Yeah, looks better in the flesh now that I've actually seen one for sale. Doesn't look quite as "stumpy" as the photos seemed to suggest. I'd have thought that if it has power connector between loco and tender it would be stupid not to fit tender pickups.
Just received an update from Jonathan at PIKO to pass along concerning some of the details.........
The Mogul has a screw-terminal block inside the tender (easily accessible by removing 6 screws). From there, any desired wiring connections can be made, for sound, DCC, R/C, etc. Power is routed from the loco, through the connector to the tender, and back to the loco. We decided to keep the loco itself largely free of electronics to allow space for a very hefty weight, which gives excellent pulling power.
The tender has no power pickups. Metal wheels can be easily snapped in place of the plastic ones (which are the same ones found on most of our rolling stock). Two packs of PIKO standard #36161 metal wheels will work perfectly and will match the style of the loco wheels, with blackened centers and polished, hard-nickel plated treads and flanges. In my experience, these are great-operating wheels!
The loco drivers are about 45mm diameter, quite a bit larger than the wheels on the 0-6-0T found in PIKO starter sets. Although the early images didn’t do much to dispel the notion that the Mogul is little more than the 0-6-0T with a tender, in reality, there are far more new parts than old.
I'll be in real trouble if they are available by the time of the BTS. The last thing I need is another engine but this looks like such a cool engine. All the needs signs keep pushing me towards a harbor layout as this would be perfect for, along with the Piko saddletanker and my Porters. Oh well be cool enough as a switching layout.
I agree with the comments above. It looks a lot better in person than the photos suggest.
Disappointing that the tender has plastic wheels but I would have swapped at least one truck to power pickup anyway and for this price, they had to cut some corners. The DCC install instructions are "lite" to say the least. I've not had a chance to crack the tender open yet, but I'm hoping they followed standard DCC color coding conventions. I'll be adding sand lines, painting over some of the "brass" and the tender is begging to have an air tank added behind the coal load. The plastic running gear is "OK" and surprisingly well molded. I'm happy so far. Time will tell as to the over robustness of the construction and drive train etc.
These have sold better than any other new locomotive ever for us. We ordered a few at a pre sale price, they are gone. We are now on the second order. Not getting much feed back. Our local club meets tomorrow, will have a test track. Hope to get some time on one then.
The things I noted while running one on a loop with 8 foot curves was that the top speed was lower than some others, that would be fine with most. The lights were quite bright, some would like them, some would want to dim or yellow them. Ran smooth.
I have now had two customer issues with these. First it was noticed that the head lite would flicker around a curve. It proved to be a bad connection in the loco plug. Jonathon sent a new one that I replaced and fixed the problem. Second, another was noted to have problems hanging up in a LGB switch. Jonathon, stated that they were tested first with LGB switches with no issues. Sent the customer a pair of LGB slide shoes, about 1mm wider. He wrote back that they were easy to change and made a big difference. With the number sold of a new product they are doing well.
It's really great that Piko is investing in G scale--I want them to succeed. But I bought two of the 0-6-0 tank locos and had trouble with both of them. Specifically, they would get out of quarter, jam up, and strip gears. I suspect the reason was a loose fit between the axles and upper and lower halves of the frames, but I never actually confirmed this--I just gave up on them after it happened twice.
This is sincerely not meant as "bashing" the company--I liked the 0-6-0, and wanted it to work, and it had some nice design features.
Can anyone speak to the drive train/frame in the new mogul? is it the same as the old 0-6-0 tank? They are planning to release an NYC "switcher" which looks to be the 0-6-0 tank with a tender and no tank. Can anyone tell me if they have changed the frame or the drive block?