WITH SMOKE & STEAM WHISTLE
Returning from its introductory year of 1975, the 1976 example of TYCO's
Chattanooga Choo-Choo train set is the same as the one from '75. A Lighted 2-8-0 Steam Engine and Tender with Smoke
is at the point of the set's consist, followed by an Operating Crane Car and Boom Tender, 55' Center-Flow Hopper Car, 62'
Triple-Dome Tank Car, and Caboose. The set also included the Steam Whistle in Billboard accessory, a 17-piece Bridge
& Trestle Set, a TYCOPak and enough brass track to create a 36" x 45" oval layout.
The Diesel Freight
A very basic TYCO train set, The Diesel Freight consisted of a Lighted
Santa Fe F-9 (#224-21) diesel pulling a 50' green Burlington Northern Box Car (#339E); a yellow Union Pacific 40' Hopper
Car (#344E); and a red Santa Fe Wide-Vision Caboose (#327-22). Completing the set was 12-sections of track
to make a 36"-circle ran by TYCO's basic 1-amp Power Pack (#899).
JCPenney's 1976 Christmas catalog includes this set and it is listed as a, "JCPenney Exclusive."
Odd as its contents match the TYCO Diesel Freight exactly. The JCPenney stock number was #X 926-8087 A; was called "The
JCPenney Exclusive 4-unit Santa Fe Freight Set" and sold that year for $14.99.
TYCO claims in its 1976 catalog that The Durango is "the greatest Western
train set of all time." The 1976 catalog is this set's first appearance and the Durango GP-20 Diesel that powers the
set is shown with the trucks TYCO usually supplied to its Alco Century 430 and RF-16 Shark Nose locos. Production
run examples for the Durango GP-20 have only been found with the more typical EMD trucks applied to TYCO's GP-20 offerings.
The set also included a Durango Cattle Car with 16 Cattle; Cattle Depot Set with Cattle Trailer and Cab; Hopper Car; 50' Box
Car; Pulpwood Car; and Operating Durango Floodlight Car. Enought track to create a 36" x 45" oval and 1-amp TYCOPak
completed this 1976 edition of The Durango train set.
The Golden West
TYCO's Golden West train set includes the 1890 4-6-0 Loco and Tender decorated
for Santa Fe (#233); a white 1890 Santa Fe Combine Coach (#372B) and a pair of brown Santa Fe 1890 Coaches (#372A).
A standard TYCO Power Pack (#899) and 14-sections of track create a 36" x 45" oval track plan compete the contents of this
train set offering.
The last TYCO train set to feature an F-unit heading up Streamline
Passenger Cars is 1976's The Inter-City. TYCO would continue to offer a set with Streamline Passenger Cars into the
1980s, but a GG1 Electric would pull the later sets. The Inter-City had an Amtrak F-9A and Combine, Coach, and Observation
Streamliners. The set included a 36" circle of track and a TYCOPak.
JCPenney includes this set in its 1976 Christmas catalog and refers to it as, "Amtrak 4-unit Passenger
Train Set." The set matches TYCO's Inter-City offering and is JCPenney stock number X 926-3567 A and sold for $32.99
The Mammoth of the Rails
The 1976 version of TYCO's The Mammoth Of The Rails train set featured
a Chessie System 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Loco and Tender (#212-03); Santa Fe Operating Crane Car with Boom Tender (#932); a
red Burlington 40' Box Car as part of the Unloading Box Car (#930) operating accessory; a silver Virginian 40' Hopper
Car (#344C); a blue with yellow roof Morton Salt C.F. (Center Flow) Hopper Car (#358B); the Santa Fe Piggyback Flat Car Set
(#926); 40' Schlitz Beer Billboard Reefer; a green Western Maryland Skid Flat with 3-Culvert Pipes; and
an Wide-Vision Caboose in Chessie System. Though likely available separately, TYCO did not include the Schlitz Beer
Billboard Reefer; the Western Maryland Skid Flat; or the Wide-Vision Chessie System Caboose among the Freight Car offerings
in the '76 catalog. The Mammoth Of The Rails in 1976 also included the Operating Crossing Gate (#908) and Freight Unloading
Depot (#931), which is where the Western Maryland Skid Flat comes into this train set. Additionally, this set included
24-Signs and Poles (#904); 29-sections of track to created a 45" x 63" double-oval layout. The switches provided were
TYCO's electric remote control examples. Finally, the standard 1-amp Power Pak (#899) came with this train set.
