Asheville, North Carolina: Tangent Scale Models announces the availability today of our latest all-new HO Scale model: The Penn Central Samuel Rea Shops 4600 Covered Hopper. Never-before available, we are pleased to bring you this highly-relevant – and needed – prototype in HO Scale.
No preorders. No waiting. These cars are available right now.
During the 1960s, railcar builders experimented with new covered hopper designs to satisfy the evolving needs of shippers as they moved away from forty-foot box cars to bulk transport railcars.
Inspired by the success of the General American Transportation Corporation (GATC) 4500/4700 cubic foot covered hopper designs, the PC Samuel Rea Shops (SRS) designed and built clones of 4600 cubic foot capacity between 1968 and 1969. While these cars were externally very similar to GATC designs, SRS designed their 4600 with a slightly taller carbody and a longer car length. Penn Central outfitted the fleet with a variety of appliance options so the cars could be utilized in multiple services. PC’s own marketing department promoted the cars as “connecting the great grain producing regions to leading eastern ports and markets.” PC classed them in four total subclasses: H51, H51A, H51B, and H51C, for a total of 761 copies. Additionally, 100 cars were built for Lehigh Valley, majority-owned by PC. After serving into the Conrail and post-CR eras, some were sold to lessors.
The Tangent Scale Models SRS 4600 covered hopper is a dimensionally-accurate replica of the real car, designed from actual blueprints and field measurements. We want to be very clear: This is an all-new car. The SRS 4600 is one foot longer striker-to-striker than the similar GATC 4500. The carbody is also 3 inches taller, giving the SRS 4600 a different look as its sill rests slightly lower to the rail than a comparable GATC 4500. Our SRS 4600 includes key H51, H51B and H51C build variations: discharge gates, handbrake appliance options, and body or truck mounted brakes. This replica includes our “near-scale” draft gear box including side “key” detail. This SRS hopper rides on Tangent’s precision 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks with prototype-specific rotating bearing caps and separate brake beam part. Our ready-to-operate replica is finished with real metal grab irons, coupler lift bars accompanying Kadee® scale couplers, sufficient hidden weights, and CNC-machined wheels to ensure the model operates as good as it looks.
Our May 2023 debut includes four railroad schemes, plus two undecorated kit options.
– Conrail (CR) H51C “Quality Gray Repaint 1992” replicates the 1990s-2000s look for the 400-car H51C class. Conrail repainted many cars in their “Conrail Quality” scheme, and we think the SRS 4600s look particularly sharp! This CR car has later-era gravity gates, replacements for the original Youngstown gates. The car body is equipped with body-mounted brake hardware with center-tube linkage. Sam Rea built the car with a ribbed roof hatch, a “low” brake housing and a side-mounted train air line the length of the car, all features that are present on this Tangent replica. The B-end has as accurate Ajax hand brake, modern brake wheel, and a “replacement” Morton crossover walkway. Check out those gorgeous 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks with proper body-style brake beam and rotating Timken caps! This Conrail Quality H51C is painted in light gray with black graphics for the 1992+ era. Look in the upper right corner, and you will notice the ex-PC car number! RTR Conrail Quality and ready to work on your railroad: Available in 6 numbers! SKU 28060
– Lehigh Valley (LV) “Delivery Gray 12-1968” shows off Lehigh Valley’s large, distinctive graphics on the side of the car. These cars were delivered in a beautiful gray with the red LV flag across 2 panels. Penn Central built 100 cars for Lehigh Valley in December of 1968, stenciled for 4550 cubic feet capacity and equipped with truck-mounted brakes. On the B-end of the car, that translates to a “missing” brake cylinder and a brake linkage that extends lower than the sill, on its way to the trucks. Speaking of the trucks, they were delivered in a red-brown color that really stands out from the LV graphics and the gray carbody. The 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks have individual brake cylinders mounted on the truck brake beams. These models are equipped with an accurate Peacock 6500 brake housing and modern-style brake wheel. The three bays are equipped with intricate and accurate Keystone Portloc “Combo” gates, allowing the prototype cars to be unloaded by simple gravity or an air-assisted pneumatic system. We are very pleased to release yet another LV model, and for those who are paying attention, know that we will continue to execute Lehigh Valley prototypes of all kinds to the highest level possible. These cars are available in 12 numbers. SKU 28061
– NYC (CSX) H51C “Ex-CR Quality Patch 1998+” gives us another peek into the later era for some of the H51C class. After the Conrail breakup was approved in 1998, NYC reporting marks were utilized by CSX for their portion of the CR car fleet. This scheme illustrates CSX’s patching of their ex-CR H51Cs with “NYC” reporting marks from 1998 forward. This car has later-era gravity gates, along with body-mounted brake hardware with center-tube linkage. The B-end has as an Ajax hand brake, modern brake wheel, and a “replacement” Morton crossover walkway. The model is equipped with our industry-leading 100-ton Barber S-2 truck with proper body-style brake beam and rotating Timken caps! “Modern” modelers need some Tangent love, too. Examples of NYC-patched H51Cs lasted on the CSX into at least 2017! Available in 3 numbers. SKU 28062
– Penn Central (PC) H51 “Delivery Gray 9-1968” is one of those schemes that just defines a car type. The first 261 “4600” cars built by PC Sam Rea were H51 class in late 1968. Painted light gray with black bays, the cars feature a small PC logo between the ribs on the right side of the car. Those black bays look sharp and show off the white PC reporting marks on the centersill, a feature carefully duplicated on this model. Check out that Peacock 6500 brake housing and beautiful modern brake wheel. The prototype’s truck-mounted brake gear translates to little things on the model like a “missing” brake cylinder on the B-End. The 4 individual brake cylinders are actually mounted on the truck brake beams, duplicated on our 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks! The bays are equipped with Wine outlet gates with their distinctive gear housing mechanism on the one side. Penn Central lettering is something that we take great pride in here at Tangent. This is industry-leading Tangent artwork and graphics: carefully duplicated based on real photos, not generic diagrams. These Penn Central beauties are ready to operate on your layout in 12 numbers! SKU 28063
We also have several undecorated kit options available, continuing our dedication to the modelers. We get it—sometimes you just want to build and paint your own car. We are modelers too, and we continue to offer undecorated products without drama.
