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Atlas Reveals First MTH Model

    Atlas Reveals First Model to Be Produced From MTH Acquisition - The 70' Madison Heavyweight Passenger Cars 70' Passenger Coach - Reading Blue Mountain & Northern (To be produced by Atlas) Since the announcement of Atlas acquiring select molds from the MTH Premier line of rolling stock and locomotives, people have been wondering what our first release will be. Atlas is pleased to announce that it will be a new run of the Madison 70' Passenger Cars. Road names on this release will match those on the upcoming MTH USRA 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Locomotive. Coaches, RPO Cars, Baggage, Dining, Combine and Observation cars will be produced (depending on road name). MTH USRA 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Locomotive - Reading Blue Mountain & Northern (To be produced by MTH) Features on this first run of 70' Passenger Cars include: Durable ABS Intricately Detailed Bodies Metal Wheels and Axles Constant Voltage Overhead LED Interior Lighting 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 1:48 Scale Dimensions Detailed Car Undercarriage Sliding Baggage Car Doors (on baggage cars) Die-Cast 6-Wheel Trucks Unit Measures: 19" x 2 7/16" x 3 1/2" Operates On O-42 Curves A full announcement with pricing will be available soon with an estimated delivery of September 2021. Available road names with matching locomotive include: 70' Passenger Coach - Boston and Maine 70' Passenger Coach - US Army 70' Passenger Coach - Southern (Green) 70' Passenger Coach - Pittsburgh & West Virginia 70' Passenger Coach - Reading Blue Mountain & Northern (Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway) 70' Passenger Coach - Pennsylvania 70' Passenger Coach - Southern (Crescent Limited) 70' Passenger Coach - Baltimore & Ohio 70' Passenger Coach - Gulf Mobile & Ohio For information on the USRA 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Locomotive, click here. For information on the previous announcement, visit https://shop.atlasrr.com or check out the video below.

Atlas Reveals First Model to Be Produced From MTH Acquisition - The 70' Madison Heavyweight Passenger Cars

RBMN Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Reading Blue Mountain & Northern (To be produced by Atlas)

Since the announcement of Atlas acquiring select molds from the MTH Premier line of rolling stock and locomotives, people have been wondering what our first release will be. Atlas is pleased to announce that it will be a new run of the Madison 70' Passenger Cars. Road names on this release will match those on the upcoming MTH USRA 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Locomotive.

Coaches, RPO Cars, Baggage, Dining, Combine and Observation cars will be produced (depending on road name).

RBMN Steam Loco
MTH USRA 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Locomotive - Reading Blue Mountain & Northern (To be produced by MTH)

Features on this first run of 70' Passenger Cars include:

  • Durable ABS Intricately Detailed Bodies
  • Metal Wheels and Axles
  • Constant Voltage Overhead LED Interior Lighting
  • 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
  • 1:48 Scale Dimensions
  • Detailed Car Undercarriage
  • Sliding Baggage Car Doors (on baggage cars)
  • Die-Cast 6-Wheel Trucks
  • Unit Measures: 19" x 2 7/16" x 3 1/2"
  • Operates On O-42 Curves

A full announcement with pricing will be available soon with an estimated delivery of September 2021.

Available road names with matching locomotive include:

B&M Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Boston and Maine

Army Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - US Army

Southern Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Southern (Green)

P&WV Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Pittsburgh & West Virginia

LGSR Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Reading Blue Mountain & Northern (Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway)

PRR Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Pennsylvania

Southern CL Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Southern (Crescent Limited)

B&O Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Baltimore & Ohio

GM&O Passenger Car
70' Passenger Coach - Gulf Mobile & Ohio

For information on the USRA 4-6-2 Pacific Steam Locomotive, click here.

For information on the previous announcement, visit https://shop.atlasrr.com or check out the video below.

Last edited by Rich Melvin
Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

@pennsynut posted:

I may be late to the MTH/Atlas deal specifics, but the announcement might infer that MTH is not dissolving but will be doing business in the steam locomotive end of the business. Just a thought.

Edit: Sorry. Just saw another thread on the MTH Pacific steamer being issued. Like I said, I'm late to the party.

