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N Scale - Atlas - 49741 - Engine, Diesel, B23-7 - Family Lines - 5118

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N Scale - Atlas - 49741 - Engine, Diesel, B23-7 - Family Lines - 5118 Image Courtesy of Atlas Model Railroad


Brand Atlas
Stock Number 49741
Original Retail Price $99.95
Manufacturer Atlas
Image Credit Link
Body Style Atlas Diesel Engine B23-7
Road or Company Name Family Lines (Details)
Reporting Marks L&N
Road or Reporting Number 5118
Paint Color(s) Gray, Yellow, Red, and White
Print Color(s) White and Black
Body Construction Plastic
Coupler Type AccuMate Magnetic Knuckle
Wheel Type Chemically Blackened Metal
Wheel Profile Small Flange (Low Profile)
DCC Readiness Ready
Release Date 2004-12-01
Item Category Locomotives
Model Type Diesel
Model Subtype GE Transportation
Model Variety B23-7
Prototype Engine, Diesel, B23-7
Prototype Brand Name GE Transportation
Prototype Manufacturer Name GE Transportation
Prototype Model Name B23-7
Prototype Year(s) of Production 1977-1984
Region North America
Era/Epoch All Eras


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Body Style Information: The Atlas B23-7 was first released in October of 2000. It shares a mechanism with the B30-7 which was released the following year (2001). The B36-7 also shares the same mechanism. The shells of the B23-7 and B30-7 are very very similar and only differ in some minor details. This is a "modern" mechanism with a split-frame, all-metal chassis, 5-pole / skew-wound motor with dual flywheels, low-friction drive, bi-directional LED lighting, all-wheel drive and pickup (no traction tires), blackened / low-profile wheels, shell-mounted Accumate couplers, and all-plastic gearing.

Starting with the 2005 production run, these models were upgraded to include "scale speed" motors and golden-white lighting.

Features: Appropriate by railroad:
Fat or thin anticlimber, knuckle or button battery boxes, FB-2, AAR or Blomberg trucks, low or high nose, flat or protruding headlight, 2 or 4 window cab.

DCC Information: Offered in two variations:
One with a factory-installed Lenz decoder and the other with a PC board designed for easy conversion to DCC.

Prototype Information: General Electric's "Dash 7" locomotive line was introduced as a replacement for the older "Universal-Series" of the 60s and early 70s. "Dash 7" series improvements included increased fuel efficiency, tractive effort and reliability. The B23-7 was a direct replacement for the 2,250HP U23B model. The first units were produced for Conrail in September, 1977 (ironically, 3 months after the last U23B was delivered to Conrail). Production continued through 1984, with a total of 535 units built. Conrail was the largest purchaser of the model, with a total fleet of 141 units.

Several features distinguished B23-7s from predecessor models. The long hood stepped outward in the area of the exhaust stack to accommodate a relocated oil cooler. In addition, the frame was 2 feet longer than that of the U23B. An FB-2 style truck was offered as standard equipment on B23-7s, but some railroads opted to use ?trade-in? trucks. Therefore, AAR type B and Blomberg trucks could be found on some models. The six power assembly doors (located near the center of the long hood) indicated that the B23-7 was powered by a 12-cylinder GE FDL engine.

Road/Company Information:
To be truthful the Family Lines System was never actually an operating railroad, it was merely a marketing tactic which brought together the allying lines of the Louisville & Nashville, Clinchfield, Seaboard Coast Line, and a number of other smaller road (such as the Georgia Railroad, Atlanta & West Point Railroad, and Western Railway of Alabama otherwise referred to as the West Point Route). With this came a new livery (not unlike the later Seaboard scheme) applied to all with sub-lettering stenciled under locomotive cabs identifying the specific company. This marketing scheme was also short-lived, lasting only from 1972 until 1982 when these railroads merged together formally to create the Seaboard System (itself operating for only a few years).

The three main components of the System were the L&N, Clinchfield, and SCL. The L&N (the first component) was a railroad synonymous with the southern states; it served major cities from New Orleans and Memphis to St. Louis, Atlanta, and later Chicago. The L&N is also one of the few classic fallen flags to never have had its original chartered name change at any point throughout its history, serving its home state and the southeast for over 120 years. As the L&N itself disappeared into the Seaboard System in 1982 just a few years later the Seaboard itself would disappear into CSX Transportation.

Brand/Importer Information:
In 1924 Stephan Schaffan, Sr. founded the Atlas Tool Company in Newark, New Jersey. In 1933 his son, Stephan Schaffan, Jr., came to work for his father at the age of sixteen. Steve Jr. built model airplanes as a hobby and frequented a local hobby shop. Being an enterprising young man, he would often ask the owner if there was anything he could do to earn some extra spending money. Tired of listening to his requests, the hobby-store owner threw some model railroad track parts his way and said, "Here, see if you can improve on this".

In those days, railroad modelers had to assemble and build everything from scratch. Steve Jr. created a "switch kit" which sold so well, that the entire family worked on them in the basement at night, while doing business as usual in the machine shop during the day.

Subsequently, Steve Jr. engineered the stapling of rail to fiber track, along with inventing the first practical rail joiner and pre-assembled turnouts and flexible track. All of these products, and more, helped to popularize model railroading and assisted in the creation of a mass-market hobby. The budding entrepreneur quickly outgrew the limitations of a basement and small garage operation. Realizing they could actually make a living selling track and related products, Steve and his father had the first factory built in Hillside, New Jersey at 413 Florence Avenue in 1947. On September 30, 1949, the Atlas Tool Company was officially incorporated as a New Jersey company.

In 1985, Steve was honored posthumously for his inventions by the Model Railroad Industry Association and was inducted into the Model Railroad Industry Hall of Fame in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, Steve was nominated and entered into the National Model Railroad Association Pioneers of Model Railroading in 1995.

In the early 1990s, the Atlas Tool Company changed its name to Atlas Model Railroad Company, Inc.


Item created by: trainnut3500 on 2017-01-03 16:24:45. Last edited by trainnut3500 on 2017-01-03 16:33:29

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