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N Scale - Athearn - 23638 - Gondola, 52 Foot, Thrall 2743 - Burlington Northern - 564446

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N Scale - Athearn - 23638 - Gondola, 52 Foot, Thrall 2743 - Burlington Northern - 564446 The image shown is the same body type though not necessarily the same road name or road number.



Brand Athearn
Stock Number 23638
Manufacturer Athearn
Image Provider's Website Link
Body Style MDC Gondola 50/52 Foot Thrall/Mill
Prototype Gondola, 52 Foot, Thrall 2743 (Details)
Road or Company Name Burlington Northern (Details)
Reporting Marks BN
Road or Reporting Number 564446
Paint Color(s) Black
Print Color(s) White
Coupler Type McHenry Magnetic Knuckle
Wheel Type Chemically Blackened Metal
Wheel Profile Small Flange (Low Profile)
Body Material Plastic
Item Category Rolling Stock (Freight)
Model Type Gondola
Model Subtype 52 Foot
Model Variety Thrall/Mill
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era Era V: Modern (1979 - Present)
Scale 1/160



Specific Item Information: N RTR 52 foot Mill Gondola, BN #564446

Model Information: This car was introduced by MDC Roundhouse in the late 1970's and was later acquired by Athearn in June of 2004. They have been marketed by both companies under various designations including "50 Foot Modern Gondola", "52 Foot Thrall Gondola" and "52 Foot Mill Gondola" as well as several other similar sounding names.

The early versions were released with Rapido couplers and later Athearn releases using McHenry couplers. The later MDC releases *might* have been shipped with some other kind of knuckle coupler. In the mid-1980's, as was true with many MDC releases, these cars came in kit form. Some of the newer releases come with loads.

Prototype History:
Introduced by Thrall Car Manufacturing Co., in 1995, with its new interior height of 5' 6" (i.e., a 6" increase in height over the previous standard), the firm's contemporary design for a 52' 6" length 2743 cubic foot capacity gondola car took advantage of a (then) newly allowed increase in Gross Rail Loading (GRL) of 286,000 lbs, which was up from the previous limit of 263,000 lbs.

Acquired by Trinity Industries (now TrinityRail) in 2001, from 1995 to 1999, Thrall produced over 6,700 of the 2743 gondolas.

The manufacture of the 2743 design was resumed by Trinity in 2005.

Road Name History:
The Burlington Northern Railroad (reporting mark BN) was a United States railroad. It was a product of a March 2, 1970, merger of four major railroads - the Great Northern Railway, Northern Pacific Railway, Spokane, Portland and Seattle Railway and the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad - as well as a few small jointly owned subsidiaries owned by the four.

Burlington Northern operated between 1970 and 1996.

Its historical lineage begins in the earliest days of railroading with the chartering in 1848 of the Chicago and Aurora Railroad, a direct ancestor line of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad, which lends Burlington to the names of various merger-produced successors.

Burlington Northern purchased the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway on December 31, 1996 to form the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway (later renamed BNSF Railway), which was owned by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corporation.*

Read more on Wikipedia.

Brand/Importer Information:
Athearn's history began in 1938, when its founder-to-be, Irvin Athearn, started an elaborate O scale layout in his mother's house. After placing an ad selling the layout, and receiving much response to it, Irv decided that selling model railroads would be a good living. He sold train products out of his mother's house through most of the 1940s. After becoming a full-time retailer in 1946, Irv opened a separate facility in Hawthorne, California in 1948, and that same year he branched into HO scale models for the first time.

Athearn acquired the Globe Models product line and improved upon it, introducing a comprehensive array of locomotive, passenger and freight car models. Improvements included all-wheel drive and electrical contact. One innovation was the "Hi-Fi" drive mechanism, employing small rubber bands to transfer motion from the motor spindle to the axles. Another was the double-ended ring magnet motor, which permitted easy connection to all-wheel-drive assemblies. Athearn was also able to incorporate flywheels into double-ended drives.

The company produced a model of the Boston & Maine P4 class Pacific steam locomotive which incorporated a cast zinc alloy base and thermoplastic resin superstructure. It had a worm drive and all power pickup was through the bipolar trucks that carried the tender. This item was discontinued after the Wilson motor was no longer available, and was not redesigned for a more technologically advanced motor.

Athearn's car fleet included shorter-than-scale interpretations of passenger cars of Southern Pacific and Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad prototypes. The company also offered a variety of scale-length freight cars with sprung and equalized trucks. The cars could be obtained in simple kit form, or ready-to-run in windowed display boxes. The comprehensive scope of the product line contributed to the popularity of HO as a model railroad scale, due to the ready availability of items and their low cost.

Irv Athearn died in 1991. New owners took control in 1994, but continued to follow Athearn's commitment to high-quality products at reasonable prices. Athearn was bought in 2004 by Horizon Hobby. Athearn was then moved from its facility in Compton to a new facility in Carson, California. In mid-2009, all remaining US production was moved to China and warehousing moved to parent Horizon Hobby. Sales and product development was relocated to a smaller facility in Long Beach, California.

Read more on Wikipedia and Athearn website.

Item created by: Chance on 2016-09-23 14:06:41. Last edited by gdm on 2020-06-01 16:07:40

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