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N Scale - Bluford Shops - 73283-1 - Open Hopper, 3-Bay, 70 Ton Offset - Bessemer & Lake Erie - 60521

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Stock Number 73283-1
Original Retail Price $22.95
Brand Bluford Shops
Manufacturer Bluford
Body Style Bluford Open Hopper 3-Bay 70 Ton Offset Side
Prototype Vehicle Open Hopper, 3-Bay, 70 Ton Offset (Details)
Road or Company Name Bessemer & Lake Erie (Details)
Reporting Marks B&LE
Road or Reporting Number 60521
Paint Color(s) Red with White Lettering
Release Date 2015-09-01
Item Category Rolling Stock (Freight)
Model Type Open Hopper
Model Subtype 3-Bay
Model Variety Offset Side
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era NA Era II: Late Steam (1901 - 1938)
Scale 1/160
Track Gauge N standard



Prototype History:
70 ton 3-bay offset side hoppers first appeared in the late 20s and by the late 30s had become an AAR standard design with cars being delivered from a number of builders in large quantities to railroads across the country. The last of these cars were delivered in the mid-'60s and many remained in service through the 80s.

Road Name History:
The Bessemer and Lake Erie Railroad (reporting mark BLE) is a class II railroad that operates in northwestern Pennsylvania and northeastern Ohio.

The railroad's main route runs from the Lake Erie port of Conneaut, Ohio to the Pittsburgh suburb of Penn Hills, Pennsylvania, a distance of 139 miles (224 km). The original rail ancestor of the B&LE, the Shenango and Allegheny Railroad, began operation in October 1869.

Rail operations were maintained continuously by various corporate descendants on the growing system that ultimately became the B&LE in 1900. In 2004 the B&LE came under the ownership of the Canadian National Railway as part of CN's larger purchase of holding company Great Lakes Transportation. As a subsidiary of CN the B&LE has been largely unchanged (though repainting of B&LE locomotives into CN paint with "BLE" sub-lettering began in April 2015) and still does business as the B&LE. Bessemer and Lake Erie's locomotives, especially the former Souther Pacific SD40T-3 "Tunnel Motors", have been scattered across the CN system lately; ironically, many are being used in the line that feeds most of B&LE's traffic, the former Duluth, Missabe, and Iron Range lines in Minnesota. The iron ore that originates on these lines is transloaded to ships at Twin Harbors, Minnesota, then sent by ship to Conneaut, Ohio, where it is again transloaded to B&LE trains. It is then taken down to steel mills in the Pittsburg area, mainly to the blast furnaces at US Steel's Edgar Thompson Plant in Braddock, Pennsylvania, part of the Mon Valley Works. As of summer 2015, most of the locomotives on the B&LE are former Illinois Central standard cab SD70's, although B&LE Tunnel Motor 905 and a few SD38's, still in B&LE orange, are being kept on the line. Also, a few Canadian National locomotives, especially SD60 5422, are assigned to the line.

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: nscalestation on 2017-10-31 16:50:29. Last edited by CNW400 on 2020-07-13 08:24:27

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