Locomotive Roster: SNCF BB 26000 ; Piko 94133 Piko 94136

Here's a review of my models of the SNCF BB 26000 from Piko!
This locomotive - famous in France - is my first locomotive from the resurgent Piko!  Piko is probably more well-known in the Americas for its line of older, inexpensive building kits, or for its rather extensive line of G-scale accessories.  Its probably less well-known outside of the continent for its ancient forays into N Scale locomotives in the ancient days of the 1960's and 1970's.  Only recently has Piko re-entered the N Scale locomotive and rolling stock with entirely new models.
And they are very good models - which  may seem surprising as Piko had its origins as a state-owned enterprise of the communist government in the old East Germany back in 1949!  Of course, those days are long gone, and I'm glad to say Piko quality is really outstanding!
The models I have from Piko are two versions of the BB 26000 - commonly known in France as the "Sybic".   That fancy sounding name is really just a shortened version of one of this locomotives key features "Synchronous Bicurrent". 
The model in orange (TGV Orange I believe?) is Piko 94136.  This is actually my second one as I previously had the other locomotive in the red/silver "multi-services" livery.  At first, this locomtive (in terms of style) did not really interest me.  But as I saw more photos of the Sybic working in its natural environments I became more and more interested in it. 
While not as flashy or iconic as its 'broken nose' cousins, it has a definite edge to it and now looks almost classic against more modern Traxx and Taurus electrics.
The 'multi-services' version (Piko 94133) has a more modern paint scheme.  While not as interesting to me as the orange TGV scheme, I still find it quite nice!
I go into much more detail (of course) in the video review, but there were a few thoughts I wanted to get 'on paper' as it were!
Overall, a really nice model that (so far) has been a flawless operator!


  1. Hi Jerry,

    Where did you pick up your Piko locomotive? I remember seeing some HO models in Prague, but I didn't know they produced N-scale.


  2. I actually happened to pick both of these up in Paris, but I do think you can order them through Euro Rail Hobbies now (not sure if Walter or any of the US based shops have any stock).

    Just checked, Eurorail doesn't show any N locomotives from Piko, but eurolokshop does:

    The Piko N scale line is actually growing quite nicely and if your looking for something a bit different, they're producing a good range of French prototypes.

  3. Very nice looking train. Some cool detail there. But, your shots overshadow it. WOW! just stunning shots.
    And your lighting makes me crazy! I can't wait until I start dialing lighting in.

  4. Thanks for the info Jerry. I checked Eurorail hobbies and they had a Piko LINT listed. I think I know what to ask Santa for xmas...

  5. Hi Jerry,

    I really enjoy your reviews!

    What is that rolling testbed you use in your sound tests? I've looked for something like this but not found any attractive options.


  6. @ Jaggy: Its the Bacchrus rolling road. They're a bit pricy, but it was the best option I could find.

    They can be a little fiddly to use if you don't put a brass rod through the nubs that each piece has.

    If I could afford it, I would have gone with the Minitrix one, which looks really nice (the adjustable rollers appear to be attached more securely to the base, whereas with the Bacchrus, they are free and can be a little fiddly to keep in place).

    The quality is good however, and they do the job! Perhaps I should do a review of my rolling stand!

  7. Hi Jerry, nice tests as usual.

    FYI, the TGV you have (which is indeed Orange) is the historical livery of the "TGV Sud-Est" (South-East).
    This is the color of the first TGVs. They had coexisted then with the blue livery you surely know (then known as "TGV Atlantique" blue). But all trains have been blue since more than 15 years (haven't found the exact date).

    Interesting facts:

    - The orange livery was also the one on the experimental "TGV 001", which was a gas turbine prototype...urgently replaced by electric power because of the 1973 petrol crisis : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TGV_001

    - To celebrate the 30 years of high speed in France, all TGVs will soon change to a new livery: http://www.youtube.com/watch?hl=en&v=ikKDH2wAi4c

    - To my knowledge, there are only 2 "exception" TGV liveries still in service:
    1) The yellow postal TGVs
    Used as an alternative to plane for overnight mail http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SNCF_TGV_La_Poste
    2) The Iris TGV (which I think you saw on your last trip to France)
    Equipped for track and catenary analysis http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SNCF_TGV_Iris_320