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Densha

DE10 & DD51

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Densha

Hi,

 

I've been looking at the DE10 and DD51 N gauge models for a while and now I'm ordering some stuff from Japan I thought about getting one of those with it. But the problem is that I just don't get a clear picture about them because of the many subtypes and models.

Initially I looked at the Kato models, but Tomix also has quite a lot of them, I don't know which is superior in all aspects.

To make clear what kind of model I want: I'm talking about JNR/JRF red/gray/white color schemes here because I'm looking for a diesel loco for pulling a freight train. I'm looking for a '90s to present model, approximately.

 

DE10

Kato's DE10 has both a Cold and Warm region model.

http://www.katomodels.com/product/nmi/de10.shtml

I don't know exactly where those belong, but I'm assuming the Warm one should be south of the Kanto region and the Cold one north of it, approximately. But does JRF really stick to that or do Cold region models also visit Shikoku sometimes (for example) and are they sometimes mixed for pulling a freight train in double traction?

Also, Ken mentions here that it is an old type model with steam generators. But are these locos actually still in service today?

 

Tomix currently has two DE10 models with different color schemes:

http://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/2222.htm

http://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/2223.htm

Both have snow ploughs. The only noticeable difference I see is that the JRF version has a little detail on the roof the JNR one doesn't.

 

DD51

Kato's DD51 is released in many versions but these three seem to be the ones released in the JNR color scheme:

http://www.katomodels.com/product/nmi/dd51.shtml

http://www.katomodels.com/product/nmi/dd51_800.shtml

The first page has a "late model warm/cold region". The DD51 800 is apparently not equipped with a steam generator but what what about the other two models? I just can't find more information about any of these three models; including where the DD51 800 would be in service and the time periods of the three of them.

 

Tomix has released many version of the DD51 of which some are very old models dating back from 2004, they all seem to have a flywheel but I'm not sure. These are the models that are actually available and seem to be in production lately:

http://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/2212.htm

http://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/2214.htm

http://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/2218.htm

http://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/2219.htm

Because of the production year difference of the model I thought there might be more differences between them than just the subtype.

 

 

Questions about all models:

  • Are there quality/detailing/technical differences?
  • In what region do certain (sub)types freight services? (even occasional is sufficient for me)
  • Does it fit with my "modern day" era I want to model? (post-JNR)
  • How about double traction? (scrap that, I don't really need that, but info is always welcome)

 

 

I know I wrote quite a large post and that it could be a bit confusing, but I hope one of you guys is able to help me out!

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CaptOblivious

I cannot tell you much about the prototype, but having handled both the new and old Tomix DE10s, and the new Kato DE10, I can comment about the running and operation of them.

 

Old Tomix DE10 (hard to find, but still out there)—terrible mechanism, loud, grumpy, binds a lot. A beast to convert to DCC, but not the worst I've seen (if that's your thing).

 

New Tomix DE10—exact opposite, has a very nice, indeed quite clever mechanism, a really great runner. Detail is much improved as well, although frankly the detail on the older version wasn't bad at all. Even has flywheels, as I recall, unusual for Tomix it seems. But, the clever mechanism makes this model nearly impossible to convert to DCC—I've done one, and will never touch another one again, ever.

 

New Kato DE10—Also a great runner with amazing detail. Very easy to convert to DCC, if you use NGDCC's drop-in decoder. Some North American decoders will almost fit, but require frame milling or modification (see Ken's writeup on subject). In all, I would pick this one, although I understand some of the details aren't quite right?

 

As for the prototype, I do know this much. There used to be two variants (well, four really) on the DE10: Those with steam generators for passenger service, and those without. Since the breakup of JNR (or thereabouts), all of the models with steam generators had them pulled and exchanged for cement ballast. As far as I know, there are no exterior differences between the two models.

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Darklighter

I ordered a Kato DD51 just yesterday ($50 at MB Klein). I went with the cold region late version (7008-1) as I like cold regions and late versions.  :grin

 

A comparision between different DD51s: http://www5a.biglobe.ne.jp/~toyoyasu/dd518h.htm (Japanese)

 

New Kato DE10—Also a great runner with amazing detail. Very easy to convert to DCC, if you use NGDCC's drop-in decoder. Some North American decoders will almost fit, but require frame milling or modification (see Ken's writeup on subject).

TCS's K1D4-NC fits without any modifications.

 

EDIT: It fits without any modifications of the frame. The light-pipe has to be shortened.

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Densha

@CaptOblivious

I like having the optional DCC for the future of the Kato DE10, but I hope I can find something out about those supposedly wrong details. I only could find out what I wrote below the horizontal line.

 

With those four variants I assume you mean those with or without steam generators and warm and cold region (2×2=4)?

