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In-Box Review
O scale
2-Rail Caboose Trucks
Friction Bearing Caboose Trucks
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by: Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]

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This set of O scale Friction Bearing Caboose Trucks from Atlas O are for 2-Rail operations. This metal set is Item 7072.

There are many high-railers who have converted to 2-rail and seek a nice set of trucks to convert their rolling stock. Atlas offers this set for them, and also for modelers who want to improve older 2-rail models, and non-Atlas models.
    Cabooses were often equipped with trucks that were smoother riding than those used on standard freight cars. Improved ride quality was also the reason why caboose trucks generally had elliptical “leaf” springs in place of coil springs, a design choice made possible because a caboose has a relatively constant weight. The Barber-Bettendorf Swing Motion caboose truck was among the most popular in the solid-journal era.[1]

This model caboose truck looks like a Barber-Bettendorf Swing Motion. Let us examine the model now.

Friction Bearing Caboose Trucks (2-Rail)
A set of two trucks come together in a bubble pack with cardboard backing. A set of adapters allow modelers to mount these onto cabeese of other manufacturers.

These trucks are metal. They have wiper contacts for powering interior lighting and presumably sound card decoders.

Atlas advertises these features:
    * Sprung Die-Cast Trucks
    * Scale 33” or 36” Turned-Brass Wheel Sets
    * Freight Trucks include Adaptor for Mounting on non-Atlas Cars

The cast sideframes capture the look of Barber-Bettendorf Swing Motion trucks. Elliptical spring ends protrude from the side and look convincing, except that the springs I have examined all have a round hinge-like end; the spring ends do not fill the opening they poke through allowing one to peer through, while the model has the voids filled. Journal box covers look good.

Caboose sideframes I have looked at hosts data cast on them, usually the cast date and the railroad they were cast for, and dimensional and variant data. (Reference the included photo, even though it is a pre-Barber Bettendorf. Another good reference is available through Click here for additional images for this review, below.) Since such information can be railroad-specific, Atlas may be excused for not adding this detail. However, the sideframes look plain without the detail. Tooling lorem ipsum text on them will increase authenticity but would it be acceptable by all but the most accuracy-oriented modelers?

Instructions and Color
The trucks are black. The wheel sets are also blackened. It should be no problem to grime and rust 'em up.

There are no instructions for mounting these trucks.

Atlas' 2-Rail O scale Friction Bearing Caboose Trucks is a good looking set for upgrading one's caboose. Even a non-Atlas model, thanks to Atlas' inclusion of adapter parts.

Detail is good and the trucks are blackened. Electric pick-up wipers are installed.

Atlas could includes instructions for mounting and connecting the electric components. I think the sideframes look plain without data but, as ruminated above, it is understandable why Atlas has not modeled it yet.

Overall, these trucks will improve an older release O caboose and those of other model companies. Recommended.

Please remember to mention to Atlas and retailers that you saw this product here - on RailRoad Modeling.

[1] Jeff Wilson. A Modeler's Guide to Freight Car Trucks. Freight Car Trucks - Model Railroader Magazine. December 2003.


Click here for additional images for this review.

Highs: Detail is good and the trucks are blackened. Electric pick-up wipers are installed.
Lows: No lettering is cast on the sideframes. No instructions.
Verdict: These trucks will improve an older release O caboose and those of other model companies.
  Scale: O Scale (N
  Mfg. ID: 7072
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Jan 01, 2019

Our Thanks to Atlas Model Railroad!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Frederick Boucher (JPTRR)

I'm a professional pilot with a degree in art. My first model was an AMT semi dump truck. Then Monogram's Lunar Lander right after the lunar landing. Next, Revell's 1/32 Bf-109G...cried havoc and released the dogs of modeling! My interests--if built before 1900, or after 1955, then I proba...

Copyright ©2020 text by Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of ModelGeek. All rights reserved.


Since this product report focuses so much on these being most correct when used as caboose trucks I was about to ask what other trucks might Atlas offer for regular freight car usage? However this image seems to answer any/all of my questions:
JAN 01, 2019 - 08:06 AM

What's Your Opinion?

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