[POLL] Do You Own an ‘O’-Gauge Polar Express Set

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[POLL] Do You Own an ‘O’-Gauge Polar Express Set
Posted by EIS2 on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 3:11 PM

There are statistics on the number of ‘O’-gauge Lionel Polar Express sets sold, but no statistics on the percentage of railroaders that actually have one.  So I thought it might be a nice time of year to take a poll.  

Please state whether you do or do not have an ‘O’-gauge Polar Express set.

I have one.


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Posted by Rene Schweitzer on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 3:13 PM

My husband has one.

Rene Schweitzer

Garden Railways and Classic Toy Trains

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Posted by scrambler81 on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 4:47 PM

I have the original set, that I bought new in I think 2005.

i also have the 10th Anniversary FT diesel passenger set. 

I have add-on cars for each set.

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Posted by phrankenstign on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 6:03 PM

Sorry, but I haven't bought one.

I've bought multipe Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends sets though.

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Posted by alank on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 6:57 PM

I don't, but I think the Polar Express trains, movie, etc. is fantastic.   My nephew has  an ‘O’-gauge Polar Express set, and adds to it.   Thinking of the Polar Express if nothing good is on TV tonight maybe I will watch it.   Our Catskill Mountain Railroad will soon begin running their Polar Express.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 7:00 PM

I don't have one either.  Loved the book, left me in tears, didn't like the movie, I thought the computer animation was poorly done and downright creepy.  I'd have liked it better if it was done live-action with Pere Marquette 1225 playing itself.

With all the other stuff I've got I just don't need the "Polar Express" set, although I have to admit Lionel hit a home run with it.

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Posted by KRM on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 7:02 PM

Polar Express never did much for me.  I bought one for the Berkshire locomotive for the grand-kids side of the layout and sold the rest off on e-bay to cover the cost. Ended up with the locomotive for free.

Now my uncle has given me his set to keep for him since he is moving into a senior living place..


Joined 1-21-2011    TCA 13-68614

Kev, From The North Bluff Above Marseilles IL. Whistling


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Posted by cheapclassics on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 8:00 PM

Good evening all,

Got one the first year it came out.  Should have bought two because they were so in demand I could have sold the second for enough to pay for both of them.  Great set and I have a few add on cars.   Could not give me the Lion Chief version.  Ugh Ugh Ugh.  I hope everyone has a good day.

Keep on training,

Mike C. from Indiana

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Posted by 8ntruck on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 10:03 PM

I got one in 2007 or 2008.  

It is the thing that got me back into toy trains.  One was sitting in the local hobby shop window that I drove past on my to and from work.  Just kept whispering at me until I bought it.

Since then, we've developed a 6' by 9' Polar Express layout that we put up every year at the KATY museum for a very popular Polar Express kid's open house.  We also set it up for the yearly train show/swap meet in November.

We've gotten most of the add ons, as well as a spare Berkshire to swap on and off the layout to provide cool down periods during our all day exhibits.

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Posted by kblester on Thursday, November 15, 2018 12:50 AM

No, but I did put together a MTH 2-8-2 engine with a 7 car set of Pennsylvania Madison cars for my Granddaughter who was in love with the movie. She loves it.

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Posted by lion88roar on Thursday, November 15, 2018 7:21 AM

No, but I have thought of buying one for each of the kids. Back in 2000 Lionel came out with a North Pole Central Berkshire, then they came out with the reindeer add-on cars, I have them all. I also have a bunch of other NPCL stuff for under the tree including the NPCL Zepher. Hope to finally have enough space to have a train garden at Christmas for them all when we move into the new house next year.

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Posted by crip on Thursday, November 15, 2018 8:32 AM
bought the LionChef set in 2014 set it up under the Christmas tree every year

Home of  the K.I.S.S. Railroad

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Posted by artyoung on Thursday, November 15, 2018 9:19 AM

Bought the original for my daughter and all the add-on cars. I have a couple of standard guage passenger cars that were disassembled and stripped by a previous owner and will be painted to match just because I liked the one near the end of the movie.

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Posted by SotaPop on Thursday, November 15, 2018 11:49 AM

I like the new Bluetooth LionChief PE set with the snow covered passenger cars - very nice! Yes

You can give a young person an iPad with the LionChief software loaded and BOOM - you just bridged a generation gap!

Happy Holidays!!!

One thing about trains: It doesn't matter where they’re going. What matters is deciding to get on.

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Posted by POTRZBE on Thursday, November 15, 2018 12:07 PM

We got the PE set in 2004 and the diesel set about 3 or 4 years ago.  It runs around the tree each Christmas season.  Everyone who sees it likes it.

