Category Archives: Announcements

2018 NMRA National Train Show – Post Show Update

The National Model Railroad Association’s 2018 National Train Show was a wonderful gathering of model railroad enthusiasts, manufacturers, modeling clubs, and hobby shops. This year’s show was in Kansas City, MO, which is one of the best railfan destinations in the country. The 2018 NMRA National Train Show ran from Friday, Aug. 10,  through Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018 and featured exhibits for anyone who had interest in trains or model railroading.

Along side the 2018 NMRA National Train Show, the NMRA also held its annual convention which took place in Kansas City from Aug. 6 – 11, 2018, ending with an awards banquet. This year, Walthers acting President Phil Walthers received the Distinguished Service Award for his lifelong contribution to the hobby of model railroading and bringing a more robust product offering to the modelers of North America. Phil follows in the footsteps of his father, Bruce Walthers, and grandfather, Wm. K. Walthers, who both received the award in 1988, and 1963, respectively. The banquet was well attended and included a presentation of next year’s convention and National Train Show in Salt Lake City, UT.

Walthers had several new announcements at the show including multiple structures. View the announcements here.

New Product Announcements – 2018 National Train Show

Milwaukee, WI., Wm. K. Walthers, Inc. is pleased to announce several new products in HO and multi-scale during the 2018 National Train Show in Kansas City, MO.

Walthers Controls

Walthers Layout Control System
HO, N, Z, S, and O Scales

Horizontal-Mount Switch Machine
942-102 – $24.98 each
October 2018 delivery
NEW STYLE – Same great features as Switch Machine #942-101 in a compact design!
• Only 1-5/8″ (4.1cm) tall – perfect for multi-deck layouts or anywhere space is limited

Stall Motor Switch Machine Controller
942-161 Stall Motor Driver – $19.98
942-142 Edge Connector for Tortoise® Switch Machine pkg(2) – $7.98
November 2018 delivery
NEW – Easily upgrade your existing turnout control systems
NEW – Works with most popular brands of stall motor switch machines
• When installed, Stall Motor Driver enables easy installation of accessory controllers & indicators
• Fully assembled, servo-based unit

WalthersProto®

70' Heavyweight Railway Post Office - Baggage Car
WalthersProto 70′ Heavyweight Railway Post Office – Baggage Car
HO Scale
920-17400 Series
$84.98 Each
November 2018 delivery for all models

Roadnames available: Pullman Green (unlettered), ATSF, IC, DRGW™ GN, MILW, NYC,
SOO, SP™, UP®

• Prototypes in service 1914 to 1971 – many converted to work train service & some preserved today
• 30′ postal apartment – typical of cars on dedicated mail & secondary passenger trains
• Clerestory or round roof to match prototype as appropriate
• Authentic interior with mailbag stanchions, sorting cases & more
• Separate catcher arms – operate facing either direction
• Highly detailed underbody with separate brake gear, steam traps, generator & more
• Modeler-installed extended drawbars for use on 22″ radius curves included
• Turned metal wheelsets & correct trucks with built-in electrical contacts

WalthersMainline®

WalthersMainline EMD SD70ACe
HO Scale
910-19845 Series with ESU Sound for DCC & DC layouts $199.98 Each
910-9845 Series Standard DC $139.98 Each
February 2019 delivery for all models

Roadnames available: BNSF, KCS de Mexico, UP®, NS Heritage Units; NYC, PC, WAB

• Limited edition – one time run of these roadnumbers!
• Easily handles 18″ radius curves (22″ or larger recommended)
• Available with ESU Sound & DCC
• Constant & directional LED lighting with high or low front headlight and working front ditch lights
• Fully assembled
• 21-Pin DCC plug
• Same powerful drive as WalthersProto® locos
• Molded drill starter points for grab irons – easily added with SD70ACe Diesel Detail Kit (#910-251, sold separately)

WalthersMainline EMD GP9 Phase II w/Chopped Nose
HO Scale
910-20402 Series with ESU Sound for DCC & DC layouts $199.98 Each
910-10400 Series Standard DC $139.98 Each
May 2019 delivery for all models

Roadnames available: BN, CP, CNW™, MILW, NS, WSOR, Undecorated (DC only)

