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General American 10,000 Gallon 1917-Design Radial Course Tank Car

By the end of World War I, U.S. production of oil and oil-related products was sharply increasing thanks to the combination of war-related demands as well as demands from home. In order to move oil and new consumer products, tank car producers introduced new car designs. In 1917 General American Tank Car introduced a new general service 10,000 gallon non-insulated tank car. Built in East Chicago, IN, these cars were easily identifiable by their circumferential rivets that surrounded the tank body, with notably different heights between the courses. These “radial course” tank cars utilized steel bolster plates that rise up vertically to hold the tank in place, complete with a “web” section behind to minimize steel consumption. At a time of fairly monochromatic box cars plying the rails, most consumable products and oil shippers proudly displayed their company markings on the tanks. This car design was no exception, with Sinclair being a dominant purchaser of tank cars of this type. Additionally, many smaller oil shippers had fleets of these cars during the oil boom years. Finally, as many oil businesses failed, the cars ended up back with GATC and were restenciled with new owner markings and were placed back into service for a new owner. Between Sinclair, Humble Oil, Hercules Powder Company, and other schemes to come in future releases, think of this as one of the first “crude oil” tank cars of consequence. Forget boring present day tanks. These cars were the most prolific tank cars built during the first tank car building boom, and were found everywhere from 1917 to 1970.

The GATC 1917-Design 10,000 Gallon Tank Car is our THIRD all-new 1917-Design radial course tank car design released – the previous two were 8,000 gallon designs! The difference is shown in the tank diameter – the 10,000 gallon tank is the same length as an 8,000 gallon one, but the tank has a larger diameter which adds diversity in size that you typically see in tank car groupings from the 1920s to the 1960-70s.

Our GATC 1917-Design series of three different tank cars are the first plastic radial course tanks offered in HO plastic! (Radial course means the tank’s steel panels overlap each other, looking like “stairsteps”). Here is a prototype photo showing the radial steel panel courses and the overlapping of the panels.

radial-course-stairsteps-1917-2-crop

By the end of World War I, U.S. production of oil and oil-related products was sharply increasing thanks to the combination of war-related demands as well as demands from home. In order to move oil and new consumer products, tank car producers introduced new car designs. In 1917 General American Tank Car introduced a new general service 10,000 gallon non-insulated tank car. Built in East Chicago, IN, these cars were easily identifiable by their circumferential rivets that surrounded the tank body, with notably different heights between the courses. These “radial course” tank cars utilized steel bolster plates that rise up vertically to hold the tank in place, complete with a “web” section behind to minimize steel consumption at a time when steel was a scarce commodity.

bolster-detail-1917-1920

At a time of fairly monochromatic box cars plying the rails, most consumable products and oil shippers proudly displayed their company markings on the tanks, as evidenced by the GATX “Sunburst Refining” example car we are offering in this production batch. Sunburst Refining Company leased cars from General American for shipping of refined oil products nationwide from Great Falls, Montana. Sunburst Refining likely tapped the Kevin-Sunburst oil field in North-Central Montana, which was developed right after World War I. These cars are stenciled for Sunburst’s headquarters city of Great Falls, Montana, which was served by both Great Northern and Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul, and Pacific (“The Milwaukee”), and feature a black-painted carbody with typical GATX graphics from the post-WWI period. Check out the fine stencilized lettering detail on this car!

Additionally, oil products shipper Sinclair purchased a very large fleet of these cars as well, decorated in the distinctive silver lettering scheme.

As the tank car fleet aged, some cars changed hands to new owners. Allied Chemical is one of those owners where a new scheme was applied in 1964. Here is a shot of it in service in 1968 on the east coast. This scheme wears the red and white Allied Chemical logo that is nicely applied to the rounded contours of the tank. The car stenciling includes separate stencil instances for “Chemicals” and “Plastics Division.”

Between Sinclair, Sunburst Refining, and other schemes, think of this as one of the first “crude oil” tank cars of consequence. Forget boring present day tanks. These cars were the most prolific tank cars built during the first tank car building boom, and were found everywhere from 1917 to 1970.

Available paint schemes are listed at right, and you can click on the images to see more photos and order! Prototype images for each scheme are available by clicking as well, mixed in with the model images.

The Tangent Scale Models GATC 1917-Design 10,000 Gallon Insulated Tank Car is a highly-detailed tank car model that includes details accurate for each paint scheme, including KC- or AB-brake variations, with or without Cardwell draft sill springs, and different hand brakes. Other visually-distinctive details for our models include the “see through” bolster section, circumferential rivets, and differing course heights. Our RTR models include correct “true-to-life” colors and “hyper-accurate” lettering including exact fonts and lettering placement. Finally, our scale replicas operate as well as they look, equipped with free-rolling all-metal wheels and Kadee® scale couplers, meaning our models are truly ready to run.

The Tangent Scale Models GATC 1917-Design 10,000 Gallon General Service Tank Car is a highly-detailed tank car model that includes details accurate for each paint scheme, including KC- or AB-brake variations, different dome heights, with or without Cardwell draft sill springs, and different hand brakes.

Here is a closeup of the AB-brake system on our 1917 model, which is found on our Sinclair and Allied Chemical tank cars.

218sidestart-ab-crop

Other visually-distinctive details for our models include the “see through” bolster section, circumferential rivets, and differing course heights.

These replicas will certainly be eye-catchers on your layout! Check out the radial courses – they look like nothing else in HO!

Features for these awesome replicas include:
– Circumferential riveted tank body and riveted underframe (count ‘em, there are many!)
– Radial course tank body – note the “stairstep” appearance!
– All-new underframe for the GATC 1917-design
– “See-through” cast knee above the bolsters
– Accurate dome appliances
– Dimensionally-correct hazardous placards with accurate hole detail
– Separately applied tank handrail
– Separately applied tank strap detail
– KC- or AB- brake variations depending on the prototype car
– Inclusion of Cardwell draft sill springs depending on the prototype car, otherwise “oval” frame openings where the springs were removed
– Different hand brake appliance options depending on the prototype car
– Highly correct “true to life” colors
– “Hyper-Accurate” lettering including exact fonts and lettering placement, including lettering applied to the underframe and air reservoir
– Durable wire grab irons and coupler lift bars
– Separate air hoses
– “Near-scale” draft gear box with side detail
– Kadee® “scale-head” couplers
– CNC-machined 33” wheels in high-quality Tangent Scale Models ASF cast steel truck with spring plank and with separate brake beams
– Replacement semi-scale wheels available separately from Tangent
– Multiple road numbers for each scheme – these cars often traveled in “groups” of more than one
– Recommended age 14 years and older

Available paint schemes are listed in the box at right, and from there you can click on the images to see more photos and order! Prototype images for each scheme are available by clicking as well, mixed in with the model images.

Don’t miss out on the Tangent Scale Models General American 10,000 gallon 1917-design radial course tank car! Just like its prototype, this car will stand out on any layout situated from 1917 to 1970, and they went everywhere!

Please click on the images at right for pricing, SKUs, high resolution photos, prototype photos, car number options, and/or to order!