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N Scale - Bluford Shops - 87212 - Boxcar, 85 or 86 Foot, Auto Parts - Illinois Central - 43994, 43971

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N Scale - Bluford Shops - 87212 - Boxcar, 85 or 86 Foot, Auto Parts - Illinois Central - 43994, 43971 Image Courtesy of Bluford Shops


Stock Number 87212
Brand Bluford Shops
Manufacturer Bluford
Body Style Bluford Box Car 86 Foot Auto Parts 8-Door
Image Provider's Website Link
Prototype Vehicle Boxcar, 85 or 86 Foot, Auto Parts (Details)
Road or Company Name Illinois Central (Details)
Reporting Marks IC
Road or Reporting Number 43994, 43971
Paint Color(s) Red with Aluminum Doors
Print Color(s) White and Black
Coupler Type Generic Magnetic Knuckle
Coupler Mount Truck-Mount
Wheel Type Injection Molded Plastic
Wheel Profile Small Flange (Low Profile)
Item Category Rolling Stock (Freight)
Model Type Boxcar
Model Subtype 86 Foot
Model Variety Auto Parts 8-Door
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era Era IV: 2nd Gen Diesel (1958 - 1978)
Scale 1/160
Multipack Yes
Multipack Count 2
Multipack ID Number 87212



Specific Item Information: Illinois Central Mainline of Mid-America 86’ Quad Door Boxcars. Illinois Central received these cars from Thrall during the Christmas season of 1964, well before IC switched to orange for boxcars. Quad door cars were preferred by General Motors and this group may have been assigned for loading at a GM plant in Indianapolis. The 6,700 mile Illinois Central system was famous for it’s network of Chicago-to-the-Gulf routes but they had several important east-west routes as well. These include routes to Omaha, Indianapolis, and Birmingham. This run will be available in 3 road numbers.

Prototype History:
The three major automobile manufacturers in the United States, Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors, each developed specifications in the 1960s for specially built boxcars to transport automobile parts (not actual cars). They stated, if you build this type of car, your will be welcome to pick up and drop off parts at our plants. Thousands of these cars were built in the 1960s and 1970s. Three railcar manufacturers, Greenville, Pullman-Standard and Thrall took up the challenge and constructed 86 foot boxcars.

These cars are not only distinctive for their length (86 foot, also listed as 85 foot) but also for the fact that they were designed for a post-roofwalk world so they took advantage of the fact they didn't need to leave room for the roofwalk and instead are simply built taller. Hence they are considered High-Cube cars. They come in two major varieties: 8-door and 4-door. The eight door types were typically made for use at GM plants and have two sets of 9 foot doors on each side. When these doors are full opened, they created a pair of 18 foot opening on each side of the car. Their 4-door sisters, as specified by Ford and Chrysler, had one pair of 10 foot doors centered on each side, permitting a 20 foot opening.

As containers gradually replaced these cars for use in the auto industry, many were re-purposed for use in other industries that involve low-density commodities such as scrap paper.

Road Name History:
The Illinois Central Railroad (reporting mark IC), sometimes called the Main Line of Mid-America, was a railroad in the central United States, with its primary routes connecting Chicago, Illinois, with New Orleans, Louisiana, and Mobile, Alabama. A line also connected Chicago with Sioux City, Iowa (1870). There was a significant branch to Omaha, Nebraska (1899), west of Fort Dodge, Iowa, and another branch reaching Sioux Falls, South Dakota (1877), starting from Cherokee, Iowa. The Sioux Falls branch has been abandoned in its entirety.

The IC is one of the early Class I railroads in the US. Its roots go back to abortive attempts by the Illinois General Assembly to charter a railroad linking the northern and southern parts of the state of Illinois. In 1850 U.S. President Millard Fillmore signed a land grant for the construction of the railroad, making the Illinois Central the first land-grant railroad in the United States.

The Illinois Central was chartered by the Illinois General Assembly on February 10, 1851. Senator Stephen Douglas and later President Abraham Lincoln were both Illinois Central men who lobbied for it. Douglas owned land near the terminal in Chicago. Lincoln was a lawyer for the railroad. Upon its completion in 1856 the IC was the longest railroad in the world. Its main line went from Cairo, Illinois, at the southern tip of the state, to Galena, in the northwest corner. A branch line went from Centralia, (named for the railroad) to the rapidly growing city of Chicago. In Chicago its tracks were laid along the shore of Lake Michigan and on an offshore causeway downtown, but land-filling and natural deposition have moved the present-day shore to the east.

In 1867 the Illinois Central extended its track into Iowa, and during the 1870s and 1880s the IC acquired and expanded railroads in the southern United States. IC lines crisscrossed the state of Mississippi and went as far as New Orleans, Louisiana, to the south and Louisville, Kentucky, in the east. In the 1880s, northern lines were built to Dodgeville, Wisconsin, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Omaha, Nebraska. Further expansion continued into the early twentieth century.

The Illinois Central, and the other "Harriman lines" owned by E.H. Harriman, was the target of the Illinois Central shopmen's strike of 1911. Although marked by violence and sabotage in the south, midwest, and western states, the strike was effectively over in a few months. The railroads simply hired replacements and withstood diminishing union pressure. The strike was eventually called off in 1915.

Brand/Importer Information:
Bluford Shops began in 2007 as a side project of two model railroad industry veterans, Craig Ross and Steve Rodgers. They saw a gap between road names available on N scale locomotives but not available on cabooses. They commissioned special runs of Atlas cabooses in Atlantic Coast Line, Central of Georgia, Monon, Boston & Maine and Southern plus runs on Grand Trunk Western and Central Vermont on the MDC wooden cabooses. While these were in process, they began to develop their first all new tooling project, 86' Auto Parts Boxcars in double door and quad door editions in N scale. By January of 2008, Bluford Shops became a full time venture. Along with additional N scale freight cars and their own tooling for new cabooses, they have brought their own caboose line to HO scale. They also have their popular Cornfields in both HO and N. The future looks bright as they continue to develop new products for your railroad.

The town of Bluford in southern Illinois featured a small yard on Illinois Central's Edgewood Cutoff (currently part of CN.) The yard included a roundhouse, concrete coaling tower (which still stands) and large ice house. Reefer trains running between the Gulf Coast and Chicago were re-iced in Bluford. Things are more quiet now in Bluford with the remaining tracks in the yard used to stage hoppers for mines to the south and store covered hoppers. Intersecting the IC line in Bluford is Southern Railway's (currently NS) line between Louisville and St. Louis. Traffic on this single track line remains relatively heavy.

Item created by: gdm on 2017-05-18 14:42:39

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