Good point.  I don't know what to think about the lack of steam engines in the original announcement and then this announcement.  Maybe there is something there that I skipped over.  I seem to be getting that way more and more.

@pennsynut posted:

I may be late to the MTH/Atlas deal specifics, but the announcement might infer that MTH is not dissolving but will be doing business in the steam locomotive end of the business. Just a thought.

I don't know, but today's MTH e-newsletter says otherwise, as have previous official MTH communications:

"March 24, 2021 - M.T.H. Electric Trains will be releasing a dozen limited-edition releases of the Premier Line 4-6-2 USRA Heavy and PS-4 Pacific steam locomotives later this Summer. These unique releases are part of a series of products representing the last M.T.H. production runs as the company concludes its 41-year history. Each of these offerings is expected to arrive in September 2021."

Again, I have no inside information, but it seems we'll soon hear more from MTH about the disposition of the tooling for the Premier steam engines as well as the RailKing product line. Personally, I'm very pleased with the transactions announced so far--this one with Atlas and the previous one with ScaleTrains--and I'm hopeful about the remaining transaction(s).

Last edited by Keith L
@pennsynut posted:

I may be late to the MTH/Atlas deal specifics, but the announcement might infer that MTH is not dissolving but will be doing business in the steam locomotive end of the business. Just a thought.

Edit: Sorry. Just saw another thread on the MTH Pacific steamer being issued. Like I said, I'm late to the party.

I’m not sure how that conclusion can be inferred from the announcement. MTH is being sold off, piece by piece.  The only we can infer is that the steam locomotive tooling hasn’t been sold off yet.

@MartyE posted:

Not a big surprise. I suspect these were already in the MTH pipeline and now they just put them in an Atlas box rather than a MTH box. It’s not like they had to start from scratch.

Good choice though. Now it will be interesting to see their first engine.

BINGO!! Atlas doesn’t move that fast and go from acquiring tooling to dealers shelf in 5 months .

@MartyE posted:

Not a big surprise. I suspect these were already in the MTH pipeline and now they just put them in an Atlas box rather than a MTH box. It’s not like they had to start from scratch.

Good choice though. Now it will be interesting to see their first engine.

Of course they’re not starting from scratch.  Why would they?  That would sort of defeat the purpose of acquiring existing tooling, wouldn’t it?

Atlas has basically gained the ability to offer a whole bunch of ready-to-go products that can be built relatively quickly at well-run facilities with a proven track record for turning out quality products.  That has to be an incredibly refreshing concept for a company that has had so many issues bringing its products to market for so many years now.

Now all they have to do is select a former MTH item that they acquired, announce it, take orders, then build it if there’s enough demand...and then put it in an Atlas box.  Boom...just like that Atlas can put themselves back in the “O” game...if they want to be.  My gut tells me there will be many more “quick-to-market” products (at least by Atlas standards!) coming our way.

And if they’re going to coordinate product releases with the entity that becomes of the former MTH, then even better for them...and for those of us who enjoy purchasing/operating products from ALL manufacturers.  I wish Atlas nothing but success with this.  Who says “O” is dead?!?!

Last edited by CNJ #1601

A logical starting point to test the waters.  A proven car that was built a bazillion times and the QC won't be as difficult with a car over a locomotive.  A smart move on their part, but in some ways dilutes the brand that has previously been known for scale excellence.

However, it doesn't take a genius to understand that scale excellence takes a back seat to a sound business practice.  Those who enjoy the 18" cars will be very happy and that is good for the market overall.

Well I must say, I'm more than a little disappointed . I thought they would carry on where MTH left off and release a multitude off items with all the molds that they purchased. Like maybe some diesels or premier rolling stock. Not the same old generic MTH passenger cars that aren't really accurate for any RR.
  Was really hoping ..... but , its not to be. I think it has been 5 years now we have been waiting for the Canadian Pacific RSD 7/15 HN. Hopefully we will not have to wait 5 years for Atlas to release an SD70ACu or AC44CW with DCS ps 3.0.

Last edited by spiral tunnels
@GG1 4877 posted:

A logical starting point to test the waters.  A proven car that was built a bazillion times and the QC won't be as difficult with a car over a locomotive.  A smart move on their part, but in some ways dilutes the brand that has previously been known for scale excellence.

