MTH's RailKing RS-3

Posted by Bob Keller
on Tuesday, November 17, 2020

You’ll not the comparable size to a Lionel Century Club F3 A-A duo parked behind it. The model will work well with traditional and some more scale-like railroads.

Alco’s RS-3 diesel is an icon of the transition era. It was a popular model and, perhaps more importantly, it was readily available in the mass rush to dieselize. It was also surprisingly resilient and even today there are a few puttering around museums and short line railroads.

 I reviewed MTH’s RailKing RS-3 in( Rock Island colors) for the December issue of Classic Toy Trains. In many ways it is an ideal first or second locomotive for gift giving or running around the Christmas tree.

The red livery is eye-catching and evokes better days of the legendary Midwestern railroad.  The white striping adds a bit of class to the otherwise solid color.

It has all the bells of whistles of powerful motors, remote couplers, smoke unit, and excellent sound system. You can control the model conventionally, with MTH’s DCS system, or the app with the Wi-Fi pack added to your DCS system. The current road names include the classic era railroads as well as the Delaware-Lackawanna, a short line that utilized mostly vintage Alcos for day-to-day operation. Te relatively modest price point is an attractive feature as well. – Bob

Add-on detailing is hard to find, but the model does represent the main detail points you’ll find on an RS3 photo or line diagram.

Okay, the cab is crewless. I think MTH could have sprung for an engineer!

The bright headlight will light up the track ahead!

The RS3 had great performance in all speed ranges and the model’s two motors had 2 pounds of drawbar pull.

As I mentioned, it looks great with traditional rolling stock. If you had a scale layout with transition period rolling stock, it would be right at home!

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