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Has anyone modeled the type of milk car with the "butter dish" tank-on-flat car in O guage/scale?  I recall seeing adds many years ago of an imported brass model in scale two rail.  These cars were common on the Lackawanna and were found on local freight and suburban passenger trains, even on the end of electrics suburban trains. I am converting a MTH brewery into a creamery and would like to model these cars along with my other box car type tank cars.


Conductor Earl

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If one is not going to go scale all the way, I would think a paint job and a bit of detailing on the traditional size flatcar would be plenty to make it look more realistic, rather than putting forth the effort to build another car. However, I don't know how long the tank is on the Lionel car. It might look OK on a scale 40' flat or it might not. 
Originally Posted by Norton:

I agree but who said to make it scale length. Just suggesting an option to high dollar unobtainium.




Last edited by Southwest Hiawatha

Great looking cars. I think they are a two axle car no trucks. Yep by Lionel. I remember someone doing an On30 bash out of them on another forum, and I was surprised to find they said it was a Lionel because of it having no trucks. (Does Lionel offer different things in Europe?) They added brass buffers/English couplers in the bash. I think one of the scale European (German?) companies makes a line of these in O with many different logo options. Not just milk, beers too. I think I image searched "European railroad tank/vat cars" 

I am encouraged by so many quick replies. So. If we could find a good model like the Precision Model version for a prototype, could we convince someone to produce a plastic scale version?  The flat car would be easy as well as the proper milk car/express car type trucks which are already available. If someone like MTH marketed a creamery version of one of its current structures and offered the cars it would create a new industry for today's demand for more realism on our layouts.  Any one with me on this?



Here's a link to a previous Forum thread on milk cars. According to a post on that thread, the butterdish cars were actually reskinned Pfaudler-type milk tankers, which originally looked like ordinary 40' reefers. That would explain why they do not look like any 1930's flat car I've ever seen. The side rails are different. 


And here's a shot of a very similar car belonging to Hood's. You'll have to follow this link; it's the cover shot of a PDF so I couldn't grab it as a JPEG. 

There was an article a few years back in RMC on how to kit bash this car in HO.


I used that article to scratchbuild one in S scale. It is easy to build up the flat car base out of styrene and plastruct shapes. The "butter dish" was made from a roughly shaped piece of wood that I covered with styrene.  A few bent wires for hand rails and some Grandt Line door hardware and brake gear completed the project, except for finding decals and trucks.  It was about as easy a scratchbuilding project as one can imagine.

Little Tommy

Originally Posted by Hot Water:

For what it's worth, be prepared to spend BIG MONEY for one of these cars, if and when you ever find one.

There was one of the PSC imports on eBay this past week painted white - only $204.....


Red one a few weeks back for $155 - no idea why I did not buy it....


Nov, there was another white one for $199.06.


Unpainted Overland car back in Oct for $283.88


There was also a decent scratchbuilding article for these in RMC in O scale a decade or so back.


The Overland car is nice, but I still have to paint & decal mine.  Painting is not a challenge; decals are another matter....

Last edited by mwb
I just picked up my 1st butterdish car today by lionel. Your email is not in your profile, contact me, I have some questions on your Creamery project.
Originally Posted by Conductor Earl:

Thank you everyone.  This has been a great thread. Lots of good leads on how to learn more about this interesting facet of railroading.




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