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HOW MANY LIONEL #600 MKT SWITCHERS DO YOU HAVE?—More “rare” postwar those “guides” ignore.

By Mike Stella

It was the least expensive diesel locomotive ever offered by Lionel.  Only $13.95 for a SW type switcher in MKT markings.  The #600 is a collectors delight with four variations, one so rare few have ever seen it and it goes without saying the “guides” totally missed it!

As inexpensive as the #600 MKT was when first introduced, Lionel still quickly found a way to reduce production costs.

"Never paint what you don’t have to” was an unspoken motto of postwar Lionel in an increasing effort to reduce costs.

Click image to enlarge.

The most common 3 600 MKT was the last variation produced, easily obtained at low prices, still a bargain and a good runner.  Black frame and black handrails make it very common and easy to obtain

Click image to enlarge.

The next variation of the #600 MKT keeps the black handrails but utilizes the gray frame.  This proved to be a very difficult piece for me to find and the last of the four added to my collection

Click image to enlarge.

Many collectors incorrectly believe the variation with gray frame and yellow handrails is the hardest to obtain.  I believe that is the result of uneducated “price guide” authors who perpetuate the myth

Click image to enlarge.
Click image to enlarge.

Many collectors incorrectly believe the variation with gray frame and yellow handrails is the hardest to obtain.  I believe that is the result of uneducated “price guide” authors who perpetuate the myth

Click image to enlarge.

Here’s the lineup of my collection of #600 MKTs.  In truth, there is a fifth version.  Do you know what it is?  I even think some guides list it!  I may add it to my collection at some future time

 

 
   
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