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Milwaukee, WI: Walthers announces the release of its latest subscription series: The Waterfront. The Waterfront will consist of a hard cover book, 6 Cornerstone Series® structure kits and a range of accessories. Starting in February 1998, components will be released monthly through August. The Waterfront allows modelers to build, detail and operate a complete waterfront in HO scale.

The Waterfront opens in February with the release of a full-color, hard cover book, Railroading Along the Waterfront (913-103, $49.98). This 120 page volume presents contributions from a series of experts in the history of waterfront railroading, including Eli Rantanes, John Teichmoeller and Mike Del Vecchio. Experts Larry Smith, Ken Patterson, and John Pryke present tips and projects for waterfront modeling. Railroading Along the Waterfront presents an overview of railroading operations on the East, West, and Gulf coasts, the Great Lakes and on America's inland waterways. With 200 photographs, many never before published, the book will show modelers a wide range of rail-marine operations and the opportunities they present for building a unique and interesting layout.

In March, the modeling itself begins, with the release of the Pier and Traveling Crane kit (933-3067, $74.98). Waterfront shipping depends on moving large amounts of cargo to and from ships. This giant crane loads and unloads ships and rail cars. It travels over rails embedded in a concrete pier. The pier itself, supported by wood pilings, offers great opportunities for weathering and detailing. The modular kit allows modelers to create a realistic pier for any area of North America. Pier add-on sections (933-3154, $19.98) are also available, for modelers to customize their waterfronts.

In April, modelers can add the Pier Terminal Building to their waterfront scenes (933-3066, $59.98). An impressive structure with a brick facade, this type of building can be found anywhere from New England, to the Gulf, to the Pacific Northwest. Here goods are put into short-term storage before traveling inland or being shipped out. With rails that run down its center, the Pier Terminal Building makes for great loads-in/empties-out traffic. Like the pier itself, the Terminal Building is a great kit to detailing and customize.

Walthers will release the Carfloat Apron (933-3068, $39.98) in May. Floats and float aprons were standard components of waterfronts in places where bridges were difficult to build. There were large float operations in New York, Baltimore, and San Francisco. Many small, one-industry operations existed along the Pacific Northwest coast. Prototype aprons allow rail cars to be safely loaded and unloaded from the float. The carfloat bridge, where the rails of the water meet the rails of the land, can be adjusted for smooth transfer of freight cars. The Walthers model can be set up in an isolated section of your layout, or several can be placed in close proximity in a busy harbor.

The Carfloat Apron provides a landing spot for June's Waterfront release, the Railroad Carfloat (933-3152, $39.98). Carfloats carried all sorts of freight cars, between spots in the harbor. Without them, waterfront interchange would have been impossible in many places. This giant (39 inches long) three-track, waterline model will add operational excitement to any waterfront layout. Modelers can use it as a portable interchange or storage facility.

July will bring the release of the Railroad Tug Boat (933-3153, $59.98). No harbor scene would be complete without a Tug, carrying out the difficult work of making sure barges and floats arrive safely at their destinations. Like the Carfloat, the Tug Boat is a waterline model. Based on a Tams prototype, it has a high pilot house and a thin stack. It will look very realistic pushing the Carfloat into its Apron.

The final release of the subscription program, Warehouse No 1, will be available in August (933-3069, $49.98). A sturdy, three-story brick structure, Warehouse No. 1 will make a great addition to a port, or to other sections of a layout. This versatile kit comes with two different kinds of windows: standard molded and screen printed, with finer mullions for modelers who are looking for an exact detailing touch.

Walthers will also release accessories in conjunction with The Waterfront series. In February, the SW-1 Locomotive will be available in 7 new roadnames (932-1355+, $79.98 ). Pier add-on sections (933-3154, $19.98) and Preiser Stevedores/Dock Crew figures, repainted and packaged for the Waterfront series (590-1010053, $19.98) will be available in March. In April, the GSC Flat Car will be available in 7 new roadnames, (932-3750 +, $9.98). Walthers will release special Street Track Inserts (933-3140, $11.98) in May; these allow modelers to make realistic Waterfront street scenes, with track running down the middle of streets. Six new roadnames of Walthers 40' Meat Reefers (932-2550+, $10.98) with new sides will be released in July. In June, another Preiser product, the 7-man Tug Crew, (590-1010052, $14.98) will be available, along with an Idler Car set (933-968, $21.98). Locomotives are often too heavy to move out onto piers or carfloat aprons; idler cars act as arms for the locos, allowing freight cars to be placed and retrieved without tipping the float or endangering the locomotive.

As with previous Walthers subscription series (The Works and Trees & Trains), The Waterfront Cornerstone Series® structures are sold through a subscription. Customers pay just $44.98 per month over the 7 month run of the series. Accessories are sold separately. Subscribers save $60, getting a $374.86 value for just $314.86.

Walthers is located at: Wm. K. Walthers, Inc., 5601 W. Florist Ave., P.O. Box 3039, Milwaukee, WI 53201-3039.

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