Athearn SD45

Discussion in 'Electo-Motive Division (EMD)' started by HWB, Aug 12, 2015.

  1. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    It appears the Athearn SD45's are in. Let's hope for the best and let the good time's roll
  2. William Jackson

    William Jackson Bill Jackson

    Hopefully, we can get a review on these, anyone recieved theirs yet?
  3. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member Staff Member

    I been looking where you guys seeing them? I Looked at MB Kleins a few days ago and Spring Creek too.
  4. William Jackson

    William Jackson Bill Jackson

    They are showing "in stock" at Athearn, so we will get the review from the sharp eye guy's.
  5. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    Rick McClellan and I got word from Spring Creek Model Trains that ours have arrived and will be shipped shortly. I got all three numbers with Tsunami sound. When mine arrive I'll post a review unless I'm beaten to the punch.
  6. William Jackson

    William Jackson Bill Jackson

    Good Keith, I got two ordered from Spring Creek, I will shoot them a reminder.
  7. paul slavens

    paul slavens Member

    I see they have made it to ebay now. The best deal on the sound version is 143.90 plus 10.95 shipping, the best deal for the dcc ready versions are 104.90 plus 10.95 shipping. Multiple numbers in stock and ready to ship, according to the sellers.
  8. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    I put together a quick video of the new SD45. Looks good out of the box. I opened 947 first. It would not program with 28/128 speed steps so I'm sending it back. 944 was next. No problems with it. I have not made any modifications or detail work to this model. This is how it looks straight out of the box. The only changes I made to the operation of the model was changing the horn to a Leslie 5 Chime and maxing out all the volumes which I do to all my sound motors. Overall I would give it 4 out 5 stars or a solid 7 out of 10. You have to remember it's nothing more than a RTR with sound and in my opinion it's value priced. If you have any questions, comments or concerns let me know

  9. William Jackson

    William Jackson Bill Jackson

    Very nice video, looks great, looks like the passenger stuff is in the ready track. Called the "Ready Track" cause its ready. That's what the old timer used to say, "Where is my train?", "Did you check the ready track" "Engines are in the pocket"
  10. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    I got 945 out of the box and programmed it. No issues. I did realize I did not have the volume maxed out on 944. After spending the evening running 944 around the layout performance, especially low speed increased dramatically is usually the case with Athearn RTR motors.
    I have three of the non sound motors. I have not taken them out of the box as I do not have decoders yet. At first glance they look just like the sound models.
    I'll try to get a video up of 944 and 945 running together and when 947 is replaced I'll make one of all three.
    My opinion, for the money you have to get at least one of these, with sound before they're gone. They look good, they sound good and it's an SD45!
  11. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    My SD45s arrived from Spring Creek Model Trains today. I am impressed with the overall appearance and the locomotives are nicely protected in their individual boxes. The level of detail on these RTR locomotives continues to impress. Some interesting things to note:

    1) The Soundtraxx OEM Tsunami for these Athearn RTR locomotives is a new design; a motor clip-on variant of the GN-1000 decoder is used. Sound is typical Soundtraxx. I will replace the OEM speaker with one of my Sweet Sound speakers.

    2) Gyralight is functional set to F5 with the sound-installed locomotives. However the Prime Stratolight is connected to the front headlight output and therefore not animated (there is no Function 6 output on the OEM board). They got the Prime Stratolight installed and connected but dropped the Prime Stratolight. Gee, thank you, Athearn, he says sarcastically. I would have paid a little more to have gotten it right.
    I will be changing out the decoder in mine to a full-blown Soundtraxx GN-1000 #828051.

    3) The power delivery to the decoder from the trucks includes direct-wiring. The system does not rely on contact between the trucks and the frame.

    4) Additional detail parts are in a separate plastic bag to be added after unpacking.

    5) The side windows slide and the wind deflectors can be loosened and mounted in a open position. The other cab windows are installed on the outside of the cab as opposed to being installed on the inside.

    6) The steps out the door from the engineers seat are open tread.

    The pictures will tell the rest of the story. Note: I removed the plastic scale couplers for dis-assembly and replacement with Kadees.

    Right-click on a thumbnail and select open in a new window or tab to see a better image.

    IMG_0402.jpg IMG_0403.jpg IMG_0404.jpg IMG_0405.jpg IMG_0406.jpg IMG_0407.jpg IMG_0408.jpg IMG_0409.jpg IMG_0410.jpg IMG_0411.jpg IMG_0412.jpg IMG_0413.jpg IMG_0414.jpg IMG_0415.jpg IMG_0416.jpg IMG_0417.jpg
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 21, 2015
  12. William Jackson

    William Jackson Bill Jackson

    Got mine today, nice review. Looks like the RTR has made a step up.
  13. Friscotony

    Friscotony Member

    One item I have noticed is that the handrails and post are orange. Photos I have show an orange post and white handrails.

    Tony LaLumia
  14. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    That is correct. The handrails are all orange except for the steps rails. They are painted white. I painted my hand rails and did some light weathering on 944 and 945. Not a bad model for the money.

    20150822_080806.jpg 20150822_080823.jpg
  15. I just picked up a couple of these on Saturday. One of them the side window glass in the cab (the two sliding panes) were installed wrong and had become wedged behind the side wall of the cab IN FRONT of the window opening. In other words, both window panes were on top of each other, and pushing the side wall of the cab outwards. I was able to pull the window panes out and snap the side wall back into place, but does anyone know how to put them back in?
  16. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    The second model of 945 I received had a similar problem. When I tried to put it back in place it fell inward. I haven't bothered to fix it so when you figure it out keep us posted
  17. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    Other than the different road numbers, were there any differences between this Athearn SLSF SD45 run and the earlier run of a few years ago?

    I bought all three of the first run units and didn't need any more, so I passed this time. In fact, I earlier sold one of the three I bought and now operate only two. They make a neat SD45-GP35-GP35-SD45 consist of Frisco Athearns!

  18. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    No appreciable difference.
  19. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    The orange is a bit orangier and some other slight differences. Mostly to the cab details. And sound.

  20. Okay, I figured it out.

    The cab wall around the windows is a separate piece. You can pry it away ever so slightly and push the glass back into place. You can't pry it very far, I used a thin piece of cardstock to push the windows back into their track from the front. You may have to first pull the sun shade out in order to pry the cab side away as well.
    Ozarktraveler likes this.

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