The Midnight Special
The 1976 Midnight Special train set featured a Shark Nose Diesel (#222-19)
decorated for the fantasy road "Midnight Special" pulling a white Union '76 Tank Car (315H); an orange New Haven 50' box Car
(339B); a silver Virginian 40' Hopper Car (#344C); and a blue and white Midnight Special streamline Caboose (#327-19).
The Midnight Special ran on TYCO's simply 36" circle layout made up of a dozen sections of 18"-radius curved track ran by
the standard 1-amp Power Pak (#899).
This set is found in both TYCO's and JCPenney's 1976 catalogs. The Penney's name for the set
was, "The Midnight Special 5-unit Freight Train Set" and it was their stock number X 926-8053 A and sold for $23.99.
The Over & Under
The 1976 example of The Over & Under train set was powered by a Santa
Fe F-9 (#224-21) pulling a yellow Union Pacific 40' Gondola with Culvert Pipe (#341B); a green Western Maryland 40' Flat
Car with 3-Tractors (#351A); a red Burlington 40' Hopper Car; a green Burlington Northern 50' Box Car (339E); and a red Santa
Fe Wide-Vision Caboose (#327-22). The '76 catalog does not list the red Burlington 40' Hopper Car as a separately available
piece of rolling stock. TYCO's 33-Piece Bridge and Trestle Set (#909) and 26-sections of track built The Over &
Under's 40" x 87" figure-8 track plan. A standard Power Pak (#899) was also in the contents of this train set.
Rock Island Line
This train set was a 108-piece Super Over & Under Set
in 1976. The Rock Island Line featured a red with yellow nose and tail Rock Island Alco Century 430 (#235-10) diesel; a
green 50' BN Box Car (#339E); a silver Virginian Hopper Car (#344C); a Frisco Autoloader with Six Autos (#349); a red with
yellow roof Rock Island streamline Caboose (#327-10); a Cattle Car & Depot Set (#935); the 24-Piece Decorated Trackside
Signs & Telephone Poles (#904); the 33-Piece Bridge and Trestle Set (#909); a 1-amp TYCO-PAK (#899); and 26 sections of
track that made a 40" x 87" large figure-eight layout.
Santa Fe Action Freight
The 1976 Santa Fe Action Freight featured a red-and-silver Super630 pulling
a Piggyback Flat Car with 2 Trailers, Billboard Refrigerator Car, Tank Car, Hopper Car, Pulpwood Car, 62' Refrigerator Car,
and Caboose. The set also featured selections from TYCO's Action Cars and Accessories line including a Remote Control
Log Dump Set, Operating Crossing Gate, and a Truck Cab and Truck Terminal. TYCO also supplied 24-Signs and Poles, a
pair of Manual Switches, and track to create a 45" x 45" double oval powered by a 1-amp TYCOPak.
The Spirit of America
Among TYCO's Bicentennial offerings in the 1976 catalog is this steam powered
train set. The set featured what TYCO billed as a "commemorative" 4-6-0 Spirit of America Steam Engine and Tender; an
1890 Combine and a pair of 1890 Coaches also decked out in red-white-and-blue Spirit of America colors. A 36" x 45"
oval and TYCOPak complete this set's contents. Except for the Spirit of America dress, this train set is essentially
TYCO's Golden West set with respect to contents.
The Spirit of '76
This basic TYCO train set featuring an F-9 in Spirit of '76 dress (#224-35);
a red Great Northern 40' Skid Flat with Culvert Pipe (#342B); an orange New Haven 50' Box Car (#339B); a yellow Union
Pacific Hopper Car (#344E); and a red, white and blue Spirit of '76 streamline Caboose (#327-35). Also among the contents
of The Spirit of '76 set in 1976 was a circle of track and TYCO's standard Power Pak (#899).
