HO FEF-3 4-8-4, UP #844, ATHG97279

AthearnSKU: ATHG97279

Sale price$519.98
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HO FEF-3 4-8-4, UP #844, ATHG97279

Detailed Information


  • Illuminated number boards
  • Individually-applied detail parts, including brass- painted bell and whistle, piping, valves, generator, steps, air pump, air tanks, reverser and coupler lift bar
  • Metal handrails
  • Builder’s plates
  • Front coupler pocket can be inserted to mount operating coupler
  • Non-operating classification lights
  • Firebox with rivet detail
  • Adjustable cab windows
  • Boiler backhead with full details and printed gauges
  • Blackened metal wheels
  • Tender-mounted DCC decoder with ESU® LOKSOUND® sound
  • Featuring all new sound recorded off UP #844 October, 2016!
  • Sound units operate in both DC and DCC
  • Synchronized chuff, whistle, bell, blow-down, air compressor, dyno and pop-off valve sounds
  • User-controlled whistle, short whistle, bell, squeal, coupler crash, injector, water stop and light dimmer
  • Some functions are limited in DC
  • Chuff, whistle and bell sounds work in DC
  • All functions NMRA-compatible in DCC mode
  • Slow speed control
  • Many functions can be altered via Configuration Value (CV) changes
  • CV chart is included in the box


  • Oil burner
  • Accurate oil tender details
  • Double or triple smokestack per prototype
  • Feedwater heater per prototype
  • Single or double generator per prototype
  • ATS cabinet per prototype
  • Side rods colored to match the prototype
  • Illuminated red signal light except on 2016 version of #844
  • Swing coupler pocket
  • Feedwater heaters
  • Two generators
  • Modified for excursion service tender with ATS cabinet
  • Minimum radius: 22”


In 1939, 15 FEF-2 class 4-8-4s, numbers 820 through 834, were acquired. They shared a family resemblance to the big Challengers and Big Boys. The FEF-2s were built as coal burners with single exhaust stacks, drop coupler pilots and “centipede” tenders that carried 25 tons of coal and 23,500 gallons of water. When they were rebuilt, they received double or triple exhaust stacks.

During the traffic crunch of World War II, ten more 4-8-4s of class FEF-3, numbers 835 through 844, were acquired. The FEF-3 boiler was slightly longer than the FEF-2; plus, the FEF-3 featured double exhaust stacks, cast pilots and cabinets on the tender. Within six months of delivery, they were fitted with “elephant ear” smoke deflectors. Several FEF-3s also received triple exhaust stacks.

All of the 4-8-4s were converted to burn oil after the Second World War. They also wore two-tone gray paint from April 1946 until the mid-1950s. While UP streamliners were all diesel powered, the FEFs worked the secondary trains such as the Pony Express and Overland as well as mail trains. At the time, those trains were usually quite long and consisted of heavyweight cars, requiring all of the power the FEFs could deliver.

Instead of retiring FEF-3 844 in the early 1960s, UP kept it for excursion service and renumbered it to 8444 in 1962 to make way for GP30 844. From the mid-1950s until 1987, FEF-3 8444 was painted in the black paint scheme. In September 1987, it was repainted into the two-tone gray scheme with yellow stripe and lettering. After returning to Cheyenne from the Los Angeles Union Station 50th Anniversary celebration in June 1989, FEF-3 8444 was renumbered back to 844. The two-tone gray paint lasted until September 1991. This release features FEF-3 8444 as it appeared from September 1987 to June 1991 with two-tone gray paint and yellow trim.

Beginning in late 1991, 844 was given a complete overhaul that lasted five years. The 844 was returned to service in black paint on September 20, 1996. A boiler tube failure in 1999 took 844 out of service for rebuilding until May 5, 2005. The model represents the 2016 version in black paint with the red signal light removed.


TYPE: FEF Northern
DCC: Ready
SOUND: Ready/21-pin
PROTOTYPE MANUFACTURER: American Locomotive Company (ALCO)
COUPLER STYLE: McHenry Scale Knuckle
Minimum Age Recommendation: 14 years
Is Assembly Required: No

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