Top critical review
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Bad value in the end: Poor couplers and hobbled controller
on December 21, 2016
This kit contains everything you need for a very basic setup. It's pretty bare-bones but it doesn't sell itself as anything more than that. You get 1 locomotive, three rolling stock (cars to follow the locomotive), 12 pieces of track that make a circle, one controller, and one AC adapter. $70 seems like a pretty good value for this.
However the set cuts some corners in some pretty upsetting ways. The controller in the kit cannot power remote turnouts. The couplers LOOK like the couplers from other Bachmann products, but they aren't; these couplers lack magnets and perform really poorly. Due to this frustrating to get the components of the train to link together. You need to spend an additional $20 for a controller that is compatible with turnouts.
I don't recommend this kit for these reasons.
That said, the track is the same as normal Bachman track and the locomotive is pretty nice for the price. It seems identical to the same make and model sold separately, except the cheaper couplers. These couplers are even called "dummy couplers" in the instruction manual. That's... insulting. Even Bachmann admits how crappy the couplers are.
Let's look at how expensive it would be if you were to buy these components separately:
Bachmann GP40 N Scale: $40
2x Bachman N Scale 11.25" radius curved track: $10 x 2 = $20
AC adapter + Controller: $70 on Amazon but $20 on Ebay (multiple listings): $20
1 Pack of Bachmann Rolling stock from their website (includes 3 freight + 1 caboose): $20
So for $100 instead of $70 you can have all these components with an extra freight car, a remote compatible with turnouts, and working couplers instead of the cheap-O ones included here.
Better deal on the whole. You won't have to spend $20 for a pack of couplers and $20 for a better controller.