Web Site of ToyTrains1
True HD 1080p Videos (Page 3 of 3)

In May of 2010, I got a new camcorder, the newly released Canon Vixia HF S21.  It records in True HD 1080p (if you choose the appropriate settings) and records videos onto its internal 64 GB flash drive.  The video files that result have incredible resolution and detail!  Since YouTube now supports True HD 1080p, the new videos appear on this page only in the YouTube player.  While I could post them here in their native format, I've compared those originals to the YouTube HD rendering and there isn't enough difference to warrant doing so.  Over the course of time, I've reshot most of my older videos in HD and they appear on this page.  When you play one of these HD videos, if your hardware supports it click on the resolution box at the lower right hand corner of the YouTube player and select 1080p, then give it a try in full screen mode.  This page is in reverse chronological order -- that is, the newest videos appear first.

Because of the number of videos, I've had to split this multimedia section into multiple parts.  On this third page, you have oldest True HD 1080p videos.  On the first page of this section are the newest True HD 1080p videos (CLICK HERE) and on the second page are the True HD 1080p videos of intermediate age (CLICK HERE).  In the other multimedia section are all of the older standard definition videos as well as the videos of real trains.  You can CLICK HERE to go to the standard definition page.  Many of the video descriptions include a link to another page within my web site that has photographs of the trains in the videos.  Also, I have reviewed many of the models on my Train Reviews page.  (This LINK will take you to the main page of my web site.)  Enjoy!

O-Gauge & Standard Gauge Model Train Videos

The Pennsylvania RR T1 Duplex (4-4-4-4) was conceived in the late 1930s as a replacement for the Pennsylvania Railroad's aging fleet of K4 Pacifics. Although it looked like an articulated locomotive (such as a Challenger or Big Boy), it was actually a duplex, two engines on a single rigid frame. The idea was to eliminate all the moving parts (including flexible steam pipes) required to swivel the front engine of an articulated, yet retain the additional power offered by two pairs of cylinders. Styled by famed industrial designer Raymond Loewy, the T1 represented the Pennsy's best hopes for a technologically advanced steamer that could compete with diesels. Extensive testing of the first two T1s, delivered in 1942, indicated the new design was a winner - a single passenger engine capable of hauling a sixteen car train at a hundred miles an hour. Glowing reports from these tests convinced management to place an order for 50 additional engines. Pennsy's Altoona works and Baldwin Locomotive Works split the order, each producing 25 engines in 1945-46. In actual service, however, the locomotives did not live up to the promise of the test engines. Although they were indeed speedy and powerful, the rigid duplex frame gave the engine an unfortunate tendency to rock back and put most of its weight on the rear drivers, allowing the front engine to slip uncontrollably. It took a very skillful engineer to keep a T1 pulling surely on all eight drivers. Given more time, these problems could perhaps have been solved, but in the late 1940s time was up for the steam locomotive. In the end, the T1 was a grand, handsome experiment that failed. Sadly, none were preserved. In 2000, MTH brought out an exquisite Premier line model of the T1, featuring their original Protosound electronics package. I later converted the locomotive to Protosound 2 (PS2), giving it the full panoply of sound and control features that enable DCS remote control. Much as with the prototype, this is a heavy hauling model. In this True HD 1080p video, you can see it effortlessly pulling a dozen scale heavyweight passenger cars, a large load indeed yet it does so without protest.

In 1924, the Pennsylvania RR roster was home to more than 3,000 2-8-0 Consolidations, proving the importance of this engine as a freight hauler. These workhorses were versatile; they worked the mainline for more than 50 years, and later, when larger engines elbowed them from the mainline, did duty on branch lines, local freights, work trains, and even in yards. The PRR made 10 different variations on their H-class 2-8-0 over the course of more than 30 years. The H10s Consolidation originally worked on the PRR's Lines West region, though they moved east to help with World War II traffic and remained in the east until the end of the PRR's steam days. In September of 2001, MTH brought out a Premier line model of the H10 consolidation. Though fully 9 years old now, the level of detail and the operation still hold up very well, as you can see in this True HD 1080p video. Though it's a small model of a small prototype, it's quite a freight hauler as I have it hauling a freight train made up of more than a dozen heavy scale PRR freight cars!

