Home Site Map Postwar Lionel Modern Lionel Soviet Trains Contact Us

Dave's Trains, Inc.
www.davestrains.com

Phone: 732-271-5124 *** Fax: 732-271-9285 *** E-mail Dave & Joan

Railroad Work Cars

This Web Page Last Updated: January 20, 2022

Yellow Line Image

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.

* * * Click on "Yes" in the Photo column to see a picture. Hit your browser's back button to return.
* * * Click on "Grade" in the 3rd column heading for an explanation of grading.

Postwar Lionel Railroad Work Cars
Catalog #ItemGradePhotoPriceDescription & More Information
50 Gang Car VG+ Yes $ 45 The most popular motorized unit ever made by Lionel: the Section Gang Car:
Photo of the other side.
Has an olive-colored rotating man, two blue fixed crewmen, center horn, blue bumpers and "U-shaped" bumper brackets dating this item as a late 1954 unit.
Photo of the front.
Has one broken stud and a repro fixed crewman was glued on to the top to hold him in place. That's about it for flaws. The unit is clean with nice lettering plus the control handles are still there!
An "aerial view."

The 50 Gang Car is common but the center horn version is much harder to find than a gang car with an offset horn. This fairly low-mileage and rather quiet piece runs great!
53 Rio Grande
Snowplow
VG/OB Yes $475 A Rio Grande Snowplow from 1957-60:
Photo of the other side.
It is the EXTREMELY RARE version with the CORRECT "a" on the sides!
Photo of the front of the unit.
Has an un-painted yellow plow plus an un-painted black body with a yellow-painted cab and black heat-stamped lettering.
Photo of the back of the unit.
Flaws: common screw cracks (no loss of plastic), scratches, scuffs, some stains in the paint, railing rivets have rust.
An "aerial" view.
Overall the unit is clean with strong graphics and the window struts are intact! Tested and the unit runs great!
Another "aerial" view.

Photo of the box.
Grade 6 original box (missing a corner of the box and nearby inner flap; small tears; one crease).
Another view of the box.
Has a homemade insert (which is a tad longer than the box) and even with the imperfections, this box is solid as it is clean, square and sturdy!
Photo of the homemade insert.

Has the original instruction sheet #53-18 dated 7/57 (missing small pieces, tears; creases, discoloration).
Photo of the instruction sheet.

This is only the third 53 Snowplow with the correct "a" that we have ever had available for sale! It is a very, very difficult piece to find!
Click here to go to Our Archives Page to read more about 53 Snowplows.
68 Inspection
Car
E+/OB Yes $325 A good-looking Executive Inspection Car from 1958-61! Modeled after a 1958 DeSoto station wagon, this unit (which measures 7 1/2 inches long) has a simulated Hy-rail device allowing it to run on railways.
Photo of the other side.
This all original motorized unit has a red-painted body with cream-painted side trim panels plus chrome bumpers and a roof-top chrome E-unit switch knob (vaguely disguised as a warning beacon).
Photo of the front and rear of the car.
Common paint loss on the chrome bumpers and chrome roof switch knob plus some paint loss on the right front fender. That's it for flaws! Overall, this car is very, very clean with nice vibrant paint and all intact with no cracks!
An "aerial" view.
Has a 2-position E-unit plus working headlights and working tail lights! Tested and this unit lights and runs great!
Photo of the instruction sheet.
Has the original instruction sheet #68-81 dated 10/58.

Photo of the sealed end of the box.
Grade 7+ original box (tears; creases; no inserts).
Another view of the box.
This corrugated box was made by the Express Container Corp. -- 68-78 is the part number.
Close-up of the manufacturer's information.
The box is solid: clean, square and sturdy -- plus there is no un-original tape anywhere!
Photo of the open end of the box.

The Inspection Car is hard to find this nice and we have had very few in collector-quality condition over the years. It is a sharp piece in a strong box!
Our Archives Page has more about 68 Executive Inspection Cars.
3469 Operating
Coal Dump Car
E+ Yes $ 45 An all-metal ore dump from 1953: painted black with white heat-stamped lettering plus metal, bar-end trucks with magnetic couplers.
Photo of the other side of the car.
Some paint chips around the top edge of the tray on one side plus the usual chipping on the lower edge of the tray on the "dumping side" where the door hits the frame. The car is very clean with nice vibrant paint and strong lettering.
An "aerial" view of the car.

An action-oriented car that looks great and works very well!
(3559) Operating Coal Dump Car E++ Yes $ 95 An automatic ore dump from 1946: has a black frame with a red tilting tray plus staple-end trucks with "flying shoe" coil couplers. Version with black Bakelite mechanism housing.
Photo of the other side.
Some paint loss in one corner of the frame and that's about it for flaws!
Photo of the motor cover.
This rare car is very, very clean with nice vibrant paint both on the tray and the frame plus the tipple action of this car works perfectly!
An "aerial" view.
The Lionel catalogue number of "3559" is clearly rubber stamped in silver on the bottom of the car.
Photo of the bottom of the car showing the number and "flying shoe" trucks.

Note that the correct box for this version of the 3559 is an "Art Deco" box. However, we do have a 3559 "Early Classic" box from 1948 for sale separately (discount of $25 if both the car and box are purchased together). Click here to go to our Original Boxes Page to read about that box.

