I spoke to Bill today at the O&WRHS Banquet/Convention and he happened to have the first working replica of the 44-Tonner soon to be released. I took some close-up photos for the page but they don’t do it justice. You have to see it in person to fully appreciate it. He also advised me that there is a video on the Rapido Trains, Inc. website which shows the 44-Tonner at work on Bill’s home layout and it really shows her off well. The video and photos are posted below.
2/8/23 – Update just in from Rapido Trains, Inc. Project Manager and O&WRHS Member Bill Schneider:
Hi all….. So, here’s what happened…..
We decided to do an O&W scheme in the first run, with the other in the next run (I need both!). Because of the 105 tie-in we decided to go with the gray first as I understand that this is what 105 will be restored to. All very simple. until….
I did mock up art of both schemes to try to get ahead. Should have known better. Although we are doing the gray scheme in the first run, the maroon scheme mockup was included in a group image in the newsletter that slipped by me.
Jason and I discussed this earlier in the week. We both feel that doing both schemes at the same time would potentially draw sales away from one and possibly make both impractical to manufacture. So, from a business perspective, we decided to stick to just the gray this run, with the maroon for the second.
My Sidney crews will just have to be patient too… ;>)
Rapido Trains is pleased to announce an all-new group of HO scale locomotives – the General Electric 44-Ton diesel.
Also commonly called “44-Tonners,” these locomotive’s compact design was driven by a 1937 labor agreement with the railroad unions that specified that all locomotives over 90,000 pounds required the use of a fireman. At a target weight of 44-tons (88,000 pounds), these diesels allowed the railroads touse only an engineer, thus saving crew costs. They were perfect for light switching, industrial and shop use.
Built in several variations between 1940 and 1956, more than 300 GE 44-ton locomotives were produced. The 44-Tonners saw service throughout North America (Canada, USA and México), as well in Australia, Cuba, India, France, Saudi Arabia, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay. The United States Navy and Air Force also owned a number of these locos. Many continued in operation with successive owners in industrial and shortline service. Numerous examples have been preserved.
The Ontario & Western Railway Historical Society owns ex-NYO&W 44-tonner #105. A group of volunteers from the society are currently restoring it back to operating condition at the Steamtown shops in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
Rapido is pleased to support their efforts by donating 5% of the sales of all O&W 44-tonner models to the O&WRHS to be used in this effort.
Visit Rapido Trains for more information on the 44-tonner Model Project.