• One of the most widely used diesels ever – based on Phase II units rebuilt for improved forward visibility and in service from the 1960s to the present
• Limited edition – one time run of these roadnumbers!
• Scale width hood with correct contours
• Dynamic or Non-dynamic per prototype
• Front mounted snowplow as appropriate
• Same powerful drive as WalthersProto® locos
• Available with ESU Sound for DCC and DC layouts
• 21-pin DCC plug
• Molded drill starter points – add grab irons easily with the GP9 Phase II Diesel Detail Kit (#910-258 sold separately)

WalthersMainline 60′ High Cube Plate F Boxcar
HO Scale
910-2922 Series $29.98 Each
March 2019 delivery

Roadnames available: CN, CP, CRLE, CSX, KCS, NS, TTX TBOX (brown, patched),
TTX TBOX (yellow, black, red TTX logo), UP®

• Limited edition – one time run of these roadnumbers!
• Currently in service with several railroads & TTX
• Hauls lumber, canned goods, beer, wine, steel, appliances & more
• Prototypically correct roof with both “X” & diagonal panels
• Separately applied latch bars
• Detailed underbody with cushioned underframe & brake gear with correct angle-mounted reservoir
• 100-ton roller bearing trucks
• 36″ turned metal wheelsets
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

WalthersMainline Thrall Rebuilt 40’ Well Car
HO Scale
910-5617 Single Cars $29.98 Each
910-55600 5-Unit Cars $139.98 Each
November 2019 delivery for all models

Single Car roadnames available: TTX – Large red Forward Thinking logo, TTX – Small red & Next Road logos, TTX – Large black & white logo

NEW – 5-Unit version! Roadnames available: American President Lines, BNSF Railway, TTX – Large black & white logo, TTX – Small red logo, TTX – Large red logo

• Limited edition – one time run of these roadnumbers!
• Based on shortened Thrall 48′ well cars in service 2003 to present
• Holds 20′ & 40′ containers in well & 40′ to 53′ top-loaded
• Heavy die-cast metal frame for superb performance empty or loaded
• Finely molded 3-D brake rods with chains, brake piping & weld lines on body
• Separate deck-mounted brake detail with piping, IBC storage boxes & realistic walkways
• 70-ton roller bearing trucks
• Correct 33″ turned-metal wheelsets
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

Cornerstone®

Cross-Dock Truck Facility KitCornerstone Cross-Dock Truck Facility Kit
HO Scale
933-4131 Cross-Dock Truck Facility Kit
$49.98 Each
August 2018 delivery

• Completely new structure kit!
• Used by trucking companies large & small from the 1940s to the present
• Prototypes receive, sort & reload freight shipments
• Also used by plumbers, contractors & similar small businesses today
• Detailed street side front office w/brick walls, separate gas & electric meters
• Correct height truck dock doors with weather bellows/seals – accommodates up to 12 trailers or trucks
• Includes two paving sections – expand & customize at any time with Gas Station Parking Lot (#933-3540), sold separately
• Great destination for SceneMaster trucks & trailers (sold separately)
• Molded in 6 colors
• Finished model measures: 15-3/16 x 19-3/16 x 3″ 38.6 x 48.7 x 7.8cm

Traveling Crane with Brick Street KitCornerstone Traveling Crane with Brick Street Kit
HO Scale
933-4096 Traveling Crane with Brick Street Kit $59.98 each
933-4097 Brick Craneway Base & Street Kit – pkg(3) $19.98 each
September 2018 delivery for all models

• Perfect for modeling industrial areas from the steam-era to the present
• Authentic detail alongside docks, shipyards & heavy industries of all kinds
• Highly detailed traveling (nonworking) crane features postionable cab, boom & hook
• Includes parts to build 3 complete straight brick street sections with craneways
• Center paving section accepts code 83 rail (sold separately)
• Molded in 3 realistic colors
• Crane measures: 4 x 4 x 9-1/8″ 10 x 10 x 22.8 cm
• Each Brick Street Section measures: 12-5/8 x 5-1/2″ 32 x 13.9cm

Cornerstone Coal Trestle Kit
HO Scale
933-4093 Coal Trestle Kit
$29.98 each
September 2019 delivery

• Prototypes sped unloading hoppers using gravity
• Typical of ramps used from the 1900s to the 1960s
• Compact size fits city or rural locations
• Molded berm simplifies modeling track on grade
• Detailed trestle with supports, abutment, railing & walkway, and bulkheads to build optional below-track storage bins
• Great addition to trackside coal dealers, lumber & building materials yards, heavy industries and more
• Molded in two colors
• Measures 24-1/2 x 4-3/8 x 1-3/4″ 62.3 x 11.1 x 4.4cm