 

@Darklighter

For $50 I would get multiple models, but I don't live in the US and don't have the money to get more than one now (I see you live in Germany, how does the price adds up?), plus that I probably won't be buying any diesel loco soon after this one, especially if it would be "just" a subtype. That's why I really want to be sure it's the one I want to have.

I also like late versions if it means what I think it does (one of the last produced in the series), but I still don't understand what Kato exactly means with it. Location wise the best would be one used from Hokkaido to Kyushu, and then I mean switching depots included, but I doubt that happened in prototype.

 

Thanks for the link! I find Kato's JNR DD51 to be particular good looking after that comparison page. But I don't really know why, the only noticeable thing is the spring on the middle axes that Kato doesn't have (or at least not so visible).

 


 

I re-read this from Ken's page which I already mentioned:

This particular model appears to be of a JNR-era (pre-1987) DE10, as it comes equipped with racks on the end railings for steam generator lines (the red plastic on the white railings in the photo above). Steam generators were a feature that was omitted from locomotives built after 1973, and eventually removed from the earlier ones. These were required to heat older passenger cars when the DE10 replaced small steam locomotives on branch lines.

Both Kato DE10's and the Tomix JNR color one have those things, only Tomix's are white. The Tomix JRF DE10 doesn't have them.

However, take a look at this picture from 2006 with those cables: http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E3%83%95%E3%82%A1%E3%82%A4%E3%83%AB:JRF-DE101155.JPG

 

This page compares some DE10 cold region models: http://www5a.biglobe.ne.jp/~toyoyasu/de10tmn.htm

I compared it to the above mentioned picture: http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E3%83%95%E3%82%A1%E3%82%A4%E3%83%AB:JRF-DE101155.JPG

So far I noticed the main difference between Tomix and Kato is the height of the model, and the form and placement of the snow plough. I can't find out about the height but the Kato's snow plough seems to be closer to the prototype than Tomix's. The color of those thingies/cables/whatever it are at the front should be red like the prototype and Kato's and not white like Tomix. Also the bogies at Kato's DE10 seem to imitate the prototype better, at least from the photo. At last the prototype's color of the steps is white with black, Kato makes it black, and Tomix makes it white, that's both wrong so let's call it even.

 

My conclusion so far:

Kato JNR DE10 seems to look slightly better than Tomix. Converting to DCC is easier (with my skills, read: possible).

Kato & Tomix JNR DD51 doesn't seem to have much difference too, the price doesn't either, so it's even so far. If I will get a JNR color I'll probably get the Kato in that case, don't really know why. :P

Now I only have to choose between Cold and Warm region, or if I want to have the JRF after all which Kato unfortunately doesn't make.

 

If my reasoning and observation is right (yes I'm asking if I'm right), then I have to figure out the prototype place and time info now before I make my decision. ???

Especially in what places Cold and Warm region models are in service. If someone knows what's the case with the DD51 800  (both with the locos and the time) I also would like to know.

 

 

My gosh, this is mainly me writing down all my thoughts but I hope it makes it easier to figure out what I'm looking for. ^^;

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westfalen

I ordered a Kato DD51 just yesterday ($50 at MB Klein). I went with the cold region late version (7008-1) as I like cold regions and late versions.  :grin

 

A comparision between different DD51s: http://www5a.biglobe.ne.jp/~toyoyasu/dd518h.htm (Japanese)

 

New Kato DE10—Also a great runner with amazing detail. Very easy to convert to DCC, if you use NGDCC's drop-in decoder. Some North American decoders will almost fit, but require frame milling or modification (see Ken's writeup on subject).

TCS's K1D4-NC fits without any modifications.

Last time I looked at NGDCC's website he appeared to have dropped the DE10 decoder, that may be why, he seems to concentrate on locos that nothing already fits. I assume you've actually tried a K1D4-NC, I sure I tried several similar decoders and they wouldn't fit but it may have been the size of some of the components on the board.

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CaptOblivious

I ordered a Kato DD51 just yesterday ($50 at MB Klein). I went with the cold region late version (7008-1) as I like cold regions and late versions.  :grin

 

A comparision between different DD51s: http://www5a.biglobe.ne.jp/~toyoyasu/dd518h.htm (Japanese)

 

New Kato DE10—Also a great runner with amazing detail. Very easy to convert to DCC, if you use NGDCC's drop-in decoder. Some North American decoders will almost fit, but require frame milling or modification (see Ken's writeup on subject).

TCS's K1D4-NC fits without any modifications.

Last time I looked at NGDCC's website he appeared to have dropped the DE10 decoder, that may be why, he seems to concentrate on locos that nothing already fits. I assume you've actually tried a K1D4-NC, I sure I tried several similar decoders and they wouldn't fit but it may have been the size of some of the components on the board.

 

A shame if he did drop it; I've installed one into a Kato DE10, and it was a dream to install and configure! But I like TCS's product line too, so I'd certainly go with that if it fits well.

