Equipped with KC brakes (AB brakes in the box)
Equipped with wood doors
During World War I the US railroads were struggling to keep up with wartime traffic, in part because of a shortage of serviceable freight cars. In an attempt to solve this problem, President Wilson nationalized the railroads under the United States Railway Administration, or USRA. One of the first tasks assigned to the USRA was to develop common designs for new freight cars. Among these was a 40' single-sheathed wood boxcar with a steel underframe.
Starting in 1918, 25,000 copies of the single-sheathed boxcar were built. Originally delivered to 22 railroads throughout the country, the cars were well received. Many cars continued in regular service in their original form well into the 1950s. Although delivered with KC brake systems many were updated to AB-brake systems prior to 1953.
The USRA single-sheathed cars formed significant parts of many railroad's fleets. The New York Central System had 2,500 cars, the Milwaukee Road had 3,000 copies and the Pennsylvania had over 9,700 cars. The PRR's cars were delivered with wooden doors, but many later received either Youngstown corrugated or Creco panel doors. The Pennsy's cars were some of the longest-living with a dozen cars still listed for interchange in 1968! Several railroads later rebuilt their single-sheathed cars with steel sides, and the New York Central even converted 700 of them into stock cars in the 1940s.
Rapido's new model of the USRA single-sheathed boxcar features an all-new body with correct steel underframe and correct free-standing details. Models will be equipped with either KC or AB brakes as appropriate. Wood, Youngstown corrugated and Creco panel doors will also be available as appropriate. These cars fill a need for a state-of-the-art model of this common car on any transition-era or earlier period layout.
Accurate new tooling
Correct details including roof and handbrake
KC or AB brakes as appropriate
Wood, Youngstown corrugated and Creco panel doors
Full underbody with separate brake rods and piping
Fully decorated and assembled
Factory-installed Rapido semi-scale couplers
USRA Andrews trucks with in-line brake shoes
Blackened turned-metal wheels