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2-6-0 Mogul Steam Locomotives


Southern Region U Class 2-6-0 31806

2-6-0 “Mogul” Steam Locomotives  

Possibly the second most frequent steam locomotive reproduced in large scale is the ubiquitous 2 - 6 - 0 commonly referred to as a “Mogul” wheel arrangement (although no one appears to know why).

Under the Whyte notation for the classification of steam locomotives, 2-6-0 represents the wheel arrangement of two leading wheels on one axle, usually in a leading truck, six powered and coupled driving wheels on three axles and no trailing wheels as illustrated  below.







In the United States and Europe, the 2-6-0 wheel arrangement was mainly used on tender locomotives. This type of locomotive was widely built in the United States from the early 1860s to the 1920s.

Early 2-6-0's had a fixed truck and it was not until 1860, after the single-axle swivelling truck was patented in the United Kingdom, that the first true 2-6-0's incorporating this refinement were built in North America.

It is possible that the locomotive class name was derived from a locomotive named ‘Mogul’ but, as is often the case, there are conflicting views as to where this particular engine originates from. 


BR Stanier 2-6-0 Mogul Steam Locomotive

In the UK the 2-6-0 wheel arrangement was found to be ideal for mixed-traffic locomotives. Although the first examples were built to a design of William Adams for the Great Eastern Railway in 1878-79 and proved unsuccessful  many later designs of 2-6-0’s were subsequently brought into successful service. This continued under the Big Four British railway companies after 1923 to the point where the 2-6-0 became the principal type for medium load mixed traffic duties.

Notable new designs included the Southern Railway’s U class (1928), the London Midland and Scottish Railway’s LMS Hughes Crab (1926), the LMS Stanier Mogul (1934), the LMS Ivatt Class 2 2-6-0 (1946), the LMS Ivatt Class 4 (1947), the London and North Eastern Railway’s LNER Class K4 (1937) and the LNER Thompson/Peppercorn Class K1 class which were built in 1949-50 after the nationalisation of British Railways.

LBSCR_K_class 2-6-0 MOGUL.jpg

London Brighton & South Coast Railway K Class 2-6-0

1200px-SRC_89_19930000_PA_Strasburg 2-6-

Strasburg Railroad #89, formerly of the Canadian National Railroad, is a 2-6-0 "Mogul"-type built in 1910.

British Railways continued to build the Ivatt and Thompson/Peppercorn designs and then introduced three standard designs, based on the Ivatt classes. These were the BR Standard Class 2 2-6-0 in 1952, the BR Standard Class 3 2-6-0 in 1954 and the BR Standard Class 4 2-6-0 in 1952. 2-6-0 locomotives continued to be built until 1957 and the last ones were withdrawn from service as late as 1968.

Well over 11,000 Moguls were constructed in the United States by the time production had ended in 1910

Moguls were also used in Australia, Belgian Congo, Canada, Finland, India, Italy, New Zealand and South Africa. (All the above courtesy of Wikipedia)

old 2-6-0.jpg

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive                              2018

Denver, South Park and Pacific Railroad      1985 -1987

Large Scale Model 2-6-0 Moguls  


There is no shortage of “Mogul” reproductions in Large Scale with Bachmann, Piko, LGB, MTH RailKing and others all regularly bringing examples to the market-place.


LGB “Moguls”  


LGB were one of the first companies to introduce a compact Mogul locomotive to their narrow-gauge range as far back as 1984/5 no doubt to appeal to the growing demand in the United States for an American prototype. Since then the locomotive has rivalled the omnipresent “Stainz” for longevity and there have been at least 30 variations released up until the time of writing.


Although they had previously addressed this overseas market in 1975 with a Porter style 0-4-0 modified from a German prototype the 2-6-0 was their first serious attempt to move into that marketplace with a 2-6-0 Mogul tender locomotive based specifically on the type to be found in service on almost all narrow-gauge railways in America.


















                                                 LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive 2018D                                                 

Denver, South Park and Pacific Railroad 1985 - 1988


Initial production was liveried in the colourful Red, Green and Black livery of the Denver, South Park & Pacific Railroad (D.S.P & P.R.R) and featured an impressive smoking balloon stack, highly polished “brass” fittings and large spark arrester for wood burning locomotives. Several variants were released in later years and some came with a set of decals to enable the tender to be altered to ‘Denver Rio Grande’ or ‘D. & R.G.W.’ During the late 1800s and early 1900s, more than 10,000 of these versatile locos were built for freight and passenger service throughout North America.


Narrow gauge railroads proliferated in the late 1980’s and made possible the opening up access to the rich ore resources in the Rocky Mountains – especially the gold reserves.


LGB 2018D 2-6-0 Mogul DSP&PRR.jpg

A dozen or so 2018D’s were repainted black at the Lehmann factory and may have found their way into private collections.


Length: 665mm                Weight: 4.6 Kilos             

              (26.2 “)                          (10.1 lbs.)

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive                            2028D

Denver, South Park and Pacific Railroad      1987 -1992

2028D BEST.jpg

In 1988 LGB issued an identical locomotive to 2018D but this engine came with a black cab, tender and boiler front. The boiler itself is painted in Russian Iron colour with “brass” on steam and sand domes. Loco is numbered 71 and displays a read ‘lantern’ headlight.

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive               2019S / 20192

Colorado & Southern Railroad #6                1988 - 1993

2019S GOOD BOXED.jpg

Catalogue: 1988 – 1993 (1993 onwards 20192)


From 1988 onwards this fine-looking 2019S Electronic version appeared (later 20192 with different numbering scheme) was made available painted in satin black with silver boiler front and straight smoking chimney stack with ‘Colorado & Southern” displayed on the matching tender. This edition featured steam, whistle and bell sounds as well as a glowing, sparking firebox. It was also fitted with a cow catcher, large lanterns working on a constant lighting system, directional lighting as standard, fully detailed cab, and spring-loaded centre wheels.


A large number of these 1890 2-6-0 Mogul locomotives were in service through the canyons with the Denver, South Park & Pacific Railroad and its successor the Colorado & Southern. In 1905 they received new boilers and in 1917 a partial refitting of the frame. This LGB model is claimed to be an accurate replica of these beautiful locomotives and are a must for any enthusiast modelling this period.


Weight: 4.6 Kilos

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive               2319S / 23192

Colorado & Southern Railroad #8                1992 - 1997

2319SA Colorado & Southern No. 8.jpg

LGB 2-6-0 Mogul Colorado & Southern #8                  2319S

This later version had a smoke arrestor and displays the number 8.

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive               2119D / 20192

Lake George & Boulder #2119                     1989 - 1990


This Sonder Special Edition was released in the USA by LGB in the livery of the imaginary Lake George & Boulder Railroad.


