Heavy Pacific
0-6-0 Switcher
Little Monster
Alco PA-1
Alco PB-1
Baldwin S-12
EMD SW1500 Cow
EMD SW1500 Calf
FM Train Master
GE U28-B
GE U28-C
GE U30-B
GE U30-C
GE U33-B
GE U33-C
Hustler Switcher
Budd RDC
EMD GP40-2
EMD SW1000
EMD SW1500
GE C44-9W
Athearn OEM

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FM Train Master
Chicago & North Western 
No. 4303 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4323 -Dummy -1979 Release

Athearn Trainmaster

FM Train Master
Milwaukee Road 
No. 4302 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4322 -Dummy -1979 Release
Athearn produced Milwaukee examples with roadnumbers 558, then 559. followed by 556 and 557.  There is a known run that came with two different roadnumbers.  One side carried 556 and the other 559.

FM Train Master
Norfolk & Western 
No. 4304 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4324 -Dummy -1979 Release

FM Trainmaster
Norfolk & Western -Black
No.4310 -Powered -1994 Release
No.4330 -Dummy -1994 Release
A late Athearn Trainmaster offering was the early black N&W scheme.  Two roadnumbers exist for this N&W Trainmaster 150 and 172.

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FM Train Master
No. 4305 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4325 -Dummy -1979 Release

FM Train Master
Santa Fe 
No. 4306 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4326 -Dummy -1979 Release

FM Train Master
Southern Pacific
No. 4307 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4327 -Dummy -1979 Release

Athearn Trainmaster

FM Trainmaster
Southern Pacific -Black Widow
No. 4308 -Powered -1993 Release
No. 4328 -Dummy -1993 Release
The Black Widow SP Trainmaster had roadnumber 4812.

Athearn Undecorated Trainmaster

FM Train Master
No. 4300 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4320 -Dummy -1979 Release

FM Trainmaster
Undecorated -Southern Pacific Type 
No. 4301 -Powered -1979 Release
No. 4321 -Dummy -1979 Release

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The above ad proclaiming the Train Master as "worth the wait" is from January 1980. This was Athearn's first Fairbanks-Morse diesel locomotive and only one to date and originally hit the market in the summer of 1979. The prototype is FM's H24-66 model, though Athearn labeled it only as a Train Master. This H24-66 loco was issued again with a number of prototype variations by Atlas in the company's Master Series. The prototype was built in the U.S. between 1953 and 1957 with 107 delivered to ten railroads: Canadian National, Canadian Pacific, CNJ, Lackawanna, Pennsy, Reading, Southern Pacific, Virginian, and Wabash.

Athearn offers six roadnames in its original release. The Milwaukee Road appears to based on the road's H-16-66 Train Master, which is similar but no the same as the Athearn H-24-66. The CNW model carrying roadnumber 1904 would also match up to a prototype H-16-66 and not an H-24-66. The same perhaps holds for the Santa Fe example. Santa Fe's nearest roster match would be its H-16-44, but I don't find them ever numbered in the 9200 series. FM diesels on Norfolk & Western have varied heritage. The roadnumber Athearn used would suggest the model is an ex-Virginian H-24-66. The Pennsy owned H-24-66 mdoels and the Athearn roadnumber on its PRR example matches a prototype.

Athearn's Train Master is an early example of prototype-specific tooling being offered on ready-to-run plastic models. In fact, I believe it to be the first example of a plastic offering being made with two versions to provide road accurate details. Athearn made an SP version and a regular version Train Master. Athearn would repeat its Espee-friendly policy of road specific models with the SD40T-2, a few afters following the Train Master issue. This was important bar-raising step for the industry.

The Train Master may also be credited as the start of Athearn's offering correctly scaled hoods for its locos. Though the prototype width of the FM's body would accomidate the usual fat factored into a design to house the drive of the day, the Train Master is correct in its proportions. This accuracy would be followed in 1982 with the first scale-width hood EMD model, the SD40-2.

You'll find a review of Athearn's 1979 release Train Master in the pages of Model Railroader's October 1979 edition.

Please note that this site was created for use by those with an interest in HO-scale model trains and does not necessarily represent the current Athearn line available today. The author is not affiliated with, nor representing Athearn and/or Horizon Hobby in any way. This site is intended for your enjoyment and information only.
Images and information presented on this site comes from a variety of sources including magazines, internet, catalogs, visitor input, and the author's collection.
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