Train Miniature FA-1/FB-1

Discussion in 'American Locomotive Company (ALCo)' started by train61, Apr 1, 2011.

  1. train61

    train61 Member

    Can anyone tell me about the Train Miniature model loco's?
    I'm thinking about buying a FA/B-1. I have never heard of this model line. Can anyone tell me about the products if they where good or bad?
    later ya'll
    Jason Ross
    Bham Sub-Div
    Bham AL
     
  2. TAG1014

    TAG1014 Frisco.org Supporter Frisco.org Supporter

    I'm pretty sure they're no longer in business, but the T-M FA's were plastic shells over metal chassis, something like the Athearn, Tyco or Varney engines of the day (1960's). Lionel also had some plastic shell FA's then (Made by??).

    Tom
     
  3. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    I have a set of the Train Miniature FA/FB units - have had them for years. I hand painted them as Frisco units back in 1980-81; I believe I have pics of them posted in my gallery album on this site.

    They are decent renditions of the Alco FA/FB, very nicely done for their time. One problem for Frisco fans is that they have dynamic braking, which the Frisco units did not have. Removing that would take a lot of filing on the roof - I just ignored it. The d/b is the large panel in the center of the roof running lengthwise.

    The mechanism is another story. The TM motor was the worst HO motor I have ever experienced - it either ran the unit at 0 MPH or at 120 MPH, very hard to control. About the same time I painted them, I repowered the FA with a "Tan Can", and now it runs very well. The gear train is OK, the trucks are very nice. The FB is a dummy unit, again with very nice trucks. One other problem is the metal frame on both - it is a thin stamped metal frame, and is not very strong. The body is held on to the chassis by some side clips that don't work real well, but you can live with it.

    The TM's are not as nice as the Proto 2000 FA/FB's, which are perfect for the Frisco, run well (when you don't have a cracked gear!), and are decorated very well. The TM's look good enough, though, that you can run them with the P2K's and they look fine. The TM's are better models of the FA/FB than the Walthers units - the Walthers don't look as nice, but run better. I had a set of those, undec, which I got rid of quickly when the Proto 2000 units came out. I know Lionel also had an Alco FA model, but I never saw one.

    I'd say if you can get the TM's at an attractive price, and you are willing to repower the FA (it was easy), go for it.

    Ken

    PS: The pic in my album of FA/FB SLSF 5208/SLSF 5302 are my two Train Miniature units.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 2, 2011
  4. TAG1014

    TAG1014 Frisco.org Supporter Frisco.org Supporter

    Ken--I see your LL/Proto FA's in your "album," where are the T-M engines.

    Thanks, Tom
     
  5. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Tom - There is only one pic of the TM's in the album, FA 5208 and FB 5302 on a display track together. There are two pages in the album.

    K
     
  6. TAG1014

    TAG1014 Frisco.org Supporter Frisco.org Supporter

    I got 'em now. Thanks!

    Tom
     

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