  • DC, DCC or MTS or battery power operation with optional Massoth DRC300 decoder

  • Front & Rear Directional Lighting automatically operate according to direction

  • LGB smoke generator 

  • Three position switch for parking, light control and smoke generator

  • Powerful Bühler 7 pole DC motor 

  • LGB scale engineer and fireman figures 

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive                            23196

Colorado & Southern Railroad #9                2010 - 2011

LGB Colorado 2-6-0.gif

Yet another eye-catching version of this popular design Mogul steam locomotive design painted and lettered for the Colorado & Southern. The C&S equipped their locomotives with distinctive spark arresters on the stacks to prevent flying sparks from causing forest fires. These powerful steam locomotives have a large snow plow. This is a rerun with a new road number and a DCC connector, Sound & Smoke Generator.  Length over the buffers 68.5 cm / 27".

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive               2219S / 23196

Pennsylvania Railroad #2219                       1990 - 1994


The above example is liveried for the Pennsylvania Railroad (RR) and has an onboard MTS DCC sound system installed.

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive                             23182

Durango & Silverton Railroad #9                  1996 - 1998

23182 Durango & Silverton #9 BEST.png

This particular livery of the Durango & Silverton Railroad was released in 1996 as a special edition and limited to 500 pieces. It is, therefore, quite rare and usually commands a premium accordingly.

This video demonstrates the sound characteristics

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive                             22185

Disneyland Railroad "W.F.Cody"                             2006

LGB 22185 Disnry Mogul.jpg

LGB often released their most popular locomotives in colourful commercial liveries and this Mogul, resplendent in the Disneyland theme park colours was produced in 2006 replacing an earlier version catalogued from 2004 - 2006 featuring a similar locomotive at Disneyland Paris with the road-name of "C.K.Holliday" (Cat.No.22184).

That completes our quick run-through of Mogul locomotives - LGB produced a whole raft of them until ceasing production quite a few years back and some models are now quite scarce,  The good news is that in 2018 LGB released a new model introduction in Denver & Rio Grande livery (Cat. No. 20280) to celebrate the company's 50 anniversary. This is bound to prove popular although at Euros 1200  / £900 it will certainly make a hole in someone’s pocket!

LGB Mogul Tender Locomotive                             20280

Denver & Rio Grande #50                                         2018

D & RGW Mogul 2-6-0 20280 New 2017.jpg

D&RGW Mogul Steam Locomotive

This is a model of the Mogul type steam locomotive of the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad painted and lettered in a special version for the 50th anniversary of LGB garden railroads. All of the driving wheels are driven from a powerful ball bearing mounted Bühler motor. The locomotive has traction tires. It is equipped with an mfx/DCC decoder with many light and sound functions. The locomotive has many separately applied details. Length over the buffers 67 cm / 26-3/8".

Specifications & Details:

Manufacturer: LGB

Article-No.: 20280

Gauge: G

Railway Company: Denver & Rio Grande Railroad

Era: III

Power system: DC

Digital-Decoder: DCC

Digital-Decoder: mfx

Drive Motor: Bühler-Motor

Traction Tyres: Yes

Smoke Generator: Yes

Length over buffers: 670 mm

Interior lighting: Yes

Sound: Yes

The following is a list of LGB 2-6-0 Moguls in Product Serial Number known to have been produced at the time of writing but this is not intended as an exhaustive index as there could well be other variants and limited editions.

2018D        Denver, South Park & Pacific Railroad No.8 (1985-1988)

2019S        Colorado & Southern Railway No.6 (1988-1993)

20192         Colorado & Southern Railway No.6 (1993 -      )

2028D        Denver, South Park & Pacific Railroad No.71 (1987-1992)

21181        Denver & Rio Grande Western No.19 (1993-1999)

2119D        Lake George & Boulder No.2119 (1989-1990)

21192        D&RGW Bumblebee No.249 (2006)

22182        Colorado & Southern Railway No.5 (1996)

22184        Disneyland Railroad No.2 “C.K.Holliday” (2004-2006)

22185        Disneyland Railroad No.1 “W.F.Cody”     (2006)

22191        Wilson Bros. Circus No.10 LIMITED EDITION   (1995)

2219S        Pennsylvania Railroad No.2219  (1989-1993)

22192        Pennsylvania Railroad No.2219   (1993 -)

22194        Southern Pacific No.49  (2006)

23182        Durango & Silverton Railroad No. (1996)

23191        Painted Black, Unlettered  (2001-2006)

2319S        Colorado & Southern Railway No.8   (1992-1997)

23192         Colorado & Southern Railway No.8   (1992-1997)

23194        Colorado & Southern Railway No.4    (2003)

23196        Colorado & Southern Railway No.9    (2010-2011)

24182        New York Central Railroad No.99 LIMITED EDITION (1996)

24192        Wilson Bros. Circus No.10 LIMITED EDITION (1995)

24194         Pennsylvania Railroad No.2518  (2003)

25192        Colorado & Southern Railway No.7  (1997-1999)

25194        Coca Cola® (2003-2006)

25196        Durango & Silverton No.396  (2009-2011)

26182        White Pass & Yukon Route No.1  (2000-2002)

26192         Colorado & Southern Railway No.10  (1997-1999)                                               

26194        Denver & Rio Grande Western No.248 (2003)

27182        Christmas Special (Weihnachten)   (2003-2006)

27192        Denver & RGW No.573   LIMITED EDITION (1998)                         

28192        Pennsylvania Railroad No.2819 LIMITED EDITION (1999)                

29192        Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway No.97 (2003)

Click “Play Arrow” to see the LGB 21181 Mogul Denver & Rio Grande in action thundering through the Rocky Mountains.

You might also enjoy watching this LGB RIO GRANDE 2-6-0 Mogul #248 as it makes the first passenger run of the day on The BIG little RAILWAY, a 5' x 17' indoor layout.

LGB Continental 2-6-0’s  

In addition to the American Mogul range LGB are probably better known in Europe for producing robust tank locomotives based on Continental prototypes including the popular “Spreewald”, a metre gauge 2-6-0T engine closely based on the tank locomotive built in 1917 by the Jung Locomotive Works.

The first version released in 1987 (Cat. No. 2074D) had a dark-green painted cab and water tanks, black boiler, and red chassis and wheels. It also no less than 7 working lamps.


Prototype Jung Spreewald. This beautifully proportioned "Spreewald" steam loco runs on the museum line of the Deutscher Eisenbahn-Verein (German Railway Club) in Bruchhausen-Vilsen.

LGB 2-6-0T Tank Locomotive                               2074D 

Spreewald                                                     1988 - 1992 

Spreewald" was built by the Jung Locomotive Works in 1917 and saw many years of service on the DEV museum railroad Bruchhausen - Vilsen.

LGB 2-6-0T Tank Locomotive                                  22741 

Spreewald DEV                                                          2003

22741 Spreewald DEV.jpg

Spreewald in Deutscher Eisenbahn DEV livery

LGB 2-6-0T Tank Locomotive                      2174D / 21741

DR - Deutsche Reichbahn                              1992 - 2003                                  

995633 Spreewald in Black-Red DR Deutshe

“Spreewald” was also made available in black and red Deutsche Reichsbahn livery between 1992 – 2003 and upgraded in 1997 with an on-board digital decode.

LGB 2-6-0T Steam Tank Locomotive                       23741

Spreewald DB - Deutsche Bundesbahn         2008 - 2011

23741 LGB 2-6-0 DB.jpg

It also had a make-over in the years between 2008 -2011 with black/red Deutsche Bundesbahn livery and the road number 99241.

