Author Topic: Micro Train Prototype Info  (Read 1027 times)

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JMaurer1

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Micro Train Prototype Info
« on: January 13, 2014, 01:02:47 PM »
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Once upon a time I started to try and find out the prototype for the MT car bodies (thinking that this would be a fairly easy project...ha). A question in another post had me referencing that info and made me think that I should dust off this project again. The goal was to try and find the prototype that MT based a particular car on. Any help is appreciated.

Example: the 020 00 000 40' Single Door Boxcar is based on a Pullman-Standard PS-1 Type Boxcar with a 6 Foot Door.

Any detailed info from there is just a bonus, such as in this example:

The MTL model is an accurate representation of the PS-1 10'6" IH prototype - albeit a transitional one.  The pressed rectangles were added to the top of the sides in 1949.  The bow-tie roof stiffeners were added to the outer roof panels in 1950, and the horizontal riveted belt rail was changed to a welded joint in the mid 1950s.  So the model is accurate for PS-1 boxcars built from early 1949 to sometime in 1950.

(I do not recall where this info was found or else I would give proper credit although I'm sure that I'm quoting Spookshow's website at some point - http://www.spookshow.net/freight)
Anyways, this is the info I do have. If anyone wants to add to this I would gladly include the info an make it accessible for everyone else.

Micro Trains Prototype Information

020 00 000 40' Single Door Boxcar
Pullman-Standard PS-1 Type Boxcar, 6 Foot Door

The MTL model is an accurate representation of the PS-1 10'6" IH prototype - albeit a transitional one.  The pressed rectangles were added to the top of the sides in 1949.  The bow-tie roof stiffeners were added to the outer roof panels in 1950, and the horizontal riveted belt rail was changed to a welded joint in the mid 1950s.  So the model is accurate for PS-1 boxcars built from early 1949 to sometime in 1950.

035 00 000 40' Despatch Stock Car
NYC 28000-28499 (Lot 757-S) convertible stock cars rebuilt from USRA SS box cars in 1947

The Micro-Trains car is an exact match to New York Central Lot 757-S. These were 500 cars (28000-28499) rebuilt in 1947 by Despatch Shops from several lots of older box cars.

The cars were convertible in that there was a second floor that could be raised so that small animals could be carried on two levels. Prototype photos show the mechanism for raising and lowering the floor.

039 00 000 40' Double Sheathed Wood Boxcar w/Vertical Brakewheel

041 00 000 40' Double Sheathed Wood 1 1/2 Door Boxcar w/Vertical BW

042 00 000 40' Double Sheathed Wood Single Door Boxcar w/Horizontal BW

043 00 000 40' Double Sheathed Wood 1 1/2 Door Boxcar w/Horizontal BW


All based on USRA design specs

During World War I, the government took over the railroads to coordinate them for the war effort under the United States Railroad Administration (USRA). Allocating materials and factory availability, the USRA decided to establish standard plans for freight cars, rather than each railroad designing its own plans and ordering to its own specifications. There were two main boxcar designs built, with double-sheathed and single-sheathed wood sides.

Spotting characteristics “AS DESIGNED”*
40-foot nominal length
Deep fishbelly center-sill underframe (USRA underframe)
Double-sheathed wood sides (vertical boards)
6’ wood door
Steel ends with 5-5-5 corrugations
Metal roof (sheet metal panels over wooden subroof)
Wooden running board (roofwalk)

USRA had thousands of these built—delivered too late for the war, and sold to railroads. Some of the railroads acquiring the original USRA cars were:
AT&SF, B&M, CB&Q, C&NW, CRIP, MP, NP, NYC, SLSF, Wabash

The Micro Trains car has most of those characteristics.
 
It has an end-mounted brake wheel, which would be typical of a modernization. Ends are 5-5-5 corrugated, roof is metal-type, 17 uniform-width panels and half-width panels at each end. I have found one prototype photo of a USRA car with 14 panels, all the same width, and no discussion that goes into the variations on number of pattern.