In 2002, MTH brought out a Premier line model of the 2500 HP transfer diesel that Lima-Hamilton built for the Pennsylvania RR. Though not a fan of diesels, these were sufficient ugly to appeal to me.   The 22 prototypes were built in 1950-1951, and these boxy center-cab units served for transfer work, which was similar to switching but on a larger scale. Rather than simply moving cars around a yard, these more powerful diesel engines moved cars from one yard to another, covering longer distances and heavier consists that would have been too challenging for many switchers. In this true HD 1080p video, I show it moving a mixed consist of Pennsy freight cars out on the mainline, probably going from one yard to another. As you can see in the video, it runs and sounds great and is a great freight hauler.

In late 2000, MTH released their Premier line model of a Pennsylvania RR E6 Atlantic (4-4-2) steam locomotive. This was, AFAIK, the very first locomotive released with the then-new Protosound 2 electronics. This incorporated synchronized smoke puffing with the sound of the steam chuffing as well as an impressive panoply of sound and locomotive controls. It also incorporated DCS remote control, though that system wouldn't appear for quite a time yet. For a 10 year old model, it still looks quite good, though modern models have somewhat more detail, it runs well, and it sounds good too as you can see in this True HD 1080p video.

In late 2000, MTH brought out a Premier model of the UP F-E-F (which stands for Four-Eight-Four, the wheel arrangement), a large Northern-typesteam locomotive. The prototype is quite famous as it is still running today as part of UP's steam program. The prototype was one of the last big steamers built in the US and incorporated all of the then-latest features. The model was one of the first with the then-new Protosound 2 system that includes the synchronized chuffing sound and puffing smoke as well as user-settable chuff rate and DCS remote control. In this five minute long True HD 1080p video, you see the locomotive leave the ready yard, couple to its very long and heavy train, make a few runbys, and then uncouple from the train and return to its track in the ready yard, all under remote control. It's a great appearing, great sounding, and great running model locomotive!

In early 2005, MTH brought out a Premier line model of the Reading T-1 Northern (4-8-4) steam locomotive. These locomotives are very recognizable as they were the stars of the "Reading Rambles" that were run with them well after the railroad switched over to diesel power. The model is an excellent representation of the prototype -- it looks great, it sounds great, and it runs very well as you can see in this True HD 1080p video. I have it pulling my "pipeline on rails," a string of 40 tank cars. Unlike the previous Challenger video, here I've used only the longer tank cars and have gone through my collection to use all of the ones that carry railroad names. See how many you can find! :)

Here's a train that I don't think I've ever shown in a video -- I call this my "pipeline on rails". Before I collected AtlasO reefers, I collected MTH Premier tank cars. Here are fifty of them (I have lots more that just won't fit on the track), being hauled by the MTH Premier UP Challenger (4-6-6-4) articulated steam locomotive that came out in 2002. Although these fifty cars are a heavy load, they are (pardon the pun) no challenge to the Challenger. :) It's a great model that looks good, sounds good, and runs very well. That's the auxiliary tender behind the main tender.

In 2004, MTH released another in their series of die-cast models of Pennsylvania RR electric locomotives. This was the L5, a prehistoric-appearing steeplecab locomotive that was the last of their experimental jackshaft electrics. The jackshafts were a breed of locomotive that conbined electric motors with steam locomotive side rods to move the drivers. The prototype was first built in 1924, and was intended for both passenger and freight operations. In this True HD 1080p video, I've coupled the L5 to a short Pennsy freight train. In the final segment, you can see it uncouple from its train and head back to its track in the locomotive ready yard, all under DCS remote control. Please visit my web site -- http://www.toytrains1.com -- for lots more videos and photos of both real and model trains.

This is the MTH Premier Santa Fe Texas-type (2-10-4) steam locomotive that came out in 2001. In real life, this locomotive was a heavy freight hauler, so I thought it appropriate to give it a heavy load in this True HD 1080p video. It's pulling a total of FORTY AtlasO reefers which is quite a load, but it does so without protest. The sound is good, the operation is good, and it's a good model of the real thing.

