• Micro-Trains Releases N Scale A&A Boxcar

  • All about the Arcade & Attica Railroad
All about the Arcade & Attica Railroad

Moderator: Benjamin Maggi

  by umtrr-author
Although this deals with a model, not the prototype, the occurrence of the release of a model of an A+A car is unusual enough that I thought readers of this forum might be interested. If this is out of bounds, I understand.

As part of its June 2007 monthly releases, Micro-Trains has announced an N Scale model of an Arcade and Attica boxcar.

It is a 40 foot boxcar with shortened ladders and no roofwalk, and carries road number 506 and is painted in the billboard style "ARA" scheme, with black roof, yellow ends, and yellow sides with the lower white stripe (including the five panel Superior brand door).

The catalog number is 024 00 330 and the MSRP (US) is $24.95. There will be a photo of the car during June at the MTL website

and after that on my website (URL in signature).

I have not yet researched the car's fidelity to the prototype but I will for my Unofficial Micro-Trains Release Report and I'll report back with what I find. Any information you might have to help out on that would be appreciated and properly credited as well.

This is, as far as I know, only the second ARA release in N Scale, the first being the same type of car from Con-Cor back circa the 1970's. It's nice to see a "local" (relatively speaking, for me) road being represented once again.

A word to the wise: when MTL does the smaller roads and the more complicated paint schemes (which lead to the higher MSRPs), they tend to make a smaller than typical run. (They don't release production figures.) I expect this to be an appealing car that will probably sell out at MTL pretty quickly; however, that doesn't make it unavailable at MTL dealers of which there are many around the USA.

  by Benjamin Maggi
Thanks for the heads up! I am not sure if it violates any advertising policy or not, but I don't think what you posted does. I sure will buy one, if not a couple more. Very interesting that they are picking NOW to release them.

  by umtrr-author
I don't think it violates any advertising policy since I'm not affliated with Micro-Trains. The UMTRR is an independent review of their products.

  by Benjamin Maggi
Just saw one on EBay, and snapped it up. The seller had 3 total available, but I only purchased one for now. Thanks for the tip, once again. :-D

  by BSOR Patarak
Cool, more A&A box cars to collect. Too bad I don't do much N scale though! :D

Here is a previous mention of the various box car schemes the A&A had:

The new car is in the right number series. There was an HO version released that had the right paint, but IIRC, with too high of a number. After looking at their web site, my only questions would be about the color choice. It states that the cars are "armour yellow"? The picture shows a lighter type orange. The cars were definitly an orange color. When I think of armour yellow, it would be the UP that comes to mind.

The write up also mentions that the cars were out of the equipment registers by 1978. I think it was actually earlier. These cars were leased from Morrison Railway Supply through Premier Leasing Development. They started disappearing by 1974. The lease was terminated in July of 1973.

I don't know what happened to them after the A&A gave up the lease. I assume they ended up being sold and may have sat at various places still in the orange paint. The cars were aging by then and doubt if they continued in service anywhere else.

This orange series (501-509) also had the larger 8 foot opening doors.

The light blue series had narrower doors and were tougher to load with fork lifts. This latter series was outright purchased by the A&A and so these were on the property longer after they were done in interchange. Many of these were sold off to local businesses for storage. These cars were ex-New Haven. I'd like a good HO scale version of the blue series. I purchased a custom painted one at the Batavia train show a year or two ago, but the numbering was off.

Hope this helps a little. I look forward to seeing your review and findings.

  by umtrr-author
Pat, thanks for the tidbit on the lessor. I'm writing the review and commentary now, relying heavily on web citations but also George Hinton's book "American Narrow Gauge Railroads"-- as you probably know, the A&A's predecessors were three foot gauge until 1895.

I'm not sure you or other A&A experts will find much new in my commentary; the UMTRR is aimed at a general N and Z Scale modeler and "accumulator" audience. But hopefully I will introduce more folks to the line. I'm planning to mention this forum in my bytes, and I will also be submitting an edited version of the item to the magazine "The N Scale Collector". I give the NSC a "UMTRR Spotlight Car" for five out of six bi-monthly issues per year and this one was a lock from the moment I saw it. So word of the A&A will reach another couple thousand people.

I have several Equipment Registers from the 1970's so I may be able to better pinpoint the disappearance of the cars from the roster. The Micro-Trains car has a six foot door, so that's an incorrect detail (what I affectionately refer to as a "Door Thing"). That Armour Yellow note in the M-T car copy was curious to me also as the image looks darker than that to me also. I'll have a copy of the car in hand probably by next week for a live look.

  by Benjamin Maggi
Also, one I mentioned the ConCor car... the only other N scale car that I know of made in A&A paint. When I was flipping through the Walthers N scale catalog, in the HELJAN structures there is a "Grain Elevator" (#322-677). And, what car is posed in front of a grain elevator? The Con Cor Arcade and Attica boxcar! What a riot! Out of all the cars they could have picked, they picked a boxcar... from our very own shortline. I want to buy the kit, and keep the box, just for the picture.

Perhaps, other buyers saw it and were exposed to the A&A too!

Here is the link to the kit: http://walthers.com/exec/productinfo/322-677
Last edited by Benjamin Maggi on Mon Jun 04, 2007 6:33 am, edited 2 times in total.

  by BSOR Patarak

I would be interested in photocopies of the A&A pages from the Equipment Registers for my own archives if possible. I have copies of a few scattered early years (before 1960).


  by umtrr-author
Pat, would scans work? I can do those more easily. I have a bunch of hard copy ORERs from 1964 and later, plus the prize of the lot, an original April 1928 Register.

Let's chat via PM and set something up...

  by reinhardtjh
I ordered 4 from Brooklyn Locomotive Works ( http://www.blwnscale.com ) on June 4th. They received at least 2 shipments from Micro-Trains between June 11th and the 15th which they needed to fill their pre-orders and it left them a limited supply. Mine arrived today (June 20th) via UPS.

The "Armour Yellow" is a somewhat pale orange as was expected. It seems to be a little too pale compared to the picture in this topic ( http://www.railroad.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=11366 ), but perhaps could be explained as being faded from weathering. The lettering is crisp as is usual for a MT product. Micro-Trains packages an extra set of wheels with the low-profile flanges for those using Atlas code 55 track whose spikes may hit the larger "pizza-cutter" style wheels which are common for N scale rolling stock. They are very free rolling and should work well on any layout.

Micro-Trains has already announced that this car is discontinued so George's warning about a small production run was correct. There is no way of telling how many are available still at various dealers and online stores, but it's reasonable to conclude that if you want one (or several) then the sooner you get them, the more likely you won't be disappointed.

John H. Reinhardt