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March 2022 Release: Pullman-Standard 3526/3600/4000 HT “Triple” Coal Hopper System

Tangent’s March 2022 release kicks off with our HO Scale Pullman-Standard 3526/3600 “Eastern” and 4000 “Western” Triple (3-bay) Coal Hoppers!  No pre-orders are required – these cars are available right now!  This is the next Pullman-Standard coal hopper product in our line of cars that introduce market-leading design and tooling practices, and is geared toward consumers who desire the most accurate models with a “family-appearance” between prototypes manufactured by the same builder.

The mid-1970s brought about an urgent need for new coal hoppers based upon a combination of robust utility and export demand as well as an aging coal fleet composed of mostly smaller-capacity, 50 and 70-ton coal hoppers.  Additionally, the opening of new low-sulfur coal mines in the Powder River Basin (PRB) region of Wyoming and Montana introduced a new supply of coal to the market, driving new coal hopper orders.

Pullman-Standard was one of several manufacturers that addressed this urgent demand for modern “three-bay” 100-ton hoppers with new designs produced in 1975-1976.  While western and midwestern customers purchased Pullman’s 4000 cubic foot models, the eastern roads purchased Pullman’s 3526/3600 cubic foot hoppers, which effectively had shorter sides to accommodate higher density coal.  We have produced both the “western” and “eastern” Pullman-Standard coal hoppers, and we offer models in multiple railroad-specific variations.  The signature identifying feature for most of these cars?  The distinctive Pullman “trapezoid” indentations on the flat panels.  These cars stand out and look visually different from other “triple” 100-ton coal hoppers from that era.  Additionally, some phases of “western” cars have one “offset” truck bolster to accommodate the longer slope sheet found on the rotary end of the car.  This means that on the B-end of the car, the axle “sticks out” past the end of the car!  These details vary by roadname, so consult your favorite prototype photos or our model photos for more details!

Our system of 3526/3600/4000 HT models being released today build up to represent five major prototype variations.  Starting with the “western” or PS4000 HT variations (not to be confused with our “LO” covered hopper models), our system of models includes three different body shells and their corresponding production details, reflecting the most significant designs Pullman-Standard produced from 1975-1976.  Our model is a dimensionally-accurate replica of the real car, and includes build details such as brake housings, brake wheels, and truck bearings. This replica includes our “near-scale” draft gear box including side “key” detail. Our ready-to-operate replica is finished with coupler lift bars, rubber air hoses, Kadee® scale couplers, CNC-machined wheels, and sufficient hidden weights to ensure the model operates as good as it looks.  Finally, our model includes a realistic and removable “flood load” exactly modeled from example PRB load practices in these Pullman-Standard cars.

The Tangent Scale Models “eastern” or PS3526/3600 HT includes two primary build variations to reflect the significant production details found on the cars purchased by Chessie/B&O, Chessie/WM, and Southern.  The engineering and appearance of our PS3526/3600 HT models are identical to the aforementioned PS4000 HT model, including the “trapezoidal” indentations in the car sides, however they have lower car sides than the PS4000 HT.  A key difference in the Eastern car design is the lack of rotary equipment, so the bolsters are symmetrical like typical freight cars.  Finally, our PS3526/3600 models include a realistic and removable “tipple load” modeled after typical eastern mine load practices.

In addition to the tooling of multiple phases of bodies as part of this system, our new PS3526/3600/4000 coal hopper models feature our 100-ton Barber S-2 truck, complete with “rotating” roller bearing caps, plus separate brake beam parts.

These “core” coal hoppers were bought by a small handful of owners, however the owners bought many of them because they were huge coal-hauling railroads.  Our March 2022 production includes five schemes for these hoppers, plus undecorated options:

– B&O Chessie Black Delivery 1975+ PS3526 represents our “eastern” car release for this production.  After our rapid sellout in the past production, we thought Chessie/B&O deserved to be offered again, quickly.  This series of Chessie PS3526 coal hoppers was large – totaling 2,500 cars.  These cars have black carbodies and include Chessie yellow graphics incorporating the Chessie cat logo and the “Chessie System” stenciling in the upper left side panels.  These cars also have “B&O” and road number stenciling applied to the underframe.  The PS3526 features a high brake housing location to be consistent with other “legacy” B&O hoppers.  We offer this scheme in 24 all-new road numbers so you can model a unit train or mix and match with your other Chessie hoppers.  Also, don’t forget to match our models up with your Tangent Chessie/B&O quad door auto parts cars, in stock at Tangent and at stores!

– Southern (SOU) Brown Delivery 1975+ PS3600 represents one of many Pullman-Standard freight car purchases made by the Southern Railway in the 1970s.  The Southern PS3600 coal hoppers were delivered in the typical red paint with SOUTHERN spelled out on the side.  The stenciling does not end there though – there is a significant amount of stenciling on these cars, plus of course an accurate ACI label.  These cars also have “SOUTHERN” and road number stenciling applied to the underframe.  If you look closely, you will notice that, YES, we tooled up a Southern body version that features the Southern-specific “open style” ends and SC-1 Empty-Load Brake Equipment details.  Check out those details, with a parallel-mounted air reservoir and additional piping for the SC-1 Equalizing Reservoir!    The PS3600 cubic foot hoppers purchased by Southern had low-mount handbrake housings, a distinction from the Pullman-Standard Chessie/B&O prototypes.  The handbrake is an accurate Universal-style brake housing and brake wheel to finish off this Southern replica.  We offer this scheme in 24 all-new road numbers so you can model a unit train or mix and match with your other hoppers.  Also, don’t forget to match our models up with your Tangent Southern quad door auto parts cars, in stock at Tangent and at stores!

