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N Scale - Roundhouse - 8311 - Boxcar, 50 Foot, Berwick - Rock Island - 302122

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N Scale - Roundhouse - 8311 - Boxcar, 50 Foot, Berwick - Rock Island - 302122 The image shown is the same body type though not necessarily the same road name or road number.



Brand Roundhouse
Stock Number 8311
Manufacturer MDC Roundhouse
Body Style MDC Boxcar 50 Foot BFF Youngstown Door
Prototype Boxcar, 50 Foot, Berwick (Details)
Road or Company Name Rock Island (Details)
Reporting Marks ROCK
Road or Reporting Number 302122
Paint Color(s) Blue and Black
Print Color(s) White and Black
Coupler Type Rapido Hook
Wheel Type Injection Molded Plastic
Wheel Profile Small Flange (Low Profile)
Body Material Plastic
Ready-to-Run No
Kit Complexity Easy-Build
Kit Material(s) Pewter Metal and Injection Molded Plastic
Release Date 1979-01-01
Item Category Rolling Stock (Freight)
Model Type Boxcar
Model Subtype 50 Foot
Model Variety BFF Youngstown Door
Prototype Region North America
Prototype Era Era IV: 2nd Gen Diesel (1958 - 1978)
Scale 1/160



Model Information: Boxcar, 50 Foot, Youngstown Single Sliding Door, Rib Side, Without Roofwalk, modeled after a prototype produced by BFF (Berwick Forge and Fabricating). MDC has released this model both in 'kit' and RTR (Read-to-Run) packaging. None of the features on the model actually match the Berwick prototype. Athearn acquired this tooling from MDC in 2004, and has since re-released it more than once. Athearn markets BFF models with both door styles (Pickens and Youngstown) as 'Berwick Boxcars'. The Athearn models feature magnetically operated couplers and are always RTR.

Prototype History:
The US government came up with a scheme to create an artificial incentive for railroads to buy new boxcars. If a railroad increased its boxcar fleet it was allowed to charge other railroads (not the customer) more for their daily use. (That's Per Diem). As an example, if the Crab Orchard and Egyptian acquired a fleet of 500 boxcars (up from zero) , and got them loaded on the ICG, it could charge the ICG for their use at an "Incentive Per Piem" rate that more than paid the CO&G's cost of ownership. So new boxcars got pumped into the system while old boxcars sat idle.

To cater to this demand, Berwick introduced its 50-foot boxcar in 1972 and sold the exterior-post car to more than 35 railroads. Though Berwick stopped production in 1982, the boxcars are still commonly seen throughout North America.

Road Name History:
The Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad (CRI&P RR) (reporting marks RI, ROCK) was a Class I railroad in the United States. It was also known as the Rock Island Line, or, in its final years, The Rock. At the end of 1970 it operated 7183 miles of road on 10669 miles of track; that year it reported 20557 million ton-miles of revenue freight and 118 million passenger-miles. (Those totals may or may not include the former Burlington-Rock Island Railroad.)

Its predecessor, the Rock Island and La Salle Railroad Company, was incorporated in Illinois on February 27, 1847, and an amended charter was approved on February 7, 1851, as the Chicago and Rock Island Railroad. Construction began October 1, 1851, in Chicago, and the first train was operated on October 10, 1852, between Chicago and Joliet. Construction continued on through La Salle, and Rock Island was reached on February 22, 1854, becoming the first railroad to connect Chicago with the Mississippi River.

In 1980 Rock Island was liquidated. The railroad's locomotives, rail cars, equipment, tracks, and real estate were sold to other railroads or to scrappers. William Gibbons (the trustee) was able to raise more than $500 million in the liquidation, paying off all the railroad's creditors, bondholders and all other debts in full at face value with interest. Henry Crown was ultimately proven correct, as both he and other bondholders who had purchased Rock Island debt for cents on the dollar during the low ebb in prices did especially well.

Read more on Wikipedia and Rock Island Technical Society.

Brand/Importer Information:
MDC Roundhouse was founded in California and relocated to Reno Nevada due to statewide restrictions on painting. MDC Roundhouse was a producer of both RTR (Ready-to-Run) and kit versions of N Scale rolling stock as well as RTR locomotives. MDC Roundhouse was purchased by Horizon Hobbies in June of 2004 and merged into their Athearn line.

Unlike many of their contemporaries which contracted with European firms to produce their products, MDC made their own toolings. They made several popular body styles and produced them for road names that many other vendors (even Micro-Trains) wouldn't touch. This made them popular with modelers. Also, their un-assembled "kits" permitted a lower price point so they were popular with "runners" as well as "modelers".

Of particular interest was the attention given to modern 50 foot steel boxcars. They made some attempt to accurately mold the differences into distinct models to represent each of the major prototype manufacturers products. They have distinct toolings not only for the different products from FMC, BFF and PS, but also multiple models for each of these manufacturers including "standard" vs "Youngstown" doors and "waffle" vs. "rib" sides. In total they produced 13 different versions of the 50 foot steel boxcar.

Item created by: gdm on 2016-04-19 12:52:45. Last edited by gdm on 2018-02-16 09:06:17

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