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Algoma Central Railfan & Modelling Site - Models

Available Models Lettered For the ACR

N Scale - HO Scale - Other Scales

This is a list of commercially available models available in either ready to run or "shake the box" kit form, lettered for the Algoma Central. The models listed here are not necessarily accurate, but some of the items listed here will be good for building a fleet of "close-enough" stand-ins with minimum effort for a more casual modeller.
For those modellers willing to put in the extra time and effort for a really accurate fleet, see here.

For other suggestions and discussions on accurately modelling AC equipment, and histories of the prototype, see the Equipment Guide.

N Scale

Diesel Locomotives

GP7

Manufacturer: Atlas
Accuracy Rating: Good
Time Frame: 1952-1985
Atlas's GP7 represents an early "Phase I" GP7 and is perfect for an ACR model. Just minor road-specific details like bells, horns and MU stands need to be addressed.

SD40

Model Photo
Manufacturer: Kato
Road Numbers: 180, 182
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Time Frame: 1971-1995
As with any mass-produced locomotive, there are a number of road-specific detail differences between the commercial model and the ACR prototype. The model is based on common US prototype features, and the AC units display common Canadian features such as low headlights, cab front bell, snowplow, snowshields, ditch lights, Canadian style vertical steps.

Passenger

Cafe Coach

Manufacturer: Wheels of Time
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in?
Time Frame: 1952-1990?

Freight

42' Gondola

Model Photo
Manufacturer: Atlas (TrainMan)
Accuracy Rating: Poor
Time Frame: 1950s-1970s
This is old Atlas train-set level tooling. The paint scheme and numbering is a decent representation of the 1960s-1970s paint scheme that was featured on the AC 4600-4800 series gondolas (their short length precluded the post 1950s billboard style lettering), but these were custom built cars that don't bear any physical resemblance to the model.

50' Gondola

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Micro-trains
Accuracy rating: Stand-in
Time Frame: 1958-2000 Stand in for the AC 601-875 series 52' drop-end mill gondolas.

40' Steel Boxcar

Manufacturer: Model Power
Road Number: 2901
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Time Frame: 1962-1970s
Only one car ever wore this paint scheme, and is represented by this car, although the model is not accurate for the rebuilt steel boxcar.

HO Scale

Diesel Locomotives

GP7

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Road numbers: 150, 170
Manufacturer: Life Like (Proto 2000)
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in
Time Frame: 1960s-1980s
The ACR's GP7s were early "Phase I" units. The Life-Like model is a "Phase II" and has several detail differences to the Algoma Central units. Basically, the dynamic brake fan should be 36" diameter instead of 48" and the side sill skirts have cut-out holes where they should be solid. Walthers has since re-released the GP7 with the proper phase details.
This model is long out of production.
Note on time frame: the AC's GP7s were acquired in 1952, but originally had no road numbers on the sides. The model lettering represents the 1960s+ version of the AC lettering scheme.

GP7

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Walthers (Proto 2000)
Road numbers: 152, 153, 158, 161
Accuracy Rating: Good
Time Frame: 1960s-1980s
Walthers re-release of the Proto2000 model, this time as a "Phase I" model which is closer to the AC units. Only minor details like MU connections, radio antennas and horn and bell locations would need to be addressed.
Note on time frame: the AC's GP7s were acquired in 1952, but originally had no road numbers on the sides. The model lettering represents the 1960s+ version of the AC lettering scheme.

GP9

Manufacturer: Life Like (Proto 2000)
Road numbers: 172
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1963-1986
There are some slight differences between the Life-Like model and the ACR units, mostly in the frame. The ACR's GP9s were the last two GP9s ever built and they have GP20 style frames. The best way to make an accurate ACR GP9 would be to take a factory-painted GP9 shell and mate it to a Proto2000 GP20 frame and drive.
This model is long out of production.

SW8

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Life Like (Proto 2000)
Road Number: 140
Accuracy Rating: Excellent/Good
Appropriate Era: 1952-1995 The AC's two SW8s were pretty standard units, and these models are pretty good for the as-delivered appearance of AC 140-141. Later on, the stack was shortened and fitted with a circular spark arrestor.

SD40

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Kato
Road numbers: 180, 182
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1971-1990
As with any mass-produced locomotive, there are a number of road-specific detail differences between the commercial model and the ACR prototype. The model is based on common US prototype features, and the AC units display common Canadian features such as low headlights, cab front bell, snowplow, snowshields, ditch lights, Canadian style vertical steps.

GP38-2

Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Life Like (Proto 2000)
Road numbers: 203
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1981-1995
Same comments as the Kato SD40 above. This was produced as a special limited run by Hobbycraft Canada with Life-Like.

FP9

Model Photo
Prototype Photos
Manufacturer: Intermountain
Road numbers: 1752, 1754
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1995-2001
Intermountain modified their FP7 into something close to an FP9, and as such there are subtle detail differences, plus the road-specific details for the AC that would still need to be added.

FP9

Prototype Photos
Manufacturer: Rapido Trains (upcoming)
Road numbers: 1750, 1754, 1755
Accuracy Rating: Excellent
Appropriate Era: 1995-2001
Rapido's model is specifically based on the GMDD built FP9s owned by CN and loaded with road-specific details. These models should have 100% accurate road-specific details for each unit represented.

Passenger

Streamline Baggage/RPO/Coach/Diner/Dome/Observation/Sleeper Car Set

Model Photo
Accuracy Rating: Poor
Appropriate Era: None
None of the cars in this set remotely match any ACR prototypes, and the models are not of an overall high quality. Several of these types were not even represented on the ACR at all (Sleeper, RPO) and most were not represented in stainless steel, with a couple exceptions (diners 504, 506, baggage 211/302, observation Canyon View).

