Lionel Soo Line Train Set from Menards

Here's my latest acquisition to my O scale train fleet - Lionel's Soo Line freight train set made exclusively for Menards, a midwestern home improvement chain, during the 2010 Christmas season. This set is a WINNER! It has an RS3 locomotive, a flatcar with a Menards truck trailer, a Soo Line 4-bay coal hopper car, and a Soo Line boxcar with a flashing E-O-T device on one end, which I thought was a nice touch. The RS3 locomotive featurs a nice horn which is an actual diesel horn recording, rather than the shrill, tone-like horns on older engines that I was expecting on this one. I was pleasantly surprised! The set came with a small oval of FasTrack as well as a "PowerMax" transformer (which as far as I can tell is like a CW-80 except it is only 40 watts and doesn't have an extra port for accessories), and a Menards billboard with two different advertisements. The set costs $300 but I paid $230 since the set is on sale until December 5th. I think this could be the best "Menards exclusive" train sets Lionel has made to date. It's not SUPER high quality or anything (the RS3 has only one motor, plastic frame and plastic handrails, for instance) but for what it is it's perfect. I love it!

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Soo Line RS3 Diesel train set from Menards and Soo Line PS-2-CD 4427 3-Bay Hopper from Lionel
LIONEL Soo Line RS3 Diesel train set exlusively from Menards This attractive, limited edition O Gauge train set features: A Soo Line ALCo RS3 Diesel-Electric Locomotive A Soo Line 4-Bay Open-Top Hopper with coal load A Soo Line Flat Car with a Menards Trailer A Soo Line Boxcar with an End-Of-Train device that has a flashing red light. The Lionel Standard O Scale SOO LINE PS-2-CD 4427 3-Bay Covered Hopper is decorated in the original scheme on covered hoppers built and delivered in 1964. The trains race past a feed mill with corrugated sidings, concrete grain silos, and a small town with grade crossings. The big city skyscrapers are in the distance as the trains round the curve and pass a lumber spur. All of the real Soo Line ALCo RS3 Diesel Locomotives were retired by 1974,

Scott Martins Lionel train layout

A Tribute to the Soo Line
If you are a fan of the Soo Line, you'll love this video! Since the Canadian Pacific Railway took over the Soo Line in the early 1990's, it has become a rare sight to see Soo Line locomotives leading trains, especially on original Soo Line tracks. Most Soo locomotives were being sold or repainted, while others were reassigned to service in Canada. C. Vision Productions has captured the images of these red and white locomotives in, "A Tribute to the Soo Line." Our crew traveled the original Soo Line on the Paynesville Subdivision from Glenwood to Minneapolis, Minnesota to capture the Soo locomotives leading trains. We also followed the Soo on the old Milwaukee Road main line following the Mississippi River from St. Paul to River Junction. Five main locomotive types from the Soo Line are featured in this program. Venerable SD 40 dash 2's, GP 38 dash 2's and GP 40's can be seen pulling freight through the rolling prairies of Minnesota, along with the larger SD 60's and SD 60M's. We even see Soo Line cabooses still in use on way freights and locals! Each train is also identified by its symbol. Don't miss "A Tribute to the Soo Line," as it is one of the last videos to show you these original locomotives in charge of moving commodities across the upper Midwest. Copyright 2000, C. Vision Productions Color/HiFi sound/60 minutes Minimal narration