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Posted by bridgeengineer on Thursday, November 15, 2018 12:48 PM

At the National Museum of Transportation in St. Louis, we build a holiday toy train display every year which features a large S gauge layout and a large G and O gauge layout, plus smaller layouts.  For 2018, we've added an O gauge Polar Express setup, 5 ft. square, in which the train circles up the mountain three times, then disappears inside and circles back down to the starting point.  The upgrade is 3.4 percent, and the downgrade is 5.6 percent, with smooth grade transitions in between.  We use a Lionel Type 1033 transformer, which allows two voltage ranges on the same throttle setting.  Higher voltage on the upgrade, lower voltage on the downgrade.  Hands-free operation, and it works perfectly.

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Posted by robmcc on Thursday, November 15, 2018 3:16 PM

I have the original version with the Trainsounds tender and the add on cars. I still set it up every year. I am thinking about getting the Lionchief/Bluetooth version though. I do like the snow covered roofs and the better looking window detail.

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Posted by Penny Trains on Thursday, November 15, 2018 6:49 PM

I made my own using a postwar 2026 and modern era 2400 style streamliners.  I wouldn't mind doing one with a Marx loco (clearly a Marx wedge tender) similar to the one in the film.  Toy train scene starts at 1:45:

Probably Lionel 600 series cars would look right.

Big Smile  I'm Cuckoo For Choo Choo Stuffs!  Big Smile

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Posted by anjdevil2 on Friday, November 16, 2018 9:57 AM

I have the original transformer controlled set, which very rarely comes out, that is for my Princess and her family when she is ready.

I have also the LionChief set.  This set sees regular duty every Christmas and once the new layout is up, will see regular duty during the year.  I love the fact that it has all the sounds from the movie, fan smoke and chuff.  It really was the best bang for the buck when I bought it.  Almost sorry I didn't wait for the 10th Anniversary set.

I do have all the cars, save the disappearing Hobo and the new Skiing Hobo car.  I had been toying with getting the announcement car for the conventional set, but I'm too cheap....lol

I am the monster in your head...And I thought you'd learn by now, It seems you haven't yet.
I am the venom in your skin  --- Breaking Benjamin

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Posted by Dave45681 on Friday, November 16, 2018 4:45 PM

Finally got one last year when there was the blow out sale at Kohls on-line sale.  Also bought the 2 add-ons they offered, even though they didn't match the new snow-on-roof variety. (announcement car and diner)

Bought the diner and disappearing hobo with the new snow roofs from a recent catalog, but I am not trying to buy all the add-ons.  Way too many cars to pull all at once with that starter set engine, I think.


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Posted by palallin on Wednesday, November 21, 2018 8:40 AM

Bought one set for the boys not long after they came out.  I have been keeping up with the add-ons except for the combine--still need to get that.

Now I am working on a second set--they boys are old enough to be looking at leaving the nest, and each one needs to have a full set.

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Posted by Northwoods Flyer on Wednesday, November 21, 2018 9:59 AM

I have an early basic set that is still in its original boxes.  I use it for train shows and for a local Christmas display.  I bought it used from another train collector.  The PE is the only recognizable train in my display for most folks, but it helps bridge the gap to the Prewar American Flyer that makes up the rest of the display.

Enjoying the World's Greatest Hobby

Northwoods Flyer

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Posted by Nationwidelines on Friday, November 23, 2018 8:47 PM

That would be a no.  Modern trains have no interest to me.  

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Posted by IRONROOSTER on Tuesday, November 27, 2018 3:32 AM

Yes.  I have one I bought about 4 years ago.  I added 3 cars and the upgrade tender.  My grandson loves it.


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Posted by DJSpanky on Friday, November 30, 2018 11:04 PM

We have one, actually bought it for Tyler was he was very little. Got all 7 cars for it. Usually runs on the outter track on the Christmas layout.


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Posted by TheDude23112 on Monday, December 03, 2018 7:36 PM

Of course I own a PE.  Set it up every Christmas!!!!


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Posted by RJSMITHINDY on Saturday, December 15, 2018 5:17 AM
Yes, Santa brought my kids the original set when it came out for Christmas that year. I later upgraded the tender with an ERR RailSounds board to add better sounds. We have all of the cars, including now the LCCA skiing hobo car that arrived yesterday, and the set is the primary runner under the tree for Christmas Day. Now that my kids are getting older, I bought a LionChief set a few years back so that they will each have one now. The PE set is definitely a big part of our holiday traditions.

- Rob

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Posted by Rescuedtrains on Monday, December 17, 2018 2:20 PM

Nope, no young children in the family at this time.

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Posted by tcripe on Monday, December 17, 2018 7:29 PM

Yes, purchased early in '05 after seeing the movie. It got me back into O gauge. Because I now have 9 engines, 40 freight and 12 passenger cars, I say it was the most expensive movie I ever saw.


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