B2 40' 12 panel Express box car, Pullman Green HO Scale
B2 40' 12 panel Express box car, Pullman Green HO Scale
B2 40' 12 panel Express box car, Pullman Green HO Scale

B2 40' 12 panel Express box car, Pullman Green HO Scale

Regular price $46.95 $0.00 Unit price per

HO scale, with trucks and magnetic couplers. Six car numbers available.

Intermountain’s Great Northern 12 panel, 40’ 6” inside length express box car models are 40’ 6” IL, correctly numbered in series 2525-2549 and painted in the all Pullman Green scheme with yellow lettering they carried from late 1950 or early 1951 through the mid-1950s. Cars were 10’ IH and are correctly stenciled 10’ IH. The capacity stencil on these models is incorrect at 169,000 pounds. Actual capacity was 100,000. Some individual cars were less. As built these cars were painted mineral red.

Out of the box these models are not equipped with Hyatt roller bearing trucks or steam and signal air lines. The nearest to correct roller bearing trucks we have been able to find are E B Products Timken trucks available from JJ&CL Train Shop at www.jjclmodeltrainshop.com. End of car air, steam and signal air lines are available from Cal Scale for those who want to add those details. See photo below of GN 2505 and end drawings of 2600 series cars showing steam and signal line arrangement. These cars also had a stirrup step attached to the side sill below the left side of the car doors.

Except for 2525 and 2526, by then rebuilt into heater cars, the remaining cars in the 2525 to 2549 group were repainted in the mid-1950s in the orange over pullman green ‘loader’ scheme.

See GNRHS Reference Sheets 61 and 151. 



Great Northern used Express, Baggage, and Baggage/Express cars to haul express and sacked mail on passenger trains for decades. Most were 65 feet to 80 feet inside length. They were heavy and of limited capacity. One random series of 65 foot cars weighed 113,000 pounds and could carry only 40,000 pounds. By the end of World War II the wood sheathed steel underframe cars were worn out and replacements were needed. Condition of the cars is indicated by the fact that in 1945 Great Northern operated 123 such cars and only 9 in 1951. After the war GN would build four series of express box cars.

The first express box car was a series of one aluminum body car number 2500 built in 1944. It was 40 foot 6 inches inside length, 10’ 0” inside height, providing 3727 cubic feet of space, with a nominal capacity of 100,000 pounds and pass through steam and signal air lines for service in passenger trains as an express box car. The car was clearly an experiment. It saved about 2 tons per car of tare weight compared to plywood cars of the same dimensions then being built. It was delivered with friction bearing freight car trucks. The friction bearings were replaced with Timken roller bearings within the first few months. This car was not painted, so was visually distinctive with its natural aluminum exterior. It remained in passenger train service until mid-1956 and continued in freight service until after 1970.

In 1945, 24 cars of a 1,000 car lot of plywood sided box cars built at St. Cloud, were fitted with sealed Hyatt roller bearing trucks and pass through steam and signal air lines for service as express box cars. Cars 2501-2524 were 10’ 0” inside height and 3727 cubic feet capacity and nominal capacity of 100,000 pounds. As delivered these cars were painted orange with black roof, ends underbody and trucks. Sometime before 1948, Great Northern repainted most, if not all, of these cars into all pullman green with yellow lettering. The heralds had the See America First lettering around the goat which was on a background of yellow. After June of 1948 they continued to be painted all pullman green with yellow lettering, but the heralds were changed to Great Northern Railway lettering around the goat on a red background. In 1955 they were repainted into the orange over green ‘loader” scheme.

Great Northern built its first all steel box cars at St. Cloud in 1948, cars 10900 to 11874, Great Northern was the last major railroad to adopt all steel box car construction.

In 1948, as an add-on to the above lot of 975 box cars, St. Cloud built 25 all steel express box cars, 2525-2549, equipped with sealed Hyatt roller bearings and pass through steam and signal air lines for use in passenger trains. Both the box cars and the express box cars had 12 steel panels per side, were 10 feet 2 inches inside height, provided 3775 cubic feet of space, and nominal capacity of 100,000 pounds. When built all 1,000 cars of this lot were painted mineral red. In late 1950 or early 1951 GN repainted the express cars in the all Pullman Green scheme with yellow lettering to match the 2501 to 2524 cars.

The 2525 and 2526 were rebuilt into heater cars 8 and 9 in the spring of 1952, and 2545 was retired in 1965. The balance of the group continued in passenger service until the BN merger. After Amtrak they returned to freight service.

The last lot of express box cars were 50 cars of 50 foot length and only 9’ 2” inside height, built at St. Cloud in 1952. These cars were 50 feet long because the 40 foot cars had proved inadequate for large volume express shipments from New York and Chicago to the West Coast. The cars were painted in the orange and green ‘Empire Builder’ paint scheme.