with the streamliners. The Ski Train would require Trainline F40PHs to be run.
The AOE cars came from many different trains. I know they had a Great Dome and an NYC Obs among the cars.

Amtrak207
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Amtrak207 » Sun Jul 25, 2010 9:24 am

I would like to see the Phoebe Snow personally, but we'll see...

westr
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by westr » Sun Jul 25, 2010 1:29 pm

If the east-west pattern continues, Walthers should be releasing a west coast train after the Broadway Limited, though since they are also re-releasing the Super Chief, they could go either way. (Brilliant move on Walthers part, btw, holding back on one sleeper everyone wanted but didn't absolutely need to have, then finally releasing it with the new plated version of the train, making everyone re-buy the entire train since that one plated sleeper woudn't match their existing unplated train.) I personally think walthers should release a North Coast Limited, but the release of the plated Super Chief suggests Walthers is planning a new plated stainless steel streamliner. If it's a west coast train, I think the 1956 CB&Q Denver Zephyr would be best choice, with lots of dome cars and plated Es. Since the California Zephyr's been done by BLI and another ATSF train isn't likely so soon after the Super Chief, the only other stainless west coast streamliner would be the Sunset Limited, but it's not as distinctive as the Denver Zephyr would be and it was usually pulled by PAs, while Walthers seems to be focusing on trains that use Es or Fs right now.
Amtrak207 wrote:I would be money that you will see a SP Sunset Limited, as a Florida train has not been done yet, or anything in the Gulf region.
SP's Sunset Limited only went as far east as New Orleans. It wasn't extended to Florida until long after Amtrak took over and switched to Superliners.

As far as an east coast/southern train, I would think either the Southern Crescent because of the name recognition and because Southern kept running it for a while after Amtrak so it might appeal to those who model the 1970s, or the Silver Meteor because of the distinctive glass-topped sleeper-lounge and that both SAL and SCL versions could be made, plus Walthers already has the observation car: the Budd Observation they've made for years is correct for the Silver Meteor.
Amtrak207 wrote:Maybe an Auto Train ? (no no, not Amtrak, but the actual Auto Train Corp.)
With the new UP cars and the ATSF Regal-series 4-4-2 in addition to what they already make, Walthers is coming closer to having everything necessary for an early Auto-Train. I think a Silver Meteor consist would get them even closer. P2000's U30B even gives them a starting point for the U36Bs. They still need the ex-ATSF full domes, and they already did the GN ones so they just need new fluted sides. The part I don't see is the ex-WP California Zephyr domes (since BLI already did the Cal Z I doubt Walthers ever will), but maybe they could get by without them. Plus the ex-ATSF baggage turned boiler car and the home-built caboose might be tricky. Maybe Auto-Train paint schemes are coming as a secondary release on the appropriate cars one of these years though.
p42thedowneaster wrote:How about:
*The Alaska RR (old or new)
*D&RG Ski Train
*American Orient Express
The Alaska RR got a lot of cars from UP and several of the new Walthers UP cars are correct for them, so I wouldn't be surprised if Walthers relased them in Alaska colors eventually.

The Ski Train always used odd cars, either those really old heavyweight coaches or those Canadian lightweights with the strange trucks in the later years. Plus the Alco PB on F-Unit trucks as a generator car. I don't see Walthers making any of that.

I don't see a complete AOE as some of those cars were so heavily modified that they'd be unique, but some of the existing Walthers cars are correct, like the GN great dome and the 20th Century Obs, and I could see Walthers at least releasing those cars in the paint scheme to tack onto trains of Amtrak Superliners. After all, they did the Friends of 261 versions of the Skytop and Superdome.
Ken S. wrote:Bachmann is producing the ARR CRC Domes.
Walthers seems to be pushing the P2K engines with the streamliners. The Ski Train would require Trainline F40PHs to be run.
Bachmann also makes a model of the former ATSF full dome as it was used on Auto-Train with larger letterboards. These cars did go to Alaska and were the predecessors to the CRC Ultradomes, so the "McKinley Explorer" paint scheme Bachmann paints them in is correct, though they are missing the huge air conditioners that were added on top of the dome. The Bachmann model has been around a long time and isn't quite up to today's standards, though I think its a lot better than it used to be. I think the two types of cars did run together for while.

The Ski Train didn't have the F40PHs until 2000. Before that, it usually ran with freight units: GP40s or GP60s or sometimes tunnel motors or the F9s from the Rio Grande Zephyr. Walthers makes P2000 Fs, and P2000 made GP60s that Walthers could bring back, but the motive power is the least of the problems with modeling the Ski Train, as I've already mentioned.

Amtrak207
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Amtrak207 » Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:25 pm

I didn't even realize the SP Sunset only went as far as NOL (Used to Amtrak lol), then again nowadays, they do too!

