Price: $29.95 to $34.90
Micro-Trains Line Co.
351 Rogue River Pkwy.
Talent, OR 97540-1200
Era: 1928 to 1968 (as decorated)
Road names: New York Central, Baltimore & Ohio, and Pennsylvania RR. One number per scheme.
Comments: The latest body style in the Micro-Trains line is a 70-foot heavyweight horse car. Though the model doesn’t follow a specific prototype, it shares some features with cars in New York Central’s 8660-8669 series.
The specialized cars were used to haul horses between training centers and tracks in the first half of the 20th century. The heavyweight cars featured three sliding baggage-style doors on each side and hinged doors on the A end.
When not used to transport horses, the cars could be reconfigured to haul vehicles, baggage, theater props, and freight, among other items. Some cars were used to transport cavalry units during World War II.
In later years, some railroads converted horse cars to conventional baggage cars. The injection-molded plastic model features a one-piece body, a separate fish-belly underframe with molded brake appliances, and a removable roof. The stirrup steps are separate castings installed between the bottom of the floor and the underbody. Inside the car is a one-piece weight and window glazing.
The distance over the striker plates is a scale 72'-6". The truck centers are a scale 56'-0". The openings for the five-window baggage doors are a scale 4'-9". The opening for the six-window middle door is 5'-6". All side doors are a scale 6'-3" tall.
The body-mounted Magne-Matic couplers are installed at the correct height. The plastic wheelsets are correctly gauged. At 1.2 ounces, the model is .1 ounce too light based on National Model Railroad Association recommended practice 20.1.
Though the Micro-Trains car is of a generic design, allowing the model to be painted in several schemes, it has key spotting features that suggest it’s a horse car. These cars wore many hats over their careers and would be appropriate for passenger trains from the late 1920s to the late 1960s.