However, it doesn't take a genius to understand that scale excellence takes a back seat to a sound business practice.  Those who enjoy the 18" cars will be very happy and that is good for the market overall.

What’s the chance that all or nearly all of mth tooling goes into the trainman line. From the photos I’ve seen of the trainman dash 8, they look awesome. This is not to bash mth, if they live on through rail king, I will likely buy a ton, but will wait until the dust settles.

This is basically a fake announcement. "A full announcement with pricing will be available soon with an estimated delivery of September 2021." Its quite obvious this was in the MTH pipeline and the timing just landed such that they'll come out with a change of the box color.

They havent announced anything. No price, no specific offering, nothing. So in that regard, I'll remain cautiously optimistic that this is really just to help MTH sell the steam engines that were simultaneously announced (by showing people that a matching set of cars is going to come too), and help get the "ATH" operation off the ground by getting some orders moving.

I think we all hoped that getting a factory out of this would get atlas back in the engine production business again. I think its been about 3 years since they've delivered a locomotive. Hopefully the "full announcement" is just the April news letter that should be coming in about 3 weeks and it includes a locomotive announcement as well.

@GG1 4877 posted:

A logical starting point to test the waters.  A proven car that was built a bazillion times and the QC won't be as difficult with a car over a locomotive.  A smart move on their part, but in some ways dilutes the brand that has previously been known for scale excellence.

However, it doesn't take a genius to understand that scale excellence takes a back seat to a sound business practice.  Those who enjoy the 18" cars will be very happy and that is good for the market overall.

I thought heavyweight passenger cars were actually 70-72’ in real life?

Also, I just checked and the previously offered Atlas Trainman “Madison” coaches are listed as 60’.

Last edited by rplst8

I'm seeing this as the passing of the baton to the next runner. The tooling Atlas acquired seems to be items that fill out their rolling stock line. MTH had a pretty extensive list of scale-sized rolling stock (Auto Racks and passenger cars aside) that other manufacturers didn't offer. Now, if they'll start re-running the centerbeam flat cars. . .

Nope.  Most were 80 footers.

The Atlas Trainman 60' coaches were patterned after actual C&NW prototypes.

Rusty

To add to Rusty's comments there are several cars in the 64'-72' range but they are not as common as the model railroad industry would have us believe.  As stated most were 80' cars.  Pullman Standards designs settled on 80' in the wood era of the 19th century with only some exceptions.  However notable exceptions include:

  • The Harriman fleet largely used by SP, UP and some others.  They were built in 64' and 72' sizes.  Some of the early baggage cars were 30'. 
  • Several Anthracite roads utilized 72' cars but normally on 2 axle trucks.  They didn't run the long distances that some the larger roads did.
  • ATSF had a series of chair cars that were in the 70'-72' range.  I'd like to find a donor car to kitbash into one as they could be found at the end of the fast mail trains.  Famously the first streamlined RPOs were 53'. 
  • Headend cars were often in the 70'-72' range.

Like everything it pays to know the prototype if that kind of thing interests you.  Like steam locomotives at the time, very few roads orders large fleets of passenger cars at once and there were a lot of builders.  When the streamlined era came along, then you start seeing more standard lengths with the ultimate standard length being 85' to this day.  This is partially due to the fact during the streamlined era, most of the new cars were predominantly built by three builders, Pullman Standard, Budd, and ACF. 

@Keith L posted:

From Atlas website...

Atlas Reveals First MTH Model

Coaches, RPO Cars, Baggage, Dining, Combine and Observation cars will be produced (depending on road name).  Features on this first run of 70' Passenger Cars include:

  • Durable ABS Intricately Detailed Bodies
  • Metal Wheels and Axles
  • Constant Voltage Overhead LED Interior Lighting
  • 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
  • 1:48 Scale Dimensions
  • Detailed Car Undercarriage
  • Sliding Baggage Car Doors (on baggage cars)
  • Die-Cast 6-Wheel Trucks
  • Unit Measures: 19" x 2 7/16" x 3 1/2"
  • Operates On O-42 Curves

A full announcement with pricing will be available soon with an estimated delivery of September 2021.



