Categories
prewar 00 scale

Lionel 00 Locomotives

001E, 002E, 003E and 004E

Lionel 00 Hudson Locomotive

Lionel only made one type of locomotive. A model of the New York Central Hudson steam engine. All Lionel models had the same 5342 number on the cab.

The model numbers were numbers are usually rubber stamped on the inside of the cab roof. The 001 locomotive can be found with the catalog number stamped into the metal ashpan under the cab (1938-39) and no number rubber stamped in the cab or with a blank ash pan and the number in the cab (1939-42). The other locomotives come with blank ash pans and the number in the cab.

001E and 002E were three rail locomotives while the 003E and 004E are two rail locomotives. All locos can be found with or without whistle tenders. All engines have three position reverse units and run on AC current.

The 001E and 003E were super detailed locomotives with added parts. The 002E and 004E were semi-scale locomotives with less trim. An 002E with tender is shown above.

Here are some close up pictures showing some variations:

Lionel 001 Super-detailed Locomotive

Lionel 002 Semi-scale Hudson

Comparison of super-detailed (top) and semi scale locomotives.

Lionel Hudson Locomotives

Comparison of super-detailed (left) and semi scale boiler fronts. Notice the added coupler and number board on the super detailed loco.

Lionel 00 Hudson Locomotives

Comparison of super-detailed (top) and semi scale locomotives. Notice the added detail on the top locomotive.

Lionel 003 steam engine

All locos can be found with large or small catalog numbers.

Lionel 00 Hudson Tenders

Super detailed tender (top) has added handrails and underframe details. Two rail 003W on top has whistle and ground plug. 002T on bottom is for three rail and lacks ground wire.

Lionel 00 Hudson Tenders

Top view of tenders. 003W on left, 002T on right.

Introduction to Lionel 00 Trains

Categories
prewar 00 scale

Lionel OO Trains

In 1938 Lionel introduced it’s OO (pronounced double 0) trains. These trains were made to a scale of 1:76. A little bit larger than the current HO trains. Why Lionel made OO instead of HO is unknown. HO was already established and had a good following. American Flyer and other companies made HO kits and ready to run train sets. There were other OO makers like Scalecraft and Varney, but OO was an orphan gauge. Maybe Lionel felt they could influence the marketplace.

Maybe Lionel’s marketing team felt they could repeat the Standard gauge marketing coup of 1906. In 1906 Lionel introduced Standard gauge trains running on 2 1/8 inch gauge track. It was anything but standard. No other manufacturer made trains on 2 1/8 inch track. Within 15 years all manufacturers of electric trains were also making standard gauge trains.

If Lionel was trying to influence the market, they failed. Lionel stopped making trains in 1942 due to the war, and never resumed OO production. Only a small handful of manufacturers made OO trains. Another reason Lionel may have made 00 trains rather than the smaller HO is there is more room inside for motors and reverse units. The European HO/00 trains are 00 scale and run on HO track.

Whatever the reason for choosing OO rather than HO, Lionel’s offerings were short lived. Made only between 1938 and 1942, these trains featured die cast construction.

Lionel 00 trains were high quality. Offered in two rail and three rail versions. The items were also offered in scale and semi-scale versions. The semi-scale versions had less detail and were a bit cheaper. The hopper was never offered in a semi-scale version.

In 1938. Lionel began offering 00 trains. Starting with a smaller version of the 700E full scale NYC Hudson loco called the 001E. Only four freight cars were made in this smaller gauge. The four cars were a boxcar, tank car, hopper car and caboose.

Lionel 00 Locomotives 001E, 002E, 003E and 004E

Lionel’s 00 Scale Boxcars 0014, 0024, 0044, 0044K and 0074

Lionel’s 00 Scale Tank Cars 0015, 0025, 0045, 0045K and 0075

Lionel’s 00 Scale Hoppers 0016, 0046, and 0046K

Lionel’s 00 Scale Cabooses 0017, 0027, 0047, 0047K and 0077

Categories
Postwar 0 Gauge

Lionel Promotional Matches

Here’s something interesting, a book of matches from about 1960. The Earnest Machine Products Company offers a free set of trains for the purchase of White Diamond plow bolts. Buy 2000 1/8 inch diameter bolts or 1000 larger size bolts, or any similar sized order and the Earnest will give you a set of Lionel Trains.

Note the Lionel train set on the matches themselves and the handy advice not to mail the matches. The artwork for the train set does not show a tender. I think this means Lionel did not create the artwork for this promotion. It looks like a cheap starter set.


Lionel Train set Matches

Lionel Matches

Lionel Promotional Matches

Categories
Postwar 0 Gauge

Lionel Employee Pins

Lionel gave employees gifts to recognize service. Below are shown a five year and a ten year employee pin. Employee service pins are very rare. These pins featured a steam engine and inserted cloisonné lettering.