LGB 2-6-0T Tank Locomotive                                  24724 

Spreewald DEV Centenary Limited Edition              2017

Spreewald DEV 100th Anniversary24742 lim

In 2017 LGB issued a special Limited Edition of the "Spreewald" locomotive in DEV livery to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the steam locomotive "SPREEWALD" as preserved at the first Railway Museum established in Germany at Bruchhausen-Vilsen. This steam locomotive is in DEV livery (The paint scheme and lettering are prototypical for Era VI) and is equipped with powerful Bühler ball bearing mounted motor. the model is also equipped with an mfx/DCC sound decoder capable of producing a wide range of sound and light functions in digital function and also an integrated smoke generator. the locomotive driving sounds are also produced on conventional analog DC running although complete functionality is necessarily limited.


Production was said to be limited to 499 units although it is possible that the 500th was donated to the Museum to help it raise funds to maintain the locomotive in the future.

This is a model of the DEV "Spreewald" steam locomotive as it is then looked in use on the museum railroad from Bruchhausen–Vilsen to Asendorf. The paint scheme and lettering are prototypical for Era VI. The locomotive is equipped with a powerful Bühler motor mounted in ball bearings and has traction ties. It has a built-in mfx/DCC decoder with many sound and light functions that can be controlled in digital operation as well as the built-in smoke unit. The locomotive is packaged in an exclusive wooden case with a booklet about the history of the original. Length over the buffers 33 cm / 13".

Here are just a few of the YouTube videos devoted to this attractive locomotive:

Piko Large Scale Steam  Locomotives 

Piko, based in Sonneberg, Germany are no stranger to the model railway market having been in business since 1949 supplying the then local East German model train market as a state-owned enterprise in the GDR. Following the reunification of Germany, they were acquired in 1992 by PIKO Spielwaren GmbH and are now a major manufacturer and exporter with over 1500 product lines across 4 scales, G Scale, HO Scale, TT Scale and N Scale. The company now own a factory in Chashan, China as well as their manufacturing plant in Sonneberg where G Gauge items are still produced. More recently they have established a major presence in the USA under the PIKO-America banner and guess what. They chose the ever popular 2-6-0 to lead their export drive - and why not? 




















In this, and later modules, we shall focus on their interesting and expanding variety of G Gauge Locomotives - Steam, Diesel and Electric. The range mainly comprises representations of German and European prototype locomotives but in order to more readily access the North American market they now offer generic replicas of US and Canadian outline short-wheelbase designs. We shall examine each of these in turn focusing initially on their 2-6-0 series.


PIKO G-scale steam locomotives are solidly engineered, robust and weatherproof, and manufactured to a high standard.  Some customers are fond of the rather endearing appearance of the smaller engines (stubby boiler and short wheelbase) but the models generally realistic and brawny appearance are convincing on their merits, offering detailed and sturdy valve gear and separately attached grab rails and pipes together with enhancement potential in the way of DCC upgrade, sound installation and imitation smoke capability.

All PIKO Steam Locomotives are currently made in Germany and feature:

  • Powerful 5-pole precision can-type motor with brass worm gears

  • Numerous moulded-on and factory-applied details, such as lights, brake cylinders, smoke stack, tank piping, cowcatchers, handrails, ladders and more

  • Fully operating directional lighting with consistent intensity

  • Detailed interior with engineer figure

  • Heavy duty, durable metal wheels on the loco

  • Sliding pickup shoes for reliable electrical contact

  • LGB Style Hook and loop type couplers

  • Authentic, crisp and clean lettering, satin effect paint decoration and appropriate logo designs

  • Created with incredibly tough weather-resistant materials

  • Minimum recommended radius: 600mm / 23.6”

  • Many models are now fitted with ball bearings on driven axles and hard-chrome plated wheels for improved power pickup

  • Added weight for greater traction

  • Realistic speeds

  • Many versions of Piko G Scale steam locomotives now come with pre-equipped factory installed sound and steam (smoke) functions (for more information please go to the site of the specific model)

  • Most others can be retro upgraded with digital decoders and sound capabilities using a simple “plug and play” interface.


Piko Large Scale 2-6-0 Moguls  


As a fairly late entrant into the large-scale model train market Piko, Germany has been making up for lost time. In 2012 they introduced their own ”freelance” generic American outline 2 – 6 – 0 Mogul locomotives. This marked a departure for the company as previous releases have tended to concentrate on European prototypes but the move clearly reflected the sheer size of the potential market in the USA which is essential if the investment in design and tooling is to be recouped. This initial foray has been followed by numerous other locomotive releases geared to American customers with numerous livery releases at regular intervals to 'refresh' the brand.

Their official database currently lists 13 versions of the Mogul type which together with the 6 models in their latest catalogues/new product leaflets would make around 19 varieties to date since 2011, the majority now with steam (smoke) and/ or sound features.

As they progressively introduce models factory fitted with a dual mode DCC chip for digital operation they are often upgraded with full sound and light capabilities. These locomotives have been hitting the USA market in volume following an extensive marketing campaign but needless to say they are also popular with European modellers.

These "Mogul" locomotives are very robust having quite a "chunky" appearance and the combined engine and tender weigh in at just over 7 lbs (around 3.2 Kilos) . The model proportions are sometimes said to be 1:22.5 scale but look a little undersized when compared against their LGB counterparts. They could be nearer 1:27 (as some of the firms earlier wagons were) or even 1:29, a scale normally associated with mainline locomotives, so check that they will match your existing inventory before purchasing. Piko tend to be reluctant to disclose the precise scale ratio - no doubt to permit "selective compression" if necessary.

My particular favourite is the Denver & Rio Grande Western version (mainly because I love the smokestack and the sound effects.) but there are a lot of models to choose from and they seem to be regularly upgraded with DCC/DC decoders and sound.

​All the versions to date feature a powerful 5-pole motor with plenty of power to draw a significant rake 1 of large scale freight cars. The locomotive is not based on any specific prototype but is fairly typical of the engines used on North American logging and mining railroads. Piko describe them as having a “brawny appearance” which is most appropriate.

As well as a weatherproof mechanism the Piko Mogul has electrical pick-up on four driving wheels together with two additional pick-up shoes. The driver axles are equipped with ball-bearings and two also have traction tyres for extra grip. These locomotives are designed to negotiate the minimum 600mm radius 45mm gauge track.

The satin paintwork is well executed with clear graphics. The Piko 2-6-0 has certainly received a welcome response from large-scale modelling customers and although prices have increase significantly over the intervening years years still represent good value for money. All in all, this popular range of locomotives represent a great introduction to large scale modelling

Note 1:  a formation of coupled passenger coaches or freight cars.

As Piko say in their catalogue the USA style Mogul 2-6-0 combines attention to detail with sturdy construction and exceptional pulling power.

All locomotives and motor vehicles in the PIKO G range are distinguished by their high level of detail and modern technology. The robustness and the special plastic stand for the "outdoor & indoor" rating.