It would be helpful if Atlas will clarify whether people will be included in the cars.  Here's the similar standard MTH Madison features copied from the most recent 2019 v1 20-44054 SP Coach page.  Atlas did purchase the MTH figure sets as well.

  • Intricately Detailed, Durable ABS Bodies
  • Stamped Metal Floors
  • Detailed Car Undercarriage
  • Authentic Paint Scheme
  • Metal Wheels and Axles
  • Die-Cast 6-Wheel Trucks
  • Fast-Angle Wheel Sets
  • Needle-Point Axles
  • (2) Operating Die-Cast Metal Couplers
  • Constant Voltage Overhead LED Interior Lighting
  • End-of-Car Diaphragms
  • Separate Metal Handrails
  • Detailed Car Interiors
  • Sliding Baggage Car Doors
  • Detailed Brake Wheel
  • Each Passenger Car Contains 10 Hand Painted Figures
  • 1:48 Scale Proportions
  • Unit Measures: 19" x 2 7/16" x 3 1/2"
  • Operates On O-42 Curves
Last edited by RidgeRunner
@Norton posted:

MTH Premier Heavyweights are the same length as Lionel 18” cars from the 2000s, and K-Line 18” cars. No need to split hairs, they all work well together.

Pete

All I was saying was that MTH refers to their passenger cars as 70 footers because they are only 17 1/2 inches long.  Looks like Atlas is going to continue with the MTH terminology.

The bigger issue with me is that the MTH cars ride lower (more realistic) than the Lionel cars I own, which have a fairly large gap between the truck and body.  As far as I'm concerned, an all MTH passenger train "looks" better than a mix of manufacturers, where I think the MTH car sits noticeably lower.  My Lionel and K-Line are closer in height and look better together to me.

I hope the Atlas cars maintain the lower, more realistic, ride height.

DSC_0148

MTH in front, Lionel in back.

By the way, I hope Atlas builds the PRR baggage with the round window as shown on this MTH car.  This car is very close to a prototype PRR B70, unlike the Lionel car behind it which is nowhere near close.  I also hope they build the MTH PRR HW multi-window RPO with round windows on all doors (current ones are rare).

And if I'm allowed some wishful thinking knowing this will require new tooling, I hope Atlas puts a round roof on some HW releases to reflect a modernized HW car.  Many roads did this.

I do agree with others that these "scale" 70 footers is an interesting departure for Atlas, even though there were a few prototype 70/72 foot cars built.  Just an observation, not a hate statement.  I know there are a lot of forum members that cannot run/do not like a scale 80' car on their layout, so this is great news for them.  I hope Atlas' decision to build them works out well for the company.

Attachments

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  • DSC_0148

Welcome to the forum DCFD!

Even though these cars are not scale I am somewhat interested in them because I have ridden on both the Reading Blue Mountain and Northern, and the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway and I have a RBM&N locomotive on pre-order. I was looking at on line photos of the prototype and I noticed almost all of the pictures I saw show the prototype with 4 wheel trucks. Some of the LGSR cars have some strange looking trucks that I have never seen before. I doubt that models of those trucks are available in O scale but I could be wrong. I wonder if in the deal Atlas made with MTH if they have access to all MTH trucks (sorry—if that was mentioned I missed it) and if Atlas will consider using 4 wheel trucks where appropriate? Just talking here and not knocking the cars. I am happy they will get made for the folks who want them. I am just on the fence about them.

@Hudson J1e posted:

I wonder if in the deal Atlas made with MTH if they have access to all MTH trucks (sorry—if that was mentioned I missed it) and if Atlas will consider using 4 wheel trucks where appropriate? Just talking here and not knocking the cars. I am happy they will get made for the folks who want them. I am just on the fence about them.

I don’t have an answer but MTH does have a 4 wheel passenger truck they use on the R50B express reefer. I don’t know if they’re prototypical on coaches though.

@RailRide posted:

Are those the ones that look lile stretched-out freight trucks? I think those are former electric MU cars.

---PCJ

PCJ, yes that’s exactly what they look like to me. My friend is a big railfan and he told me that some of these cars are former electric MU cars so you are right about that.

