Between the development of ethanol and the rise in North American oil production, America’s freight car builders have been on a tank car-building bonanza in the past decade. Builders are working hard to meet the demand with enough new car orders on the books to provide job security for years to come. It’s an exciting time on the railroad – and a great new service opportunity for your layout too.
Tank cars come in all shapes and sizes. The design of choice for these new cars is classified T-108 by the American Association of Railroads. It is a fairly simple car, which is non-pressurized, has a single loading point on top and single bottom discharge outlet and can carry 30,000 gallons of product. Thanks to all of this new production, it is quickly becoming one of the most common cars of any type on the rails today.
As an added benefit to modelers and train watchers, with the more “eco-friendly” ethanol products on board, many car owners are once again adding corporate logos and at least a little splash of color to the sides of the cars. That being said, basic black, gray and white schemes are still quite common.
We’ll take a closer look at ethanol cars and operations in this week’s upcoming Freight Car Friday feature. Whether you model this operation or not, no modern freight train would be complete without a few of these tank cars and Lionel has just what you need.
Our 30,000 gallon tank cars feature:
- Die-cast metal sprung trucks with rotating roller bearing caps
- Operating couplers with hidden uncoupling tabs
- Die-cast metal end sills
- Metal ladders, safety rails, steps and railings
- Etched metal platform walkways
- Opening fuel hatch cover
- Individual non-consecutive road numbers
- O31 minimum curve
The cars are all available as 3-packs in ACFX, ADM, Procor and UTLX – some of the most common owners and leasers on the rails today. You’ll regularly see these cars of the same and different companies running together in small groups or unit trains. Mix them with some of our previous runs for even more variety and longer trains. The sets retail for $239.99. See your dealers, the tank cars should be rolling to you this summer.