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Railroad Work Cars

This Web Page Last Updated: February 24, 2019

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This page contains our current inventory of Postwar Lionel railroad work cars. Included here are inspection cars, ballast tampers, burro cranes, fire cars, gang cars, maintenance cars, tie-jectors, track cleaner cars, snow plows, crane cars, searchlight cars, log dumps, coal dumps and barrel cars plus other specialized pieces of rolling stock that are used for railroad maintenance and upkeep. Boxcars, refrigerator cars, stock cars, most flatcars, gondolas, hoppers, tank cars and vat cars are located on our Freight Cars web page. Cars from the "Space & Military" Series are shown on our Space & Military Cars web page and all cabooses and work cabooses are located on our Cabooses web page.

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* * * Click on "Grade" in the 3rd column heading for an explanation of grading.

Postwar Lionel Railroad Work Cars
Catalog #ItemGradePhotoPriceDescription & More Information
55 PRR
Tie Jector
E+/OB Yes $260 The Pennsylvania Railroad Tie Jector Car: un-painted red body with white heat-stamped lettering plus a silver ornamental horn.
Photo of the Tie Jector.
Earlier (1957-58) version without the horizontal slot behind motorman.
Photo of the other side.
The "J" on one side has a scratch and that's about it for flaws! It is a good-looking unit: very, very clean with strong graphics overall and the man is original.
Photo of the operator at the controls.
Serviced by us -- the ejection mechanism works great and the unit runs well!
An "aerial" view of the unit.
Has the original envelope #55-77 (wrinkled; tears; tape) containing the #55-76 instruction sheet dated 10/57 (creases; stains), two #3360-126 original actuators and twenty (20) original #55-5 track ties.
Photo of the envelope, instruction sheet, track actuators, track ties and lubricant tube.

Photo of the box.
Grade 9 original box (minor tears; small scrapes; missing the small square cardboard end spacer).
Another view of the box.
Has the larger insert and this brick-like box is SOLID: clean, square & sturdy -- plus there is no tape anywhere!
Photo of the box insert.

Sharp and very clever motorized unit in one of the nicest Tie Jector boxes we have ever had! The Tie Jector will look good either on display or adding some action to your layout.
3451 Operating
Log Dump Car
E/OB Yes $125 A very unusual item: the operating log dump from 1946-47 with silver RUBBER-stamped lettering!
Photo of the dumping side of the car.
Has a black die-cast frame with a metal tilting tray plus staple-end trucks with coil couplers.
Photo of the other side of the car.
One of the fixed stakes has some bare metal showing from rust removal; the lettering is very, very strong on one side and has only some minor loss on the other side! (Usually the lettering is weak and virtually unreadable on both sides.) Overall, the car is very clean with a nice, rust-free tilting tray.
Close-up of some of the lettering on one side.
The dumping mechanism and the coil couplers work perfectly!
An "aerial" view of the car.
Has the correct load of five (5) original unstained logs and the correct original (smaller 7-inch) #160 Bakelite unloading bin.
Photo of the logs and the unloading bin.
Also has the correct original instruction sheet #3451-27 (dated 5/46) -- a very hard item to find!
Photo of the instruction sheet.

Photo of the box.
Grade 6 original box (tears; creases; stains; glue residue; mildly distorted).
Another view of the box.
Has the original insert (liner) and even with the flaws, this box is very presentable as it is complete and sturdy! It is also the correct "Art Deco" box (measuring 4 3/8 inches wide, 10 1/4 inches long and 3 1/2 inches high) for this version of the 3451.
Photo of the elaborate box insert.

This variation of the 3451 is much harder to find than the heat-stamped 3451. It has been almost three years since we have had a rubber-stamped 3451 for sale; it is the nicest one we have surfaced as the lettering is very readable! If you are assembling a set from 1946 or early 1947, this is the correct car for those outfits.
Log Dump Car

GREEN frame
E+ Yes $ 60
All-metal log dump car from 1954-55: has white heat-stamped lettering on a green frame plus bar-end trucks with magnetic couplers. Catalogued as "3461-25" by Lionel but only "3461" appears on the car. Comes with five (5) reproduction stained logs.
Photo of the other side.
A couple of small rust spots on the tilting tray plus the lettering is not as white as when new and that's about it for flaws! The car is very clean overall with strong lettering and nice vibrant paint on the frame.
An "aerial" view showing the car's tray and the logs.

A perfect car for a layout -- it looks good and it works perfectly!
3620 Searchlight Car E+ Yes $ 60
A sharp revolving searchlight car from 1955-56: has a gray-painted, die-cast frame with black (sans-serif) lettering, orange generator, steps on the frame and bar-end trucks with magnetic couplers. Version with unpainted gray searchlight housing cap and thin lettering on the frame.
Photo of the other side.
The base of the searchlight bracket is tarnished and the searchlight lens is a reproduction item. That's about it for flaws! The car is very, very clean with very strong lettering and nice vibrant paint -- plus it lights and works properly!
An "aerial" view.

