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Rio Grande Product News – November 2021

Featured in the November 2021 Green Light

We try to capture the significant D&RGW models for Rio Grande modelers in the our Rio Grande Model News section of The Green Light Newsletter.  Here are the new product announcements that were in the November 2021 edition sent to members.

If we missed a product announcement, or you have a review you want to share, please let us know by commenting below or e-mailing us at:  GreenLight@rgmhs.org

Athearn Rio Grande HO 30′ Old Time Flat Car

In October, Athearn announced a December 2022 release of a new HO scale 30' "old time" flat car.  The fully-assembled and ready to run model painted and printed for D&RGW in road number 20494 and 20495 features a highly-detailed, injection-molded body, separate brake wheel, machined metal wheels with RP25 contours,
body-mounted McHenry® operating scale knuckle couplers, weighted for optimum performance on a minimum radius 18”.  MSRP for the each model is $35.99.  For more information see your local hobby dealer or visit Athearn.com.



Walthers HO Scale 50′ 100-Ton 4-Bay Hopper

Walthers has released limited quantities of its latest run of D&RGW HO scale, 100-ton, quad hoppers.  These are modeled after the first 125 cars of this type ordered by the D&RGW in May 1964.  The model is painted to match that first order of hoppers featuring the classic flying Rio Grande and the “Randy Kilowatt” logo (proclaiming that it’s carrying Routt County Coal).   The ready-to-run model features a die-cast metal underframe for excellent performance loaded or empty, sloped sheet braces & update brake gear, correct 36" turned metal RP-25 wheels and Proto MAX™ metal knuckle coupler.  The model will come in four D&RGW road numbers 16978, 16982,  16990, 16996 with a MSRP of $29.98 per car.

For more information see your local hobby dealer or visit Walthers.com




Accurail HO Scale USRA Twin Bay Hopper Set

Accurail announced in late October a new limited-run 3-car set of its HO scale twin bay hoppers in D&RGW mineral red w/Royal Gorge Moffat Tunnel Logo  available in January 2022.  The unassembled 3-car set comes in DRGW road numbers 1820, 18254, 18271 and MSRP is $55.98.  You can also purchase a fourth car randomly selected from the 3-car set, its MSRP $18.98

For more information see your local hobby dealer or visit  Accurail.com



Micro-Trains Rio Grande N 50′ Standard Boxcar

Micro-Trains announced in October 2021 these 50’ standard box cars with 8’ double sliding doors, no roofwalk and short ladders in brown with white lettering with Roller Bearing trucks. Built in the mid-1960s by American Car & Foundry, this 4921 cubic-foot capacity box car belonged to Denver & Rio Grande Western car class A320. In 1977, the car was shopped, had its roofwalk removed, was repainted into the orange and black scheme, and demoted to a general service car, serving through the 1980s.   The model comes in two D&RGW road numbers 63315 & 63341 with an MSRP of $29.90

For more information see your local hobby dealer or visit  micro-trains.com



RailSmith N Scale Rio Grande Baggage Cars

RailSmith is now accepting advance reservations for D&RGW  lightweight baggage car painted in the distinctive 4-stripe scheme. The ready-to-run come models are based on prototypes that regularly ran on the D&RGW Royal Gorge and Prospector. Although not apparent in this illustration the car has full-skirting. Delivery is planned for the first quarter of 2022.

The DRG&W had three baggage cars in this series. This four-stripe scheme was the delivered version and were the only lightweight baggage cars the Denver & Rio Grande had.  They were used as on the Royal Gorge as well as the Prospector.  Baggage #1212 in four stripe scheme.  is a classic version of this car this is a very limited production with an MSRP of $48.00.  You can also purchase both the 1211 & 1212 as a pair  with an MSRP of $89.00.

For more information see your local hobby dealer or visit http://aka.rgmhs.org/rea



Bowser HO Scale HO 70 Ton 2 Ballast Car with Side Chutes

Bowser announced pre-orders for it latest HO scale 70-ton ballast cars with side chutes based on the D&RGW rebuilt two-bay covered hopper cars.  Bowser is offering the cars in three D&RGW road numbers (AX25000, AX25003, AX25009) The ready-to-run car features crisp details and sharp painting and printing, metal wheels and knuckle couplers. The deadline to make your orders for the model slated for delivery in the fall of  2022 is on December 10th has an MSRP of $29.95.   For more information see your local hobby dealer or visit  bowser.com



Green Light Editor’s Note

Prototype Photo by James Belmont

Editor’s Note: There was quite the debate on the Denver & Rio Grande Western Facebook page recently about this latest model release and just how many of the cars were actually painted black with the prototype as Browser offers three road numbers.

The answer can be found in the Jim Eager’s Rio Grande Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment by Morning Sun Books (http://aka.rgmhs.org/colorguide.)  Only AX25000 matches the prototype, all the other rebuilt ballast cars kept their original covered hopper gray and black lettering with only minimal stenciling.  So in the true spirit of modeling the prototype I only ordered AX25000.



  1. Reply
    Dale DeWitt says:

    I was pleased to see the mention and discussion of the planned new Bowser 2 bay ballast car and your comments that only the #25000 in black is correct for this rebuild. I was wondering if the Society has formally provided Bowser with this information in hopes of them also producing correctly lettered grey versions for the other ballast cars in this rebuilt series. If not perhaps is is not too late to make this happen. Dale

    • Reply
      RGM&HS Webmaster says:

      This model was passionately debated on our Facebook page back in November 2021. A person on the page took it upon themselves to reach out to Bowser before the Society did and got the following response:

      “…Bowser replied. It sounds like they aren’t interested in correcting this run because they plan to offer gray units in the future. They are offering the other two road numbers in the black scheme with the justification they are “fantasy” and these cars aren’t 100% accurate to any specific car/railroad.
      So there’s that.”

      Bowser to my knowledge never reach out to the Society about the model beforehand. Reservation for the car(s) were due in December 2021 which from our experience with other manufacturers means Bowser has already set the art work, model specs and scheduled the run at the factory. I doubt there is anything we can do the change it.

      I have also used the Eastern car works kit and retro-fitted my grey 2-bays years ago.

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