Steam Generator

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Rapido Trains
Road Numbers: 72, 74, 75, 77
Accuracy Rating: Good *(see notes)
Appropriate Era: 1992-present
GMDD steam generator. Rapido road numbers 72, 74, 75 and 77, but only 75 and 77 are appropriate for this type of car. One minor error crept into the artwork for this car: the stripes should not continue across the side access door.

Baggage Car

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Rapido Trains
Road Numbers: 307, 308, 309, 311
Accuracy Rating: Excellent *(see notes)
Appropriate Era: 1983-present
Representative of the AC's ex-CN baggage cars, acquired mostly in the mid 1980s. (Note that 308 and 309 have unusual hinged end doors, which are not represented on the model, as this is a slightly different variation of ex-CN car. The rest of the car is pretty much the same.

Lightweight Coach

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Rapido Trains
Road Numbers: 5441*, 5462*, 5474*, 5483*, 5494* (first run), 5512, 5514, 5519, 5545, 5571 (second run)
Accuracy Rating: Excellent *(see Notes)
Appropriate Era: 1992-present
The Rapido coach is based on a CNR prototype, and the cars currently operated by the ACR are ex-VIA, originally CN coaches of the same prototype. So Rapido's cars are dead-on in terms of detail. Unfortunately the colour of the first run of AC cars is a little off, as they are a slightly tan colour rather than the pure silver-grey of the prototype. This was corrected for the more recent second run of AC car numbers.

Freight

50' Gondola

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Athearn
Road number: 715
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1958-2000
Athearn's car is 2 feet short and has solid ends rather than drop ends. Only available in one number. Unknown what (if any) actual prototype the Athearn car was based on.

52'6" Gondola

Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Life-Like (Proto 2000)
Road Numbers: 621, 650, 658, 672, 675, 703
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1958-2000
The Proto 2000 car is a high-quality model of a 52'6" drop-end mill gondola, but is based on a US design built by Greenville Steel Car and Bethlehem Steel. This car has a deeper side sill and one extra side panel compared to the NSC cars that the ACR owned, but this is currently the best stand-in available. Available in 6 different numbers. This was produced as a special limited run by Hobbycraft Canada.

52'8" Bulkhead Flatcar

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Walthers
Road Numbers: 2420, 2412, 2423, 2415
Accuracy Rating: Excellent
Appropriate Era: 1975-present
This is the first RTR release to be fully accurate for the Algoma Central. The model is based on the same Hawker-Siddeley prototype acquired by the ACR and the lettering is accurate.

52'8" Bulkhead Flatcar - ex-BCIT Patch

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Walthers
Road Numbers: 2467, 2426, 2474
Accuracy Rating: Excellent
Appropriate Era: 1975-present

40' Steel Boxcar

Model Photo
Manufacturer: Model Power
Road Number: 2901
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1952-1970s
Only one car ever wore this paint scheme, and is represented by this car, although the model's details are not at all accurate for the prototype car which was a steel-sheathed rebuild of an old outside-braced wooden boxcar..

Triple Hopper

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Model Die Casting/Roundhouse
Road Number: 8600, 8629
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in/Poor
Appropriate Era: 1984-present
The MDC car is too short, and is missing three full panels at the right side of the car where the large ONR logo should be. Also the colours are wrong. The MDC car is painted black, and the numbers re-marked in blue. These cars were actually a (heavily weathered) dark forest green, and the reporting marks and numbers were marked out in a lighter green, definately not blue. Out of production.

Triple Hopper

Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: True-Line Trains (Hobbycraft Canada)
Road Number: 6049, 6050, 6058, 6066, 6071, 6075
Accuracy Rating: Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 197x?-1984 (1984-present if renumbered by modeller into 8600-8629 series)
Once again, it's the ONR paint scheme on the completely wrong car (Atlas 90-ton hopper). The car body is too short and has less panels than the prototype, and the lettering is squished in to fit on the car. Better option than the MDC car though.

Rapid-Discharge Triple Hopper

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Walthers
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in *(see notes)
Appropriate Era: 1974-1998
Lettering on these cars is pretty good (some minor errors in data and placement of the smaller lettering crept in on later runs), but the interior features solid bulkheads, while the ACR cars had steel tube bracing in a "V"-shape between each hopper. The bulkheads should be replaced with the bracing and the interior repainted. This modification should be able to be completed without damaging the paint on the exterior body.

Rapid-Discharge Triple Hopper (WC Re-mark)

Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Walthers
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in *(see notes)
Appropriate Era: 1995-1998
Walthers released this lettering scheme before doing the original ACR scheme. Their first attempt got a lot of things pushed over onto the wrong body panel. Later runs largely corrected the lettering errors. See reference above for interior detail differences.

Rapid-Discharge Triple Hopper (SSAM/WC Full Repaint)

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Walthers
Accuracy Rating: Good/Stand-in
Appropriate Era: 1995-1998
See comments above about interior details.

Caboose

Steel Caboose (CN Pt. St. Charles)

Model Photo
Prototype Photo
Manufacturer: Overland
Accuracy Rating: Excellent
Appropriate Era: 1976-1998
Factory painted brass. Overland offered two numbers in both the original large logo and 1990s smaller repaint logo.

Steel Caboose (ex-CP)

Prototype photo
Manufacturer: Rapido Trains
Accuracy Rating: Excellent
Appropriate Era: 1992-approx. 2000
Model based on the CP prototype, lettered and accurate for AC 9607-9609 which were acquired from CP in 1992.

This page 2001 Chris VanderHeide


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