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Bluford Shops - 74121 - Open Hopper, 3-Bay, 70 Ton Offset - Pittsburgh & Lake Erie - 3265

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N Scale - Bluford Shops - 74121 - Open Hopper, 3-Bay, 70 Ton Offset - Pittsburgh & Lake Erie - 3265 Image Courtesy of Bluford Shops
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Production TypeAnnounced
Stock Number74121
Original Retail Price$32.95
BrandBluford Shops
ManufacturerBluford
Body StyleBluford Open Hopper 3-Bay 70 Ton Offset Side
Prototype VehicleOpen Hopper, 3-Bay, 70 Ton Offset (Details)
Road or Company NamePittsburgh & Lake Erie (Details)
Reporting MarksP&LE
Road or Reporting Number3265
Paint Color(s)Black
Print Color(s)White
Paint SchemeCoal Load
Additional Markings/SloganCigar Band
Coupler TypeGeneric Magnetic Knuckle
Coupler MountBody-Mount
Wheel TypeChemically Blackened Metal
Wheel ProfileSmall Flange (Low Profile)
Announcement Date2022-04-08
Release Date2023-06-01
Item CategoryRolling Stock (Freight)
Model TypeOpen Hopper
Model Subtype3-Bay
Model VarietyOffset Side
Prototype RegionNorth America
Prototype EraNA Era II: Late Steam (1901 - 1938)
Scale1/160
Track GaugeN 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 Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad (P&LE) (reporting mark PLE), also known as the "Little Giant", was formed on May 11, 1875. In 1880, William Henry Vanderbilt's Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railway bought stock to the tune of $200,000 in the P&LE. The P&LE would stay in the Vanderbilt's New York Central system until Conrail. Company headquarters were located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The line connected Pittsburgh in the east with Youngstown, Ohio at nearby Haselton, Ohio in the west and Connellsville, Pennsylvania to the east. It did not reach Lake Erie (at Ashtabula, Ohio) until the formation of Conrail in 1976.

The P&LE was known as the "Little Giant" since the tonnage that it moved was out of proportion to its route mileage. While it operated around one tenth of one percent of the nation's railroad miles, it hauled around one percent of its tonnage. This was largely because the P&LE served the steel mills of the greater Pittsburgh area, which consumed and shipped vast amounts of material. It was a specialized railroad deriving much of its revenue from coal, coke, iron ore, limestone, and steel. The eventual closure of the steel mills led to the end of the P&LE as an independent line in 1992.

At the end of 1970 P&LE operated 211 miles of road on 784 miles of track, not including PC&Y and Y&S; in 1970 it reported 1419 million ton-miles of revenue freight, down from 2437 million in 1944.
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: CNW400 on 2022-04-08 22:16:42

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