All standard DC locomotives are also ready-prepared for retrofitting digital and/or sound although you may well find that the latest versions have DCC (Digital Command Control) already factory-fitted to save you the job. If so you can also run them on conventional DC analogue should you prefer.




  • Powerful 5-pole motor

  • High traction

  • Current reduction from the wheels by means of wheel grinders (‘sliders’)

  • Spring-mounted rail grinding (‘slider’) contacts

  • Separately attached buffer planks with bracket coupling, interchangeable with medium buffer coupling

  • Separately attached handrails, windscreen wipers, roof cables and fans

  • Driver's cab with driver

  • Authentic lacquer and detailed inscriptions



When the 2-6-0 wheel arrangement was first introduced in the 1880’s it gained the nickname "Mogul” and proved a popular locomotive on the railroads of America. Thousands were built into the 1900’s and the engine provided much of the light hauling power on short and branchlines.

In common with all Piko G Scale locomotives these Moguls need an analogue power supply of between       0 – 24v A Direct Current (DC) or increasingly DCC (Digital Command Control) to operate properly and are all capable of circumnavigating the tightest Radius 1 (600mm). Early models have directional lights, ball bearing "Buhler" motors, and are smoke ready or have a factory fitted smoke unit already.

Later models will accept a digital decoder for DCC operation (Piko naturally recommend their Decoder 36122 that replaces the internal printed circuit board) and offer built-in sound capability (Piko offer a sound module No. 36198, for this purpose). They are usually dual capability chips and can detect standard DC operation.

More recent models have seen major technical upgrades to add Dual Mode Decoders (Analogue DC and DCC) and authentic train sounds to add to the realism.

The precise technical specifications for each locomotive are available on the company websites in Europe

and North America or detailed in the latest PIKO G Scale Catalogue but the following bullet-list is a generic



Dimensions & Measurements:

  • Scale: not specified by manufacturer but thought to be 1:27 scale

  • Length (total): 570 mm

  • Height (top to rail): 170 mm

  • Width: 110 mm

  • Weight: Engine + Tender: Approx. 7.1 lbs (3.2 Kilos), Engine: Approx. 5.3 lbs. (2.3 Kilos)

  • Pulling power: About 2 lbs. of drawbar pull

Technical Details:

  • Operation: Analogue DC

  • Minimum Radius: 600 mm

  • Wheels: Chrome plated

  • Axles: Ball bearing

  • Geared axles: 2

  • Gears: plastic

  • Traction tyres: 2 (front axle)

  • Pick-up Shoes: Yes - 2

  • Motor: 5-pole, unknown brand

  • Power pick-up: 3 axles, 1 set of pick-up shoes

  • Lights: Front, rear (bi-directional), white

  • Smoke generator: Yes


More recent versions are now available with either DC or DCC control options. See the technical details following this table below:

This table attempts to summarise all the model variations understood to have been officially issued to date in both the UK and USA:

N.B. In the last few months the distribution of Piko products in the USA may have moved from Piko America to Walthers. The contact information is still to be updated.

Piko 38228 2-6-0 Mogul Denver & Rio Gran

PIKO 2-6-0 "Mogul" Steam Locomotive                  38218 

Denver & Rio Grande Western RR                             

38214 D&RGW MOGUL with Sound & Smoke.jpg


For those of you that like to have a more detailed technical description this is a full specification for the Piko  2-6-0 Steam Locomotive with dual mode decoder, sound and smoke currently being shipped but these specifications can always change at short notice:



Equipped with Dual mode (Analogue and DCC) Motor/Sound decoder pre-programmed with American steam sounds.

Compatible with analogue (DC) and digital (DCC) power. The decoder senses which type of of operation is being used, analogue or digital, and responds automatically,

Basic Functions - available both in analogue DC and digital DCC:


Motor control – All power to the motor goes through the sound decoder, enabling proper coordination of the locomotive’s movement with other operating features.
Lighting – The sound decoder provides a regulated supply of 5 volts for directional front and rear headlights. The “forward” light illuminates automatically, according to the direction of travel.
Smoke – The sound decoder provides a regulated supply of 5 volts to the smoke unit for excellent operation even when the loco is standing still or moving slowly.
Sound – The authentic sounds of a real steam locomotive are digitally reproduced through the powerful 3-watt audio amplifier. All sounds are polyphonic; one sound will never interrupt another.

Steam Sound Effects:
The sound decoder includes over ten sound different effects. Depending on the effect, these are generated either continuously, automatically, or as controlled by the user.
• Steam Exhaust (Chuff)
• Whistle
• Short Whistle
• Bell
• Air Pump (Compressor)
• Blower
• Brake Squeal
• Brake Release
• Dynamo
• Steam Release
• Coal Shovelling (factory default is set to “on”, but can be turned off using a Digital system, for both Analogue DC and Digital / DCC operation)

Maximum Operating Voltage: 27V DC
Motor Current Capacity: 2.5A Continuous, 4.0A Peak
Lighting Output Current: Maximum 500mA at 5V DC
Smoke Unit Output: Maximum 500mA at 5V DC
Audio Amplifier Power: 3 Watts at 8 Ohms
Length: 69mm / 2.72”
Width: 32mm / 1.26”
Height: 12mm / 0.48
Minimum Temperature: 4C / 40F
Maximum Temperature: 32C / 90F

Speaker (included)
Nominal Size: 6.5cm / 2.5”
Rating: 8 Watts
Impedance: 8 Ohms
Frequency Range: 20-20K Hz
Waterproof Cone Construction


Note: If choosing to fit a different speaker, ensure that the speaker is of 8 Ohms impedance to avoid damaging the audio amplifier. Choose a speaker of adequate wattage rating to avoid damaging the speaker.

The sound decoder is factory-set with the following “default” function assignments:
F0 Headlight On/Off
F1 Bell On/Off
F2 Whistle On/Off
F3 Short Whistle
F4 Steam Release (Hiss)
F5 Not used
F6 Smoke Unit On/Off
F7 Headlight Dimmer On/Off
F8 Mute
F9 Inertia Override (temporarily overrides momentum settings)
F10 Half Speed (for switching/shunting operations)
F11 Brake Squeal (when moving); Brake Release (when stopped)
F12 Not used

Length (over buffers): 22 1/2 inches
Width: 4 3/8 inches
Height (above rail head): 6 3/4 inches
Weight: 7 lbs (3.2 Kilos)

There are still some more 2-6-0 steam locomotives in the Piko stable (roster?) but I thought I would close this particular section with several selected video clips from my YouTube collection which either review the features or where you can actually see them running (a sort of "Mogul Fest" if there is such a term):

Piko 2-6-0T Saddle Tank Steam Locomotive   

Before we leave American outline models I would also draw you attention to a Saddle Tank version of the     2-6-0T wheelbase arrangement announced by Piko in 2018 (and released in 2019) would seem to incorporate much of the same tooling and technology as used in the “Mogul”.

The first models to be released was in Union Pacific livery, incorporating the popular smoke and sound features as well as a dual-mode Digital Command Control (DCC) sound decoder, located in the tender that works on both DC and DCC layouts.