The engineers on my railroad have been complaining that the number one curve, where I happen to shoot most of my videos, is pretty rough on their locomotives. Taking no chances, I issued orders for the DC-3 track inspection car to examine the track on that curve. The film crew happened to be on site and caught the action. This MTH Premier O-gauge model of the UP DC-3 car came out in 2001 and, in terms of detail, sound, and operation, has held up very well indeed, as you will see in this short True HD 1080p video. One of the more unusual cars in my collection, it's a fun car to operate and I hope you enjoy the video!

MTH brought out their Premier line model of the Northern Pacific Yellowstone (2-8-8-4) articulated steam locomotive in December of 2003. It was very much a reissue of the previous PS1 model of the DM&IR Yellowstone in a new paint scheme, but with the PS2 sound and control package in it, that was pretty easily overlooked. As you can see in this True HD 1080p video, it looks great, sounds great, and runs great too. It's hauling 28 of the 36' woodsided reefers from AtlasO which is quite a load yet this locomotive has no problem with that at all. I even got a matching NP caboose for this video! :)

About ten years ago or so, MTH released their Premier line model of a Climax steam locomotive. The prototype was a small geared steamer that was used primarily on logging railroads. As with the Shay, the Climax had the pistons turning a drive shaft that was geared directly to the small drivers, giving this locomotive the ability to climb very steep grades, albeit quite slowly. Unlike the Shay, the Climax has the pistons on the diagonal rather than vertically and the geared driveshaft is underneath the locomotive, between the drivers, rather than on the outside. As you'll see in this True HD 1080p video, the model, though tiny, is extremely well detailed, looks great, sounds fantastic, and runs very well.  In the final segment of the video, there's a close-up of the drivetrain, which you can compare to that of the Shay.

As long as I had the Pennsy freight train on the tracks, I decided to shoot the last of my big PRR freight hauling steamers. This is a True HD 1080p video of the MTH Premier PRR Mountain (4-8-2) steam locomotive hauling that train. The model came out in 2003 and has held up quite well over the years of heavy use. As you can see in the video, it looks and sounds great and runs very well. The prototype locomotive was one of Pennsy's main freight haulers, with more than 300 Mountains having been built and used in heavy freight service.

On a visit to Trains & Things in Trenton, NJ where Mike Wolf of MTH Electric Trains was visiting, they had on display the 2007 MTH reproduction of the Ives Olympian set, which was one of the last made by Ives in the years leading up to the Great Depression (1929-1930).  It seldom happens, but for me it was love at first sight and I walked out of the store with the set even though it's Standard Gauge.  For those unfamiliar with it, Standard Gauge trains run on track that is much wider than O-gauge track and, being much more from the toy train genre, there is no real scale, so Standard Gauge trains come in a variety of sizes, from small to very large.  My Standard Gauge Christmas trains (videos down the page) are from the small school.  This new set is from the very large school.  The locomotive (based on a Milwaukee Road bipolar) and four cars stretch out over six feet in length!  While faithful to the original set in appearance, this reproduction incorporates all of the latest electronics and is fully controllable with the DCS remote control system. As you can see in this True HD 1080p video, it a super appearing, super sounding set.  If the background looks unfamiliar, my Standard Gauge trains run on my auxiliary layout, which is on the carpeted floor of my library.

Just about nine years ago, I got the MTH Premier model of the Pennsylvania Railroad Q2, a duplex-drive 4-4-6-4 freight hauling behemoth of a steam locomotive. It was one of the first locomotives equipped with Protosound 2 (PS2). I've had it running on and off all the years since and it still runs great. In this True HD 1080p video, you can see it hauling my PRR freight train. Since the feedback I've received about this train has been quite positive, I visited the train store recently and bought quite a few more cars to add to it. In the slow speed run-by you can get a good look at the now two dozen car train. Following the higher speed run-by, you can watch as the Q2 uncouples from the train and returns to its track in my locomotive ready yard.

This is another unusual video. It shows the MTH Premier Great Northern (GN) S-2 Northern-type (4-8-4) steam locomotive pulling a large consist of 36' woodsided reefers. That's quite a load, and the S-2 runs out of oomph. It calls for help, and the MTH Premier GN R-2, a 2-8-8-2 articulated behemoth, answers the call. It backs out of the ready yard onto the mainline, couples to the back of the train, and together the S-2 and the R-2 get it up to speed and on the way to its destination. As you'll see in this True HD 1080p video, the S-2 and the R-2 work splendidly together in lash-up using DCS, combining to move the train with no trouble at all. The detail and operation of both locomotives is superb!

