By 1910, the heavyweight became the dominant passenger car design. The heavyweight replaced the wood siding with riveted steel sides and roof and a concrete floor supported by a massive steel fishbelly underframe. Manufacturers used the weight to provide ride stability and comfort.
The cars retained the clerestory, or raised roof, from wood car days, where windows could be opened to provide ventilation, also allowing cinders and soot to enter the cars, when underway. Some cars received air conditioning in the future. The design proved very durable and many cars saw service for more than 50 years in mainline service, often mixed with lighter, streamlined cars.
The majority of heavyweights were 80′-85′ long, which scales out to about 21″ in O gauge. Many O gauge modelers, however, find cars of this length impractical, as they require large curves and create long trains that can overwhelm a typical-sized layout. For those reasons, our Altas heavyweights are about 70 scale feet in length – reproducing the look and feel of prototype heavyweights in a model that will round O-42 curves and look at home on most O gauge layouts.
Configured in 4-car, 2-car and single-car configurations, each type features car interior detail, overhead interior lighting, end-of-car diaphragms and intricate under-car detail. All configurations are mounted atop die-cast metal 6-wheel trucks with operating metal couplers, metal wheels and metal axles. LED lights provide illumination to both interior and observation car drumheads.
Railway Post Offices, also known as RPO’s, were operated in passenger service to sort mail en route to speed up delivery. The Railway Mail Service required RPO’s to follow strict design rules. Swing arms located near the large sliding door were used to pick up and deliver bags of mail, while underway, while the train was operating at full speed!
First class mail, magazines and newspapers were sorted, cancelled when necessary, and dispatched to post offices in towns along the route. Registered mail was also handled, and the foreman in charge was required to carry a regulation pistol while on duty to discourage theft of the mail.
CB&Q RPO 1923 resides at the Illinois Railway Museum
- 4-Car Sets Feature (1) Combine, (1) Coaches, (1) Dining, (1) Observation
- 2-Car Sets Feature (2) Coaches
- Add on cars offered as single cars: Baggage & RPO
- Durable ABS Intricately Detailed Bodies
- Metal Wheels and Axles
- Constant Voltage Overhead LED Interior Lighting
- LED drumhead and lanterns on observation cars
- Operating Die-Cast Metal Couplers
- Colorful, Attractive Paint Schemes
- End-of-Car Diaphragms
- Separate Metal Handrails
- Fast-Angle Wheel Sets
- Needle-Point Axles
- Detailed Car Interiors
- 10 Passenger Figures In Each Coach Car
- 1:48 Scale Dimensions
- Detailed Car Undercarriage
- Sliding Baggage Car Doors
- Die-Cast 6-Wheel Trucks
- 1 Car Unit Measures: 19″ x 2 7/16″ x 3 1/2″
- Operates On O-42 Curves