A useful car that will add some action and light to your layout!
3927 Track Cleaning Car E++ Yes $ 60 A good-looking operating Track Cleaning Car from 1957-60: this interesting non-self-propelled-motorized unit has an unpainted orange cab with black heat-stamped lettering plus a heavy die-cast frame.
Photo of the other side showing the car in its cleaning mode with the wiping carriage down.
Minimal flaws -- the car is very, very clean with crisp lettering!
Photo of the front.
Has both ORIGINAL plastic squeeze bottles (little or no fluid left). The bottles have the typical stains and dirt around the lettering but the lettering is complete and readable on both bottles!
An "aerial" view of the car.
Fully functional and the cleaning mechanism works as designed! Has a reproduction washing sponge and three reproduction wiping cylinders.
Photo of the lettering on the front & back of the bottles.
Note that this unit must be pulled by a locomotive as the motor inside is strictly for the cleaning action.
Photo of the instruction sheet.
Has the original instruction sheet #3927-44 dated 5/57 (stains).

Great piece that will provide some "play" value to a layout!

Still thinking about this car? A recent Kalmbach Books (Classic Toy Trains) publication just listed the 3927 as one of the TOP 100 postwar Lionel collectible items! See page 49 of the book "Collectible Lionel Classics" for author Roger Carp's depiction of the Track Cleaner Car's provenance including its design, development and history.
6460 Operating
Crane Car
E++/OB Yes $ 90 A black Bucyrus Erie Crane Car from 1952: has a die-cast frame, white lettering, bar-end (metal) trucks with magnetic couplers plus open cranks and the correct offset hook.
Photo of the other side.
Version with thin lettering & one hyphen on each side of the frame.
An "aerial" view with the crane ready for a work detail.
Minimal flaws! The car is completely intact and very, very clean with nice vibrant paint and crisp lettering on both the cab and the frame!

Photo of the box.
Grade 7+ original box (tears; creases; no inserts). The box is very presentable as it is clean, square and sturdy plus it has both end flaps and all four inner flaps -- and there is no tape anywhere!
Another view of the box.

A good-looking car in a decent box!
6560 Operating
Crane Car
E+++ Yes $ 40
A Bucyrus Erie Crane Car from 1956: has an unpainted red cab with white, heat-stamped lettering plus a black plastic frame with white, heat-stamped lettering, solid cranks and metal, bar-end trucks with tab couplers. Has the correct original straight hook.
Photo of the other side.
Minimal flaws! The car is completely intact and very, very clean with crisp lettering on both the cab and the frame.
An "aerial" view showing the crane prepared for a work detail.

A great-looking work train piece that offers both realism and "play value" for a layout.
6561 Cable Car Load:

Yes $ 35
Gray-painted, die-cast, depressed-center flatcar from 1954: has black, rubber-stamped serif lettering plus bar-end trucks with magnetic couplers. Comes with the correct load of two original orange reels with the original aluminum wire.
Photo of the other side.
Minimal flaws on the flat -- it is very clean with very strong lettering and nice vibrant paint! Each of the reels is chipped but they are both all original and very clean! Has a repro elastic tie-down band.
An "aerial" view showing car's decking and the chips on the reels.

A good-looking, prototypical car.

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Railroad Work Cars
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Every industry has to maintain their machinery and to be prepared for all emergencies. The railroads are no different and they have become quite imaginative in developing specialized work cars to perform essential maintenance and repairs. Worn-out equipment from age and the environment plus disruptions in service from accidents and train wrecks required specific and unique approaches to keep tracks clear, signals working, and trains running. The railroad industry proved to be ingenious through the years by inventing unique designs to address obstacles and disasters attributable to the terrain, the elements, mechanical failure, and human error. Self-propelled cranes, snow plows, handcars, inspection cars, maintenance cars, and ballast tampers were used to maintain their fleets, clear wrecks, keep the tracks clear, inspect & repair the tracks, and build new lines.

Lionel offered some very interesting railroad work cars in the postwar era including the useful crane cars, handy searchlight cars, prototypical rail truck cars & wheel cars, plus action-oriented dump cars for unloading ballast & logs and operating barrel cars to transport supplies. In addition, Lionel provided interesting motorized units which were modeled after those items used by the real railroads including snow plows, a burro crane, a handcar, an inspection car, a fire car, a gang car, a maintenance car, a tie laying car and a ballast tamper.

Railroad Work Cars are often forgotten but are vital to your operations.

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Go to these pages to see other Postwar Lionel Items:

Postwar Lionel
Diesels & Electrics Steamers Passenger Cars
Railroad Work Cars Freight Cars Space & Military Cars
Cabooses Accessories Sets
Original Boxes Other Paper ~ Unique Reference Charts ~

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