While the Pennsylvania Railroad FF1 and FF2 boxcab electric locomotives belonged to different eras, there are some perks to running your own railroad! :) In this True HD 1080p video, you get to see them double-headed (that's the FF1 -- Big Liz -- up front) hauling a very long all-Pennsy freight train. Though they might not have run together in real life, double-headed locomotives on long freight trains were and are still a very common sight on the railroads.

In June of 2003, MTH brought out a Premier model of a 4-truck Shay steam locomotive, decorated for C&O and featuring PS2 (I already had the one issued years earlier with PS1 decorated for WVP&P). A Shay locomotive was designed for use in the logging industry, on lightweight track that might have very steep grades and very sharp turns. It's a geared locomotive with great tenacity though made for low speeds. Though mine usually runs on my auxiliary layout, I've moved it to the main layout where it's easier to film in detail. In this True HD 1080p video, you get to see it in operation with a close-up of the amazing gear operation. I've seen real Shays at museums and this model is pretty much on the money. Enjoy!

Big Liz starred in the very first video that I uploaded to YouTube, so it's only fitting that she get her own True HD 1080p video. In this video, I have her hauling a dozen Pennsy freight cars, though that's a pretty small load for such a large, powerful model. The prototype was built in 1917 as Pennsy's first experimental boxcab AC jack-shaft electric locomotive but was so powerful that it kept ripping out the couplers of the day and was finally relegated to pusher service. Since people seem to want to see other parts of my layout, I've done this video a bit differently. Big Liz normally resides in my locomotive ready yard, so I show her leaving the yard, proceeding through the interlocking plant and onto the Track 1 mainline. You then see her and her train in several run-bys and finally get to see her uncouple from her train and come back into the ready yard

In the previous video I showed the MTH Premier D16d pulling its 19th century passenger cars. This was shot on Track 1, my outer O-72 loop which is closest to the camera. This train normally resides on a storage track in my central yard, which is accessed via Track 3, the innermost loop. I thought it would be interesting to show how the train makes its way back to the storage track, traversing the interlocking plant to get from Track 1 to Track 2 to Track 3 and then into the yard and onto the appropriate storage track. It was a pain to shoot as I had to move the camera around to locations that really aren't suited for filming, but the final True HD 1080p product gives you a good idea of how my layout works, even when it's clogged with train after train on all of the loops and storage tracks

In December of 2005 I received the MTH Premier PRR D16d American (4-4-0) steam locomotive. This is a model of a high strutting late 19th/early 20th century steam locomotive, complete with high domes. From the large 80" drivers, you know this was designed for passenger service. It's a small locomotive as were most locomotives of this time period. It's a highly detailed model that runs very well. In this True HD 1080p video, I show it hauling a set of late 19th century passenger cars, which is very much how you would have found it in real life.

This True HD 1080p video highlights my MTH Premier Pennsylvania RR Baldwin Shark (A-B) diesel locomotives, which came out in October of 2001 and which haul my Pennsy work train. Both a slow speed and a higher speed video segment are included. Since the work train normally resides on one of the stub sidings in the yard that occupies the center of my layout, I thought I'd also show how it gets from the inner main track 3 (to which all of the yard tracks connect) to the outer main track 1 where I film via the interlocking plant that connects all three main tracks.

In August of 2006, MTH delivered their Premier line model of a PRR A5. This is a very small four-coupled (0-4-0) steam locomotive that was used as a yard switcher to move around cars and make up trains. As a scale model, it's tiny compared to most other O-Gauge steam locomotives but it's very detailed and quite powerful for its size. In this True HD 1080p video, you can see how exquisitely detailed it is. I've also run it in several of the ways that you might have seen it running in real life

In early 2002, I got a special train set from MTH. They called it "American Legacy #768W" and it was a reproduction of a train set originally brought out by Lionel in 1939. It had a beautiful die-cast Premier scale model of a NYC J1e Hudson painted in tinplate grey enamel with a matching tinplate tender and a set of four blue tinplate passenger cars. In the intervening years, I've matched those blue cars with an MTH reproduction of the actual tinplate blue locomotive that together make up the classic Baby Blue Comet set. Since the grey Hudson has a box coupler (from the days before WW II), it's kind of hard to run it with most of my trains that have knuckle couplers. However, for a very long time I've had a set of the same 600-series tinplate passenger cars with the box couplers but in a gorgeous terra-cotta enamel finish. Mating the locomotive with those cars makes for a stunning train, so here it is in crystal clear sharp detail in a True HD 1080p video.

