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Micro-Trains - 20586 - Boxcar, 40 Foot, PS-1 - Alton - 1200

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Collectors value this item at an average of 11.5711.57Collectors value this item at an average of 11.57
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N Scale - Micro-Trains - 20586 - Boxcar, 40 Foot, PS-1 - Alton - 1200 Copyright held by TroveStar
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Stock Number20586
Secondary Stock Number020 00 586
Original Retail Price$14.50
BrandMicro-Trains
ManufacturerMicro-Trains Line
Body StyleMicro-Trains 020 Boxcar 40 Foot PS-1
Prototype VehicleBoxcar, 40 Foot, PS-1 (Details)
Road or Company NameAlton (Details)
Reporting MarksALTON
Road or Reporting Number1200
Paint Color(s)Aluminum
Print Color(s)Red
Coupler TypeMT Magne-Matic Knuckle
Coupler MountTruck-Mount
Wheel TypeInjection Molded Plastic
Wheel ProfileStandard
Release Date2002-05-01
Item CategoryRolling Stock (Freight)
Model TypeBoxcar
Model Subtype40 Foot
Model VarietySteel, PS-1
Prototype RegionNorth America
Prototype EraNA Era III: Transition (1939 - 1957)
Scale1/160
Track GaugeN standard



Model Information: This is Micro-Trains first body style. It was introduced in 1972. Its is a model of a Pullman-Standard PS-1 boxcar from circa 1957. Micro-Trains does not market it as a PS-1 so as to allow themselves some latitude so they can use this car to model non-PS prototypes. Hundreds of different releases have used this body style in various paint schemes and road names. They are equipped with 6' sliding doors, either Youngstown (4/5/4 rib pattern) or Superior (7 panels). It is not a model of a "modern" steel boxcar as the length (40 foot) and the roofwalk are more typical of the transition era (1939 - 1957).

In 2019, Micro-Trains started releasing this model with new body-mounted couplers attached to a new underframe.
Prototype History:
The 40' Boxcar is widely known as one of the most popular freight cars used by railroads as they transitioned from steam to diesel. In particular the Pullman Standard or PS-1 design was one of the most popular and was widely used by North American railroads. These boxcars were built beginning in 1947 and share the same basic design, with certain elements such as door size, door style or roof type varying among the different railroads and production years. When production of these cars ceased in 1963, over 100,000 had been produced.

So just what is a PS-1? Well the simple answer is it is any boxcar built by Pullman Standard from 1947 on. The design changed over the years – sometimes subtly, sometimes for customer request, and sometimes in a larger way. In general, most PS-1’s built from 1947 to 1961 share the same dimensions and basic construction techniques. These cars all had a length of 40′, a height of 10’5″ or 10’6″, welded sides and ends and roof of Pullman’s own design. The greatest variation was in the size and style of doors used. Pullman Standard also offered 50′ and later 60′ boxcars – also with the PS-1 designation.
Road Name History:
The Alton was established in 1931 as a subsidiary of Baltimore & Ohio to takeover the Chicago & Alton Railroad which B&O had picked up at a foreclosure sale in 1929. Alton was a 1,028 mile system running from Chicago to St. Louis, much of it on parallel routes, one via Bloomington and Springfield, the other via Peoria. The parallel routes met at Alton, Illinois, a Mississippi River port 20 miles north of St. Louis. Another line ran from Springfield west to Kansas City, plus branches. Alton had the second shortest route from Chicago to Kansas City (only Santa Fe was shorter.) At its founding, Alton had 292 locomotives, 232 passenger cars and more than 13,000 freight cars. For most of its history, Alton was operated in close cooperation with B&O but that changed in 1943 when Alton was untangled from B&O in the hope of selling it. In 1945, Gulf Mobile & Ohio (itself the result of a merger just five years before) bought the Alton for $1.2 million. At the time, GM&O only ran as far north as St. Louis so the addition of Alton transformed them into a Great Lakes-to-the-Gulf system. The two systems were merged in 1947. The expanded GM&O adopted Alton’s red and maroon passenger colors and “the Alton Route” was applied to many GM&O steam locomotive tenders and some diesel flanks. Today, the St. Louis – Chicago line is part of Union Pacific by way of Illinois Central Gulf , Chicago Missouri & Western and Southern Pacific. The Springfield – Kansas City line is part of Kansas City Southern by way of ICG, CM&W and Gateway Western. (Tex Courtesy of Bluford Shops)
Brand/Importer Information: Micro-Trains is the brand name used by both Kadee Quality Products and Micro-Trains Line. For a history of the relationship between the brand and the two companies, please consult our Micro-Trains Collector's Guide.
Manufacturer Information:
Micro-Trains Line split off from Kadee Quality Products in 1990. Kadee Quality Products originally got involved in N-Scale by producing a scaled-down version of their successful HO Magne-Matic knuckle coupler system. This coupler was superior to the ubiquitous 'Rapido' style coupler due to two primary factors: superior realistic appearance and the ability to automatically uncouple when stopped over a magnet embedded in a section of track. The success of these couplers in N-Scale quickly translated to the production of trucks, wheels and in 1972 a release of ready-to-run box cars.

Micro-Trains Line Co. split off from Kadee in 1990 to form a completely independent company. For this reason, products from this company can appear with labels from both enterprises. Due to the nature of production idiosyncrasies and various random factors, the rolling stock from Micro-Trains can have all sorts of interesting variations in both their packaging as well as the products themselves. When acquiring an MTL product it is very important to understand these important production variations that can greatly enhance (or decrease) the value of your purchase.

Please consult our Micro-Trains Collector's Guide
Item created by: Lethe on 2015-05-31 17:46:30. Last edited by gdm on 2022-01-17 10:43:59

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