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Kato Amtrak 13002 (Seibu E851?)

So, I was browsing eBay and saw advertised a Kato Amtrak 4+4+4 Electric Locomotive... For all I'd known Amtrak America had never had any such an engine and therefore clicked the item to investigate... In front of me appeared (what looked like) an EF81 in Amtrak livery!

Kato Amtrak 13002 Kato Amtrak 13002 Kato Amtrak 13002
Kato Amtrak 13002 Kato Amtrak 13002 Kato Amtrak 13002

It seems that, back in the day, Kato didn't want to put money in to actually designing the models for America and therefore just repainted a (very slightly) remodeled EF81. Of course, it could be an exact copy of another Japanese electric locomotive, but I haven't had the time yet to do further research.

Toni Babelony of the JNS Forum posted a message in the thread I created on this locomotive that indicated that this is much closer to a Seibu E851. Thanks for pointing this out! Here is the Kato page on the Seibu E851. You'll notice that the Seibu has port holes, and other differences, but is obviously what Kato used as a base for this Amtrak locomotive.

Kato Seibu E851 Seibu E851 in Japan Kato Seibu E851
The real E851 in Japan

Meanwhile, here are some photos I've taken of EF81s in Japan:

Nihonkai heads to Osaka Nihonkai heads to Shinosaka Ex-Nihonkai EF81
DE10 and EF81 EF81 Nihonkai at Osaka
Twilight Express EF81 104 joins (passing Thunderbird) EF81 28 running light in Umeda EF81 28 running light in Umeda_001
Nihonkai paused Hokutosei at Fukushima NihonKai pauses at ShinOsaka
The Twilight Express at Shin Osaka The Twilight Express pulls into ShinOsaka

And, of course, if this locomotive really does exist, then please comment and tell me!

Comments (9) Trackbacks (0)
  1. I saw one of these gathering dust at a hobby shop several months ago, so thanks for sharing it as I was somewhat fascinated with the combination! I think the Amtrak scheme looks quite good on this locomotive actually!

  2. Yeah, Amtrak EF81 is spiffy. If I ever see one I’ll prolly buy it.

  3. I’m pretty sure that’s not an EF81. The roof equipment and side vents are of a different pattern than the EF81. The roof equipment looks more like that of an EF65, but again the side vents aren’t right. But neither is it, just having checked, an EF60, 61, 62, 63, or 64. Obviously, it can’t be an EF66. I’m out of guesses. Maybe one of the EF7x series? I can’t find photos of anything but the EF71 (of which this is not). Or a Seibu loco? (The Seibu version of the EF65 has portholes on the side, though).

    It’s a mystery to me…interesting, though.

  4. So, how does it run, I’m curious to know? What’s the inside look like? A tricky DCC conversion in the works for the blog?

    • It runs like a champ, as any good Kato does… the swivelling front/rear bogies look cool on my Tomix Finetrack too!

      As for DCC… I’ve no decoders with me here in Melbourne and, honeslty, little motivation to DCC this current hack of a layout.

      I’m currently playing with occupancy/distance detection _again_ and I’ll include a video with the Amtrak as the test unit… it might even happen tonight… depending on how charged-up my cordless drill is :P

  5. I have found an Amtrak model also. But the numbers on the front are EF65505 with Kato markings on the bottom and No. 301. What do you think it is?

  6. I am putting one up on eBay tonight. RUNS SWEET, good lookin’. CHECK IT OUT under my eBay name “brionb-half”. FOund this site while trying to find some info on it.

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