Rplst8, yes you are correct but I don’t think they are prototypical for passenger cars. I could be wrong though. And MTH also has the 4 wheel trucks from the 19th century passenger cars. Probably not prototypical either.

Oman, good question. On the 60’ Atlas cars they did use 4 wheel trucks. Perhaps  Atlas will use those trucks? Hopefully most of these questions will be answered in their next announcement.

@rplst8 posted:

I don’t have an answer but MTH does have a 4 wheel passenger truck they use on the R50B express reefer. I don’t know if they’re prototypical on coaches though.

The MTH passenger truck on the R50B is the PRR 2D-P5 standard truck that was used for many decades as the standard passenger trucks under the R50s, B60 baggages, and the P70 coaches.  They are specific to the PRR.

@Hudson J1e posted:

And MTH also has the 4 wheel trucks from the 19th century passenger cars. Probably not prototypical either.

Oman, good question. On the 60’ Atlas cars they did use 4 wheel trucks. Perhaps  Atlas will use those trucks? Hopefully most of these questions will be answered in their next announcement.

The MTH trucks are close, but the details are a bit outdated.  The truck under most of those cars is the standard AAR 4 wheel passenger truck.  I am using MTH 2 rail trucks on some All Nation cars I am working and they are close enough for me.  The Atlas trucks are similar and likely a little more accurate for the era.  All Nation's 4 wheel trucks are great, but they are not as easy to find based on the age of the castings.

The cars are mostly former Bethlehem steel commuter cars that were found on the Reading and CNJ.

Last edited by GG1 4877
@Oman posted:

Atlas did some 60' passenger cars. What trucks did they put on those?

I Have a few Atlas 60' Reading and Northern coaches. they have the correct 2 wheel trucks. the only cars equipped with 3 wheel trucks are the pullman and office cars. As for the LGSR 2 wheel trucks, they are strange but i did see a model of them somewhere. not sure where though. pick up those LGSR while you can. from what i see going on, RBMN is repainting all the blue ones into the dark red color.

@GG1 4877 posted:

The MTH passenger truck on the R50B is the PRR 2D-P5 standard truck that was used for many decades as the standard passenger trucks under the R50s, B60 baggages, and the P70 coaches.  They are specific to the PRR.

I read that those trucks were also used on the P58 coaches.  Transplanting them onto one of the MTH 70’ Madison coaches could make something slightly more prototypical I guess.

@BobbyD posted:

Didn't MTH take over the Madison car tooling from Williams while it was being made at Samhongsa? (sic?) They came in those "Custom Trains" or something boxes.

That's where he got the Weaver E8 tooling with the big "eyebrows" over the windows too IIRC.

This history must go back quite a few years. I got back into the train hobby in the late 90s and don’t remember hearing of these acquisitions.

@BobbyD posted:

Didn't MTH take over the Madison car tooling from Williams while it was being made at Samhongsa? (sic?) They came in those "Custom Trains" or something boxes.

That's where he got the Weaver E8 tooling with the big "eyebrows" over the windows too IIRC.

I don't think that is the case since Williams by Bachmann has offered many of the same heavyweight cars Williams did originally.

@BobbyD posted:

Didn't MTH take over the Madison car tooling from Williams while it was being made at Samhongsa? (sic?) They came in those "Custom Trains" or something boxes.

That's where he got the Weaver E8 tooling with the big "eyebrows" over the windows too IIRC.

@SGP posted:

I don't think that is the case since Williams by Bachmann has offered many of the same heavyweight cars Williams did originally.

The Bachmann heavyweights got from Williams were clones of the Postwar 2627 Lionel Madison cars.

MTH got the Williams scale-proportioned 70 footer cars.

Rusty

Last edited by Rusty Traque
@C_Murley posted:

I Have a few Atlas 60' Reading and Northern coaches. they have the correct 2 wheel trucks. the only cars equipped with 3 wheel trucks are the pullman and office cars.

Not sure what the Pullman and office cars are. I haven't seen any of these sets that have those cars. I have the Milwaukee Atlas 60' set - and I think this was true for all the different railroads done in this line - the RPO and baggage have 6-wheel trucks. All the rest have 4-wheel trucks.

Last edited by breezinup

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