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admin 13.09.2014

In conjunction with this week’s NMRA National Convention, the three-day National Train Show is taking place in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Besides the 40ft covered hopper, tank car, and caboose samples that have been traveling with the Athearn booth for over a year, the only fresh models appeared to be a new run of the ex-MDC mechanical reefer in several PFE schemes. BLMA was showing samples of the TTX brown F89J flat and the preproduction pipe loads for the more modern pipe-flats. Exactrail was showing a flyer announcing a Trenton Bulkhead Flat in N scale, but only HO tooling samples were on display.
Fox Valley Models had test shots of the shells for the upcoming GP60M and GP60B engines on display for the first time. Aside from his typical table of etched brass gems, if you asked the right question an RP sample of the upcoming Flexi-Van Mark IV flatcar appeared.

Produced from 1972 to 1986, the GP38-2 helped inaugurate Electro-Motive's "Dash-2" series of locomotives and became one of EMD's all-time best sellers. Building on the success of the GP38 introduced in 1966, the Dash-2 model looked almost identical on the outside but incorporated a host of internal upgrades that lowered exhaust emissions and improved reliability, ease of maintenance, and tractive effort.
The result was an engine so hard working and dependable that it became as common on American railroads as the F-unit was in the 1950s and '60s. New for 2014, this accurately modeled GP38-2 joins our economically priced Ready2Rail lineup in eight prototypical paint schemes.
With over 2200 engines sold throughout North America, rare was the railroad that did not roster these reliable, second-generation EMD workhorses. Most significant was the replacement of the maze of hard-wired circuits, switches, interlocks, and relays - which had characterized first-generation diesels and had been the source of many of their service issues - with modular, solid-state electronics.

Trains magazine recognized this in 1982 by designating B&O GP38 #3802 (a pre-Dash-2 model) as the All American Diesel; the engine resides today in the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum, repainted in its 1982 Chessie System colors. Other improvements toughened the pistons, rings, and bearings of the 2000-horsepower, non-turbocharged model 645 prime mover. Many GP38-2s have soldiered on for more than three decades and remain in service today on short lines and regional railroads.

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