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First Look Review
N scale
Beer Can Shorty Tank Car
Atlas N Trainman® Beer Can Tank Car; Standard Chemical # 508
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by: Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]

Originally published on:
RailRoad Modeling

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Beer Can Shorty Tank Car
Series: Atlas N Trainman®
Roadname and road number: Standard Chemical 508

Atlas increases their roster of N Trainman® beer can shorty tank cars with six new roadnames.

Standard Chemical
A google search finds two strong results for Standard Chemical: Standard Chemical Company of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Standard Chemical Company of Toronto, Canada. This model sports reporting mark SCLX. SCLX is issued to CanadianOxy Industrial Chemicals Limited Partnership.

"Shorty beer can" tank cars
I don't think this model has an actual prototype. It is close to some, however. Data stenciled on the tank car identifies it as a DOT 111A60W1:
    • Non-Pressure Tank Car
    • Top and Bottom Shelf Couplers
    • Non-Insulated or Insulated.
    • Safety Valve (35 psi) or Safety Vent (60 psi)
    Certified to carry
      Caustic Soda
      Fuel Oil
I spent more time trying to ferret out the ARR class* than I did writing this review. With consideration of the above the closest match I found is AAR Type: T103
    Detail Info: Tank Cars, General Service Cars, Carbon Steel Tank (Welded or Riveted), Includes Rubber Lined. AAR 203,203W,211A60W1,211A100W1,211J100W1.
    ICC or DOT 103,103W,104W,111A60W1,111A100W1, 111A100W3,111A100W4, Capacity: 10,000-11,000 gal.

N Trainman® Beer Can Shorty Tank Car
Trainman models are marketed for economy. I think this model is of legacy tooling upgraded with knuckle couplers and excellent finish. Packed in a jewel box for safe display or storage, this shorty is nestled in a clear form-fitted cradle with a lid. A styrofoam block buttresses the ladders from damage and a thin plastic sheet protects it from scuffing. No part diagram is provided.

    Ladder detail
    Dome detail
    Accurate painting and printing
    AccuMate® couplers

Molding quality is high with no flash, sink dimples, visible ejector circles, or seam lines. I didn't find any glue smears where separate parts were attached, like the Miner hand brake wheel. However, the tooling is old and some detail is soft and over scale. While the stirrups and ladders are molded open, the running board decking is not.

Pulled with AccuMate® knuckle couplers, the model rolls well on trucks of dirty brown colored plastic wheels held in Bettendorf double truss trucks. One wheel of this beer can car had one too many and dropped out of its truck while I was handling the car. Replacing the plastic trucks and over scale stirrups and ladders will greatly improve the look of the model.

My inspection finds the model to be in conformance with NMRA Standards and Recommended Practices, with RP-25 wheels and couplers at acceptable height. It weighs 0.8 ounces which is almost exactly the RP-20.1 Car Weight ideal. End sill to end sill it’s a scale 28-foot 8-inches long, and 34-ft from coupler to coupler. No dimensional data is stenciled on the car to check this against.

Paint and markings
This characteristic of the model really sets it off. The paint is smooth and opaque and does not obscure any detail. The multicolor Standard Chemical emblem is registered. All markings are sharp and legible. One of the road number digits is incomplete. The data tells us this car was built in September 1967, holds 10,387 gallons, is equipped with single-wear steel wheels, and lists test dates and capacities.

Six new roadnames and an undecorated car are issued in this release:
    1. Brea Chemical (Silver/Red/Blue)
    2. DOW Chemical (Yellow/Blue)
    3. Eastman Chemical (Black/White)
    4. Hudson Bay Oil & Gas (Green/Black)
    5. Southern Star Lard (Silver/Red/Black)
    6. Standard Chemical (Red/Blue)

Each name has two road numbers to choose from.
Atlas N Trainman® Beer Can Shorty Tank Cars are nice models and marketed for economy. The paint and printing quality is high and they have knuckle couplers. NMRA weight is spot-on.

These are from older tooling and lack the scale fidelity of recent models. As nice as the printing is there is one incomplete digit but i need much magnification to see it. Prototype pedigree is ambiguous.

Modern N scalers can economically create a small fleet with these nice looking beer can shorty tank cars. Recommended.

Please remember to tell retailers and vendors that you saw this model here - on RailroadModeling.

AccuMate® couplers are made under license from AccuRail, Inc.

GATX. Equipment Types (Railcars & Locomotives). [Web.] 2011.

GATX. GATX Tank Car Manual, 6th Edition. 1994.

*RR Pictures Archive.net. AAR Class T - Tank Cars. [Web.] n.d.

Joel O. Lubenau, CHP. Standard Chemical Company; A Brief History of Standard Chemical Company. [Web.] 8/11/2008.

Standard Chemical Company. Background of Standard Chemical Company, Limited. [Web.] n.d.

USFA Hazardous Materials Guide for First Responders
Silhouettes of Rail Cars, Tank Trucks and Chemical Tanks Railroad Tank Car Marking System http://www.hsdl.org/?view=docs/dod/10_01.pdf September 8, 1998.

*AAR Class:
    T: Tank Car. Tank car means any car which is used only for the transportation of liquids, liquefied gases, compressed gases, or solids that are liquefied prior to unloading. Car may be without underframe if container serving as superstructure is designed to serve as underframe. If car has underframe, it must be designed only for the carriage of one or more enclosed containers (with or without compartments) that form the superstructure and are integral parts of the car.
Highs: High quality printing and finish. Knuckle couplers.
Lows: Oversize components. Soft detail.
Verdict: Atlas N Trainman® beer can shorty tank cars have impressive paint and printing and can look good on a modern N scale layout.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: N Scale
  Mfg. ID: 50 001 014
  Suggested Retail: $12.95
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Feb 06, 2013
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Atlas Model Railroad!
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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