Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

Fox Valley Models N scale Milwaukee Road ribbed-side bay-window caboose

Read this review from Model Railroader
Fox Valley Models N scale Milwaukee Road ribbed-side bay-window caboose
Fox Valley Models N scale Milwaukee Road ribbed-side bay-window caboose
Price: $32.95

Fox Valley Models
P.O. Box 1970
Des Plaines, IL 60017

Era: late 1960s to early 1970s (as painted)

Comments: A Milwaukee Road ribbed-side bay-window caboose is the latest N scale offering from Fox Valley Models. The firm offers the caboose based on the 1939-41, 1946, and 1951 prototypes. Our sample is based on the ’46 prototype.
All of the models feature a one-piece molded plastic body, a separate plastic underbody with molded brake detail, and wire grab irons. The cabooses don’t have detailed interiors.

With 65 cabooses, the 1946 series was the second largest batch after the 75 built in 1939. These cabooses, numbered 01950 through 02014, had features from the earlier production runs, such as straight-frame trucks, small grab irons on the upper ends, and staff-mounted brake wheels.
The big difference between the ’46 prototype and its predecessors was the position of the sliding windows in the bay. Until 1946, the bottom edge of these windows was even with the other windows. In 1946, the sliding windows were lowered, providing an arm rest for crew members.

Our sample is decorated in the Milwaukee Road’s late 1960s repaint scheme. The paint is smooth and evenly applied, and the color separation line is crisp. The tri-color Milwaukee Road herald is properly registered, which is no small task in N scale.

Overall, Fox Valley did a good job on the model, though, there were a few small detail issues. The splash boards, a feature added to ribbed-side cabooses starting in 1941, were left off. The horizontal railing on the end platform was flat, but should have been modeled as a piece of angle iron.

The model’s dimensions closely match drawings in Jeff Kehoe’s Milwaukee Road Rib-Side Cabooses (Milwaukee Road Historical Association, 1996). The body-mounted Magne-Matic knuckle couplers are
at the correct height, and the metal wheelsets (mounted on metal axles) are correctly gauged. At .5 ounce, the caboose is .375 ounce too light based on National Model Railroad Association recommended practice 20.1.

Kudos to Fox Valley Models for releasing a ready-to-run Milwaukee Road ribbed-side bay-window caboose in N scale. This is a signature caboose that had been overlooked by manufacturers for far too long.

Join the discussion

Read and share your comments on this article
Comment on this article
Want to leave a comment?
Only registered members of are allowed to comment on this article. Registration is FREE and only takes a couple minutes.

Login or Register now.


Five compact track plans.

Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!
By signing up you may also receive occasional reader surveys and special offers from Model Railroader magazine. Please view our privacy policy