“USRA COPIES”
The USRA design was widely successful, and many railroads that did not buy the original USRA cars had copies made to the same plans...but with variations.
Some used 8-7 corrugated ends instead of 5-5-5.
Some used end-mounted brake wheels instead of vertical brake staffs.
Some used different doors, or replaced the original doors with steel ones.
There MAY have been differences in number of roof panels, but this seems this least noticed and recorded detail.
And some used a different underframe without the distinctive USRA fishbelly center sill.

MicroTrainsLines variations
MTL produced the USRA double-sheathed cars with several alternate details—
- With USRA fishbelly underframe or “standard” (relatively flat) underframe
- With vertical brake staff or end-mounted brake wheel
- I don’t know if they offered models with different doors, but MTL has offered different door styles as interchangeable parts.
The models were said to be produced with detail variations to match prototypes.

050 00 000 34' Wood Caboose, Slant Cupola
Prototype is based on the Southern Pacific C-30-1 caboose

051 00 000 34' Wood Caboose, Straight Cupola
Prototype is based on the Southern Pacific C-30-1 caboose

065 00 000 39' Single Dome Tank Car
General American ICC-103 10,000 Gallon Tank Car

083 00 000 40 Foot Steel Drop Bottom Gondola

Micro-Trains 40 Foot Steel Drop Bottom Gondola represents a Union Pacific prototype. The inside length of these cars was 41 feet even, inside width 9 feet 6 inches, inside height 5 feet, outside length 42 feet 9 inches and extreme height 9 feet 4 inches. The capacity was 1948 cubic feet or 100,000 pounds. Curiously, the cars are described as "U.P. Gondola, Steel, Fixed Ends" but it's the AAR Designation that gives it away. "GS" translates to "An open top car, having fixed sides and ends and drop bottom, consisting of doors hinged at center sills to dump outside of rails."

085 00 000 33 Foot Panel Side Open Hopper, 2 Bay, Flat Ends

There were a number of mostly Eastern roads that had panel side hoppers, but it's the specific Wabash version that is the basis for the new MTL model. Some vital statistics: inside length 33 feet, inside width 9 feet 7 inches, outside length 34 feet, extreme outside width 10 feet 7 inches, extreme height 10 feet 10 inches, capacity 2120 cubic feet or 110,000 pounds.

100 00 000 36' Riveted Steel Side Caboose
The MT steel caboose is modeled after a Texas & Pacific prototype.

116 00 000 Troop Sleeper
Pullman-Standard Troop Sleeper, Version 1

118 00 000 Troop Kitchen
American Car and Foundry Kitchen Car

130 00 000 Bay Window Caboose
These models are based on a Southern Pacific prototype (SP's C-50-9)










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wcfn100

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Re: Micro Train Prototype Info
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2014, 01:29:11 PM »
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While good for it's time, the MTL's PS-1 is not an 'accurate' version.

The biggest issue being that the body is 6" too tall.  The next being that the lower door track doesn't sit on the sill.  The doors have width issues as well.

If you need info on the proto PS-1, I covered them here in comparison to the Atlas car.  Other notable changes are side grab and tack board locations.

And as I covered on the tank car in the other thread, it is not 10,000 gallons when you compare the measurements.

Jason
« Last Edit: January 13, 2014, 01:39:41 PM by wcfn100 »

bbussey

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Re: Micro Train Prototype Info
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2014, 02:12:12 PM »
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All of the PS-1 boxcars in the 2xxxx and 3xxxx series share the same inaccuracies, not just the 20000 series.

A handful of the models are accurate, or are close.  On the older (20th century) freight tooling, the 35000 stock car, 4xxxx series and 1xxxxx series USRA wood boxcars, 45000 series fishbelly flat, 50000 series caboose, 52000 REA express reefer, 59000 ice reefer, 5xxxx series 36' reefers, 69000 riveted mech reefer,78000 auto boxcar and 9xxxx center flows are the best — although all except the caboose, mech reefer, auto boxcar and center flows ride too high. 

On more recent (21st century) freight tooling, it's easy enough to verify the models since they are based (for the most part) on specific prototypes.

On the passenger car tooling, all of it is accurate except that the two troop cars ride too high.
Bryan Busséy
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NSE #1117
www.bbussey.net