In November of 2003, MTH released a Protosound 2 version of their Premier model of the C&O Allegheny, a hulking 2-6-6-6 articulated behemoth. This locomotive was the tallest, widest, heaviest, and most powerful steam locomotive ever produced and was used in heavy coal service in the Allegheny mountains. As you can see in this True HD 1080p video, the detailing of the model is superb and the sound is great. Before anyone asks, I've been assured that the weird whistle is entirely prototypical and comes from recordings of the real thing.

This is a True HD 1080p video of the MTH Premier Cab Forward (4-8-8-2) that came out in 2008. This locomotive is a PS2-equipped reissue of the original Premier Cab Forward model that came out in 1996. As with most such reissues, it has more detail than the original and, on this one, MTH issued it in two different models; one modeling the locomotive as-built (as did the original model) and the other modeling a locomotive equipped with a more modernized cab front which SP used on a number of the older Cab Forwards as they were rebuilt. It's the latter one that I got and I'm very pleased with it! As you can see in the video, the detailing is superb and the audio shows off the excellent sound set. The locomotive is hauling a very eclectic freight train, as the cab forwards did in real life.

In early March of 2006, MTH brought out a Premier model of the New York Central (NYC) #999, a small American-type (4-4-0) locomotive with enormous 86" driving wheels. When the prototype was put into service in 1893 hauling the Empire State Express between NYC and Buffalo, it quickly set the world land speed record of 112.5 miles per hour. The model is an exquisite representation of the prototype as you can see and hear in the True HD 1080p video. In the second segment, you can hear it pull into the station with the chatter about setting the world speed record. It's hauling a set of seven woodsided passenger cars appropriate to the time. The detail on the cars is also exquisite, down to the potbellied stove in each passenger car. If you pause the video in the first segment, you can actually make out the stove at the front of each car!

The New York Central (NYC) Hudson is probably one of the most recognizable of all steam locomotives. The Hudsons were the backbone of the great steel fleet that plied the iron between New York and Chicago. It was capable of pulling a large passenger train at more than 100 miles per hour, and headed most of the New York Central's premier trains, such as the 20th Century Limited. The 4-6-4 Hudson evolved from the 4-6-2 Pacific through "superpowering" by adding a larger firebox and the extra trailing truck axle that was required as a result, much at the 2-8-2 Mikado evolved to the 2-8-4 Berkshire. This MTH Premier model is of a NYC Hudson with streamlining designed by Henry Dreyfuss and includes the matching streamlined cars. The prototype took to the rails in 1938 and this model came out at the end of 2000. As you can see in the True HD 1080p video, the model is superb, it sounds great and it runs very well. Toward the end of the second segment, you can hear the announcement of the 20th Century Limited as the train pulls into the station.

In August of 2008, MTH brought out a Premier model of the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) P5a boxcab electric locomotive. This was a workhorse on the Pennsy and ran on the Pennsy mainline (now the Amtrak Northeast Corridor) not far from my home. The model is die-cast, quite heavy, and is an exquisitely detailed replica of the real thing. As you can see in this True HD 1080p video, it runs very well and has great sound, though, as with all electric locomotives (as opposed to steam), the sounds are somewhat limited. Toward the end of the video, I demonstrate some of the features incorporated into this locomotive, including pantographs that automatically raise and lower with direction change and steam pressure release (the locomotive had a steam generator so it could provide steam heat to the passenger cars).

Back in 1998, MTH brought out a Premier model of the Jersey Central (CNJ) Blue Comet, a heavy Pacific (4-6-2) locomotive, painted in two tones of blue, which hauled a special train from the CNJ terminal in Jersey City to the seaside resort of Atlantic City (long before the days of casinos). The model was issued with the original Protosound system (PS1) and I later converted it to Protosound 2 (PS2) so that it could be controled with the DCS remote control system. Over the years, MTH has brought out several sets of matching passenger cars (all named for comets), to the point that I now have twelve of them.  In this True HD 1080p video, you get to see the Blue Comet locomotive with all of its matching passenger cars, a model of one of the most famous trains ever to travel the rails here in New Jersey.

