Proto vs Athearn

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by racer25j, Jan 29, 2007.

  1. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    I'm in the market for a quality product and I was wondering what people thought about the Proto 2000 and Athearns premium locomotives. They both seem do have the same qualities but Walthers of course touts theirs as revolutionary. I noticed that Walthers seems to be out of what I want but my hobby shop may be able to get one. Athearn seems to have theirs in stock and my hobby shop is pushing it; even going so far as to give me the stores catalog to take home.

    I'm sure both are very fine products but maybe there is a reason Walthers is out of stock; beyond being $15.00 cheaper that is.
  2. zachary

    zachary Member

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    Hello racer25j i dont know what loco you want. If it was me I would go with proto 2k i have a e6 from proto 2k and it is a great runer and puller. bye zacharyf
  3. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    I was thinking of a GP30. I want something out of the 60's era. I have'nt heard from anyone about the two manufactures; only what I have read. Thanks for the quick reply.

    Jeff
  4. zachary

    zachary Member

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    Well jeff i dont know about their gp 30 but i have heard alot of good things about them. If they are anything like the e6 i would go for the proto zachary
  5. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

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    Well, Athearn doesn't do one (AFAIK). The Proto GP30 is a good runner, and has really nice body detail, but it is a bit pricey. Bachmann has re-released the Spectrum GP30 on a new chassis, and comes with DCC installed for $34.98 at Walthers. They're a bit growly out of the box, not as smooth as the Proto, but for $35, I can live with that.
  6. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

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    I have both Proto 2000 and Athearn engines on my roster... And they are all very good runners.

    By the way, a lot of the Proto 2000 locos like their GP9 have mechanisms that are direct clones of the Athearn power chassis. That's a testament to how well-designed the Athearn mechanism is! :thumb:

    You really can't go wrong with either P2K or Athearn.
  7. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    Thanks for the input. I was looking for one premium with sound and lights and then I would fill the rest of my fleet up with basic DCC locomotives. The layout that I am building will allow for both freight and passenger mainlines and I was thinking of a premium F7 later on.

    I won't be able to run more than two consists at one time so I'm really not worried about quantity.
  8. sidetracked

    sidetracked Member

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    I have a proto 2000 GP30 and a rs27 switcher plus a proto steamer,,, all with sound,,, the GP30 and the steamer are awesome,,,,, the rs27 had a jerk to it when I got it,,, I tried oiling it and cleaning it, never could get it out,,, it got so bad tonight i tore into it,,, pretty sure it is a bad motor cause everything else looks good,,,, ,,, going to buy another one when i find one,,,,, ,,,,,, ,,,,, st
  9. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    I'm getting excited just thinking about it. O that's just wrong.

    :p
  10. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    Had to go with Athearn. Wathers was out of everything that I wanted. My hobby shop had a Santa Fe SD45 with DCC and sound on sale so I picked that one up. I was hoping for something in the 60's era but early seventies will be just fine.
  11. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

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    That's not just an Athearn... that's a Genesis! The premier line, with a very nice driveline and detail. Good choice, but that's a lot bigger than a GP-30. :)
  12. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

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    In the few minutes that I've been in this hobby ( 50 years, I guess that's quite a few minutes ) Athearn has always been the "best bang for the buck". The "Genesis" line is on a par with about anything else on the market. My BL20-2s are built on old athearn GP7/9 chassis, that have been remotored, and run quite well! Check out www.athearn.com and look for GP30 to see if there are any available.
    Pete
  13. joesho

    joesho Member

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    id say go with proto!;D
  14. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    It's sweet...I think I did ok and the price was right. I just have to reprogram it to my controller which means I have to set up a programming track and that sounds like a pain in the ass.
  15. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

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    It's not that big a deal... which DCC system do you have?
  16. racer25j

    racer25j Member

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    I went cheap with the Bachman. I figured I would only run two, maybe three locomotives at one time. Most likely two, due to the size of my track. I might run two frieght lines and a switcher instead of the passenger line that I was thinking of.
  17. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

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    I figured that out after I read your other thread :)

    You don't need a programming track, see my post in your other thread.

    The Bachmann system is great for a small layout. Super bang for the buck. Good choice!
  18. jbaakko

    jbaakko Active Member

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    Here you go.. Athearn RTR-Athearn Genesis-Proto 2000
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The Genesis & Proto 2000 have see through grills, the P2K's dynmaic brake lacks detail where the Genesis looks way better there. Beyond that, all 3 have equal details, installed grabs (unless you get the oldest run of Genesis SD70 series), plastic handrails...
  19. jbaakko

    jbaakko Active Member

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    Ditch that hunk, and buy the new NCE Powercab, it has the DCC all in the hand held cab, and can control the SAME amount of trains.
  20. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

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    Nice system though the NCE is, it's overkill for a small layout, and 3x the price of the Bachmann system.