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N Scale - Atlas - 3304 - Boxcar, 40 Foot, Steel Plug Door - Detroit Toledo & Ironton - 19194

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N Scale - Atlas - 3304 - Boxcar, 40 Foot, Steel Plug Door - Detroit Toledo & Ironton - 19194


Brand Atlas
Stock Number 3304
Original Retail Price $2.25
Manufacturer Atlas Model Railroad
Body Style Atlas Boxcar 40 Foot Plug Door
Prototype Boxcar, 40 Foot, Steel Plug Door (Details)
Road or Company Name Detroit Toledo & Ironton (Details)
Reporting Marks DTI
Road or Reporting Number 19194
Paint Color(s) Yellow
Print Color(s) Black
Coupler Type Rapido Hook
Wheel Type Nickel-Silver Plated Metal
Wheel Profile Deep Flange
Body Material Plastic
Release Date 1977-01-01
Item Category Rolling Stock (Freight)
Model Type Boxcar
Model Subtype 40 Foot
Model Variety Plug Door
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era Era III: Transition (1939 - 1957)
Scale 1/160



Model Information: Atlas first released this model in 1976. It was originally produced in their New Jersey factor. It replaced a similar model made by Roco for Atlas from 1967 - 1975. The American-made Atlas tooling was launched with an amazing 24 different road names. In the 1997 Atlas catalog, this model is referred to as a 40' Plugdoor Boxcar. However, the earlier Roco model had been referred to alternatively as a "Reefer" (1967, 1969 and 1971) as well as a "40' Insulated Plugdoor" (1975). Sometime in the 1990s, the tooling was moved to China. From September 2006 onward, this model was considered part of the 'Trainman' product line.

Prototype History:
Plug-Door boxcars are usually insulated and typically carry products such as canned goods that require protection from extremes of temperature but do not require refrigeration. Plug-style doors were normally used to ensure a tight seal in the insulation. Designed for transport of both perishables and large loads, plug doors allowed box cars to be sealed from outside dust and dirt. Cars like these were manufactured during the 50s and 60s.

Whether you consider this a reefer or a boxcar is a matter for angel-pinhead-counters. There seems to be a bit of a blurry line during the transition era between the idea of a steel ice reefer and an insulated boxcar. I guess an ice reefer was meant to hold ice for cooling but I doubt this is a cut-and-dry distinction. Modern "mechanical" reefers are a different breed as they contain a refrigeration unit which quite distinctly sets them apart from "boxcars".

Road Name History:
The DT&I was born in 1905 with the sale and reorganization of the Detroit Southern Railroad. Beginning in Detroit, the DT&I carved a huge northwest to southeast arc around western Ohio, serving Lima (like the bean, not Peru), Springfield, Jackson, and finally the Ohio River port of Ironton on the Kentucky border. Toledo was reached via a short segment of trackage rights on the Ann Arbor.

In 1920, as part of a complicated solution to realigning a shipping channel that served Henry Ford’s River Rouge plant, Ford bought the DT&I. The Ford years brought a ban on facial hair, uniform white hats and an expectation that crews keep their overalls clean and tidy. He also strung catenary and bought heavy electric locomotives for a 17 mile line segment between his River Rouge plant and Carolton, Michigan. During this period, the DT&I closed for business on Sundays. In 1929, Ford sold the line to Pennroad Corporation, a holding company affiliated with the Pennsylvania Railroad.

The steam fleet of the DT&I was a pretty homely lot. 2-8-0s and Russian Decapods were the kings of the road for the first few decades. As the tide of traffic turned from coal and minerals from the south end of the line to automobiles from the north end of the line, DT&I went to Lima Locomotive Works for faster stronger 2-8-4 Berkshires. Although the DT&I Berks were light and stumpy by Berkshire standards, they were a bit too much for DT&I’s physical plant so their final steam orders were for very heavy Mikados ( 20 tons heavier than USRA Heavy Mikes.) By 1955, they had completely dieselized with 37 EMD GP7’s and GP9’s setup for short hood forward operation (interesting given their ties to the Pennsylvania Railroad who preferred long hood forward operation) and 24 various EMD switchers.

The DT&I diesel fleet has always been solid orange but the logo on the long hood was smaller and more reserved in the 1950s. Second generation diesels included 8 GP35’s, 21 GP38’s, 6 GP40’s, 5 SD38’s (used in hump service,) 8 GP38-2’s, and 20 GP40-2’s. Features included a general lack of dynamic brakes and nose mounted gong style bells (a feature familiar to fans of Chicago & North Western.)

The freight car fleet was very, very colorful. Often, special colors were used to identify groups of cars for large customers. Ocean blue boxcars were for General Mills, Army green went to a paper mill on the Soo Line, yellow went to Campbell Soup, and of course, the auto parts cars which came in sky blue, cypress green, and magenta.

In 1963, and with control having been passed from Pennroad to The Pennsylvania Company (another holding company at arms length from the PRR,) the DT&I gained control of the Ann Arbor from their parent Wabash, turning the AA orange. This was part of the complicated arrangements made in the run up to the Penn Central merger. PRR needed to end their control of Wabash but wanted to hold onto DT&I and Ann Arbor. DT&I control ended in 1973 when AA declared bankruptcy.

In 1976, the DT&I was profitable even though parent Penn Central was in bankruptcy. Therefore DT&I was not included in the Conrail consolidation. In fact Conrail gave DT&I trackage rights on their lines from Springfield to Cincinnati, which gave DT&I even more Ohio River access as well as friendly connections with Southern and Louisville & Nashville. Meanwhile, The Pennsylvania Company, stripped of its Penn Central parent, put the DT&I up for sale. Grand Trunk Western offered to buy it and Chessie and N&W offered to jointly buy it. The ICC went with Grand Trunk Western and the sale was completed in 1980. Some locomotives were painted in GTW blue and red but with DT&I logos. In 1983, the DT&I officially merged into GTW.

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.

Manufacturer Information: 'Atlas Model Railroad' represents the New Jersey manufacturing facility for Atlas brand model railroad products. Atlas also imported European made models in their early years and those items will be noted as having manufacturers set appropriately. In the 1990s Atlas moved all their toolings to China.

Item created by: gdm on 2017-03-24 11:39:31. Last edited by gdm on 2018-02-22 00:23:49

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