In June of 2003, MTH brought out a Premier model of the Pennsylvania RR (PRR) S1, which was a one-of-a-kind 6-4-4-6 duplex steam locomotive. Unlike the big articulated locomotives, this one had a solid frame. The prototype locomotive spent the first two years of its life on rollers at the 1939 New York World's Fair, where it wowed visitors. In actual service however, it was too big for the tight curves of the east and spent it's short life running west of Crestline, Ohio, where it proved to lack sufficient traction to justify its existence, hence it was the only one of its kind. The model looks great (it reminds me of Flash Gordon's spaceship from the old serials), runs great, and sounds great. In this True HD 1080p video, you see it hauling a total of 18(!) heavyweight passenger cars, a very, very heavy train indeed. With just about any other locomotive, I'd double-head to pull this load; the S1 manages it all by itself.

This is another video reshoot in True HD 1080p. While I don't have many diesel locomotives in my collection, much preferring steam, for these I made an exception. These are my MTH Premier PRR Alco PA-1 diesel locomotives, a full A-B-A set, in the incredibly attractive tuscan with five gold stripe passenger livery of the Pennsylvania Railroad. In this video, I show them hauling eight of the MTH Premier heavyweight PRR passenger cars, very much as they would have in real life. As you can see in the video, the models smoke almost as much as steamers, much as the prototype Alco diesel locomotives always put up a large cloud of smoke. When comparing this video to the original, shot a few years ago in standard definition (SD), the crispness, clarity, and detail available with True HD 1080p really stands out.

I got the MTH Premier model of the Duluth Missabe & Iron Range (DM&IR) Yellowstone, a 2-8-8-8-4 articulated behemoth, when it came out in 1999.  At the time, it came with the original Protosound system (PS1).  Much later on, I upgraded it to Protosound 2 so that it could have the full array of bells & whistles and work with the DCS remote control system.  As I recall, it was one of the more difficult conversions due to the narrow width of the tender chassis.  The original video showed it hauling some freight cars.  For some reason, I didn't show it with the ore cars that were made to go with it.  That's a lapse that I have now rectified in this True HD 1080p video of the Yellowstone with its dozen ore cars and caboose.  As you can see in the video, it looks and sounds great and runs very, very well.

I love it when people don't believe me! In the notes for the True HD 1080p video of the double-headed Big Boys that I posted on YouTube, I mentioned that either one of them could easily haul the entire train by itself. Of course, I got an email from somebody who "knows better" saying that there was no way that could be. So, here's a video of just one of the MTH Premier Big Boys hauling an even longer train made up of the die-cast auxiliary tender (quite heavy), 54 AtlasO woodsided reefers, and a caboose. The only reason that there aren't more cars is that the Big Boy is pretty much chasing its own caboose.  If I had a larger layout, it could haul a lot more cars -- I've done that on the large modular layouts at train shows.  This is the first Big Boy that MTH brought out and was converted by me from PS1 to PS2. As you can see at the end of the video, that conversion extends to the auxiliary tender, which I remotely uncouple from the train using DCS.  So much for "Mr. Knows Better"!

Some of the most popular videos I've ever posted have been of the Union Pacific (UP) Big Boy steam locomotives.  The prototypes were the longest steam locomotives ever built and everything about them was enormous.  My MTH Premier models are rather old and originally came with the Protosound system.  A while back, I upgraded both of them to Protosound 2 (PS2) so that they would work with DCS and have all the bells and whistles.  While more modern models may have a few more details, they remain very impressive.  Now that I'm reshooting videos in True HE 1080p, it was an easy choice to get them out of the display case and put them on the tracks, double-headed for twice the sound and twice the smoke, at the head of a very long, very heavy freight train, exactly as they would have run in real life.  The train has 42 AtlasO 36' and 40' woodsided billboard reefers, and between the locomotives and the reefers, I have to say that this is one of the best videos that I've shot to date.  Enjoy!

As you can see from the videos below, I've been busily reshooting videos of my various locomotives in True HD 1080p using my new camcorder.  This latest video isn't a reshoot but rather is an original video that I've never shot before.  When reshooting the videos for the two Triplexes (Triplices?), Erie and Virginian (shown below), I started to wonder how much one Triplex could haul.  With the real coal loads made by my friend Bob (http://www.bobscoalloads.com), the coal hoppers are quite heavy and I wanted to see if just one could haul all of the hoppers that I have, a total of 27.  The short answer is yes, pulling that much weight was no problem.  Well, at least for the Triplex.  The problem was that the couplers on the hoppers couldn't handle that much weight and the train kept breaking apart!  Now, I could have just wired the couplers shut and been done with it, but the fact that I use DCS opens up other answers to the problem.  In this case, since I was using the Erie Triplex, I went ahead and put the Erie Angus (the 0-8-8-0 camelback) at the end of the train, lashed-up the two locomotives using DCS, and as you can see in the video, it worked flawlessly in keeping the train from breaking apart under its own weight.  And, while you might never have seen a Triplex and an Angus on the same train in the real world, this is my railroad and on my railroad they work happily together!  Enjoy! 

I actually have two Triplexes (Triplices?) in my collection; the Erie and the Virginian. Now, the Virginian's prototype Triplex was a 2-8-8-8-4 whereas the model is a 2-8-8-8-2, basically a redecorated Erie Triplex. Given that there was only one prototype locomotive, I can understand MTH taking this shortcut by using the existing Erie tooling since to make new tooling that you probably couldn't use again would be silly. In any case, the locomotive is superb, it looks, sounds, and runs great as you can see in this True HD 1080p video.

Mallet locomotives were articulated; that is, they had at least two sets of drivers, one of which could swing free of the boiler, allowing a very long and powerful locomotive to make its way around fairly tight curves with the boiler overhanging the curve.  They also reused steam from one set of cylinders to another.  The version of the Mallet in this video, the Triplex had THREE separate steam chests and drivers, on the theory that if two were good, three would be better.  The Erie had three of these 2-8-8-8-2 locomotives.  The theory did not long survive the reality, as the boiler was unable to produce enough steam to power all six cylinders and after going only a relatively short way, the locomotive slowed down and came to as stop as it ran out of steam and then had to sit and wait until it built up a head of pressure again.  In 2002, MTH brought out a Premier model of the Erie Mallet.  As you'll see in the video, the detail is exquisite, the sound is great, and it operates beautifully.  It's one of the gems of my collection.

When I posted my first videos of my two SP Daylight locomotives on YouTube, I almost immediately started getting requests to do a video of them double-headed, so of course I did.  Well, it's happened again.  With the True HD 1080p videos of the GS-2 and the GS-4 posted, I've already been asked to post a video of them working together.  This is the video.  The GS-2 is in front, the GS-4 follows, and they're hauling my entire collection of matching SP passenger cars.

Here's another True HD 1080p video of a freight hauling locomotive.  This one is the MTH Premier model of the PRR I1s Decapod, a 2-10-0 brute of a locomotive  that was used in heavy freight service.  Though it came out in 2004, it's still a very good representation of the prototype.  I have it hauling an all-Pennsylvania freight train made up of mostly MTH Premier freight cars of various types.

I have many models of locomotive prototypes that were used to haul coal from our nation's coal fields to the ports.  One such is the Norfolk & Western (N&W) Y6b, a 2-8-8-2 compound articulated locomotive.  A true Mallet-type, it used its steam twice, funneling the high pressure steam from the boiler into the rear cylinders and then exhausting it at lower pressure into the larger front cylinders before the final exhaust up the stack.  This MTH Premier model came out in 2002 and is a very good representation of the original.  This video, shot in True HD 1080p, shows it to good advantage hauling a long string of coal hoppers.

I thought a change of pace in the HD videos was in order.  Here's the MTH Premier PRR J1 Texas (2-10-4) steam locomotive that came out in 2005.  It's a model of one of the PRR's heavy freight haulers.  Rather than give it a long string of reefers, I dug through my collection and put together a freight train of various Pennsylvania cars.  There are about a dozen of them and they look mighty fine behind the J1, which, though now five years old, still looks and sounds great!