– Undecorated SRS 4600 KIT – PC H51 / LV Version is a completely unassembled and unpainted kit. It is based on the PC Sam Rea 1968 H51 and Lehigh Valley prototypes. Multiple outlet gates are included to handle Wine Gravity, Youngstown Roto-Vac Gravity/Pneumatic and Keystone Portloc Gravity/Pneumatic options. The kit has the correct Peacock power brake, Apex crossover platforms and truck-mounted brake features. The kit includes Tangent 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks with rotating Timken caps and CNC-machined 36” wheels. You supply your own favorite couplers. SKU 28050-01
– Undecorated SRS 4600 KIT – PC H51B / H51C Version is a completely unassembled and unpainted kit. It is based on the PC Sam Rea 1968-69 H51B and H51C prototypes. Multiple outlet gates are included to handle Youngstown EZ-Roll Gravity, Youngstown Roto-Vac Gravity/Pneumatic and Keystone Portloc Gravity/Pneumatic options. Multiple power brakes are included to handle Peacock 6500, Ajax and Equipco 4000 prototypes. The kit features Apex crossover platforms and correct body-mounted brake details and truck details for the H51B and H51C classes. The kit includes Tangent 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks with rotating Timken caps and CNC-machined 36” wheels. You supply your own favorite couplers. SKU 28051-01
– Pigeons – 24 Unpainted Pieces is something we didn’t want you forget about: This package contains 24 tiny HO unpainted plastic pigeons in 3 different poses. They are the perfect finishing touch for the roofs of all your Tangent freight car projects. SKU 211
All of these models (with prototype photos) can be seen at www.tangentscalemodels.com !
The Tangent Scale Models PC Sam Rea Shops 4600 covered hopper is a state of the art, dimensionally-accurate scale replica with highly accurate “true-to-life” colors and precise letter stencils. Our PC SRS 4600 offers detail variations and phases to replicate the different SRS 4600 build offerings. Example variations include: body-mount or truck-mount brake systems, multiple prototype outlet gates and B-end power brake options. This replica includes our fine “near-scale” draft gear box with beautifully-rendered side “key” detail. Our ready-to-operate replica is finished scale metal grab irons, coupler lift bars, accompanying Kadee® scale couplers and sufficient hidden weights to ensure the model operates as good as it looks. At more than 150 parts per car, not to mention phase accurate details, genuine Kadee couplers, and all-metal wheels, we provide you with a high-value model that will provide you with years of enjoyment and curb-appeal.
These products are shipping today! A quick synopsis of our PC SRS 4600 era and railroad-specific details and variations include:
• Dimensional accuracy – designed from General American plans and verified with field measurements
• Highly correct “true to life” colors
• Industry-leading “Hyper-Accurate” lettering including exact fonts and lettering placement
• Genuine Kadee® scale couplers
• “Near-scale” draft gear box with beautifully-rendered side “key” detail
• Multiple road numbers for each scheme
• Signature PC SRS “smooth” welded roof with both upper and lower flange roof edge fastener detail
• Ribbed roof hatch
• “See through” Apex running board and Apex/Morton crossover platforms
• Road-specific details for each scheme, including 2 different brake systems, 4 different outlet gates, 2 different crossover platform options, 5 brakewheel housing and clevis options and 2 different routing board options.
• Beautiful details including separately-applied scale wire grab irons and coupler lift bars – no “molded on” plastic grab irons or “thick” plastic grab iron parts anywhere on this replica!
• Metal corner stirrup steps
• Separate flexible rubber air hoses
• CNC-machined 36” wheels with front and back detail and accurate tapered axles
• Our precision Tangent Scale Models 100-ton Barber S-2 trucks with prototype-specific rotating bearing caps (four possible options!) and separate brake beam part (2 possible options!)
• Recommended age 14 years and older
Don’t miss out on the Tangent Scale Models PC SRS 4600, an important and never-before-offered covered hopper from the 1968-2017 period! Pricing for RTR models is $56.95, 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!