Once again this is a freelance model and does not depict any particular prototype. As far as I can establish there have so far only been two liveries for this Saddle Tank. - Union pacific and Denver &Rio Grande Western as shown below. It is not clear what plans Piko have for this model in the future. I hesitate to speculate that this may be due to it not being particularly popular with America customers but we shall wait and see.


PIKO Saddle Tank Model Features

  • Detailed 2-6-0 saddle tank steam locomotive with lights

  • Powerful 5-pole precision can-type ball-bearing motor

  • Numerous moulded-on details including lights, tank piping, brake cylinders, and smoke stack

  • Factory-applied flag-posts, cowcatchers, bell, ladders and more

  • Operating white directional lighting

  • Digital DCC decoder and sound ready

  • Interior with engineer figure

  • Heavy duty, durable hard chrome ball-bearing drive wheels

  • Hook and loop type couplers

  • Crisp and clean lettering and logo designs

  • Created with incredibly tough weather-resistant materials

  • Minimum recommended radius: 600mm / 23.6”

  • Length: 370mm / 14.6”

  • Made in Germany


To add digital sound & smoke you will need to install a PIKO #36220 Digital Steam Sound Kit with a #36142 5-Volt Smoke Unit.  

To add analog sound and smoke add a PIKO #36221 Analog Steam Sound Kit as well as a #36142 5-Volt Smoke Unit and #36143 5-Volt Regulator

A Visaton FRS-5 speaker is also needed for sound, which can be purchased from various online sellers or from our parts department.  (The Visiton FRS-7 speaker that comes in a #36220 kit can be saved for future projects, and is too big to fit the smaller Saddletank locos.) Instructions, including a "How-To" video are available on our YouTube pages if you click here

PIko 2-6-0 Camelback Steam Locomotives  


Before we leave the Piko America roster I cannot leave out the somewhat peculiar model of a compact short-wheel based Camelback Switcher Locomotive (sometimes referred to as "Mother Hubbard" or "Centre-Cab" due to it's eccentric appearance.) The prototype was ostensibly built between 1913 and 1921 to take advantage of cheap anthracite which required a wider firebox and was in use on several railroads. In order to give the driver better visibility the cab was located astride the middle of the engine astride the boiler. Apparently this also gave the crew a somewhat violent ride and they were subsequently banned on safety grounds.



  • Detailed Camelback steam locomotive with lights and smoke

  • Powerful 5 pole precision can-type ball-bearing motor

  • Numerous moulded-on and factory applied details including lights, brake cylinders, smoke stack, tank piping, cowcatchers, handrails, and more

  • Comes with working 5-volt smoke unit

  • Comes with DCC installed and digital sound made by Soundtraxx.  (* Full-featured operation on Analog DC with nearly all the same functions as on Digital DCC.)

  • Operating white directional lighting

  • Heavy duty, durable hard chrome ball-bearing drive wheels

  • Hook and loop type couplers

  • Crisp and clean lettering and logo designs

  • Created with incredibly tough weather-resistant materials

  • Minimum recommended radius: 600mm / 23.6”

  • Length: 525mm / 20.3”

  • Made in Germany

(the original Piko version was an 0-6-0 model which took advantage of the drivers and tender used on their  2-6-0 Mogul so a 2-6-0 variation must have seemed a natural progression.)



37222_1024x1024 BR24.png


Piko Large Scale BR24 2-6-0 Steam Locomotive Epoch III  (Product Code: 37220)  

We are not quite finished with Piko in this category as the company has certainly not ignored its domestic customers whilst pursuing its ambitions in the USA. In fact they have come up with a superb model of the Deutsche Bahn (DB) BR 24 Steam Locomotive with Smoke Deflectors accurately representing the prototype which originally entered service in 1928.

The BR24 a 2-6-0 wheel arrangement (or 1C I believe in the German classification) shares it origins with the the BR64 (2-6-2) and proved light, reliable, strong both as a  versatile passenger service locomotive on long branch lines and but also freight and mixed trains.

The last BR24 was eventually retired by the DR in 1966.

Piko's scaled down representation has impressive finely detailed superstructure with numerous moulded and separately applied railings and piping. The detailed drive wheels are spoked and have stainless steel tyres and carbon brush pick-ups and metal shoes for reliable electrical continuity. The motive power is provided by a 7- pole Buhler precision-can ball bearing motor and the model incorporates complete and detailed valve gear. there is also a 5v smoke generator, opening smoke box door, directional LED lighting and engineer figure.  Although the locomotive is ready for installation of sound the actual  sound unit  (Code: 36222) is available separately for retrofitting.

A really impressive model but please note that whilst the locomotive will run on Analogue DC, the accompanying sound functions ONLY on Digital DCC.  There is no sound on Analog DC power.


  • Detailed 2-6-0 steam locomotive with working lights and smoke

  • Powerful 7-pole Bühler precision can-type ball-bearing motor

  • Numerous moulded-on and separately applied details including lights, brake cylinders, bumpers, smoke stack, tanks, piping, handrails, and more

  • A working 5-volt smoke unit

  • Operating white directional lighting with switchable chassis lighting

  • Detailed interior with engineer figure

  • Digital DCC decoder and sound ready (Use a PIKO #36222 sound kit in conjunction with PIKO loco decoder #36122).       

    • NOTE:  Locomotive will run on Analogue DC, but the sound functions ONLY on Digital DCC.  There is no sound when using Analogue DC power.

  • Heavy duty, durable stainless steel drive wheel tyres

  • Carbon brush pickups

  • Injection-moulded driver centres

  • Hook and loop type couplers (LGB Style)

  • Crisp and clean lettering and logo designs

  • Created with incredibly tough weather-resistant materials

  • Minimum recommended radius: 600mm / 23.6”

  • Length: 677 mm / 26.7”

  • Made in Germany

This looks to be a really superb model and although I have not yet had the pleasure of seeing one in the flesh feel sure that it will appeal to many German large-scale modellers (who will certainly need deep pockets as it retails at circa  € 1200.)

Probably not a name that often crops up when discussing large-scale model trains but smaller producers, such as Hartland Locomotive Works (HLW) have been around for a long time and have made a valuable contribution to the growth of the hobby even if not a world player. before are I had even had time to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard nowadays) I learn that this company too, has also ceased trading and disposed of all its inventory. The company had been in business 25 years but eventually succumbed to difficult trading conditions not helped by the Covid-19 virus pandemic. There is an outside chance that they might resume production one day but with so many competitors reducing their product ranges that day may never come. Many of the company's moulds were acquired from the long gone manufacturer 'Kalamazoo' and possibly 'Delton'Aristocraft also obtained some of the same manufacturers moulds for their Classic 1:24 scale models but as this demonstrates  this does not mean that such models are saved. 


Check out their website using this button link:  

I will still include this piece as an epitaph and because many of their models still come up for auction.


This company, founded. owned and operated by the Coates family, and based in LaPorte Indiana goes back a long way  It's origins can be traced back to a much older manufacturer called Kalamazoo Toy Train Works named after the home town of its founder Bob Shuster. Kenneth W. Coates Jnr. loved model railroading and purchased Kalamazoo in 1995 tooling when the company went up for sale. Among other assets he acquired tooling for a popular 4-4-0 locomotive and he also bought some tooling from Delton Trains, of Michigan which both became the corner stone for future sales.

