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N Scale - Atlas - 11718-4 - Locomotive, Diesel, EMD GP7 - Great Northern - 616

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N Scale - Atlas - 11718-4 - Locomotive, Diesel, EMD GP7 - Great Northern - 616 Japan Release


Stock Number 11718-4
Original Retail Price 0.00¥
Brand Atlas
Manufacturer Kato
Body Style Atlas Diesel Engine GP7
Prototype Vehicle Locomotive, Diesel, EMD GP7 (Details)
Road or Company Name Great Northern (Details)
Reporting Marks GN
Road or Reporting Number 616
Paint Color(s) Green & Orange
Coupler Type AccuMate Magnetic Knuckle
Wheel Type Chemically Blackened Metal
Wheel Profile Small Flange (Low Profile)
Release Date 1987-12-01
Item Category Locomotives
Model Type Diesel
Model Subtype EMD
Model Variety GP7
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era NA Era III: Transition (1939 - 1957)
Scale 1/160



Specific Item Information: green box

Model Information: The Atlas GP7, GP9 and GP9-TT models are some of their oldest models. The models share the same internal mechanisms and differ only in their shell details. Unlike many of their other older body styles, these bodies have been updated several times and are still a regular part of the Atlas production cycle.

The first release of this body type was in 1974 and the models were produced by Roco in Austria. Production for these models ended in 1982. The next release started in 1987 and the models were re-tooled by Kato in Japan for Atlas. The third version came out in 1995 and was made in China for Atlas and these engines were essentially a redo of the Kato mechanism. Finally, in 2006, a completely new mechanism was introduced and this 4th version is a split frame, dual-flywheel, slow-motor, modern engine. Furthermore, with the more recent releases, most road-names and numbers are available in both a DCC-Ready and a Decoder-Equipped version.

Assembly instructions from Atlas: GP7 (Japan version), GP7 Ph.1 (China version), GP7 Ph.2 (China version).

DCC Information: The first version of this engine (Roco) gets a solid "No" for DCC capability, but this is no surprise as these were made in 1974. The next two releases (Kato and China) are split-frame, but also split-board. They may be DCC-Friendly, but likely it will be a fair amount of work to upgrade these. The most recent version (China, 2006+) is eminently DCC-Ready. Furthermore, most road-names and numbers produced since 2006 are available in both a DCC-Ready and a Decoder-Equipped version. Earlier DCC factory-equipped versions were fitted with Lenz LE063XF decoders, whereas most recent versions are fitted with NCE N12A2 decoders. The Atlas version of these decoders will respond to manufacturer's address "127" (CV8) i.e. "Atlas Model Railroad Products", though being identical to their original manufacturer's specification.

For non-DCC-ready versions, a wired DCC decoder installation for this model can be found on Brad Myers' N-scale DCC decoder installs blog.

Models produced since 2006 accept the following plug-in decoders:
- Digitrax DN163A4: 1.5 Amp N Scale Board Replacement Mobile Decoder for Atlas GP30 and other short Atlas diesel locomotives.
- Digitrax DN163A2: Retired decoder, replaced by DN163A4.
- NCE N12A2: Plug and play decoder for N-Scale Atlas Classic Series GP7, GP9, GP30, GP35.
- TCS ASD4 (Installation for GP7, Installation for GP9)
- MRC 1955: N-Scale Sound Decoder for Atlas GP-7, GP-9, GP-30 or GP-35

Prototype History:
The EMD GP7 is a four-axle (B-B) road switcher diesel-electric locomotive built by General Motors Electro-Motive Division and General Motors Diesel between October 1949 and May 1954. Power was provided by an EMD 567B 16-cylinder engine which generated 1,500 horsepower (1,119 kW). The GP7 was offered both with and without control cabs, and those built without control cabs were called a GP7B. Five GP7B's were built between March and April 1953. The GP7 was the first EMD road locomotive to use a hood unit design instead of a car-body design. This proved to be more efficient than the car body design as the hood unit cost less to build, was cheaper and easier to maintain, and had much better front and rear visibility for switching.

Of the 2,734 GP7's built, 2,620 were for American railroads (including 5 GP7B units built for the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway), 112 were built for Canadian railroads, and 2 were built for Mexican railroads. This was the first model in EMD's GP (General Purpose) series of locomotives. Concurrently, EMD offered a six-axle (C-C) SD (Special Duty) locomotive, the SD7.

From Wikipedia

Road Name History:
The Great Northern was born in 1881 with the consolidation of several railroads of the northern plains under the leadership of James J. Hill. By 1893, the mainline from the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River to Seattle was complete.

The GN had two distinctly different characters. The eastern half was a largely flat, grain producing region serving cities like Fargo, the Twin Cities, Grand Forks, Duluth, Sioux Falls, Sioux City and even Winnipeg in Canada. The east end also included the iron ore rich regions of Minnesota. Half of North Dakota was blanketed by GN branchlines (21 in all) serving every imaginable grain elevator.