The Super Road & Rail
The 1976 example of the combination train set and slot car set featured
a Lighted Santa Fe F-9A (#224-21) and a Non-powered Santa Fe F-9B (230-21). The train set portion also included
a green Western Maryland Flat with Tractors (#351A); an orange New Haven 50' Box Car (#339B); a silver Virginian 40' Hopper
Car (#344C); the Santa Fe Piggyback Flat Car Set (#348) and the Wide-Vision red Santa Fe Caboose (#327-22). TYCO's 24
Signs and Poles Set (#904) was included along with 16-sections of track and the 1-amp Power Pak (#899).
The Racing Set's contents included a pair of TYCOPRO car; 26-sections of
slot car track; 13-pier supports; 16-sections of crash barrier fence with flags; a pair of racing controllers (#8752); a power
pack (#8767); and the 3" road and rail crossover section (#8727).
This TYCO set was also part of JCPenney's 1976 Christmas catalog offerings. The JCPenney set
matched the contents and was their stock number #X 926-1785 A and sold for $44.88 that year.
A basic TYCO train set featuring the Diesel Switcher with red-and-silver
Santa Fe markings, a Hopper Car, 50' Plug Door Box Car, and Caboose all running around a 36" circle track plan powered by
a 1-amp TYCOPak.
TYCO bills this monster set as a "railroad empire." The System 200
featured an F-9 Diesel; Tank Car; Hopper Car; Piggyback Flat Car Set (No.348); Remote Control Freight Unloading Depot (No.931);
Cattle Car and Depot Set (No.935); 2 Cabooses; a GP-20 Diesel; 50' Box Car; Autoloader with Six Autos (No.349); Operating
Crossing Gate (No.908); 24-Signs and Poles (No.904); Remote Control Whistle in Billboard (No.934); 47-sections of track with
4-Remote Control Switches (No.910-7 and No.911-7) that created a 4' x 8' triple oval layout; and a pair of Power Packs.
Twin Diesel Freight
This TYCO train set featured a pair of red-and-silver Santa Fe F-9 (#248-21)
diesels; one powered and one non-powered. These two engines powered a train consisting of a 50' green Burlington
Northern Box Car (#339E); a green 40' Western Maryland Flat with Tractors (#351A); a red-and-black Southern
Railway Pulpwood Car (#334A); a brown with silver roof and ends Hershey Chocolate Billboard Reefer (#355B); and a Wide-Vision
red Santa Fe Caboose (#327-22). The Twin Diesel Freight set rather surprisingly only provided a simply 36"-circle
track layout, odd considering it is a rare TYCO set to offer two diesels, and the standard Power Pack (#899).
Super Spirit of '76
12-unit Train Set
(JCPenney No. X 926-7972 A)
Super Spirit of '76
6-unit Train Set
(JCPenney No. X 926-7980 A)
Included in JCPenney's 1976 Christmas catalog was this Spirit of '76 set featuring the ALCO 430 pulling
a Baby Ruth 40' reefer; UP 40' hopper; Western Maryland 40' flat with 3 culvert pipe sections; a Union '76 40' single dome
tank car; and a streamline cupola Spirit of '76 caboose. The set's track plan build a figure-8 that was supported by
TYCO's 33-piece Bridge & Trestle Set, all powered by a standard 1-amp TYCO power pack. The JCPenney price was $29.88
for the set; and you could purchase for $14.99 for the TYCO Spirit of '76 ALCO 430 as a separate item.
JCPenney Railroad Empire
(JCPenney No. X 926-3518 A)
1890 Spirit of America
5-unit Train Set
(JCPenney No. X 926-7964 A)
(JCPenney No. X 926-8012 A)
The contents of this set in JCPenney's 1976 Christmas catalog match that of the TYCO '76 cataloged
(JCPenney No. X 926-3559 A)
The contents of this set in JCPenney's 1976 Christmas catalog match TYCO's 1976 cataloged Chattanooga