Hi Everyone,

I am seeking information on the first Yuengling Beer train set offered by K-Line in the 1980's-1990's. They were sold as an exclusive at the Yuengling Beer Gift shop in Pottsville, PA and you had to have a specific number to purchase them at that time.  They made a second set later on available for general public purchase.  The first set included a K-Line Reading MP-15 switcher and Schuylkill caboose and various product cars.  Any information and even pictures would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Jim 

 

Original Post

Here is a pic of what the numbered sets looked like. Other than the engine and I think the caboose the rest of the cars came in plain white boxes. There was no set box included. I was pretty happy to find a set some years back as they are fairly rare.

 

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As shown is MILWRD's post, the first three boxcars for 1986-1988 where Frank's Roundhouse cars: Yuengling Pilsner, Lord Chesterfield Ale, and Yuengling Porter. The next three were K-Line: K6230 American Lager hopper (1989), K6141 "The Schuylkill" caboose (1990), and K2234 D.J. Yuengling & Sons MP-15 (1991).

Did the brewery sell these as sets or just individually? What is the "you had to have a specific number to purchase them at that time" about?

The second series were K-Line freight cars and engine from 1992 to 1999, K-Line passenger cars from 2000 to 2005, and MTH passenger car and engine 2006-2007.

Ramon

"Did the brewery sell these as sets or just individually? What is the you had to have a specific number to purchase them at that time about?"

I couldn't tell you who distributed the original sets. I picked mine up on da bay.  Regarding the specific numbers,  my set has a gold sticker on the bottom of the engine and each car with the set number on it.

The robertstrains.com website, hosted by an OGR Forum member, has photos of mostly all of Frank’s Roundhouse O gauge non-tinplate production.  Here’s a link to the page with closer-up views of those 3 Yuengling box cars shown in the photo posted by milwrd above which as Ramon posted were produced by Frank’s Roundhouse: http://www.robertstrains.com/Frank61.htm

There’s also a photo of the Stegmaier Beer box car on that page.

Bill

Individual cars or engines were issued on a yearly basis by the Yuengling shop. I do not believe complete sets were ever sold. In fact, it was primarily through a K Line Collectors Club newsletter that most train collectors learned about them well after the first issues were gone. Once people were aware, sales and production numbers went up. Because of the increased supply, later issues are less valuable today.

"I do not believe complete sets were ever sold"

Then how would you explain the group numbered stickers on the bottom or inside of the engine and rolling stock in the picture I posted above?

There was also an engine and a couple of cars that recently sold on eBay all having the same (but different numbered group) sticker on or in them. So, I believe sets were made but don't know how many.

There was a full first set, but you bought each item in the set from the Yuengling Gift Shop on an individual basis over several years.  You were assigned a specific number and each year a different item for the set was released for your purchase with your original number assigned to it.  Later, a second set was released the same way (one item at a time), but there was not a specific number assigned to each item.

Thanks,

Jim 

I'm new toOGR.  I realize this thread is a few years old, but I would like to revive it.  JIMMYG's account is correct.  The cars were released yearly and you registered with a number, then you would have first shot at that numbered car when the new release came out.  There were no complete sets sold as a set.  You had to go back each year for each of the six years to build your complete set.....which is why complete sets are so hard to find.  There were 500 (plus a few extras) of each piece released each year, so the number of complete sets is far less than 500.  Even harder to find are a very few of the locomotives that had very rare black siderails from the factory instead of yellow.  I'd like to know how many of those there were.  From what I understand, there was only a handful.  Does anyone have any more insight?

Thanks,

Tim

After the original series, they released the "Signature Series" which was mostly freight cars (except for the oddball Chesterfield Ale observation passanger car ???).  The locomotive for that set was a steam loco.  The series of passenger cars you have are the most recent (and final) series they did. All the cars in that series are that same beige color. I think there are a total of 5 passenger cars and a steam loco that was produced by MTH after K-line went down.  You can still buy the locomotive from the gift shop, but all the cars are sold out.....pretty easy to find on eBay though if you keep your eyes open!

....and just to clarify, the passenger cars are all K-line.  The entire Signature Series was also K-line.  Only the locomotive for the final passenger series was an MTH product.  In my opinion, the locomotive doesn't match the rest of the series very well in style, but we'll blame it on the demise of K-line, I guess.  

Thank you for the pics.  Looks like there were 7 passenger cars in the final series, not 5.  The locomotive and the Chesterfield Ale car in the lower pic are actually from the Signature Series, but I must admit that that locomotive is a better match for the passenger series than the MTH one in the upper picture, which is the "official" loco for that series.

