The Pennsy Modeler

In order to portray Pennsylvania Railroad and interchange partners as accurately as possible, this blog contains articles which are essentially notes to myself, but are shared should the community desire the same information.

Articles are sorted by modification date, so if an existing article receives an update it will be presented at the top of the list again.

 Alco RS3ph1a

The announcement by Bowser of forthcoming state-of-the-art RS-3's with road-specific features inspired this spotting guide for the various Alco RS units owned by the Pennsylvania Railroad.

Road numbers in bold are in my personal collection (or on order).

When planning to model the Pennsy during the post World War II era, there are certain parameters which you may or may not wish to consider when selecting a year (or years) to depict. Among them may be paint schemes, specific models of diesel locomotives, specific models of freight cars, etc.

The graph below illustrates when certain features of the Pennsy came into play, or faded into history.

 ES6 8566

This table cross references Pennsy diesel classes with manufacturer model numbers and indicates available HO scale models and first year of use on the PRR system. Table is organized by class prefix and number. Click on class number to view the class roster in a new window. From the roster you can access specific unit information and photos.

Prime mover data is included to assist in selection of sound decoders. 

Models in bold are in my personal collection. 

Corrections and additions to this page are welcome. 


Early Trailer Numbering -- 1954-1959

The trailer number was broken into three parts. The first two digits indicated the trailer length. These two digits were followed by an alphabet letter (C, E, or W). The sig-nificance of the letter is unknown. The letter was followed by numbers indicating the trailer number. Thus trailer 32E250 is a 32’ trailer numbered 250.

Paragon2ReadingT120130912 0002.1The Pennsy was not to operate on its rails locomotives which it did not own. These inclued railroad test units, builder test units, demonstrators, and leased units.

Railroad Test Units

July and August, 1924: The PRR borrowed a 37-ton GE gas-electic at the piers in New York City.

1937: The PRR borrowed an EMC 600 hp switcher for potential use at the General Motors plant in Linden, New Jersey. The Pennsy purchased the unit afterwards -- Class ES6 #5911.

1947: The Pennsy tested an F-M H20-44 as a potential helper west of Altoona. They eventually went with EMD F3's for this purpose, in an A-B-A configuration.