Cornerstone Modern Shopping Center II
HO Scale
933-4116 Modern Shopping Center II Kit
$39.98 each
October 2018 delivery

• Contemporary design with decorative front wall for added realism
• Three stores in one compact structure – use alone or combine kits to model a typical strip mall
• Molded cut lines for easy kitbashing
• Highly detailed brickwork, large glass windows & entry doors
• Colorful signs for a variety of businesses
• Looks great alongside Modern Shopping Center I (#933-4115) or The UPS Store® (#933-4112) sold separately
• Molded in 3 colors
• Measures 10-1/2 x 4-15/16 x 3-1/2″ 26.6 x 12.5 x 8.8cm

SceneMaster™

SceneMaster 20′ Smooth Side Container
HO Scale
949-8650 20′ Smooth Side Container
Retail Price – $9.98 each
January 2019 delivery

Roadnames: REA (right-side & end doors), CN, NYK, Y.S. Line, APL, Blue Compass, CP Ships, Manchester Lines, Mitsui, Undecorated
• All-new container model in standard end door & right side door versions
• Widely used during 1960s & 1970s
• Authentic rivet, door latch & hinge details
• Colorful period schemes
• Perfect period loads for WalthersMainline G85 & 60′ Pullman-Standard VTTX container flatcars (each sold separately)

SceneMaster Zombies pkg(6)
HO Scale
949-6080 Zombies pkg(6)
Retail Price – $14.98 each
October 2018 delivery

Great for seasonal haunted houses or starting your own HO apocolypse, this special set of figures is to add a little “after life” to your layout. Set includes six hand-painted figures with scary realistic detail.

2018 NMRA National Train Show

Walthers NMRA 2018

Walthers will be exhibiting at the National Model Railroad Association Inc. National Train Show between August 10th and the close of the show on August 12th.

The National Train Show, established in 1988 by NMRA, is celebrating its 30th year as a nationally sponsored combined industry trade show and public train show to promote the hobby of model railroading.  This year’s show is taking place in Kansas City, MO, and will feature “Ask The Collectibles” Appraiser, LEGO® mini land, a children’s play area, and free Thomas train rides, in addition to many exhibitors and manufacturers.

If you’ll be in attendance, please stop by and check us out at booth #1606, we’d love to see you!  If you’re not able to visit you can still see all the new products and several new announcements on display at the Walthers booth by watching our Facebook Live stream the morning of Friday, August 10th at 8:30a.m. CDT, and by checking out our Instagram.

Founded in 1935, NMRA currently has over 18,000 members and serves 19 Regions which cover the United States, Australasia, Canada, the British Isles and Europe.

#WalthersTrains #WalthersNMRA

A new generation takes the throttle at Wm. K. Walthers

Stacey and Phil Walthers

Four generations of family leadership

May 30, 2018

Wm. K. Walthers, Inc. is pleased to announce that on September 4, 2018, Stacey Walthers Naffah will become its fourth President. Current President Phil Walthers will retire from day-to-day operations of the company but will remain Chairman of the Board and be available to work on special projects.

“I couldn’t be more proud and excited to turn over the leadership of Walthers to Stacey,” said Phil Walthers, “She brings an enthusiasm and vision to the company that will continue to support our dedicated customers while helping to bring new people into the hobby.”

“I am excited, and humbled to take the helm and to pursue the opportunities presented by this great family business,” added Stacey. “I’m honored to carry on the legacy of the hard work of those before me. Model Railroading is truly one of the classic and timeless hobbies. It transcends ages from the young child with his or her first train set to the adult hobbyist creating highly detailed worlds in miniature.”

Stacey’s promotion will begin a fourth generation of family leadership at Walthers, which recently celebrated 86 years of serving model railroaders. Founder Wm. K. was succeeded by son Bruce, and Phil succeeded Bruce as President in 1984. Now Stacey will succeed her father.

Stacey is a graduate of Boston College and earned her MBA at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, where she studied best practices in operating multigenerational family businesses and entrepreneurship. Stacey has been with the company for nine years, serving most recently as Vice President of Sales and Marketing. She is a past President of the Model Railroad Division of the Hobby Manufacturer’s Association and is the current President of the World’s Greatest Hobby, Inc., a non-profit industry organization which exists to promote the hobby of model railroading.