The western half is the mountainous portion that most people identify with Great Northern. This included crossing the northern Rockies and the even more difficult Cascade ranges. Cities on the western half included Billings, Butte, Helena, Havre, Spokane, Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver. In 1931, a connection to the Western Pacific was completed from Bieber north to Bend, Oregon. This line was disconnected from the rest of the Great Northern. They used trackage rights on the Oregon Trunk and SP&S to bridge the gap. The Cascade Tunnel, the longest on the continent at 7.8 miles, wasn’t completed until 1931. Construction included a massive sluiceway and hydro-electric power station to feed the electrified line through the tunnel and several miles of railroad on either side. This replaced the original Cascade Tunnel which was a third as long but 500 feet higher up the mountain. That replaced the original route that was another 700 feet higher, had 4% grades and 50 miles of snowsheds. All told, Great Northern had about 8,300 route miles.

The steam era was especially unkind to the Great Northern. They seemed to go out of their way to make their locomotives ugly. Belpaire fire boxes were the norm (made famous by the Pennsylvania, made hideous on the GN.) Headlights were often mounted just above center giving them a spinster look. Cab fronts were often at odd angles. The tender coal bunkers were often taller than the engines. But it wasn’t just aesthetics. GN had a knack for buying the wrong engines for the job. 150 Prarie type 2-6-2’s were so unstable at speed that they were busted down to branchline duty almost straight away and none survived after about 1930. Their first 4-8-2 Mountains built for passenger and fast freight were such a disaster, they were rebuilt into 2-10-2’s. Many railroads had built Mountains out of Mikes but no one had ever started with a Mountain and had to build something else from it. The first 2-6-6-2’s were so under-powered, the boilers were used to make Mikados instead. They did manage to build the largest, fastest, and most powerful Mikados in the country however. Their articulated fleet included 2-6-6-2, 2-6-8-0 (later rebuilt into Mikes), 2-8-8-0, 2-8-8-2 types as well as a pair of Challengers originally delivered to SP&S. Many engines were dressed up with green boilers and boxcar red cab roofs.

For the first generation of diesels, GN bought like many large railroads did: a sampling from everyone. Cab and hood units from EMD and Alco and switchers from EMD, Alco, and Baldwin populated the roster. GN’s first generation geeps and SD’s were delivered with the long hood as the front. This included their GP20’s which had high short hoods and the long hood as the front. Aside from an early black scheme for switchers, the GN fleet was delivered in Omaha Orange and green with yellow piping.

Beginning with the arrival of GP30s in 1962, the paint scheme was simplified by dropping the bottom orange band and the yellow piping. For the second generation, General Electric replaced Alco as a supplier of new road engines.

In 1962, some GN freight cars began to appear in Glacier Green which ran along side the vermilion paint adopted in 1956. In 1967, they went for a major shift. Sky Blue, white, and dark gray were joined by a new version of the Rocky the goat logo. There was talk that this would become the paint scheme for Burlington Northern. The GN name and logo was painted on a steel panel bolted the the hand railings of hood units, making it easier to remove after the merger. For whatever reason, they went with green, black and white, a version of which was simultaneously being tested on the Burlington Route. In 1970, Great Northern, Northern Pacific, Spokane Portland & Seattle, and Burlington Route merged to form Burlington Northern.

Brand/Importer Information:
In 1924 Stephan Schaffan, Sr. founded the Atlas Tool Company in Newark, New Jersey. In 1933 his son, Stephan Schaffan, Jr., came to work for his father at the age of sixteen. Steve Jr. built model airplanes as a hobby and frequented a local hobby shop. Being an enterprising young man, he would often ask the owner if there was anything he could do to earn some extra spending money. Tired of listening to his requests, the hobby-store owner threw some model railroad track parts his way and said, "Here, see if you can improve on this".

In those days, railroad modelers had to assemble and build everything from scratch. Steve Jr. created a "switch kit" which sold so well, that the entire family worked on them in the basement at night, while doing business as usual in the machine shop during the day.

Subsequently, Steve Jr. engineered the stapling of rail to fiber track, along with inventing the first practical rail joiner and pre-assembled turnouts and flexible track. All of these products, and more, helped to popularize model railroading and assisted in the creation of a mass-market hobby. The budding entrepreneur quickly outgrew the limitations of a basement and small garage operation. Realizing they could actually make a living selling track and related products, Steve and his father had the first factory built in Hillside, New Jersey at 413 Florence Avenue in 1947. On September 30, 1949, the Atlas Tool Company was officially incorporated as a New Jersey company.

In 1985, Steve was honored posthumously for his inventions by the Model Railroad Industry Association and was inducted into the Model Railroad Industry Hall of Fame in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, Steve was nominated and entered into the National Model Railroad Association Pioneers of Model Railroading in 1995.

In the early 1990s, the Atlas Tool Company changed its name to Atlas Model Railroad Company, Inc.

Item created by: Powderman on 2021-12-10 14:41:46. Last edited by Powderman on 2021-12-10 14:41:48

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