If you are remotely interested in the history of model train manufacturer I urge you to read a series of articles written by Paul D.Race for the Family Garden Trains under the title "Fallen Flags of Garden Railroading" which summarise the work of the early pioneers in the hobby. use the link below to read about "Kalamazoo".

Hartland Locomotive Works trains are very durable and of high quality suitable for outdoor use. The engines used in their locomotives are solid and reliable industrial-grade, high-torque, long-life DC electric motors. The bodies of the engines and cars are all injection-moulded out of UV-stablilised ABS plastic by Ken's existing company, appropriately named Kenco Plastics, making them very durable and ideal for outdoor use.


HLW manufactures about 200 different products at any one time. New products are continually added, while other are phased out. While they used to build track, as well, they have dropped that out of production to concentrate on making locomotives, cars and parts.

Hartland prides itself on quality and detail even in the smaller details. For pieces such as boiler hand rails, whistles, safety valves, flag pole pockets, etc, they use solid brass, rather than easily damaged plastic.


All the painting is done on site in their own paint booth by Greg, and every HLW product is assembled by family members including Suzie, Maria and Rosalba.

Sadly, Ken passed away in June of 2005, but Hartland Locomotive Works continues to be a family business and carries on the tradition of passion, pride and made in America quality and is still the only toy train brand made exclusively in the USA.


A 4-4-0 in Denver & Rio Grande livery from Hartland Locomotive Works

HLW 2-6-0 "Mogul" Steam Locomotive                  38218 

Colorado & Southern Railroad RR                             

Hartland Locomotive Works 2-6-0 #10 Colo

Smaller producers, such as Hartland Locomotive Works (HLW) were capable of delivering large-scale model

trains such as this imposing 2-6-0 Mogul Steam Locomotive #10 in Colorado & Southern mining livery.

This is an impressive unit featuring: 

DCC Ready 
Smoke Included
Equipped with 12 volt DC Precision High-torque, Long-life Electric Industrial Grade Motor
Highly Wear & Weather-Resistant Materials
Indoor and Outdoor Use
Solid Brass Hardware & Decorative Detail
Working Light


I should stress that this model is no longer in current production but there may be the odd example still around.


Courtesy of  Manfred Kopka CC BY-SA 4.0, 

Hartland Locomotive Works    

Perhaps I should redress the tendency to focus too much on the larger brand names by projecting some light on the smaller brands some of whom have had a major influence in their home markets. I may include some "fallen flags" in this segment - American terminology for those railroads that have ceased to exist and fallen by the wayside for all manner of reasons. This expression now extends to companies involved in the manufacture of model railroads such as Aristo-craft but I fear that we will see quite a few more - not least MTH Trains whose closure seems imminent. 



Compared to Piko’s saturation coverage Bachmann Trains "Mogul" roster appears, at first sight at least, to be a little threadbare in recent years but their history regarding 2-6-0 introductions goes back a long way and they have tried to address both the basic and more sophisticated railroading fraternity.

In the early years their basic models in this category have represented narrow gauge industrial type 2-6-0 tender locomotives (such as those used for logging or mining operations) falling some way between the standard “Big Hauler” category and Spectrum quality although sometimes released as the latter. 


Seemingly built to a scale of 1:20.3 the engines appear rather small to many experts and may not be entirely accurate. In more recent times Bachmann gained a reputation by producing more refined models as Spectrum 1:20.3 scale and whilst their commitment to the finer scale in general now appears to be waning somewhat (they have discontinued all production of their 1:20.3 scale freight and oil cars) of late they do appear to be focusing on more high fidelity versions of the 2-6-0 wheel arrangement as part of their upmarket range with more ornate paint schemes.

The discontinued ‘older’ mini moguls are still worth searching for as they are an ideal starter tender locomotive especially if you intend to build a logging or mining line. They frequently pop up on auction sites and specialist sales and have fairly good running characteristics. These are several of the models produced in that era that era and numbering and liveries sometimes changed.

As far as I have been able to ascertain the first Bachmann 2-6-0 Mogul locomotives were manufactured between 2000 and 2003 in the 8149* series to accompany the popular Bachmann 4-6-0 model. The models are built to the scale of 1:20.3 model to conform to the new National Model Railroad Association Fn3 fine-scale standard of 15 mm-per-foot. As such this may be the first mass-produced model locomotive to meet this new standard.

These particular examples featured in the company's 2001-2002 Garden Railways / Gartenbahn Brochure for Europe.

By 2002 the readers of the Model Railroader magazines chose Bachmann's 2-6-0 as the Readers Choice "large-Scale Locomotive of the Year" and the 814XX Series was still going strong in 2008 (apart from the black unlettered version 81492) with the following features:

  • DCC ready

  • LED headlight

  • NMRA compliant polarity selector

  • Smoke generator with on-off switch

  • Load-synchronised LEDs in firebox and ashpan for realistic fire glow

  • Precision 5-pole can motor

  • Metal frame

  • Complete backhead detail

  • Fully operational Stephenson valve gear with operating piston valves, Johnson bar, and linkage

  • Numerous separate detail parts

  • Metal handrails and piping

  • Prototypical, sprung axle bearings

  • Chemically blackened machined metal wheels

  • Scale coupler pockets

Quite a lot of sophistication for the time and fully deserving of its Spectrum appellation. However, by 2009 both Rio Grande versions were discontinued and in 2010 only the Baldwin Locomotive Works (81495) and Yellow Pine Lumber Co. #11 remained in the Catalogue for that year and even the latter livery dropped out in the following year leaving just the Baldwin Loco Works guise.

However, it was joined by the Yellow Pine Lumber version in 2010 but that was also discontinued in 2011. This serves to illustrate that even a company the size of Bachmann Industries cannot have all of its products in every different version, available year after year. It has to make production runs when the economies of scale dictate so if you are after a particular version, and nothing else will do, buy it while you can as it may disappear altogether.

Fortunately, in 2012, Bachmann changed track and reverted to a much cheaper 1;20.3 Industrial 2-6-0 Mogul in its standard "Big Hauler" range and discontinued (or "rested") the upmarket Spectrum editions.  The 'workhorse' versions came in no less than four plainer liveries reflecting the mining and lumber scene and the technical specification was lower to meet the price-point of US$ 325 (which many dealers were able to beat).

If you have any questions this video by Large Scale On Line (LSOL) released at the time should answer most of them:

 The Baldwin 2-6-0  Revival !

After an absence of 15 years Bachmann changed tack again and in the 2015 and 2016 catalogues announced the arrival of a completely new range of upgraded and highly-featured Spectrum 2-6-0 Baldwin 8-18D Class Moguls in 4 new liveries. The paint schemes for the entire series are very colourful and it was extraordinary to discover that these are the actual liveries in which the prototypes either originally left the Baldwin Locomotive Works or have subsequently been adopted by their owners.

  • 81486 Steam Locomotive with Tender 2-6-0  “Glenbrook”

  • 81487 Steam Locomotive with Tender 2-6-0 Eureka & Palisade “Reveille”

  • 81488 Steam Locomotive with Tender 2-6-0 Denver & Rio Grande “Raton”

  • 81489 Steam Locomotive with Tender 2-6-0 Grizzly Flats “Emma Nevada”

The new versions impressive features include all metal gears for a smooth quiet drive, "plug-and-play" socket in the 8-wheel tender to accommodate the control systems of your choice including conventional DC power, NMRA/NEM DCC and/or Radio Control operation. The authentic paint-schemes are very well executed  as are the graphics. This official Bachmann video release gives you a good idea what you get for your buck - all US$1,250 of them!.


  • “Glenbrook”  

The Glenbrook is a 2-6-0, Mogul type, narrow gauge steam railway locomotive built by Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1875 for the Carson & Tahoe Lumber & Fluming Company's 3 ft (914 mm) narrow gauge railroad. 

This locomotive (together with its sister #2 “Tahoe”) were used to haul cordwood and lumber from Glenbrook, Nevada on the east shore of Lake Tahoe to Spooner Summit, at the crest of the 

Glenbrook Steams again..jpg

Carson Range.  At the summit, the logs and lumber was put in a flume which carried it to the south end of Carson City. There it was loaded onto flatcars of the Virginia & Truckee Railroad which carried it to Virginia City for use in construction of the town, as mine props, and as boiler fuel.

The area was fairly well logged out by 1890 and the owners sold #2 Tahoe to the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad (NCNG). #1 Glenbrook was stored at Tahoe City until 1937 when it was also sold to the Nevada County Narrow Gauge, who cannibalised the loco largely for parts for Tahoe.

The NCNG shut down in 1942, but the original owners bought the locomotive back and presented it to the Nevada State Railroad Museum , Carson City, Nevada where, following restoration to its original state, it now joins other preserved locomotive in steam from the Virginia & Truckee Railroad. 

The Model:

81484 Glenbrook.jpg




1:20.3 Scale

Baldwin 2-6-0 Mogul


Cat.No. 81486


The impressive list of features present in on all four editions is essentially the same except for paint schemes and detail modification to match the appropriate prototype so I will list them here just once to save repetition:

advanced non-proprietary plug-and-play electronic printed circuit board to accommodate the control system of your choice, including conventional DC power, NMRA/NEM DCC, and/or RC operation

• powerful precision-balanced can motor connected to an all-metal gearbox and gears with appropriate gear reduction for a six-wheel drive system with superior performance at realistic speeds


• fully operating Stephenson valve gear with operating piston valves, crosshead pumps with piping, Johnson bar, and linkage


• fully equalized locomotive suspension system to provide super-smooth operation on uneven track


• electrical pickup from all drive wheels and both tender trucks

• two optical sensors, one in each cylinder, give you the option of adjusting the timing and count of steam chuffs

• factory-installed speaker with wire pigtail to allow easy installation of optional aftermarket sound


• two switches behind the smoke box door allow you to choose whether the headlight/ashpan flicker and smoke generator are turned off or controlled by the device in the non-proprietary plug-and-play socket


• easy access to switches in the tender for motor power on/off and choice of track pickup or battery power operation according to NMRA or Large Scale railroading practices


• realistic coal and wood loads in the tender per prototype

• strap or wood pilot per prototype GLENBROOK Item No. 81486


• option for either body-mounted or truck-mounted couple height

• metal frame, drivers, hangers, driver leaf springs, siderods, piston rods, valve guides, guide rods, handrails, and piping


• brass-plated metal whistle


• machined brass pop valves and bell with metal clapper


• separate sanding lines


• cab detail and lighting


• LED headlight


• load-synchronized LEDs in firebox and ashpan for realistic fire glow


• complete backhead detail including steam gauge with piping, throttle, sight glass fittings, and operating firebox door


• engineer and fireman figures


Length: 26.5”            Width: 4.5”                Height: 7.3”               Scale: 1:20.3


  • “Eureka & Palisade "Reveille"

The “Reveille” was built by Baldwin in about 1878 as a sister engine of the more famous ”Eureka” steam locomotive which operated on the Eureka & Palisade Railroad, a 3 ft (914 mm) narrow gauge railroad constructed in 1873-1875 between Palisade and EurekaNevada’  The line was built to carry silver-lead ore from Eureka, Nevada, to the Southern Pacific Railroad main line that ran through Palisade, a distance of approximately 85 miles (137 km).

81487 Prototype Eureka & Palisade - Reve

Subsequent corporate restructurings brought on by financial difficulties saw the line operated as the "Eureka and Palisade Railway" and then the "Eureka Nevada Railway."

The line eventually succumbed to the effects of flood, fire, competing road traffic, and dwindling amounts of extracted ore. The rails and rolling stock of the last surviving narrow gauge railroad in Nevada were removed in 1938.

The Model:




1:20.3 Scale

Baldwin 2-6-0 Mogul


Eureka & Palisade

Cat.No. 81487

81487 Eureka & Palisade.jpg


Denver & Rio Grande "Raton"

The “Raton” (#3810) is one of 11 Class 40 2-6-0 Moguls purchased 1876 by the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad  to handle its freight traffic. Other similar locomotives acquired between 1876 - 1878 included "Santa Clara #3806"; "Chicosa #3809"; "Monte Carlo #3899"; "Trinchera #4519"; "Poncha #4317"; "Nepesta #4335"; and "Cochetope #4336".

81487 Prototype Eureka & Palisade - Reve

The Model:




1:20.3 Scale

Baldwin 2-6-0 Mogul


Denver & Rio Grande

Cat.No. 81488

81488 Raton.jpg


Grizzly Flats "Emma Nevada"

The fourth livery in the newly released series is the vintage 1881 “Emma Nevada” decked out in the livery of the privately owned “Grizzly Flats Railroad” and was renamed after a famous opera star of the late 1800’s having started life as “Sidney Dillon” on the old Nevada Central Railroad. 

The GFR is a 3 foot (914mm) narrow gauge line, situated in San Gabriel, California, and only 500-foot (152 m) long. It was the inspiration of Ward Kimball, a lifelong railroad fan and Disney animator, who built it in his backyard through the orange grove, in San Gabriel, California to accommodate both his “Emma Nevada” 2-6-0 acquisition along with the last remaining Passenger Coach #5 from the Carson & Colorado Railroad which he had also purchased in 1938.

“Emma Nevada” and Passenger Car #5 were restored for steaming operations but ceased regular steaming in 1951 when the engine developed boiler problems.

In the 1990s, Ward donated the "Emma Nevada", Coach #5 and most of the rolling stock he had also accumulated to the Orange Empire Railway Museum (OERM).

The Model:




1:20.3 Scale

Baldwin 2-6-0 Mogul

"Emma Nevada"

Grizzly Flats RR

Cat.No. 81489

81489 Bachmann.jpg

By all accounts Bachmann seem to have done a very creditable job in replicating the original colours and linings, even to the extent of achieving a much closer match to the Russian Iron boiler than hitherto. 