Phil, who has been with Walthers since 1972, has served as President of Walthers since 1984 and was elected to the HMA’s Model Railroad Hall of Fame in 2010. During his tenure the company has grown to be the nation’s largest exclusive model train distributor and also one of the nation’s leading full-line model railroad manufacturers.

Stacey noted the impact that Phil has had on her career: “I am profoundly grateful for the time I’ve been able to work with my father preparing me for this role, and for his example, his guidance and his stewardship. The impact he has made on our business and on our industry cannot be overstated; the model railroading hobby is better for his thoughtful leadership over the course of his career.”

“Our hobby helps people relax, build, learn and grow. In an age when so many things are virtual, it’s a real, tangible, experience, and through it people create real connections in our fast-paced world,” Stacey added. “Our customers have been DIY’ers and makers from day one, and the hobby’s unique combination of technology, creativity, history and connectivity are as relevant as ever.”

Established in 1932, Wm. K. Walthers, Inc. is a distributor and direct seller of model trains, accessories, and related items from more than 200 manufacturers. Walthers also manufactures its own branded items for its WalthersProto, WalthersMainline, WalthersTrainline, Cornerstone, SceneMaster, Walthers Controls, and WalthersTrack lines. To view the press release, click here.

Fun facts regarding WalthersProto’s newest name train: Union Pacific’s 1960s City of Los Angeles

1. Faced with ongoing problems with long-time partner, the Chicago and North Western Railway, Union Pacific (UP) shifted its trains to the Milwaukee Road (MILW) in October of 1955. UP insisted all equipment match its own – repainted Milwaukee cars and diesels soon roamed across the UP railroad. Milwaukee soon standardized on the yellow and gray scheme for all of its passenger equipment.

2. EMD E9s were the typical power for the train. Between Chicago and Omaha, both UP and Milwaukee locomotives could be used. From Omaha west, UP locomotives with Automatic Train Stop (ATS) led the train.

3. From the fall of 1956 until 1971, when Amtrak took over, the City of Los Angeles (COLA) with its Pullmans, and the lower priced coach train, Challenger, were combined for the winter months when ridership was declined. Coaches were placed up front, and sleepers at the rear. However, both were still shown as separate named and numbered trains in public timetables.

4. The City of Los Angeles carried a great deal of express and storage mail. In 1953, UP purchased 33 baggage cars from American Car & Foundry, and these cars were often found on the COLA. These long cars were equipped with six-wheel trucks so they could handle heavier loads. All were built to the same plan, but eight had separate roof vents, while 25 had a single large vent (these are the prototype for our model). After 1967 when postal contracts were terminated, most were reassigned to work train service.

5. To reduce the number of stops en route, dining car crews remained on board for the entire trip. They slept in Baggage-Dormitory cars, which were equipped with two- and three-tiers of bunks, along with lavatory and toilet facilities that took up roughly half of the interior, with the remainder used for express or checked baggage.

6. Dome cars were the standard by which all western trains were judged and by 1955 UP offered Dome-Coaches, Dome-Lounges and unique Dome-Diners. While UP had used the name “Streamliner” for its luxury fleet since the 1930s, the competition was so strong that the flagships were rebranded “Domeliners” although the name was actually coined by the Wabash.

7. Dome-Diners were the signature car of the COLA. Like a standard diner, they had a complete kitchen and seating for 36. Eighteen seats were located directly under the dome offering an unequalled dining experience. Competing with Santa Fe’s Super Chief, the lower level included a private dining space with seating for up to 10, known as the “Gold Room,” where special gold-pattern china and gold-plated utensils was used in place of traditional silver.

8. Although constructed as tail cars with an observation end, the added time and costs of switching Dome-Lounge cars at the end of each run led to them being rebuilt for mid-train service in 1956; the end windows were plated and a diaphragm added.

9. Typical of many long-distance trains, Union Pacific provided lower-priced and more informal dining facilities in Café-Lounge cars, first delivered in 1948. As demand for affordable meals increased, UP rebuilt the assigned cars in 1959 with a lunch counter and extra storage space.

10. The Pacific series 10-6 sleepers represented UP’s first order of Budd-built stainless steel cars. Although built of stainless steel with Budd’s signature fluted sides, UP ordered 25 in yellow and gray for the Streamliner fleet, and the remaining 25 in two-tone gray for overnight trains. Yellow and gray was adopted for all passenger cars in 1952, and these distinct and colorful cars were standard equipment on the City of Los Angeles into the 1960s.

11. UP was one of the last roads to order new passenger equipment, with final deliveries in the summer of 1965.

Click to find out more about the WalthersProto HO Scale City of Los Angeles or preorder today (deadline is May 31, 2018).

New Product Announcements – 2017 National Train Show

Milwaukee, WI., Wm. K. Walthers, Inc. is pleased to announce several new products in HO and multi-scale during the 2017 National Train Show in Orlando, FL.

ML-8

WalthersMainline® Plymouth ML-8
HO Scale
910-20007 Series ESU DCC Control-Only $149.98 each
910-10007 Series Standard DC $99.98 each
November 2017 delivery for all models

Roadnames available: BN, Bicentennial, Painted, Unlettered with decals: Green, Red, Orange, Black,
Yellow with Stripes

• NEW – now available with ESU Control-Only Decoder for DCC layouts
• Prototypes in service 1920s to the present with several now in museums
• Used as shop switchers by railroads & all types of industries
• Control decoder (no sound) with built-in capacitor to maintain performance during brief power interruptions over switches and dirty track
• Three-point suspension for positive track contact
• Highly detailed, heavy die cast metal underframe & hood
• Etched metal, see-through radiator guard
• Separate metal handrails
• Painted, Unlettered locos include decals with Cornerstone industry logos, numbers & more
• Fully-assembled, ready to enjoy – perfect loco for small layouts
• Powerful WalthersMainline drive with:
– Five-pole skew-wound motor
– Prototypical low speed gearing
– Helical-cut gears for quiet operation
– All-wheel drive and electrical pickup
– Machined brass flywheel
– Constant and directional LED lights
• RP-25 metal wheels
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

Reefer


WalthersMainline® 50′ Exterior-Post Mechanical Reefer
HO Scale
910-3750 Series
$27.98 Each
November 2017 delivery

Roadnames available: Santa Fe Refrigerated Despatch, Canadian Pacific, Burlington Refrigerator Express,
Erie Lackawanna, Milwaukee Road, Pacific Fruit Express – late w/UP & SP logos, Undecorated

• All-new tooling
• Based on CB&Q Haveloc Shops-built prototypes – similar cars in service 1960s to early 2000s
• Must-have car for serving cold storage facilities & grocery wholesalers
• Used to move all types of temperature-sensitive food products
• Matches prototype dimensions
• Diagonal panel roof w/separately applied exhaust stack
• Authentic plug doors
• Detailed refrigerator inlet & outlet grilles
• Late improved Dreadnaught ends
• See-through running board
• Highly detailed underbody w/fuel tanks & brake gear
• 70-ton roller bearing trucks
• Correct 33″ turned metal wheelsets
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

Hopper

WalthersMainline® 39′ Trinity 3281 Covered Hopper
HO Scale
910-7500 Series
$27.98 Each
December 2017 delivery

Roadnames available: Union Pacific – CMO, CSX Transportation, General American, Norfolk Southern, Trinity Industries Leasing, First Union Rail – WSOX, Undecorated

• Completely new car from rails to roof!
• Based on later production prototypes in service from 1990s to the present with 7 side panels (2 narrow, 5 large)
• Used for dense, heavy loads including cement & frac sand
• Run alone & in unit train service
• Separately applied brake gear, discharge gates, inlet hatches & end ladder cages
• See-through running board
• Correct 36″ turned metal wheelsets
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

Well Car

WalthersMainline® Thrall Rebuilt 40′ Well Car
HO Scale
910-5601 Series
$29.98 Each
February 2018 delivery

Roadnames available: TTX 53000-series with two logo variations; DTTX 745000-series

• All-new model!
• Based on shortened Thrall 48′ well cars in service from 2003 to the present
• Holds 20′ & 40′ containers in well & 40′ to 53′ top-loaded
• Heavy die-cast metal frame for superb performance empty or loaded
• Finely molded 3-D brake rods with chains, brake piping & weld lines on body
• Separate deck-mounted brake detail with piping, IBC storage boxes & realistic walkways
• 70-ton roller bearing trucks
• Correct 33″ turned metal wheelsets
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

Spreader

WalthersProto® Jordan Spreader
HO Scale
920-110100 Series
$89.98 Each
February 2018 delivery

Roadnames available: Santa Fe, BNSF, Canadian Pacific, Pennsylvania, Southern Pacific, Union Pacific, Maintenance-of-Way (gray), Painted Yellow – Unlettered, Undecorated – Kit

• Totally new model from rails to roof!
• Based on Model 2-200 Spreader-Ditcher-Snowplow used by dozens of railroads
• Prototypes in service 1920s to the present
• Fully assembled, railroad ready – undecorated kit also available
• Perfect companion to WalthersProto Russell Plows (sold separately)
• Factory-installed grab irons
• Complete underbody w/brake gear & piping
• Thin profile stirrups
• Cab window “glass”
• Railroad-specific details:
Horizontal or vertical air reservoir
Original or one of three later headlight styles as appropriate
70-ton roller bearing or Bettendorf trucks as appropriate
Single-chime air horn
• Positionable wings & moldboards can be raised & lowered
• Built tough with durable metal hinges & other details
• Ultra-smooth rolling metal axles & 33″ wheelsets
• Proto MAX™ metal knuckle couplers

Control System

Walthers Layout Control System
Z, N, HO, S, and O Scales
Components priced from $9.98 – $24.98
February 2018 delivery

Switch Unit
942-101 $24.98Dual Color LED Fascia Turnout Controller w/Drill Template
942-121 $9.98

Dual Color LED Accessory Controller w/Drill Template
942-123 Yellow, Green $9.98

2-Amp 12V Filtered DC Power Supply
942-110 $19.98

Distribution Block
942-111 $11.98Dual Color LED Fascia Crossover Controller w/Drill Template
942-122 $16.98

Control System Turnout Drill Set
942-140 $11.98


• Low-cost solution for easy turnout control in Z, N, HO, S, and O Scales!
• Expandable at any time — grows with your layout
• Use with DCC- or DC-powered layouts – includes built-in DCC accessory decoder
• Plug & play RC servo-style wiring with connectors – no cutting or soldering needed!
• User-friendly instructions with illustrations & drilling templates simplify installation & operation
• Mix & match components to customize your system using:
Servo-based slow-motion Switch Unit
Power Distribution Block
LED panel indicator/control pushbutton switches
Add-on system cabling (Connecting Cable 942-112 pkg(5) $9.98 Extension Cable 942-113 pkg(5) $9.98)
3-Piece Drill Set
2 Amp Power Supply

C&O George Washington

Fast facts about the C&O George Washington – coming soon in HO from WalthersProto®

For folks lucky enough to ride C&O’s George Washington in the streamline era, getting there really was half the fun! A relaxed atmosphere unique among name trains and long-standing traditions of superb service made every rider feel welcome. With the arrival of brand-new lightweight cars in 1950, George, as he was known to his many friends began some of the best and busiest years of his long career.

Following the introduction of Walthers newest name train, the C&O George Washington, we’d like to share with you some interesting facts we learned during the development of this train. The George has a rather topsy-turvy story, and here are some of the highlights:

The George Washington was the C&O’s flagship for almost 40 years, and along the way it established a reputation for service that was second to none. Taking full advantage of growing public excitement over George Washington’s 200th birthday celebrations planned for 1932, C&O began laying the groundwork for its new train in 1931. While the C&O served several cities associated with Washington in his lifetime, the PR department proclaimed him the railroad’s first president (via his connection to an early canal company with later ties to the railroad) and launched a major campaign rebranding itself as “George Washington’s Railroad.”

Introduced on April 30, 1932, the mostly new consist was America’s second train to feature air conditioning – Baltimore & Ohio’s Capitol Limited beat it by a week. Popular from the start, it quickly rose to become the line’s flagship, overshadowing the Fast Flying Virginian (FFV) and was soon known simply as the George. Befitting its status, it carried train numbers one and two in public and employee timetables.

Overnight service was offered between Washington, DC and Cincinnati, Ohio, with stops at key southern cities. Connecting service was also provided to the famous Greenbrier and Homestead Hotel resorts in West Virginia; with no major highways and only a small hobby airport nearby George was the best way to get there well into the jet age.

Plans to streamline all C&O trains began in 1946 with a massive order for 284 lightweight cars from Pullman-Standard. Postwar economic factors led to cutbacks, but C&O accepted most of the 52-seat coaches (80 ordered, 59 retained) and 10-6 sleepers (75 ordered, 56 retained) that became the road’s signature streamlined equipment. As a result of the sales, similar cars were found on the IC, DRGW, and B&O and eventually on other railroads as well.

Assigned to George and other trains after deliveries began in 1950, these unique C&O coaches and sleepers had custom-designed interiors inspired by wartime rider surveys. Coaches featured a curved glass center partition to break-up the “bowling alley” floor plan found in standard cars, which also resulted in blank panels on the exterior. Where most 10-6 sleepers were built with the expensive bedrooms on one end, the C&O City series put all of them in the center, well away from the noise and vibration of the wheels. Outside, these sleepers were unusual in that they carried both names and numbers.

After they were cut from the Pullman order as a further cost-cutting move, C&O simply repainted heavyweight mail, baggage and dining cars to match the new yellow, blue and stainless steel lightweights and continued to use some right to the end in 1971. George operated with heavyweight diners until 1960 when three Budd mid-train Lunch Counter-Dining-Observation cars (built for George’s intended daytime companion, the Chessie, which never entered service) were assigned. These were replaced in 1962 by rebuilt mid-train Pullman Diner-Dormitories, which remained George’s standard food service cars through 1971 and are part of our HO model of the train.

E8A units were delivered in two orders from 1950-1953; no B units were purchased. The first 10 arrived painted similarly to new F7s entering freight service, but management felt this didn’t go well with its new passenger scheme. All 10 were repainted very shortly after delivery (photos are rare) and the next 20 arrived in proper passenger colors. These would remain standard passenger power through 1971.

One of the most operations-oriented trains for modelers, George was probably the hardest working passenger train in America by the late 1950s. Numerous cars and entire sections were set off and picked up along its route, operating as separate trains to serve Louisville, Detroit and Newport News, as well as Chicago via the NYC and New York City via the PRR. George eventually took over the duties of the FFV and Sportsman and on some portions of the run, 16 cars were standard. A third E unit (all were rebuilt with nose-mounted MU equipment) was added to move the heavier train through the mountains, and to power one of the sections. If you want to model a passenger train that features online switching and consist changes, the George is the train for you.

As the C&O and B&O joined forces in the early 1960s, passenger services were consolidated. No effort was made to keep cars on their home rails, and George began sporting a mix of equipment. As a result, sections of the train now ran as far west as Chicago and St. Louis.

One the eve of Amtrak, George had the honor of being the last C&O passenger train in service. Much of its scenic route is still served today by Amtrak’s Cardinal.

There’s still time to make this great new train part of your operations or collections! Reserve yours today at https://www.walthers.com/products/name-trains/george-washington

Welcome to Walthers Blog: The Junction

The Junction Between Railroading, Modeling, and Creating a Great Layout

All aboard!

Photo: Bob Gallegos

All great railroad journeys begin with those two words. We at Walthers would like to welcome you to the beginning of a great model railroad journey here at The Junction!

As you can imagine there are many model railroaders, model builders, railfans and crafters that work here. Many of our interests overlap and we like to share our ideas. This blog sits at the junction of these varied hobby interests.

In The Junction you’ll see posts by modelers and enthusiasts here at Walthers. Blog entries will highlight what’s new, what’s cool, what’s fun and more. How-to articles, tips, techniques, train operations, detailing, quick projects and more will all be part of the mix. Plus, there will be some posts just for fun – after all, that’s why we’re in the hobby!

Speaking of fun, we all have an idea of what our ideal layout would look like. As hobbyists we’re looking to have fun while we learn to build and operate better, or more realistic models.
For example, you’ve no doubt seen product photos in very realistic diorama or layout settings at walthers.com. Ever wonder how some of those scenes are put together? In this blog we’ll occasionally give you insights, tips and tricks on how to use a variety of models and materials to make layout scenes like those above.

In other posts we may write about a specific train, locomotive, car or structure, its use and other models that complement it. Maybe we’ll talk about how to use different modeling materials, or perhaps how to detail layout scenes from prototype photos.

One thing’s for sure, it’s all an unfinished layout right now and we’ll be detailing it as The Junction moves forward. We plan to make new blog entries at least once per month, so make sure to check walthers.com regularly for updates!

Welcome aboard and enjoy the ride!