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Model Railroading > Rapido's new CP TOFC Flatcar

Date: 06/18/24 05:51
Rapido's new CP TOFC Flatcar
Author: funnelfan

I'm very happy with Rapido's new CP TOFC flatcar. When I ran my SP 1990's pig train a few weeks ago, I found that I was woefully short of equipment to handle 53' trailers much like the prototype railroads of the time. These cars could be found mixed in with other TOFC cars all across the country well into the 2000's. In researching the car, I found many were being repainted red in the late 80's early 90's timeframe, so it will only get a light weathering. Interestingly they retained the second hitch and ramps at that time. Later the cars would lose the ramps when they fell off, but gained container pedestals for handling containers. I have a photo of a earlier version of this car at SP's Brooklyn Yard in Portland, OR in the early 90's. It was of CP 505021 in brown with Canadian Pacific spelled out, and rather very dirty by that point. I do hope Rapido makes that style of car eventually as well. While the cars did travel far and wide in North America, I can't justify more than one in a train since they were not that common in the US. The only issue I had with this car was the hole in the hitch is very small, even smaller than the .032" brass wire kingpins that I standardized my trailers on a few years ago so they would fit on any car. It was a easy task to drill the hole to .038" and then bevel the edge by spinning a xacto knife in the hole. I love the see-through grating and the weight of the car. Makes a very welcomed addition to my TOFC fleet.
What is surprising about this car is it's length. CP was obviously thinking far ahead when the cars were ordered in 1972. At 63' long they easily accommodate the then standard 45' or pairs of 26' trailers with lots of room to spare. Even here in the US as trailer lengths quickly grew from 40', to 45' to 48' to 53' in the 80's and early 90's, these cars were able to accommodate the changes without modifications. That made them a valuable commodity in the 90's as one of the few TOFC cars capable of handling 53' trailers. TTX was busy pairing up 89' flatcars into Triple 57' machines anticipating the next round of trailer growth that never came. If you like intermodal trains, you need to get one of these cars.

Ted Curphey
Ontario, OR

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/18/24 06:18 by funnelfan.

Date: 06/20/24 09:58
Re: Rapido's new CP TOFC Flatcar
Author: rschonfelder

I agree that this is a nice car and was very much needed for the Canadian market.  Also, the Canadian trailers are very nice.

In production faults typical from Rapido's factories, the only thing noticed is on my CN versions, China left off the coupler cut levers. This I discovered when I was looking at changing out the Chinese clone couplers to the much higher quality Kadee couplers and saw that the six CPRail cars all have the cut levers and the CN cars do not. You can clearly see the vacant holes on the end of the CN cars on my three cars.

I wonder if anyone else bought CN cars and have noticed the same thing?  I will be checking out Plano to see if they have something to fix this because there has been no answer to my calls from Rapido.

Rick Schonfelder

Date: 06/20/24 11:13
Re: Rapido's new CP TOFC Flatcar
Author: RGDave

I am thrilled with the two CP cars I purchased for use on my Onondaga Cutoff.  They are really, really nicely done cars that fill a big hole in any piggyback consist from my era!

~Dave Abeles

Date: 06/20/24 15:24
Re: Rapido's new CP TOFC Flatcar
Author: nsscot

mine are missing too never noticed til you said that...

Date: 06/20/24 20:43
Re: Rapido's new CP TOFC Flatcar
Author: funnelfan

rschonfelder Wrote:

> In production faults typical from Rapido's
> factories, the only thing noticed is on my CN
> versions, China left off the coupler cut levers.

Interesting, I went and looked at the original renderings in the Newsletter #151 from May 2022. The cut levers were not on the CN cars in the renderings. I like the Details West and Plano etched metal cut levers better than the plastic ones on the Rapido models.

Ted Curphey
Ontario, OR

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