 

The page of DD51 comparisons was interesting, and matches my experience: Micro Ace seems able, at times, to achieve astounding levels of detail. But most of the time, they really leave something to be desired. Their DD51 on that page didn't hold a candle to the others. Now, I've also done a DCC install into a different Micro Ace DD51 model that looked, I think, a good bit better, so depending on the model, you might be OK detail wise. Their mechanisms aren't as good as Tomix and Kato, though—yet a far sight better than many North American mechanisms!

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keitaro

Ma ones run great but what shits me is the amount of modification required just to mount a TN coupler...... same for their steamers if they could add a tn coupler mount i would snap a few of their dd51's and other ef models.

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bikkuri bahn
Especially in what places Cold and Warm region models are in service. If someone knows what's the case with the DD51 800  (both with the locos and the time) I also would like to know.

 

Basically, cold region models would be used in Hokkaido, Tohoku, and Hokuriku.  Warm region models would be the remainder regions, including the Pacific Ocean side of southern Tohoku, which sees little snowfall. DD51 800 series were not equipped with steam generator equipment, appear to be warm region models, and were mainly used on freight.

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Densha

Good to know of the MicroAce models. I knew of them (and of course saw them in the comparison page), but thought Kato and Tomix appeared more consistent with their detailing. If Kato's motor is better, and installing TN couplers (which I eventually want to do) is difficult with MA, then I'll go with Kato.

 

Especially in what places Cold and Warm region models are in service. If someone knows what's the case with the DD51 800  (both with the locos and the time) I also would like to know.
Basically, cold region models would be used in Hokkaido, Tohoku, and Hokuriku.  Warm region models would be the remainder regions, including the Pacific Ocean side of southern Tohoku, which sees little snowfall. DD51 800 series were not equipped with steam generator equipment, appear to be warm region models, and were mainly used on freight.

Thanks! So the DD51 800 is basically a later built model and isn't much different from the "warm region" version?

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bikkuri bahn
Thanks! So the DD51 800 is basically a later built model and isn't much different from the "warm region" version?

 

Yes, basically.  The non-inclusion of the steam heat boiler lightened the unit by 6 tons, so the center bogie had to be re-adjusted to prevent wheel slip.  Interestingly, there was a plan to introduce a new model called the DD52, but the militant labor unions of the time were so demanding in having a say in discussions of new rolling stock, that production just remained with the existing model, of which the 800 series was the final mark.  This union problem was also a reason why the kiha 40 series had so many versions in its production run, rather than introducing completely new designs with better performance and passenger comfort.

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Densha

Interesting, but I shouldn't get myself in Japanese historical politics. I'm already spending way too much time on reading and looking at Japanese trains on the internet. ;)

Now I'm gonna make the decision which model I want myself, to tell the truth I want multiple but I can't afford that now.

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KenS

Last time I looked at NGDCC's website he appeared to have dropped the DE10 decoder, that may be why, he seems to concentrate on locos that nothing already fits. I assume you've actually tried a K1D4-NC, I sure I tried several similar decoders and they wouldn't fit but it may have been the size of some of the components on the board.

A shame if he did drop it; I've installed one into a Kato DE10, and it was a dream to install and configure! But I like TCS's product line too, so I'd certainly go with that if it fits well.

 

Last January I'd ordered some of the NGDCC DE10-compatible DE22x6_DE10K through Bob @ BTTrains, but they'd been discontinued and NGDCC was calling the DE22x6_DD54K a replacement for it. On their website, it doesn't list the DE10 as one of the trains supported and I don't think I was ever told specifically that it was. I ordered a couple, but didn't install them. My recollection is that there was some issue with them on the DE10, either a light-alignment problem or a component placement issue that would have required frame milling. In any case, I didn't get around to installing them, but that might have just been because my DCC conversion project has been sidelined since then.

 

The info Bob passed along at that time (I was ordering several decoders for different trains/locos) was:

 

DE22x6_DE10K: replaced by DE22x6_DD54K

DE22x6_EF15K: still have a small stock, after which this will also switch to 22x6_DD54K

DE20sx4EL6x: replaced by  DE30sxn0EL6x + extFX4

 

BTW, the info on my site about DE10 steam generators is all from Wikipedia, so take it for what it's worth.  :grin  I think what's in the photo that was linked above were MU and brake cables, rather than the steam lines, but it's hard to be sure. The main thing I found annoying was their bright orange color, and they're made of a slick plastic that's hard to paint (or I'd have just painted them black).

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Densha

BTW, the info on my site about DE10 steam generators is all from Wikipedia, so take it for what it's worth.  :grin  I think what's in the photo that was linked above were MU and brake cables, rather than the steam lines, but it's hard to be sure. The main thing I found annoying was their bright orange color, and they're made of a slick plastic that's hard to paint (or I'd have just painted them black).

