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Micro-Trains - 59020 - Reefer, Ice, Steel - Bangor and Aroostook - 8550

At least one of these are for sale right now with a price of: $9.95

68  of these sold for an average price of: 12.4912.4968 of these sold for an average price of: 12.49
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Collectors value this item at an average of 5.005.00Collectors value this item at an average of 5.00
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N Scale - Micro-Trains - 59020 - Reefer, Ice, Steel - Bangor and Aroostook - 8550 Copyright held by TroveStar
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Stock Number59020
Secondary Stock Number059 00 020
Original Retail Price$12.95
BrandMicro-Trains
ManufacturerMicro-Trains Line
Body StyleMicro-Trains 059 Reefer Steel 40 Foot Ice
Prototype VehicleReefer, Ice, Steel (Details)
Road or Company NameBangor and Aroostook (Details)
Reporting MarksBAR
Road or Reporting Number8550
Paint Color(s)Orange
Print Color(s)Black
Coupler TypeMT Magne-Matic Knuckle
Coupler MountTruck-Mount
Wheel TypeInjection Molded Plastic
Wheel ProfileStandard
Release Date1997-05-01
Item CategoryRolling Stock (Freight)
Model TypeReefer
Model Subtype40 Foot
Model VarietySteel, Ice
Prototype RegionNorth America
Prototype EraNA Era III: Transition (1939 - 1957)
Scale1/160



Model Information: The prototype for this model is the PFE R-40-10 ice reefer built in 1936 and 1937.
MTL released this model with various road names, for which the actual prototype might in fact be different.
Prototype History:
Not all steel reefers contained mechanical refrigeration units. Although today we expect that a modern reefer contain an air conditioning unit to be integral to the car design, this was not always true. There was a period following the second world war when the cost of steel was cheap but the cost of a refrigeration unit was high. Early mechanical refrigeration units were unreliable, noisy, expensive and costly to maintain, and for the early post-war years many railroads continued to use ice for refrigeration even though the technology for mechanical refrigeration was possible.

In the post-WWII period, steel once again became readily available and the railroads rapidly replaced their aging fleets of wood reefers with newly constructed steel cars. Among the more common steel reefers for meat and other perishable commodities were those built by URTX. These cars had a horizontal rivet strip along the middle of each side, improved Dreadnaught ends and diagonal-panel roofs.

From Wikipedia and other sources
Road Name History:
The Bangor and Aroostook Railroad (reporting mark BAR) was a United States railroad company that brought rail service to Aroostook County in northern Maine. Brightly painted BAR box cars attracted national attention in the 1950s. First-generation diesel locomotives operated on BAR until they were museum pieces. The economic downturn of the 1980s coupled with the departure of heavy industry from northern Maine forced the railroad to seek a buyer and end operations in 2003.

The company was incorporated in 1891 to combine the lines of the former Bangor and Piscataquis Railroad and the Bangor and Katahdin Iron Works Railway. It was based in Bangor and lines extended from there to Oakfield and Houlton in 1894. The line was extended from Houlton to Fort Fairfield and Caribou in 1895. A parallel branch line was extended from Oakfield to Ashland in 1896. A branch was built from Caribou to Limestone in 1897, and the main line extended from Caribou to Van Buren in 1899. The Ashland Branch was extended to Fort Kent in 1902. A southern extension was completed in 1905 through Northern Maine Junction to Searsport on Penobscot Bay. The Medford Cutoff from Packard to South Lagrange was completed in 1907; and a branch was built from Millinocket to a new paper mill in East Millinocket. Rails were extended up the Saint John River from Van Buren through Madawaska and Fort Kent to St. Francis in 1910; and Mapleton was connected to Stockholm and Presque Isle on the main line, and to Squa Pan on the Ashland branch. An international bridge was constructed over the Saint John River between Van Buren and St. Leonard, NB in 1915 to connect with the Canadian Pacific Railway and National Transcontinental Railway (later merged into the Canadian National Railway).

BAR began hauling potatoes in heated box cars in 1895. Potatoes provided a stable income source through the great depression, and provided 50% of the railroad's revenue following World War II. BAR had the 2nd largest United States railroad-owned reefer fleet (after Santa Fe) during the 1950s. BAR made an arrangement with Pacific Fruit Express whereby PFE reefers shipped Maine potatoes during winter months and BAR reefers carried California produce during the summer and autumn. While potatoes started moving by truck following completion of the Interstate Highway System into northern Maine in the 1960s, what actually resulted in the railroad losing its potato business forever was the Penn Central Transportation Company (PC), whose interchange service became so bad during the winter of 1969?70 that a large portion of the 1969 potato crop was spoiled by freezing when car heaters ran out of fuel. The claims process against PC was not resolved prior to PC's bankruptcy declaration the following June. As a result, several potato farms went out of business; and those that survived distrusted rail service and never returned to using the railroad.

Inbound chemicals and outbound paper from mills on the Penobscot River at Millinocket and East Millinocket were major revenue sources for the BAR from 1900. Another paper mill was built in Madawaska in 1925. Pulpwood and wood chips to the paper mills became increasingly important as potato loadings declined. The remote port facilities at Searsport were a preferred loading point for ammunition during World War II; and BAR transported heating coal and aircraft fuel to Loring AFB for Strategic Air Command bombers through the Cold War. BAR painted 2,500 box cars in the red, white and blue colors of the US flag during the 1950s. A less expensive oxide red paint scheme with large white reporting marks was adopted during the Vietnam War.

The line from Brownville Junction to Katahdin Iron Works was abandoned in 1922, but the rails remained in place until 1933. BAR passenger train service ended in 1961. Bus service, which began in 1936, continued with buses lettered for Bangor and Aroostook running on Greyhound Lines schedules between Aroostook County and New York City's Port Authority Bus Terminal until 1984. The Greenville branch was dismantled from 1962 to 1964. Several Aroostook County segments were abandoned when potato traffic disappeared in the 1970s. In 1995, the BAR was acquired by Iron Road Railways. In 2002, the company was declared bankrupt, and in 2003 its lines were sold to Rail World, Inc., which initially incorporated them into the newly formed Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway. In 2010, the 233 miles (375 km) of track from Millinocket north to the Canada-US border were sold to the state of Maine for $20 million to be operated by Irving's Maine Northern Railway. MM&A kept the line from the Millinocket paper mills south to Searsport; after its 2013 Lac-Megantic derailment and bankruptcy, the line was sold to Fortress Investments as the Central Maine and Quebec Railway.
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 2020-11-10 12:09:30

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