Lionel Employee 5 Year Pin

Lionel Five year pin.

Lionel Employee 10 Year Pin

Lionel ten year pin.

Categories
Postwar 0 Gauge

Lionel Nabisco Shredded Wheat Premiums

In the late 1950s these interesting cardboard displays were included in boxes of Nabisco’s Shredded Wheat cereal. Young boys must have badgered their mothers for cereal so they could add to their collections.

Different scenes were made featuring various Lionel Locomotives. Here are three of them.


Lionel nabisco premium
Lionel 2338 Milwaukee Road GP Diesel Locomotive

Lionel nabisco premium
Lionel 2350 New Haven EP-5 Electric Locomotive

Lionel nabisco premium
Lionel 520 Box Cab Electric

Categories
Postwar 0 Gauge

Lionel Postwar Trains

Lionel Postwar Trains

The Lionel trains made between 1945 and 1969 are called Postwar trains. This terminology defines Lionel production very well. Trains were not made during the war, and Lionel changed hands in 1970. Trains made between 1945 and 1969 are called postwar trains.

Lionel took advantage of the production gap to introduce their new operating knuckle couplers. All Lionel postwar trains except the short lived Lionel Scout series had the famous cast knuckle couplers. Lionel had begun moving towards more realistic model trains in the late 1930s. In the postwar period Lionel continued the trend to realistic models.

The biggest postwar innovation was the introduction of smoke in 1946. Within a few years all Lionel locomotives except the cheapest starter sets had smoke. Lionel postwar accessories featured men who did things. Opened car doors, threw out milk cans and mail bags, unloaded and loaded barrels, loaded ice and many other interesting activities.

Lionel’s postwar offerings were model trains you could play with.

Categories
Postwar 0 Gauge

The Russian O Gauge Train Set.

The Russian train set was made in the late 1950’s and early 60’s. At least I think so because there are dates or at least things that could be dates rubber-stamped on the bottoms of all the items. This was sold as a set with all the items shown below and a bridge and crossing gate not shown.

The track is numbered with riveted on metal tags. You start with the section numbered one and connect number two to it and so on until you have set up the entire layout. There are wire harnesses that clip
to the track and have plugs similar to the type found on Marklin HO trains.

All the contents appear to be copies of toy trains made by other manufacturers. Oddly the Russians did not copy new trains, they copied older items. This could be because their technology was better suited
to making trains with 20-year-old manufacturing methods.

The die casting of the engine is very well executed, and the overall construction is superb. These could be the only toy trains produced in a command economy. Obviously the profit motive was not a factor in
the design.

As far as I know after 1948 no American company made complete ready to run train sets that included accessories except Marx’s low cost train sets and the failed All Aboard train sets made by American Flyer in the 1960’s.

The accessories included with the Russian train were not available separately. However, there does seem to be a lot more accessories out there than trains. This could be because the trains were thrown out instead of being repaired and the accessories were then used with other trains.

Note: The pictures are not to scale. Engine is actually longer than the passenger cars.

The Set.

This is the set with a few extra items added.

The Station.<

The station has a bell inside it and light. The station has punched out widows with nice sheetmetal frames in them. They look like they were designed to hold glass in the frames. There is no glass in the
frames though. There is, however, plated sheetmetal in the frames. Note sheetmetal, unlike glass is NOT transparent. So why is there a bulb inside?

I used to joke with my dad when he had only one station to
look at that it must be because they were designed by a committe. One person wanted a lighted station, while another thought the shiney metal looked good so they compromised and did both! My dad suggested it was because they were made in Communist Russia and the guy who added the bulb to the station needed the job.

Only one station came with the set. The station on the left should have light covers like the upper station on the streetlights.

These small holes are the only place light can come out of the station. Notice black lettering on one and red on other.

The Engine.

The engine is a big blue 12 wheeled diesel locomotive. It is diecast metal. Only the four inner wheels are powered. The loco can also be found in brown or green.

The Passenger Cars.

The set came with two of these green coaches. There is a variation of the lettering and the color changes to a brighter shade in the later trains.


The Boxcar.

Only one of boxcar came in the set. There are probably variations in the lettering, but with only the one shown to look at I can’t make any statements. The door slides. All cars have die cast metal wheels with
oversized flanges, and couplers similar to American Flyer Link and Pin style couplers.

The Flat Car.

One flatcar came in each set. This car comes in two shades of brown. Only one is shown. I don’t know if this car came with a load.

The Gateman and Flagman.

The Gateman is a copy of a Lionel 45 gateman introduced in 1935. When a train goes past the man comes out and waves at traffic. It does not have warning sign like Lionel’s version. The Flagman is a smaller copy of the Lionel 1045 Flagman introduced in 1938. Like the Gateman there is not a crossing sign.

Streetlights and Block Signals.

