I got a good deal on these two postwar Lionel passenger cars recently at a local train show. I figured part of the reason they were so cheap was the rust on them. Since they were not anywhere near decent looking, I figured I could fix them up to suit me without having to worry about "messing up" nice originals. I think these cars had lights in them from the factory as the trucks had roller pickups, but there were no bulbs, sockets or even wire inside them (possibly another reason for the low $25 for the pair price). The trucks are a little on the rough side, but I decided to swap them out rather than repair them.

IMG_20191109_230956~2

I decided to use Marx deluxe trucks since I run mostly Marx and the Deluxe trucks look more like passenger car trucks than the factory originals. Also, the cars' size works well with Marx 3/16" sized trains. I will save the original trucks so if I part with these cars the new owner can have the rights ones. No physical alterations are planned for the car bodies, just repaint.

IMG_20191114_223003

While cleaning up the tin I discovered some of the rust was more than skin deep.

IMG_20191116_182334IMG_20191116_182255IMG_20191116_182157

Looks like the cars will be making a trip to the body shop prior to painting. Planning to use Krylon Hunter Green gloss for the bodies and Ivory gloss for the window frames.

More to come...

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Attachments

Photos (5)
Original Post

Looking forward to the completed project.  A little Bondo and you're good to go.  Good choice on the Krylon paint.  I prefer it over Rustoleum.   

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

                                                                                                                                        

JD2035RR posted:

I love little projects like this.  It's so satisfying to see these brought back to life. 

Are these cars held together with screws, tabs, some of both?

The roof is held in place with one screw. Everything else is tabs.

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Your cars in Brown and Silver numbered 2442 for the Pullman and 2443 for the Observation were illuminated.  They came in 1946 cataloged set number 2100 as 2-pullman's and 1-observation, pulled by a 224 steam locomotive and a 2466T non-whistle tender. According to Greenberg Vol III, ..."The cars are listed as 2442 Pullmans and 2443 observation but are clearly shown in the catalog as green.  Lionel made 2442 and 2443 cars in 1946 but they are always brown.  They made green cars in 1946 but they were always labeled 2440 and 2441"  The brown cars are considerably more scarce than the green ones although a rumor  persists that Lionel took advantage of the confusion with the catalog and packaged 2 different  2100 sets , one with brown and one with green cars.  SO ... before you paint them green you might consider that their original brown color is more scarce.

Best wishes, great find, I have the correct 224 and have been looking for a set of brown cars for some time. 

Don McErlean posted:

Your cars in Brown and Silver numbered 2442 for the Pullman and 2443 for the Observation were illuminated.  They came in 1946 cataloged set number 2100 as 2-pullman's and 1-observation, pulled by a 224 steam locomotive and a 2466T non-whistle tender. According to Greenberg Vol III, ..."The cars are listed as 2442 Pullmans and 2443 observation but are clearly shown in the catalog as green.  Lionel made 2442 and 2443 cars in 1946 but they are always brown.  They made green cars in 1946 but they were always labeled 2440 and 2441"  The brown cars are considerably more scarce than the green ones although a rumor  persists that Lionel took advantage of the confusion with the catalog and packaged 2 different  2100 sets , one with brown and one with green cars.  SO ... before you paint them green you might consider that their original brown color is more scarce.

Best wishes, great find, I have the correct 224 and have been looking for a set of brown cars for some time. 

Thanks Don.

The guy that sold them to me said they had "heat stamped" lettering and were from '47 to '48. Does that make them less rare?

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Dan Padova posted:

Looking forward to the completed project.  A little Bondo and you're good to go.  Good choice on the Krylon paint.  I prefer it over Rustoleum.   

Yeah, I like Kryon better too. It dries quicker and seems to chip less.

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Andy :  The exact answer to your question on lettering is somewhat complicated (like all early Lionel stuff).  The "Brown Series" was offered in 46-47-48-49 with the differences being the engines that they came with and the color & number in the lettering. 