These locomotives exhibit an unprecedented level of detail and it is a great shame that the price is likely to deter many enthusiasts from acquiring one. Notwithstanding the manufacturers recommended prices great discounts are to be had from some USA based retailers so keep looking - especially that at present the exchange rates seem to have moved in the UK's favour with a £ worth almost US$ 1.4.


There is very little to quibble about and some of the detail changes between models are hard to spot unless you happen to be an expert on steam transportation of the period. All that is missing is a range of 1:20.3 scale passenger cars to accompany the locomotive and tender.  Yes , I realise that Bachmann have come up with some matching Coach and Combine pairings for each version but as far as I can ascertain they are essentially new paint jobs on their long established range of 1:22.5 scale Jackson-Sharp Passenger Cars.  In theory this would make them slightly undersized and purists may consider this a compromise too far. Such a pity that Bachmann didn't take the opportunity to retool these classic favourites in 1:20.3 - passenger cars have always been their weakness in comparison to their major competitors.


Their reluctance to incur the additional development and tooling costs has no doubt been influenced by the somewhat lukewarm reception for their 1:20.3 Spectrum rolling stock resulted in the range being drastically curtailed in recent years.  In retrospect, with the Corona Virus engulfing the world, that was probably a wise business decision. However, all is not lost as I have to admit that the "new" passenger cars do not look that much out of place. There again, each car is priced at US$ 140 (UK £115) which adds considerably to the total outlay if you want a rake of matching coaches in the same livery as your locomotive. 


There are a number of YouTube videos featuring these impressive locomotives and these are recommended viewing. Just click to play. 

In the following video, we take a look at a couple of very old steam locomotives that are all still running today. These steam locomotives were all built before the year 1900. The first is Eureka and Palisades Number 4, a small narrow gauge  4-4-0 built in 1875. It is the oldest narrow-gauge steam engine of this type running in the U.S. The engine is privately owned by Las Vegas, NV resident Dan Markoff and occasionally makes public runs on tourist railroads. The second locomotive is Virginia and Truckee 22, the “Inyo”. This 4-4-0 was also built in 1875 and currently runs on special occasions at the Nevada State RR Museum in Carson City, Nevada. Finally, we see Denver and Rio Grande number 315, built in 1895. It is currently maintained by the Durango Railroad Historical Society in Silverton, CO.

Before we exit the Bachmann 2-6-0 category there is just one more prototype we need to cover. Indeed,

it would be unforgivable to overlook Bachmann’s other contribution to the 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ model fraternity, especially as Thomas the Tank Engine and his friends are credited by some as the saviour of the model train hobby among the new millennium generation.


According to Wikipedia the fictional James is loosely based on the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway "Class 28", an 0-6-0 mixed-traffic tender engine of 1912/13, designed by George Hughes.  The Class 28s were powerful goods engines but tended to be nose-heavy, especially when used as relief engines on excursion trains, as they often were, and driven at speed so the addition of a pony truck on the fictional Island of Sodor was designed to counteract this alarming tendency.


Designed very much as a toy to appeal to the younger generation it is “big, bright and robust” which it does admirably whilst still having some kit-bashing potential as one of the few British outline tender locomotives available. Whilst this very basic locomotive has very little detail (leaving virtually nothing to get knocked off by exuberant handling) it does feature blackened metal spoked wheels on both engine and tender. A thermal circuit breaker is also fitted which temporarily cuts-out the power if it becomes overloaded or misused.

The foregoing is courtesy of Wikipedia.

James the Red Engine # 5   (91403)

Bachmann - James the Red Engine -Product

Originally released as a child friendly locomotive but more recently Bachmann have upgraded the model to provide for DC/DCC control and also added sound effects which has added considerably to the price of the locomotive so youngsters may have to rely increasingly on the generosity of their grand-parents should they wish to add it to their "Thomas & Friends" collection. This is the only sensible video I could find and unfortunately the quality is poor but at least gives you an impression if you are unable to visit a stockist.

Here is a much better compilation showing James the Red Engine with his friends Thomas & Percy.

This is a more comprehensive comparison of the locomotives available from Bachmann in large scale.



Marklin DB BR24 Class (2-6-0) Steam Locomotive No.24 044.                                         Era III (1945 - 1970)  Gauge 1      (1:32 Scale)                                                                                                                          Product Code: 55248  

The next candidate in the popular 2-6-0 category is the German firm Marklin who market a range of Spur 1 / Gauge 1 Locomotives for mainline operation to complement the narrow gauge models supplied by their subsidiary LGB. If you are looking for a 1:32 scale model based on a European outline prototype this could be the one for you. Unfortunately, it is no longer in production (they were made as a 'one-time weathered series' strictly to order) but may still be available either from dealers or on the second-user market. This next video shows the locomotive and tender in action:

Prototype: German Federal Railroad (DB) class 24 "Steppenpferd" ( "Prairie Pony") passenger locomotive. Original version with small Wagner smoke deflectors and weathering.

Model: Specification:


The locomotive has a frame, running boards, boiler with the cab floor constructed of metal. The remaining parts are made of high quality plastic. The locomotive has an mfx digital decoder, controlled high efficiency propulsion, and extensive sound functions. It can be operated with DC power, AC power, Märklin Digital, and DCC. 3 axles powered. The locomotive has a built-in smoke unit. The dual headlights change over with the direction of travel. The headlights and the smoke generator will work in conventional operation and can be controlled digitally. The engineer's cab has interior details and the firebox flickers. The locomotive has many separately applied details. The locomotive has a reproduction of the prototype coupler on the front and a claw coupler on the rear of the tender. An accessory package with a reproduction of the prototype coupler, a claw coupler, and a figure of a locomotive engineer and a fireman is included with the locomotive. The road number for the locomotive is 24 044.
Minimum radius for operation 1,020 mm / 40-3/16".
Length over the buffers 53 cm / 20-7/8".                                                       


(Company catalogue description - you can still access further details on the company online shop)

55248 Marklin BR24 Class 2-6-0 Steam Eng


  • One-time limited run series

  • Form variant with small Wagner smoke deflectors

  • Realistic driving sound

  • Built-in smoke generator unit that puffs rhythmically

  • Flickering firebox light effect

  • Chassis and prevailing construction of locomotive metal

  • Vehicle is equipped with sprung buffers

  • Installed sound electronics synchronised with the wheels

  • Dual headlights change over with the direction of travel

  • Automatic claw couplings can be replaced with screw couplings

Digital decoder with up to 9 digitally controlled functions when operating with the 60652 Mobile Station or 60651 Up to 5 functions in operation with Control Unit 6021. Prepared for up to 16 functions with future controllers. Assigned functions depending on the equipment of the locomotive.

I should perhaps, mention that this particular locomotive and tender was priced at É 2,300 (UK SRP £1,950) when released.

Footnote: Marklin did once produce an American Outline 2-6-0 “Washington” Union Pacific Article No: 54530 as part of their MAXI range but I have been unable to discover much about this model from the product databases which only date back to 2001. This version occasionally pops up on Ebay.

That just about finishes our look at the large-scale 2-6-0 Mogul for the time-being. Here are just a few extra video links of real-life (and model varieties) 2-6-0's going through their paces: 

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