Built by the road's Juniata shops in 1917, the FF1 was the first step in the Pennsy's long search for a heavy-duty mainline electric locomotive - a search that would culminate in 1934 with the GG1, perhaps the most successful and best-loved electric ever built. The FF1, however - like her contemporary, the Erie Triplex 2-8-8-8-2 steam engine - was a monstrous machine that was simply too big and too powerful for the technology of her time. Like the Triplex, she became known for rippling the couplers out of freight cars and was soon relegated to pusher service, where the railroad figured she would do less damage. But on at least one occasion, Big Liz, as the crews called her, pushed so hard that boxcars began to pop out of the middle of the train. Listen to the "train wreck" sounds in our model of the FF1 and you'll hear the crew's reaction.* The drive system in this one-of-a-kind experimental engine was borrowed in part from the steam locomotive. At each end of the FF1, two giant traction motors turned a jackshaft that moved side rods to power the drivers. Designed for drag freight service, Biz Liz had but two continuous speeds: 10.3 and 20.6 mph. Within a decade, jackshaft drives would fall out of favor, in part because they pounded the rails terribly at higher speeds, just like a side rod steam locomotive. Later electrics would have the traction motors geared directly to the drive axles, as they were on a GG1. Big Liz never fulfilled the dream of her designers - to help level the mountains on the Pennsy's line from Altoona to Pittsburgh. But it's surprising how much she had in common with the Pennsy's most successful electric. The monstrous FF1 and the glorious GG1 were virtually the same length, had similar horsepower, and shared the same number of driven axles. What was impractical in 1917 turned out to be sheer genius in 1934. The first-ever O gauge model of this historic locomotive, our Premier FF1 recreates the visual and mechanical excess of the original design, but runs better than the prototype ever did. Only MTH engineering could make such a large, complex model run smoothly and steadily at speeds from a barely perceptible crawl to wide-open throttle. For a perfect World War I era freight train, team Big Liz up with the Pennsy N6b caboose shown elsewhere in this catalog and our USRA single- and double-sheathed wooden boxcars from earlier catalogs. * DCS System required to access "train wreck" and several other atmospheric sound effects. Did you know? Big Liz was capable of 4000 continuous horsepower at the rail and a maximum of 4800 hp when starting a heavy train. Like most electrics, her starting effort was greater because her electric motors could handle a large overload for a brief period of time.