In 46 they came in sets 2100/2100W with a 224 loco and either a 2466 T or 2466WX (W means Whistle)

In 47 they came in sets 2120S/2120WX with a 675 loco and either a 2466T or 2466WX tender

All lettering was Silver in 1946 and White in 1947 .  Note color scheme was brown sides and roof, Grey Door and window inserts, and the brown cars always came with lights

They came back in 48 and 49 with Brown color again BUT the numbers changed to 6442 for the pullman and 6443 for the observation.  Color scheme (brown/grey) was the same and they had lights. Lettering was white.

In 1948 they came in set 2136 WS with a 675 loco and 2466WX tender in 1949 they came in the same set, 2136WS,  but the 675 came with a 6466WX tender.

Clearly if your cars were in the 2400 series they were produced for the 46-47 outfits.  If they were in the 6400 series they were produced for the 48-49 outfits.  All these cars were brown. 

The most scarce are the Brown cars with the silver lettering.  these were only made in one year 1946.  The others are more rare than the common Green series however there is also a two tone Blue series which carries yet a 3rd set of numbers and is even more rare - postwar however it is a pre-war carryover and is more common with the pre-war trucks.  MOST IMPORTANT - as far as I can research 2442/2443/6442/6443 cars were always BROWN and 2440/2441/6440/6441 cars were always GREEN. the lettering changed from silver to white in 47 and never went back.  49 was the last year of the tinplate cars.

I know you were thinking of painting them GREEN and the GREEN series covered all these years but the car numbers, set numbers, and loco's in the sets were different.  I can give you those if you want.  There really is no question however that the brown cars, especially those with silver lettering are far more scarce.

Best Wishes and Good Hunting.  Hope to see pictures of your re-hab'd cars when you are done

Don

 

 

 

Andy: One more thing I forgot.  While I cannot be certain I would think that the numbers and lettering was not "heat stamped" although it was likely stamped.  Why would I say this...well the sides of the car are tinplate and this would be highly unlikely that the heat stamp could make an impression as this mechanism is supposed to do.  My opinion of course but I wanted to tell you

Don

Don,

I am truly grateful for the info. However they were lettered, the mechanism partially embossed the letters and numbers into the steel. I smoothed it out with the Bondo putty too.

Truthfully, I bought these with intentions of making a Christmas train rather than restoring them to showroom condition. I'm going to fix the rust so the cars don't continue to corrode away and when the next person gets them they will be ready for brown paint. I had originally planned to paint the interior white for better lighting, but thanks to your input, I will leave the original paint on the inside so the next person will know they were originally brown cars. 

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Andy:  Your response on the "heat stamping" really got my "nerdy researcher" gene going.  I dived into the question in more detail and am glad to say I can confirm that both you and the fellow that sold them to you ARE CORRECT.  I pushed through my collection of "Classic Toy Trains" and came upon an article in the February 2017 issue, titled, "Lionel Sets for 1947" by Joe Algonzzini and Roger Carp (you could hardly get folks with more expertise in Lionel Trains, especially postwar).  In the article they directly state that in 1947 that the sheet metal Pullmans / Observation switched from rubber-stamping in 1946 to heat stamping in 1947.  So your observation that you felt the indentations is solid proof since the cars were numbered  2442 and 2443 that their year of production was 1947.  This would mean that your lettering was originally white. 

I hope that you send some pictures in when you are finished.  I really like these cars and have a 3 car set in Blue/Silver which has pre-war trucks and is pulled by a 1666 steamer and a 3 car Green set that is post war and would have been likely pulled by a 2025 2-6-2 steamer in 47 or a 224 steamer in 46 and I am embarking on a magnifying glass review of the lettering to see if I can detect rubber or heat stamping to fix the year and hence the loco.

