Re: best brass tank car models

Tim O'Connor

Bill, here are a few good brass tank car models.

Lambert 105BW -- 8000g, acid service, platform
Lambert 103W -- 10000g, single dome, platform

The Lambert cars are well made. There is a photo of the acid car
in the 1961 Car Builder Cyc. They are not as highly detailed with
regard to brake gear as we demand, but otherwise seem accurate.
I have actually seen examples of the 10000 gallon car and am
positive that it is an accurate model for the late 1950's. (The
most recent one I saw was in 1991 in BN company service.)

Overland 3028 -- 11000g, pressure tank, no platform

This was marketed as "LP tank car". I think it is based
on a 1930's prototype, either ACF or Union Tank. Richard
knows, I'm sure!

Overland 3130 -- 8000g, ACF, single dome ( Type 27? )
Overland 3132 -- 8000g, ACF, triple dome
Overland 3133 -- 8000g, ACF, 1 dome, platform
Overland 3134 -- 8000g, ACF, manyway, platform, chlorine

The above came out in the late 1980's and were pretty cheap
compared to prices now. They are highly detailed and well made.
They come in very small boxes so you have to look carefully!
One set good for the chlorine car was Champ's Dow HT-72. The
triple domes are rare.

Overland 3229 -- 10000g, GACC, 1 dome, no platform

Another good model, these have a large-ish dome and some were
decorated for asphalt service. I think Richard H. has vouched
for the accuracy of them for some California refinery. I have
seen similar cars of other owners and mine is decorated with
Champ's Cities Service decals, for asphalt service of course.

Overland 3231 -- 10000g, X-3

This model needs some minor corrections to be as accurate as
Martin's model. I started working on mine when we were all doing
the Virtual Modeler X-3 -- e.g. I reworked the brake components
from KC to AB spec. However now it sits forlorn in storage...

Overland 3270 -- 8000g, GACC, 1 dome, insulated, platform
Overland 3271 -- 8000g, GACC, 3 dome, insulated, rebuild

Besides being wonderful looking models, I love the #3270 because
it has open grid running boards. Very unusual for a model tank
car even in brass. The 3 dome car has different size domes, and
that is why I assume it represents a rebuild. (IIRC.)

Overland 3361 -- 16000g, 103W, 1 dome

These late 1950's cars were bought by UP, CGW, and other roads.
It was marketed as a UP O-70-1 but I think it can be painted for
other owners. I forget who built the prototype cars, but probably
it was ACF.

W&R -- 1, 2, 3 domes, Pressed Steel Car, KC brakes, high walkways
W&R -- 8000g, 1 dome, Pressed Steel Car, AB brakes, modernized
W&R -- 8000g, 4 dome, Pressed Steel Car, AB brakes, modernized

The W&R tank cars are beautiful models. I only got the modernized
cars to paint for Northern Pacific company service, for which they
are correct. The high walkway cars were unpopular for some reason,
and were easy to find for a long time at train shows.

I didn't list the Precision Scale models, of which there were
several. They are not up to your modeling standards. Also I did
not list railroad specific cars such as Pecos River Brass did
for AT&SF and SP.

I feel competent to look at a brass model of a boxcar or reefer and say if
it is a good model or not, and since most significant house cars will be
done eventually I believe either in resin or styrene, I have not purchased
any brass freight cars except for a couple of tanks cars (the Red Caboose
GATX model) and two N&W covered hoppers done by Overland a few years ago.

But tank cars are another matter and although I have educated myself, I am
still unsure when I look at the brass models I see around at the various
shows. I would find it helpful if people could list 5 to 7 of what they
think are the best tank car models that have been done. If you have a
catalog number, so much the better in trying to identify them at shows.

Bill Welch

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