A 2011 release that depicts a prototype that was introduced in late 1978 and is still used to the present-day, the ready-to-run ExactRail Evans 5277 Cubic Foot Plate C Boxcar (a 1978 Evans/SIECO design) has molded-in stirrup steps, Athearn 70-Ton trucks that are fastened to the chassis with a pair of black screws, truck mounted McHenry knuckle couplers, and a flat weight that is glued to the floor of the inner car body.
Packaged in a colorful, glossy, cardboard window box, the car that was received was carefully cradled in a pair of flexible, vacuum formed plastic nests.
The model's design is a departure from similar styles of N-Scale rolling-stock marketed by Atlas Model Railroad Co., Con-Cor, Micro-Trains Line, and MDC Roundhouse Products/Athearn; whereby a weighted plastic, or cast metal chassis is typically inserted into an injection molded plastic body that has a cast in roof, ends, grab irons and/or ladders. Reminiscent of Intermountain Railway Company kit built and ready-to-run forty and fifty foot AAR sliding door boxcars, with separately applied injection molded plastic roof and under body detail castings, the ExactRail model has its simulated nailable steel floor cast into its injection molded plastic shell.
Unlike the aforementioned, early production Intermountain Railway products, the finely cast body ends, doors, and grab irons are molded into the shell casting and are not separate pieces.
Tooled, with full length straight side sills, the body of the ExactRail boxcar has short, delicate, molded-in stirrup steps, end platforms, and Superior doors with NRUC herald plates, where they are appropriate.
Likely to have been rectified in later model releases, the only points that I could quibble about were the fact that the model arrived with a pair of Cyanoacrylate finger prints on the underside of the roof casting, and a loose, previously glued in flat weight that was rattling around inside of the car body.
A common issue with MDC Roundhouse Products Ready-to-Run freight cars (i.e., models without a separate metal chassis casting) that were factory assembled in China was the fact that like the ExactRail model that I had received, the adhesive that was used to adhere the flat metal weight to the floor of the inner car body had completely dried out, becoming hard and brittle, which resulted in the weight coming loose in shipping.
As was the case with some of the RTR Roundhouse Products models that I had previously received, Walthers Goo (or, if one prefers, double-sided foam backed tape or a silicone adhesive) can be used to reattach a loose weight.
Weighing 1.1 ounces, as measured on the N Scale NMRA Rolling Stock Weight Template, the ExactRail Evans 5277 model conforms to the NMRA's recommended weight for the model's car length.
When checked, the wheels were properly gauged and the couplers were at the proper height.
With its razor sharp body detail, superb paint job, crystal clear printing (i.e., for many, even the tiniest printing on the car body is legible without the aid of a magnifier), and precision, chemically blackened CNC machined wheel-sets, in this writer's opinion, the manufacturer's direct price of $17.95 each for the ExactRail late version Evans/SIECO 5277 Boxcar is commensurate with the model's exceptional fabrication and design attributes.
Two thumbs up from nscalemodeler160!