I agree on the brilliant move on Walthers' part. I would love to see a North Coast Limited as well, and I totally forgot about the CB&Q Denver Zephyr! I wouldn't doubt a metal plated stainless steel streamliner is in the works as well.

Another note, every streamliner they did so far went through Chicago.

Personal note, I have to commend Walthers here, being in my early 30's, this streamliner series gave me a glimpse as to "what if I lived just a few decades sooner" realization. I have always found the streamliner trains fascinating and FULL of history. From a modern modeler, I have to give credit where credit is due; I love the history Walthers does with each train, as well as now the limited run certificates, history of the cars, the grand lore, etc. It is truly a history lesson in every car's box, and on the website as well as newsletters.

I look forward to purchasing the Broadway set (also, for you PRR fans, a metal-plated ATSF Super Chief 4-4-2 Regal sleeper would be authentic in your PRR consist, as through-service sleepers were accurate for the mid to late 1950's (I believe 1957 was the last year for this? Please correct me if I am wrong!) But that is a way to tie in the upcoming Walthers Super Chief car to your PRR Broadway set.

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Otto Vondrak
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Otto Vondrak » Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:45 pm

I'd say we are more likely to see something for Illinois Central or Northern Pacific or Burlington before we saw something from smaller "regional roads" like Rio Grande or Lackawanna. Alaska Railroad is just out of the question (not enough market share).

Just my two cents.

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westr
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by westr » Mon Jul 26, 2010 1:27 am

Otto Vondrak wrote:Alaska Railroad is just out of the question (not enough market share).
The Alaska Railroad will probably never be the big passenger train of the year, but that doesn't mean Walthers won't release the paint scheme if they already have correct cars in the UP series (like when they did the Empire Builder cars in Burlington Northern.) Athearn's done 3 runs of the SD70MAC in Alaska, plus F7s, GP35s, GP40-2s, cabooses, freight cars and even a rotary plow that is now being re-released. And Bachmann went to the trouble of making both versions of the Colorado Railcar Ultra Domes for Holland America's McKinley Explorer that runs on the Alaska Railroad, even though they already make the ex-ATSF full-dome in the scheme. Apparently there IS a market for Alaska Railroad stuff. All that wouldn't be available otherwise.

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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Amtrak207 » Mon Jul 26, 2010 12:29 pm

It was discussed on the Model Railroader msg board regarding the Broadway Limited and Super Chief about lighted drumheads and tailsigns.

If you want these items for these two runs, as well as future streamliner runs, I strongly suggest that you e-mail Walthers and let them know! While it is known that Walthers does check modeler message boards; a direct e-mail is always better. Walthers DOES listen to their customers (hence added grab irons, properly tinted windows, etc), and the more requests they get regarding illuminated tail ends, they more likely they will do it.

It is still early enough for them to incorporate this into these two runs, as well as future ones.

So send those e-mails off to:

newproducts@walthers.com

-Tom

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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by CBass1307 » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:12 pm

Seeing as to how they have no trains for the southeast thus far, I would guess that they would go with something down there, but since I model New England, I would like to see something up here at some point. I think the most popular would be NYC's "The New England States". I would love to see one of New Haven Trains (The Federal, Merchant's Limited, or another) done. Least likely to ever happen would be one the the Maine Trains (The Gull proabably having the most chance).

Amtrak207
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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Amtrak207 » Fri Aug 06, 2010 1:07 pm

If they continue with a western streamliner for 2012, maybe the North Coast Limited. But I can def. see a Panama Limited as a central U.S. train.

With the metal plating being a hot seller, Southern Crescent anyone???

-Tom

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Re: Walthers' yearly name trains...

Post by Otto Vondrak » Fri Aug 06, 2010 1:56 pm

CBass1307 wrote:Seeing as to how they have no trains for the southeast thus far, I would guess that they would go with something down there, but since I model New England, I would like to see something up here at some point. I think the most popular would be NYC's "The New England States". I would love to see one of New Haven Trains (The Federal, Merchant's Limited, or another) done. Least likely to ever happen would be one the the Maine Trains (The Gull proabably having the most chance).
What's the difference between the New England States and the Twentieth Century Limited? Okay, I know there are differences, but Walthers just got done with an NYC series, so I doubt they will do another. Why the NES? Why not the James Whitcomb Riley or the Wolverine or...?

A New Haven train would be nice (Yankee Clipper, Merchants, Federal, etc), but again, regional roads like NH, D&H, B&M, MEC et al will most likely never make the list.

Southeastern railroads are a good candidate! There's a possibility we may someday see a B&O Royal Blue or a N&W Pocahontas or the Southern Crescent or Seaboard's Orange Blossom Special, or perhaps even the KCS's Southern Belle... Probably sooner than we would see a C&EI or FEC train.

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