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Hey guys,
It's the kid again! I was wondering if anyone out there has purchased the new I/M cab forward with dcc and sound. If so can you tell me how the sounds are. I know they switched from tsunami to loksound and after listening to a few steam loksound decoders I'm fairly impressed but I haven't heard any for the cab forwards specifically. Before I buy one there are a couple thins I would like to know. #1 can the chuff rate be matched perfectly to the locomotive? #2 Is the chuffing an articulated chuff? #3 do you get a nice selecton of whistles or more specifically how well do loksound decoders program, are they nicely compatible with most dcc system and have a rich amount of features? Hoping a few of you out there can answer a couple of these questions so I can sleep easy at night again.
:p Thanks in advance!


Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
I just talked to Intermountain, and asked them those questions.
1. The chuff rate is not on a cam but is based on the speed of the locomotive not track voltage.
2. Yes it is a Mallet type articulated chuff. The front and rear pistons are a slightly different sound.
3. There is a pre-programmed prototypical whistle on F2 as well as the SP style horn used on the late steamers. There is also a short whistle on one of the higher functions. He said there were other whistle options but why would anyone want a non-prototypical one?
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Well-Known Member
The cab forwards were not Mallets (differential and expanded steam between two engines) but were simple steam. For some reason the SP called their AC's Mallets, but probably because they were articulated. In some circles, there is no differentiation between compound engines and simple steam, but if they are articulated they all come under the name of 'Mallee' to the SP folks.

The AC's were really nothing more than Yellowstone 2-8-8-4's turned nose-side back.

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
Hey thanks for all the input guys! Has anyone had experience with loksound decoders? How are they?
My only experience is with a set in the Precision Craft F3s. I have not tried to program them or do anything other than just run the locos. I do remember that the early ones used high ohm speakers like 100 ohms, so I did not buy any. At the time speakers like that were hard to find. I believe the LokSound folks have corrected that issue now and can use a normal 8 ohm speaker.

I have a couple friends who will not use anything but the LokSound. They are people who are really into programming their own sounds. One has a loco that does the "think I can, I think I can, I think I can, sound instead of a normal chuff, it swears and curses when it is working too hard or has to slam on the brakes.


Well-Known Member
I believe, but you'll still have to ask, that LokSound changed their decoders to conform more with what is readily available in the way of replacement or third party speakers to hobbyists in N. America. This happened in the last year or two. Good tip, though.
Well, they arrived. Awesome looking! Motor is WAAAYYY better than the earlier releases and the sound (to me) is on par with Tsunami. I am happy with my purchase. I only wish they would throw their hat in the ring and do some other steamers! AHEM, COUGH, AC-9!!!!!!!


Well-Known Member
When I last spoke with Frank Angstead, he told me there would be no more steam engine projects. The market is too narrow. They need generic locomotives that can be lettered for any RR to pay for the tooling, and steamers were awfully RR specific. If you want an AC-9 you're going to have to buy brass. The old Max Gray model shows up on e-bay from time to time. I happen to have one. It's affordable and solidly built. Sunset made them too. The key version is more expensive but since there were only a few of them, and only on the SP I don't look for any plastic manufacturer to do one. I would be happy to be proven wrong but I don't think I will be :(


Well-Known Member
i want to get one cause intermountain wont be putting out more steam but dont know if i can justify it, thats y i want irocs pics of his so i can make up my mind lol


My AC-12's just arrived today. Here's some photos:






So, first impressions:

1. Impressive detail, really amazing as you can see in the photos.
2. Should be a good puller. Loco weighs in just under 27oz. Tender about 5oz.
3. Runs very smoothly. I don't have the previous runs to compare with.
4. Loksound 4 decoder has a nice, deep chuff. Air pump sounds seem realistic. Two whistles: Horn and steam whistle.

I'm going to try to get some video over at the club either tonight or Saturday. I'll keep ya'll posted!

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