Normally I find it hard to praise packaged train sets, however I am Very much impressed by the Trainman set # 931-840 by Walthers Hobbies. For starters the packaging is first class as it displays the product to its best advantage and it further shows about all the necessary details and information needed to help a prospective buyer make a decision to buy or not buy.

The center piece of this set is a superbly produced Santa Fe F3A diesel electric engine that should be admired not only by a beginner in model railroading but also by seasoned model builders. Great effort was taken to produce an engine to make any owner proud to run or display.

The engine is mounted on a solid metal frame and is powered by a state of the art electric motor that is equipped with dual brass fly wheels so as to produce a quiet smooth operation at speeds.

Also to ensure an even flow of electric power the engine is mounted on two Power trucks that supply eight wheel pick up and traction. An extra feature on the engine is that it can be converted from analog operation to DCC operation with very minimal effort.

The set is equipped with five units of rolling stock including;
One boxcar,
One flatcar with a log load,
One flatcar with a road grader load,
One hopper car with no load,
One caboose painted to match the engine.
All cars display great detail and road names.
All cars and the engine are equipped with metal axles and metal RP-5 wheels that are contoured to the track to ensure smooth operation especially on curves.
The set comes with a 1300 MRC power supply that should provide ample operation for many years.
Also supplied with the set are three vehicles, two P/U trucks and a concrete truck.
I tested the set first on the supplied track ( Bachman EZ track ) and was more than satisfied with the way the train functioned at all speeds. I then tested it on my persona lay out and found that the train operated well on mutiple curves as well as on fairly steep grades, the train tracked well through switches and compound switches.
All in all this set seems to be well above average for a starter kit.

In summary I would like to say that I was very impressed with the over all quality of this set, mostly I was impressed with the F3A engine. It seems that great care was taken to produce a very realistic representation. The detail is superb and the over all quality of this engine makes this set very desirable to young and older modelers.

Happy railroading ,Bud.