But in fact, we experience a lot of electrical pick up problems on the layout and it's not related to dirty. In fact, excellent new Atlas locomotives that performs well have some problems. Also, our pair of GP9 need a pick up upgrade. As you could know, during last operation session, a simple GMD1 wasn't enough to handle the train. I need more power and our GP40-2W are up to the task for now (lacking sound and DCC). The only alternative is the pair of sound-equipped RS18. Jérôme tested them and said they are probably among our best locomotives ever. No surprise. Until recently, my 2007 DW&P RS11 was considered the best loco we ever bought for the layout.
After pouring 8 hours drilling holes and gluins details parts, two RS18 are ready for paint shop. What about the 3 others... Eh... let's stay cool!
The fun part is I wont have to paint the frames because they are already in correct CN colors. The reason is simple, I bought CV and DW&P RS11 units to save me some work. I'll also keep Atlas handrails as is. Yes, I could have made prototypical ones with fine brass like the pro diesel detailers do... but these are operation locomotives that will end up seeing lots of action. Better keep Atlas bullet-proof product.
EDIT: We decided to paint them in Zebra scheme, so the frames will have to be repainted...
Also, I decided all my units will be in series 3600. The reason is simple, the steps each side of the cab are correct. With other series it ain't. I'm a very lazy modeler and didn't want to spend my entire life redoing things I can save by simply changing the roadnumber. Anyway, I did my homework and a few 3600s locomotives found their way regularly on Murray Bay Subdivision. I have evidence for 3622, 3688 and another one I forgot the number and which I'll model.