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The red car that you mentioned is Mail Van (7820). There are a number of other trains in the picture including: 7730 - Goods train (the locomotive doesn't seem to be visible) 7710 - Push-Along Passenger Steam Train (just the cars) 7750 - Steam Engine with Tender (pulling the cars from 7710) 7814 - Crane Wagon 7760 - Diesel Shunter Locomotive ...
Most of the parts are of set 7288. I see at least the following: Window / door with the gates Big wall parts with stickers. Cop minifig & white shirt criminal Computerdesk and front of the truck Red front of the small car I also see parts of 7279: Gray shirted criminal Part of the ATM terminal Parts of the little car (lights and front with ...
You can definitely use the trains without batteries and push them on the tracks. In fact, a lot of LEGO trains come without the battery option, and you can add it if you want. Most people will get the battery option as it is fun to watch LEGO trains go on their own, but it is not necessary. You can even build raised tracks and have the train go down on ...
At least the mobile police post 7288; the label on the piece identifies it. Look for pieced used as license plates; license plates on Lego cars often contain the set number. In fact, any number printed or stickered on a piece is likely to be the set number. The dog doesn't have to be from a police set; he also appears in at least one firefighter set.
The white two-legged assembly with the blue light that's just above the left dog looks to be part of the robot dog from Space Police set 8399. Additionally, the minifig near the red car front appears to be from the World Racers theme and the one just under it that's missing its head looks like Johnny Thunder from the Adventurers theme.
You can only control PF IR receivers with the PF remote controls. These are the normal (8885) or the speed control (8879). With the speed remote control you can also choose different speeds. And yes, the train motor from 7897 is compatible with power functions, as long as you use a extension wire (acts like adapter from the old 9V-system to PF, 8886 or ...
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