Here's a True HD 1080p reshoot of my original Southern Pacific Daylight steam locomotive.  This is the MTH Premier model of the GS-4 Northern (4-8-4) that I converted from the original PS1 to PS2 which enabled it to run under the full control of DCS.  The video shows it hauling my full set of matching passenger cars, which I have equipped with a full cast of characters!  Toward the end of the video, you can hear the passenger station announcement that's part of the sound set.

This is a video of another train that I usually have on my layout.  It's on my #3 track which is a diameter of O-42 and it consists of a very long string of older AtlasO 36' woodsided reefers.  Pulling the train is the MTH Premier PRR L1 Mikado (2-8-2) and pushing is the MTH Premier PRR B28 switcher (0-6-0).  As with the previous video, the pusher isn't just for show.  On curves this tight (with S-curves no less), without a pusher a train of this length and weight would stringline every time.  With the pusher, as you can see, it runs flawlessly.  This video is in True HD 1080p, shot in 24 fps native progressive mode.  Enjoy!

A while back, I shot some videos showing the MTH Premier K4s Pacific (4-6-2)  locomotives in several different combinations (I have a total of three models of this locomotive, all different).  Here's one that I didn't show except in an overall layout video.  Here, in True HD 1080p, is the prewar #1737 at the head of a long string of older AtlasO reefers.  The postwar #1361 is pushing.  This isn't just for show.  They're on my track #2, which has a diameter of O-54.  With a train of this length and weight on that tight a curve, if I didn't have a pusher engine, the train would stringline.  Enjoy!

Some of the most popular videos I have ever shot and posted have been those showing the Southern Pacific (SP) streamlined Daylight locomotives, class GS-2 and class GS-4, both Northern-type (4-8-4) steamers.  That being the case, it only makes sense to give them the True HD 1080p treatment and I've started that with the video below showing the GS-2 Daylight #4412 hauling a long matching passenger consist.  I shot this one at 24 fps progressive cinematic mode at the full 24 Mbps and it gives, I think, the best overall viewing experience.  Enjoy!

The MTH Premier Mohawk is my most recent addition to the collection so I thought that I'd reshoot that video in True HD 1080p.  I've once again used a different set of camera parameters and have used a different program to process the raw video.  I'll be interested in the reactions and which of the now four HD videos is the most pleasing to the eye, so your comments are appreciated!

Number three anyone?  ;)  This is the third video that I've shot in True HD 1080p and I think I'm happiest with this set of parameters.  Given my fascination with articulated locomotives, I'm a little surprised that I waited untill the third video with the new camcorder to shoot one.  It's the MTH Premier Great Northern (GN) Z-6 Challenger (4-6-6-4) pulling a very long string of AtlasO reefers.  All in all it turned out quite well.  Enjoy!  :)

I've now shot a second video in True HD 1080p.  This one shows the MTH Premier NYC A-2 Berkshire (2-8-4) pulling a long string of recent AtlasO reefers.  It has the distinction of being one of the few locomotives ever painted olive green!  I changed some of the parameters in the camera when shooting this.  I also used a new version of NeroVision when rendering it and it seems to have turned out rather well considering how inexperienced I am with the new camcorder.  See what you think!  :)

May, 2010: Well, the day had to come and it finally has.  I now have a new HD camcorder that records in True HD 1080p (resolution of 1920x1080 progressive) and YouTube is supporting the uploading and playback of such videos.  From this point forward, I will be shooting train videos exclusively in HD and will be making them available exclusively via YouTube.  Honestly, I don't know how I'd make these files available in the variety of formats that I have in the past and it would be silly to reduce them in resolution and quality so that I could.  In theory I could post them in their native format, but I've compared that to the YouTube rendering; the difference is slight and isn't worth the effort.  The first of my HD videos shows the MTH Premier Erie Angus (0-8-8-0) camelback steam locomotive that came out in 2004 pulling the latest 2010 AtlasO reefers.  When you use the YouTube player below, you can select the resolution that you want in the lower right of the player.  If your hardware supports it, give the 1080p selection a try and expand it to full screen for the best possible viewing experience.  Oh, I almost forgot.  YouTube!  My train videos there have now racked up a mind-numbing total of over FOUR MILLION views!

Click here to go to True HD 1080p videos page 1 (newest)

Click here to go to True HD 1080p videos page 2 (intermediate)

Click here to go to Standard Definition Videos

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Last updated: 22 Jan 2020

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