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In-Box Review
Ford C Box Van
HO RTR Ford C Box Van, Roadway
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by: Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]

Originally published on:
RailRoad Modeling

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Ford C Box Van

The Ford C-Series...
...was a medium-duty cab over truck built by the Ford Motor Company between 1957 and 1990. While advertisers boasted of its versatility, it was used primarily for local delivery, and fire apparatus. Many of the fire trucks came merely as cab and windshield models. It featured a small grille near the front bumper, with a four-pointed star emblem on each end, the word "F O R D" spelled out below the windshield, and had a cog-and-lightning bolt crest emblem between the headlights. Models consisted of the C-500, C-600, C-700, C-750, C-800, C-900, and the C-900 "Big Job" model.[1]

Roadway Express, Inc.
Roadway Express, Inc. is one of the oldest and largest trucking companies in the United States. Roadway Express was founded in 1930 by brothers Galen and Carroll Roush in Akron, Ohio. Although trucking had made great strides during the 1920s, the motor carrier industry was still in its infancy. Railroads provided the primary transportation for goods from point of manufacture to point of sale. Trucks were used for less than full-load shipments, which was still Roadway's primary market. In 1930 Roadway entered the business it would come to lead with a load of tires shipped from Akron to St. Louis, Missouri. [2] Roadway adopted complementary colors of orange and blue for their striking livery. The company expanded and grew into the 1980's. Finally, in 2003 competitor Yellow Corp. acquired Roadway Corp., forming Yellow Roadway Corporation.

HO RTR Ford C Box Van, Roadway
Roadway's livery has always been a favorite of mine. When Athearn announced their line of squat cab Ford C trucks I was happy to find it for Roadway. Athearn packages the model in a blister pack that extends through a heavy card "box top." The model is molded and assembled to a high standard. No sink holes, mold marks, nor flash are visible. The model features recessed panel lines for the doors and hood. The door handles are appropriately raised.

The cab exterior is well detailed with side mirrors, windshield wipers, signal lights on the front fenders, and the distinctive Ford grill and bumper. The grille is molded open.

The signal lights are in scale. The headlights are clear lenses surrounded by chrome rings. Five cab top running lights are molded on, the lenses simulated with paint.

The cab interior has basic detail with seats and a steering wheel. Though the cab is squat and the windows are small, the tan interior allows you to see the detail. The windshield is the only flaw I discovered: it is not flush with the cab top (I noticed this in the website photo, too). Fortunately it can be gently pushed into place, though it pops out now and then..

The chassis is detailed with the frame, a basic engine bottom and transmission, drive shaft, fuel tank, exhaust, differential, and rear axle. Mud flaps, too. The tires are rubber and feature tread detail. They wrap around beautifully detailed hubs.

A large van box sets atop the rear chassis. It features corrugated sides detailed with fine rivets, lights and reflectors, and HAZMAT placards. The rear door is equally well detailed.

This is a Ford licensed model.

Parts are molded in color. The detailing is fantastic! Athearn did not paste on decals, they printed the markings. The data and names are incredibly fine and sharp, even under magnification. The front of the hood features 'FORD', the sides of the hood sport another emblem. The lettering is sharp and legible, and the emblems are recognizable. Impressive!

Athearn currently lists 74 of box vans in 21 railway roadnames, 35 trucking company names, and un- or partially decorated.

This Roadway box van is a great offering. The painted detail is excellent! The molded detail is good. I appreciate the applied side mirrors. Overall a great addition to your HO scale layout or diorama. Recommended!

Remember to tell manufacturers and seller that you saw this model here--on Railroad Modeling!

[1] Wikipedia, Ford C-Series
[2] fundinguniverse.com/company-histories/Roadway-Express-Inc-Company-History.html

Click here for additional images for this review.

Highs: The painted detail is excellent and the molded detail is good. Separately applied side mirrors.
Lows: The windshield has to be pushed back into place to seat tight. Little detail under the cab.
Verdict: Overall a great addition to your HO scale layout or diorama.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:87
  Mfg. ID: ATH27655
  Suggested Retail: $19.98
  Related Link: HO RTR Ford C Box Van Series
  PUBLISHED: May 06, 2011
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Athearn!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Frederick Boucher (JPTRR)

I'm a professional pilot with a degree in art. My first model was an AMT semi dump truck. Then Monogram's Lunar Lander right after the lunar landing. Next, Revell's 1/32 Bf-109G...cried havoc and released the dogs of modeling! My interests--if built before 1900, or after 1955, then I proba...

Copyright 2021 text by Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of ModelGeek. All rights reserved.


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