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N Scale - Athearn - 5951 - Gondola, 50 Foot, Thrall Hi-Side - Wisconsin Electric - 3-Pack, Set 3

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At least one of these are for sale right now with a price of: $55.98


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N Scale - Athearn - 5951 - Gondola, 50 Foot, Thrall Hi-Side - Wisconsin Electric - 3-Pack, Set 3 Image Courtesy of Horizon Hobby


Brand Athearn
Stock Number 5951
Original Retail Price $69.98
Manufacturer Athearn
Production Type Regular Production
Image Provider's Website Link
Body Style MDC Gondola 50 Foot Thrall Hi-Side
Prototype Type Gondola, 50 Foot, Thrall Hi-Side (Details)
Road or Company Name Wisconsin Electric (Details)
Reporting Marks WEPX
Road or Reporting Number 3-Pack, Set 3
Paint Color(s) Yellow and Black
Print Color(s) Black and White
Coupler Type McHenry Magnetic Knuckle
Coupler Mount Body-Mount
Wheel Type Chemically Blackened Metal
Wheel Profile Small Flange (Low Profile)
Multipack Yes
Multipack Count 3
Release Date 2019-09-01
Item Category Rolling Stock (Freight)
Model Type Gondola
Model Subtype 50 Foot
Model Variety Thrall Hi-Side
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era Era IV: 2nd Gen Diesel (1958 - 1978)
Scale 1/160



Specific Item Information: Athearn N 5951 Thrall Gondolas, Wisconsin Electric (WEPX) #3 (3)

Model Information: This is one of the body styles acquired by Athearn from MDC in June of 2004 and re-run under the Athearn Brand. A significant re-release was done by Athearn in 2019.

Prototype History:
Thrall was a recognizable freight car manufacturing company in the 1960s to 1980s. Their designs still carry on today. The company focused on building specialized freight cars including high side gondolas, and rotary-dump gondolas for coal. In the 1980s, Thrall acquired five competing railcar manufacturers and became the largest such manufacturer of these cars in the United States.

In the 1960s, coal haulage shifted from open hopper cars to high-sided gondolas. Using a gondola, the railroads are able to haul a larger amount of coal per car since gondolas do not include the equipment needed for unloading. However, since these cars do not have hatches for unloading the products shipped in them, railroads must use rotary car dumpers (mechanisms that hold a car against a short section of track as the car and track are slowly rotated upside down to empty the car) or other means to empty them.

Road Name History:
WEC is one of the nation’s largest electric and natural gas delivery companies, with deep operational expertise, scale and financial resources to meet the region’s future energy needs. They focus on reliable service, customer satisfaction and shareholder value. They provide vital services to nearly 4.4 million customers in Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota. Their scale and geographic proximity allow for operating efficiencies across our 70,000 miles of electric distribution lines, 44,000 miles of natural gas distribution and transmission lines, and 8,800 megawatts of reliable power plant capacity.

In 1896, The Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Co. forms to provide electric, steam and interurban rail service. Service area covers more than 12,000 square miles. In 1938, the company changed name to Wisconsin Electric Power Co. In 1987, Wisconsin Electric restructures, establishing Wisconsin Energy Corp., and several new subsidiaries including Wispark, Wisvest and Witech. In 2002, Wisconsin Electric changes its name to We Energies. The new name brings together the best attributes of two strong organizations, Wisconsin Electric and Wisconsin Gas and represents a single, forward-thinking organization with a re-energized focus on customer service. In 2015, Wisconsin Energy acquires Integrys Energy Group, forming WEC Energy Group.

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: gdm on 2019-09-24 12:09:13

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