– Burlington Northern (BN) Ph 3 Black Delivery 1976+ PS4000 is a different “Phase 3” carbody version of the classic BN paint scheme as applied by Pullman-Standard, compared to our previous “Phase 1” release.  The classic Burlington Northern billboard scheme was applied with white stencil lettering on a black car, with white rectangles on the end and slope sheets to designate the rotary end.  Some of the car fleet was repainted in the 1980s with full white ends and we will offer those down the road, but these samples from BN’s massive fleet of almost 1,200 cars are the statistically relevant scheme for BN’s largest coal hopper fleet.  These Phase 3 models have the distinctive Pullman “trapezoid” indentations on the side panels, and the “short B end, short A end” body configuration.  We offer this scheme in 24 road numbers so you can model a unit train!  This 1976+ scheme lasted into the BNSF era so it is relevant for all modelers.

– Burlington Northern (BN) Ph 3 Black Double Rotary Delivery 1976+ PS4000 illustrates the same BN scheme to the one above, applied to a Phase 3 carbody, which was the 1970s “standard” scheme applied to BN coal hoppers.  These double rotary cars are necessary for many BN coal trains that had to go through a rotary dumper (otherwise the caboose or locomotives had to be uncoupled from the consist).  This scheme is a “Phase 3” car that includes the “Short B and Short A” configuration designated for the BN double rotary cars, and a slightly shorter carbody believe it or not!  Yes, we tooled this version.  These cars also have the “trapezoid” indentations on the carbody side panels typical of all 1975-1976 BN-ordered Pullman coal hoppers.  Available in 2 all-new road numbers for 2022!

– Chicago & North Western (C&NW) Ph 2 Clinton Repaint 8-1985 PS4000 represents the 1980s CNW program repaint cars into Clinton green with yellow ends, which lasted well into the 2000s.  CNW’s paint and lettering specification included yellow ends to designate the rotary end of the coal hopper.  The scheme includes the classic “ball and bar” scheme with a red ball and black bar.  Interestingly, this specific series of CNW cars did not have the distinctive trapezoids on the car sides but instead had flat panels, which forced us to tool a different body shell specifically for this CNW order in order to be correct!  These cars were similar to the BN cars because they had the “short B end, long A end” body configuration with offset truck bolster spacing, although they had ladders on the left side of the car instead of grab irons.  CNW ordered two groups of these Pullman 4000 cubic foot cars of equal numbers.  This Tangent release focuses on the common green repaints that were in coal service, as well as coke, aggregate, and tie services as well later in life.  Don’t miss out on these classic cars from 1985!  We offer this scheme in 24 road numbers so you can model a unit train!  And don’t forget, you can mix these hoppers with our black and white CNW cars from 1975, in stock at Tangent and at stores!

– Undecorated RTR models are also available and come delivered with black paint for those who want to paint their own!  We are offering five versions that cover most of our production variation possibilities:

  • Undecorated RTR PS3526 HT B&O/WM Version 1975+
  • Undecorated RTR PS4000 HT Phase 1 Body Rotary Draft Gear 1975+
  • Undecorated RTR PS4000 HT Phase 1 Body Standard Draft Gear 1975+
  • Undecorated RTR PS4000 HT Phase 2 Body 1975+
  • Undecorated RTR PS4000 HT Phase 3 Body 1976+

All of these models can be seen at www.tangentscalemodels.com !

The Tangent Pullman-Standard PS3526/3600 and PS4000 system of coal hoppers offer a multitude of detail variations and phases to replicate the many different Pullman-Standard offerings.

These products are shipping today!  Features for these coal hopper replicas include:

  • Dimensional accuracy – designed from Pullman-Standard plans and verified with field measurements
  • Highly correct “true to life” colors
  • “Hyper-Accurate” lettering including exact fonts and lettering placement
  • “Near-scale” draft gear box with beautifully-rendered side “key” detail
  • Multiple road numbers for each scheme
  • Two different coal loads (one load is included with each model)
  • Separately-applied “car shaker” parts
  • “See-through” brake platform
  • Full “lacy” AB brake detail and train air line
  • Rubber air hoses including “wrong side” mounting for rotary ends
  • Five dimensionally-correct coal hopper body variations with appropriate side panel arrangements (trapezoidal and flat), as well as offset and non-offset truck center arrangements
  • Six different assembly builds within our system
  • Road-specific details for each scheme, including different brake appliances and 2 different styles of unloading door mechanisms
  • Beautiful details – wire grab irons and coupler lift bars – no “molded on” plastic grab irons here!
  • Accurate interior bracing parts
  • Precision Tangent Scale Models 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks with roadname-specific rotating bearing caps and separate brake beam part
  • CNC-machined 36” wheels
  • Replacement 36” semi-scale wheels for our “rotating bearing cap” trucks are available separately from Tangent in either blackened or nickel-silver finish
  • Genuine Kadee® scale “scale-head” couplers
  • Recommended age 14 years and older

Don’t miss out on the Tangent Scale Models Pullman-Standard PS3526/3600 and PS4000 system of coal hoppers, one of the most relevant coal hopper models of the 1970s!  Pricing for RTR models is $46.95, with quantity discounts for direct purchases from Tangent Scale Models.

That wraps up our update for today, and thank you for supporting the family-owned businesses in our industry!

David Lehlbach

Tangent Scale Models