Friday, May 9, 2008

Amtrak EMD F40PH (for National Train Day)

Name of Model: EMD F40PH AMTRAK
Created by Christoph Eisenring who posts models on MOCpages and Brickshelf
Found at: and
For obvious reasons, I couldn't let National Train Day here in the states go by without posting a nice Amtrak engine. Of course, one of the classic 9V LEGO® train designs was 1992's Metroliner set, but train buffs often complain about the inaccuracies of the design - although it's pretty and immediately recognizable, it doesn't truly resemble any particular train and the nose shape is reminiscent of European trains (which is, for obvious reasons, wrong on an Amtrak train because "Amtrak" is a portmanteau of "American" and "Track", and Amtrak is a quasi-governmental company in the United States). This engine, on the other hand, is based on a specific Amtrak design and gets in plenty of accurate details. A few stickers were used, but surprisingly no printed parts from the Metroliner set appear. There are some interesting building techniques at play - the cockpit windows are done with clear bricks and studs-not-on-top trickery, and the rear of the engine makes good use of Technic steering elements (circa late 80's early 90's), panels, studs-not-on-top elements, switches, and minifig-scale steering wheel bases. Two 9V motors are used in the wheels to provide extra power (and thus the ability to drive more train cars at a decent speed). It's worth noting that the engine looks great in the 7-studs-wide scale ( clearly visible from the front) - builder Christoph Eisenring definitely made the right choice when picking that scale!

I don't know if any LEGO Train Clubs are involved with National Train Day or not, but if you're in the states and can make it to one of the events today (Saturday May 10th), I'm sure it'll be fun. Personally, I'll be sitting it out, but I'd love to hear about it if anyone reading this goes.

No comments: