N Scale Freight Car Reference

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by matrix, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. matrix

    matrix New Member

    Feb 14, 2002
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    Anyone know where I can find a book article or online source for information on how to pick up an old N Scale freight or passenger car and identify it?

    For example: "50 foot wood reefer, "Carnation Milk," Yugoslavia on bottom, metal wheels, Rapido coupler" Manufacturer: Lima. Importer: Model Power mid-1970s (or whatever)

    That kind of thing.

    I need this for identifying unmarked items in large lots purchased from estate sales. Most cars are marked (or like Roundhouse, you get to know what they look like), but there has been a lot of incest and shenanigans in the freight car business over the years and some of it is quite esoteric. Are all cars marked "Austria" manufactured by Minitrix even if they don't have TRIX stamped on the bottom? Exactly which LifeLike cars are unmarked? Does that mean ALL unmarked cars with these wheel sets are LifeLike? That's the kind of thing I want to find out. I want to be as accurate as possible when I list them for auctions.

    I know there is a Loco encyclopedia online that does this very thing (and I use it), but I need one for freight and passenger cars. Walthers catalog does no good because the cars I can't identify are 20-30 years old. MTL reference guides and other collector manuals do no good because I hardly have a tough time identifying an MT.

    Or maybe there's a rule of thumb list out there and I am just imagining that there are many permutations of the same cars by different manufacturers and importers. But that is certainly the way locos are and I have seen a lot of identical cars marked with different manufacturers.

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    -- alex
  2. RI541

    RI541 Member

    Feb 21, 2002
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    You might try the Hample N-Scale Collectors Resourse Guide,you can contact N-Scale Supply:


    You wouldn't happen to know anything about a Life-Like car with sliding doors lettered for the Ontario Northland would you?