What's a MU? So far I can see that MU and the brake cables are those red things at Kato's DE10. The red/orange seems bright from the photos, but it's better than it being white which is absolutely not prototypical. Actually it should be weathered somehow, just like the grilles at the side.

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Darklighter

I assume you've actually tried a K1D4-NC, ...

Yes, but I'm afraid I forgot one small but necessary modification: I had to shorten the light-pipe (as described on Ken's website). However, it wasn't necessary to disassemble or modify the frame.

 

For $50 I would get multiple models, but I don't live in the US and don't have the money to get more than one now (I see you live in Germany, how does the price adds up?)

Shipping starts at $30 (USPS Priority Mail International), so it adds up to about the same price as ordering from Hobby Search choosing SAL shipping. (I ordered more stuff (E5 basic set, 7 US freight cars, 4 building kits and some small parts) and paid $50 for shipping.)

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Densha

For $50 I would get multiple models, but I don't live in the US and don't have the money to get more than one now (I see you live in Germany, how does the price adds up?)

Shipping starts at $30 (USPS Priority Mail International), so it adds up to about the same price as ordering from Hobby Search choosing SAL shipping. (I ordered more stuff (E5 basic set, 7 US freight cars, 4 building kits and some small parts) and paid $50 for shipping.)

If I ship it with my order from Popondetta it's cheaper than paying shipping costs two times so I'll go with that.

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CaptOblivious

If you want TN couplers, better to go with Tomix. Kato's couplers aren't very compatible with the Tomix TN coupler system, although they do work with Micro-Trains couplers. So, pick yer poison…

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Densha

Is it possible to attach couplers of either Kato or Tomix to locos of both or is that not possible? What are the differences between the couplers? I know that Kato themselves even has more than one type.

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westfalen

I assume you've actually tried a K1D4-NC, ...

Yes, but I'm afraid I forgot one small but necessary modification: I had to shorten the light-pipe (as described on Ken's website). However, it wasn't necessary to disassemble or modify the frame.

 

For $50 I would get multiple models, but I don't live in the US and don't have the money to get more than one now (I see you live in Germany, how does the price adds up?)

Shipping starts at $30 (USPS Priority Mail International), so it adds up to about the same price as ordering from Hobby Search choosing SAL shipping. (I ordered more stuff (E5 basic set, 7 US freight cars, 4 building kits and some small parts) and paid $50 for shipping.)

Thanks for the DCC info. Looks like the next time I order from MB Klein I'll add a couple of DE10's to the order, if I can get the decoders from them and a few other things I'm waiting for it will spread the price of postage.

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Nick_Burman

What's a MU?

 

Multiple Unit, a reference to the cabling set up between two or more pieces of motive power to permit them to be operated by a single person.

 

Cheers NB

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Martijn Meerts

I have 3 of the Tomix DD51's (2 red/grey, 1 blue/grey), and they're excellent runners.

 

I have a DE10 as well, but that's a MicroAce, it's the dark blue one they released a while ago. Haven't ran it more than 2 laps around the temporary oval though..

 

What I like about the DE10 is the 3-axle front bogie and 2-axle rear bogie.. Not something you often see =)

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Densha

Actually, what about the taillights of Tomix and Kato? Do they work?

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Martijn Meerts

Actually, what about the taillights of Tomix and Kato? Do they work?

 

They don't work on the Tomix, not sure about Kato, but I expect they don't there either. Of all the locomotives I have, not a single one actually has functional tail lights.

 

I don't think Japan has many push-pull trains, which is probably why the models don't have functional tail lights.

 

Come to think of it, I do have the MicroAce Sylpheed train, which is a 3-car EMU with an additional diesel locomotive. That one might be a push-pull train, but I have no idea if the model has functional tail lights, I'd have to check that some time.. Of course, the locomotive itself isn't powered, but rather 1 of the EMU cars, so it's not very useful to know ;)

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CaptOblivious

Actually, what about the taillights of Tomix and Kato? Do they work?

 

No, no manufacturer does. On both the DE10 and DD51, the lights are built into the base of the handrails on the steps on either end. There is almost no room for any kind of bulb, LED, or lightpipe, and I have yet to see someone fit a light in there—lord knows I've given it a thought or two myself. Now, on the Tomix and Kato DE10s, they do use a clear red plastic lens at least (not sure about MA).

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westfalen

Actually, what about the taillights of Tomix and Kato? Do they work?

I know the Kato ones don't, but that dosen't bother me as I don't really want working tail lights on any of my locomotives as they should only be on when the engine is running light.

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CaptOblivious

Actually, what about the taillights of Tomix and Kato? Do they work?

I know the Kato ones don't, but that dosen't bother me as I don't really want working tail lights on any of my locomotives as they should only be on when the engine is running light.

 

Or shunting, but then its one light on each end.

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