I don’t know how many of each came with a set. Two different bases were made over the years. The block signal also came with two different heads. The streetlight has a glass bowl over the bulb to give it the shape you see in the photo.

The Transformer is rated at 75 watts and runs on 127 volts 50 cycle current. The output is 5 to 13 volts AC for the train and 13 volts for the accessories.This is a beautiful set of trains with an interesting history.

Categories
prewar 00 scale

Nason P5A PRR electic loco in 00 gauge 1934-40

Nason P5a

In 1934 Nason introduced a machined bronze kit to make the model of The Pennsylvania Rail Road’s P5A locomotive. The kit cost $37.

I’ve had this loco for years, and it’s certainly my favorite OO loco.This is set up for outside 3rd rail, and has one large motor with field windings. The advertisement on the American OO site for this loco says it came with 2 motors in 1935. Here’s a link to the ad.

When I got this loco it was wrapped in newspaper from 1957 so I’m pretty sure this is an unmolested model. I bought this from an elderly woman whose dad had built the layout when she was a girl in the 1930s.

I have lots of OO gauge trains assembled kits, and this loco along with the other locos I got from the same seller show the best workmanship of any OO trains.

A few of the pieces of window glass have fallen out over the years, and there are a few scratches that allow the bronze casing to show through, but otherwise this is in wonderful shape.

Here’s another picture from the end:

Nason PRR P5a end view

Here’s the top so you can see the details of the pantographs and the electrical stuff on the roof:

Nason 

PRR P5A Roof Top

Lastly here’s a bottom view:

Bottom view Nason PRR P5a loco

Nason was in New Rochelle NY. Here’s a bit of history on Nason.

Categories
Prewar 0 Gauge

Lionel 4 Wheel 600 Pullman O Gauge 1915-25

Lionel 600 passenger set in orange

Lionel introduced the O gauge line in 1915 with 3 different sizes of passenger cars. The little 4 wheeled 600 Pullman cars were the smallest O gauge car. In fact this is the smallest O gauge passenger car ever made by Lionel.

The first year the 600 was made in dark green with a gold stripe under the windows and in dark olive green. In 1916 the gold stripe was dropped.

In late 1917 or early 1918 Lionel produced brown cars that were sold in sets with matching short bodied 150 locos.

Later in 1918 Lionel changed the color of the car to maroon. Maroon is the most common color of the 600 Pullman car as it was made until 1925.

The orange cars shown on this page were probably made in 1921. They are extremely rare.

Some of the dark green cars without gold stripes may also be specials from the 1920s, but they don’t look any different from the cars produced earlier so are largely ignored by collectors. A dark green 600 Pullman with a corporation stamp on the bottom is probably a later special rather than a regular production item.

The pullman was almost always lettered New York Central Lines over the windows and pullman under the windows in gold. The number 600 is usually on the car end to the right of the door, but some cars have the number on the bottom. Earlier cars have “The Lionel Lines NY USA” stamped on the end, later cars have a Lionel Corporation stamp on the bottom.

Dark olive geen cars came in 1915 only sets with gold ventilator 700 locos.

The dark green 600 Pullman came is sets with the 700 and long 150 locos in dark green. Corporation dark green cars without gold stripes may have come with matching short 150 locos or 158 locos. Maroon and brown cars came with matching 150 or black 158 locos. The orange cars came with the maroon 150 loco shown in the photo above.

close up of orange 600 pullmans

Lionel reused the number 600 for a Pullman car in the 1930s.

Categories
Prewar 0 Gauge

Lionel 820 Boxcar O Gauge 1915-26

Lionel Brown roof 820 box car from 1915

The 820 Box car was introduced by Lionel in 1915. The first runs of cars were yellow-orange with brown roof as shown above. Few of these brown roof cars were made, and they are very rare. Some guides say the roofs were produced in brown and maroon, but I’ve never seen a maroon one.

The brown roof 820 is much rarer than the brown roof 4 wheeled 800 boxcar.

After a few brown roof cars were produced, Lionel changed the roof color to match the body.

Cars were produced from 1916-26 in yellow-orange and in a darker shade of orange. Both shades of orange cars had Illinois Central or Union Pacific road names. There are quite a few variations of the lettering on the orange cars.

Sometime in 1916 or 17 Lionel made a run of dark green 820 box cars lettered for Santa Fe. My dates are based on a photograph of trains running under a Christmas tree that shows two dark green cars that is
dated December 1917 on the back.

The dark green car is worth more than the brown roof car, because it’s more widely known. The all orange cars are quite common and relatively cheap.

Any box for these cars is harder to find than the car itself, and if in nice shape with all flaps, will bring more than the car.

I’ll add pictures of the other colors of The Lionel 820 boxcar in the future.

Note: The number 820 was also used on a floodlight car made by Lionel in the 1930s.