GP35 IS A TOP PERFORMER
MODEL RAILROADER – February 2004
This versatile EMD GP35 diesel road switcher is a good-looking
and powerful second-generation general purpose locomotive that
will be right at home hauling a hotshot freight or switching a
yard. It’s made by Atlas O in two versions for two-rail
layouts that use either DC or Lionel’s TrainMaster command
control and RailSounds 4.0 system.
Electro-Motive Division introduced the prototype GP35 in late
1963. Its clean lines and angled cab roof corners set the body
style EMD followed for the next 30 years. By the time
production ended in January 1965, 1,250 GP35s had been built
for U.S. railroads, 26 for Canadian customers, and 57 went
south of the border to Mexico.
The 2,500-hp GP35 was initially built for fast freight
service. Most rode on conventional EMD GP-type trucks,
although a few were fitted with Association of America
Railroads type B trucks taken from Alco trade-ins. Atlas
provides the appropriate trucks for each paint scheme.
The Atlas O GP35 closely matches the dimensions shown in a
prototype drawing published in the Model Railroader
Cyclopedia: Vol. 2, Diesel Locomotives.
The GP35 shown here is a low-nose Chesapeake & Ohio model with
a detailed three-piece plastic body. Norfolk & Western and
Southern models have a different cab and a high nose. Both
versions include individually applied details and wire grab
Most of the model’s five-pound weight is provided by its
die-cast underframe, which includes the pilots and fuel tank.
The corner steps and footboards have fine see-through openings
while all of the running boards and platforms have a nice
safety tread texture.
The GP trucks have well-detailed die-cast sideframes with
factory-applied separate brake cylinders, piping, and swing
hangers. The blackened nickel silver RP-25 contour wheels
match the National Model Railroad Association standards gauge.
Each truck is driven by a powerful can motor mounted
vertically above the kingpin. The motor in the cab area is
neatly concealed by a black plastic housing with a crewman on
each side. The trucks pivot around the motor shafts. A worm
and gear inside each truck transfers rotation to spur gears
which drive both axles.
Our GP35 came with a removable secondary printed-circuit board
so the model can be converted to Digital Command Control (DCC).
A pair of plugs with color-coded wires that match the NMRA
Recommended Practice 9.1.1 are provided. Atlas includes an
instruction sheet covering how to connect these plugs to the
main PC board for easy installation of a heavy-duty (6 amp)
The model has reversing lights so the headlight is illuminated
only in the direction of travel. At the same time, the
classification lights display a red indication to the rear as
marker lights for light engine or pusher movements.
In addition to the DC model reviewed here, Atlas is making a
another version that includes the Lionel TrainMaster command
control and RailSounds digital sound system which operates
only in the command control mode.
O SCALE GP35 FEATURES
Blackened nickel-silver RP-25 wheelsets (in gauge)
Directional headlights and marker lights
Digital Command Control receptacles and cables
Drawbar pull: 21.1 ounces
Eight-wheel electrical pickup
Kadee-compatible scale magnetic knuckle couplers
Metal grab irons and handrail stanchions
Minimum radius: 36”
Twin motors with flywheels
Weight: 5 pounds
O SCALE EMD GP35
Price: 2-Rail (with Lionel Electronic system) $399.95
2-Rail DC, $379.95
Dummy units $199.95
Atlas O LLC
378 Florence Ave.
Hillside, NJ 07205-1799
Plastic and metal locomotive
(Two road numbers each)
Chesapeake & Ohio; Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe; EMD
Demonstrator (limited edition); Gulf- Mobile & Ohio; New York
Central; Western Pacific; and undecorated
Norfolk & Western, Southern Ry., and undecorated