Okay, so here is a picture of the entire passenger car series, known as the "Millenium Series".  The cars in order from top to bottom as follows:

2000 - Black and Tan (K-Line p/n K4598-2000)

2001 - Lager (K-Line p/n K4598-2001)

2002 -  Chesterfield Ale (K-Line p/n K4598-2002)

2003 - Light (K-Line p/n K4598-2003)

2004 - 175th Anniversary (K-Line p/n K4598-2004)

2005 - Porter (K-Line p/n K4598-2005)

2006 - Light Lager (K-Line p/n 33-6025)

2007 - Locomotive (Mike's Train House) - Not Shown

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.....and here is the "Signature Series" (mostly) freight set released from 1992-1999.  Again, they are shown in order from top to bottom:

1992 - Pilsner Boxcar (K-line p/n K-649105)

1993 - Black & Tan Boxcar (K-line p/n K-649113)

1994 - Lager Tank Car (K-line p/n K-639106)

1995 - Lord Chesterfield Observation Car (K-line p/n K4598-1829)

1996 - Premium Light Hopper Car (K-line p/n K-629105)

1997 - Porter Caboose (K-line p/n K-619111)

1998 - Steam Locomotive (K-line K-3015)

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Finally, back to my original post:  Most of the first series freight train sets (released from 1986-1991) included a MP15 locomotive with yellow side rails.  However, there were a few (what have been described to me as) "factory mistakes", where the side rails were black.  I have one of each as you can see in the pictures.  The boxes were labeled with the same part number, so I believe that they were indeed "mistakes".  However, I would like to know how many of the black rail lMP15's exist.  I've been told "5" by one person and "around a dozen" by somebody else, but I really don't know how credible either source is.  Does anyone have any reliable insight on this subject?

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Ah, Yuengling.  Good beer.  Back in the day, early '70s,  it was ranked among Gibbons or Iron city.  Panther P*ss to give you an idea.    I rediscovered it about twenty-five years ago.  No I don't drink it at all.  Has to do with the owner's view on organized labor.  'nuff said.  

Dan Padova

 

"In the course of my life I have had to eat my words, and I must confess it was a wholesome diet"..........Winston Churchill

                                                                                                                                        

Tim the Trainman posted:

Finally, back to my original post:  Most of the first series freight train sets (released from 1986-1991) included a MP15 locomotive with yellow side rails.  However, there were a few (what have been described to me as) "factory mistakes", where the side rails were black.  I have one of each as you can see in the pictures.  The boxes were labeled with the same part number, so I believe that they were indeed "mistakes".  However, I would like to know how many of the black rail lMP15's exist.  I've been told "5" by one person and "around a dozen" by somebody else, but I really don't know how credible either source is.  Does anyone have any reliable insight on this subject?

I'm not sure I'd get too excited about the version with black handrails. First, because it's easy to switch from just about any other MP-15. Second, a good friend of mine, the late Aaron Needham, obtained several (10-12) Yuengling MP-15 cabs from the K-Line Service Department in the mid-1990's. He built them into complete locos by switching cabs with a regular production MP-15, making a "black handrail" version. Given that you appear to have original boxes with each of your units lends a possibility that a few came this way from the factory, but again, it would be very hard to prove.

TRW

Thanks, TRW.  Agreed.....and great information regarding your friend's purchase from the K-line service dept.

Just FYI, the information I have about the small number of black-railed MP15's came from a retired gentleman who was the original curator of the gift shop at the Yuengling brewery.  He was the person responsible for making the original Yuengling train set available.  I purchased a complete original set from him many years ago.  He told me about the black-railed MP15's, but even he wasn't sure of the numbers, nor did he tell me the whole story.  In hindsight, I could kick myself for not spending more time with him to get all the details, but I didn't think it was too important at the time, I guess. 

Anyway, I have a high level of confidence in the general story and  that the black-railed MP15 I just purchased (along with 3 other cars with matching serial numbers) are legitimate.  I bought them from the original owner, who had that serial number assigned to him and who got them directly from the gift shop. 

I actually have a theory about how these black-railed "factory mistakes" came to be, but I'll save it for another day.  Let's just say that I don't think these were really "mistakes" at all and leave it at that.  For now, I'll continue my fact-finding mission.  It's not like I have anything better to do! 

Thank you again for your input.  Much appreciated!

Tim the Trainman posted:

....and just to clarify, the passenger cars are all K-line.  The entire Signature Series was also K-line.  Only the locomotive for the final passenger series was an MTH product.  In my opinion, the locomotive doesn't match the rest of the series very well in style, but we'll blame it on the demise of K-line, I guess.  

Just for completeness, the 2006 Light Larger Coach is by MTH (Rugged Rails).

Ramon

Thanks Ramon.  I should have taken a closer look at the labeling.  I didn't realize they switched over to MTH for the last car in the series as well as the locomotive.  At least they kept the packaging consitent across the entire Millennium Series.  All three of the Yuengling train series were "dis-jointed" in some way or another.  The first and last series had pieces from two different manufacturers and the Signature series had that oddball Chesterfield ale car that didn't fit in in any way!

Hopefully, if they ever produce a 4th series, which sounds doubtful, they will be able to offer a truly matched set of some sort.

Thanks again for clarifying, Ramon.

TTT

Tim the Trainman posted:

Thanks Ramon.  I should have taken a closer look at the labeling.  I didn't realize they switched over to MTH for the last car in the series as well as the locomotive.  At least they kept the packaging consitent across the entire Millennium Series.  All three of the Yuengling train series were "dis-jointed" in some way or another.  The first and last series had pieces from two different manufacturers and the Signature series had that oddball Chesterfield ale car that didn't fit in in any way!

Hopefully, if they ever produce a 4th series, which sounds doubtful, they will be able to offer a truly matched set of some sort.

Thanks again for clarifying, Ramon.

TTT

If there is anyone on the planet that knows beer cars it is Ramon. 

I know where I have been, I know where I am at, I am hopeful I know where I am going.(The devil and God are talking it over).

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