Best Regards, Don

Any ideas on window glazing? These cars didn't have any, but I think they should have, since they were also supposed to be lighted. Thinking of home brewing some LED lighting so a frosted window look would probably be better than clear.

Milk jug plastic?

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

I've added/replaced the  plastic on my tin passenger cars with clear plastic. The craft stores (JoAnn Fabric, etc) should have this. I think milk jugs would be too thick to work with. I take coarse sandpaper and work over both sides of the plastic to get the frosted look.

Dave

 

 

 

Saving Tinplate One Piece at a Time

handyandy posted:

Any ideas on window glazing? These cars didn't have any, but I think they should have, since they were also supposed to be lighted. Thinking of home brewing some LED lighting so a frosted window look would probably be better than clear.

Milk jug plastic?

The milk jug is my preference and it's free.

Steve

Steve "Papa" Eastman

Yorba Linda, CA

Left Coast, Home of the lunatics

Used a plastic ice tea jug, like a milk jug, but it had tea in in instead of milk.  LOL

I couldn't get enough flat surface to cover the windows in the doors. I will glue pieces of plastic over the doors and the rear window in the observation.

I cheated and used LED tea candles to light the cars. I usually don't care for lighted cars so these will work for the odd times I want lights. The flickering golden light kind of mimics old school track powered lights too.

IMG_20191130_172805IMG_20191130_172932IMG_20191130_174944

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Attachments

Photos (3)

Andy:  The cars look GREAT!  What a super job.  I noted the Marx "Pickle Fork" coupler on the rear of the observation, did you use those throughout?  Do you plan on using a Marx Loco to pull the cars?  If you do I bet a Marx 333  4-6-2 loco available from '49-58 would be great, its die cast and a great runner.  The 666 2-4-2 from '55 also die cast is another possibility.  Finally the 1829 a Hudson 4-6-4 while plastic has a lot of detail in the casting and is really sharp.

Well, anyway what a terrific job best of luck with them!!

Don

Don McErlean posted:

Andy:  The cars look GREAT!  What a super job.  I noted the Marx "Pickle Fork" coupler on the rear of the observation, did you use those throughout?  Do you plan on using a Marx Loco to pull the cars?  If you do I bet a Marx 333  4-6-2 loco available from '49-58 would be great, its die cast and a great runner.  The 666 2-4-2 from '55 also die cast is another possibility.  Finally the 1829 a Hudson 4-6-4 while plastic has a lot of detail in the casting and is really sharp.

Well, anyway what a terrific job best of luck with them!!

Don

Yes, it's a Marx coupler. The cars are running on Marx Type F deluxe trucks. I will be using a custom painted Marx 999 to pull them. My K-Line 333 clone and my 666 seem a little big for the "scale" of these cars. Currently I have a tin Marx 898 doing the honors.

Andy

 

When they were passing out brains, I thought they said trains and I asked for a slow one.

Love the use of "tea light" electronic candles to light the cars, probably more reliable than the original single roller electrical pickup powered lights.  Nice save of cars that another person might have tossed in the trash.   Mike

Silly NT's...I have Asperger's Syndrome! 

Looks nice Andy. Given how rusty the cars actually were, I think you over-worried a little bit over some future owner of the cars. I personally wouldn't have given it much thought, given that most "collectors" are looking for items in better condition. But that said, it also shows you're a thoughtful person.

I also use Krylon spray cans amongst many other brands, so long as I'm using a plastic safe primer first. And I agree, the Krylon does dry quickly.

A little pointer: I always wipe the spray nozzle with isopropyl alcohol after a spray, to help reduce the chance of clogging. I also use a small plastic 35mm film container, filled with isopropyl alcohol to soak the nozzle on brands of paint that I find are more prone to clogging nozzles.

Add Reply

Post
OGR Publishing, Inc., 1310 Eastside Centre Ct, Suite 6, Mountain Home, AR 72653
330-757-3020

www.ogaugerr.com
×
×
×
×
×