Sunset (Korea) Brass PRR DD-1

Introduced: 1983

Well, no question about it, this thing is just plain cool looking. And cooless factor aside, it's actually a very nice looking and running little model.

Each unit is a mirror image of the other (permanantly MU'd together), with one unit picking up one rail and the opposite unit picking up the other. This seems like maybe a prescription for trouble, but since both drivers and both pilot wheels conduct current, I actually didn't have any pickup problems running this thing around (not even through turnouts). Overall performance is very smooth, and slow speed creep is excellent. I didn't have any problems with any of the wheels derailing, nor did I have any problems running it around on narrow (9.75") radius curves. Amazingly enough, each unit has its own motor (5-pole can jobs). Each unit also has its own non-directional headlight.

Having said all that, this model does have a few negatives (hence the "B" rating). First off, it's pretty loud (no doubt owing to the all-metal/no-plastic mechanism). Secondly, current is ferried from one unit to the next via wires (clearly visible between the two units). And lastly, there are no couplers or window inserts.

Still and all, I can't end this review on a negative note. Given the era in which it was produced, this is a very respectable model overall.

I'm not really sure who ultimately manufactured this model. About all I know for sure is that Sunset imported it from Korea ('cuz that's what it says on the box). Unfortunately, Sunset does not disclose their sources, so I guess we'll never know for sure. Speculation is that it was done by some sort of small-time "some guy in his garage" type operation (as opposed to one of the "name" manufacturers like Ajin or Samhongsa).

To remove the shell(s), simply unscrew the four screws (one on each corner). The bulbs are simply pressed into their housings, so just push them out and feed the wires through the hole in the roof.

Grade: B

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