This primitive-looking car with a prewar-carryover design is another example of an early postwar item that is no longer that easy to find in collector-quality condition. It is also the first 3559 with flying shoe trucks we have ever had available for sale!
Click here to go to Our Archives Page to learn more about 3559 Dump Cars.
3620 Searchlight Car E+/OB Yes $ 40
SOLD
A revolving searchlight car from 1955: has a gray-painted, die-cast frame with black (sans-serif) lettering, orange generator, steps on the frame and bar-end trucks with tab couplers. Version with unpainted gray searchlight housing cap and thin lettering on the frame.
Photo of the other side.
The light bracket is tarnished and that's about it for flaws. It is a clean car with strong lettering -- plus it lights and works great!
An "aerial" view.

Photo of the box; brace yourself, it will not win any beauty contests.
Grade 5 original box (one end is taped shut; missing both interior coupler flaps; tears; creases; lots of tape; amateur repairs; writing; punctures; no insert).
Photo of the nicer end of the box.
Lots of flaws but the box is fairly sturdy and will protect the car in shipping and in storage. It is also the correct ("Middle Classic") box for this version of the 3620.
Another view of the box.

A useful car that will add some action and light to your layout!
3650 Searchlight Extension Car E+++/OB Yes $175 A searchlight car with DARK-gray die-cast frame and metal, bar-end trucks with tab couplers from 1957-59: clever car with a removable light fixture to provide illumination to remote parts of a layout.
Photo of the car.
Minimal flaws! It is a very, very clean car with spectacular lettering!
Photo of the other side of the car.
Has a repro crank (but it's one of the better ones) -- and the car does light!
An "aerial" view.
Includes the original instruction sheet #3650-38 (dated 7/56) . . . AND the special "NOTICE" (#1629) warning the customer that "the cable ends . . . will come out if the cable is completely unwound and pulled."
Photo of the special "NOTICE" and the instruction sheet.

Photo of the box.
Grade 8+ original box (tears; small creases; minor stains; "period" writing; reproduction insert). Has a very, very well-done reproduction insert and this box is SOLID: clean, square and sturdy -- plus there is no tape anywhere.
Another view of the box.

A sharp car in a very, very nice box. This very useful car will add some light to your layout!
Our Archives Page has more about 3650 Searchlight Extension Cars.
3927 Track Cleaning Car E+/OB Yes $ 45 An 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. Has a reproduction washing sponge and three reproduction wiping cylinders.
Photo of the other side.
The front of the frame has some paint missing and that's about it for flaws! The car is all intact and very, very clean with crisp lettering!
Photo of the front.
Has both ORIGINAL plastic squeeze bottles (little or no fluid left). The bottles are sharp: clean with beautiful lettering!
An "aerial" view showing the car in its cleaning mode with the wiping carriage down.
Fully functional and the cleaning mechanism works as designed! Note that this unit must be pulled by a locomotive as the motor inside is strictly for the cleaning action.
Photo of the lettering on the front and back of the bottles.
Has the original instruction sheet #3927-44 dated 5/57.
Photo of the instruction sheet.

Photo of the box.
Grade 5 original box (missing the tuck of one end flap and missing a nearby section of the box; tears; creases; lots of tape; amateur repairs; writing; no inserts). The box will not win any beauty contests but it is clean, square and sturdy. It will protect the unit in shipping and in storage.
Another view of the box.

Great piece that will provide some "play" value to a layout!
6362-55 Rail Truck Car Load: Unused

Car:
E++
Un-run
OB
Yes $125 An orange rail truck carrying flatcar with black letters from 1956-57 that was NEVER RUN! Has the correct load of three unused trucks without pivot studs. Flat has bar-end trucks with extended tabs to open couplers. Version with "LIONEL LINES" in thin, short, sans-serif lettering.
Photo of the other side.
Minimal flaws! The frame is rust free and the car body is very, very clean with very strong lettering!
An "aerial" view of the car and the load.

Photo of the box.
Grade 8 original "Late Classic" box (minor tears; writing on one end flap; small color stamping on both end flaps). Some flaws but the box is clean, complete, square and sturdy -- plus there is no tape anywhere!
Another view of the box.
The 6362 truck car was made from 1955-57; the box and couplers date this car as a 1956-57 item.

Note: it is very, very hard to find this box in nice condition as the cradle ends on the car usually caused the box to be destroyed from the inside out.

Sharp car with a strong box!
Click here to go to Our Archives Page to learn more about 6362-55 Rail Truck Cars.
6561 Cable Car ======
Load:
E++

Car:
E+++
Un-run
OB
======
Yes $135 Gray-painted, die-cast, depressed-center flatcar from 1954 that was NEVER USED! 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.
The car is very, very clean with very nice lettering and nice vibrant paint! The reels are completely intact and very, very clean! Has the original elastic tie-down band plus the original inspection slip.
An "aerial" view showing car's decking and the aluminum wire on the reels plus the inspection slip.

Photo of the box.
Grade 7+ original box (tears; creases; writing; "period" pricing; "aged" look).
Another view of the box.
The box is solid: clean, complete, square and sturdy -- plus there is no tape anywhere!
A third view of the box.

A good-looking, prototypical car that will be an upgrade for most collectors -- plus it is in a very presentable box. A fairly common car -- but not in this condition!

Hints for buying
Railroad Work Cars
(We will bring you back)
How can we help?
RR Crossing Image
~~~ Ready to Order? ~~~
Click here to
Place an Order

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.

Yellow Line Image

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 ~

Yellow Line Image

Return to the Main Menu of Dave's Trains, Inc.

Home Site Map Postwar Lionel Modern Lionel Soviet Trains Contact Us

Yellow Line Image