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2163WS Four Car Steam Freight Set

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History
The 2163WS steam freight set is a historic set. Lionel used this set to introduce the upgraded 726 Berkshire -- now with magne-traction and a new number, 736 -- to the train community. It proved to be a popular and durable locomotive. Set 2163WS was the first of almost 20 catalogued sets to include the 736 Berkshire steam locomotive.

In addition to 1950 being the first year for the 736, it was also the only year which the Berkshire was offered with a premium 12-wheel tender. This tender is also a bit unusual because it was lettered with Lionel Lines on the sides -- while almost all other 12-wheel tenders had Pennsylvania lettering.

Finally, this set was also a transition year for a couple of popular and sort-after freight cars:

  • First, 1950 was the introductory year of the 6472 refrigerator box car -- a non-operating version of its infamous cousin, the 3472 operating milk car. 1950 was the only year the 6472 ever appeared in a set.
  • Secondly, the highly detailed and desireable 6555 tanker ended its production in 1950. This tank car was the last pre-war carry-over freight car designs to end production during the postwar era. To this day, the 6555 remains a desireable freight car.

Although all of the freight cars in this set are common, the set remains in demand -- as do all other 736 Berkshire sets.

Components:
Standard components of this set include:

  • 736 Steam locomotive
  • 2671WX Tender
  • 6462 New York Central gondola with six wooden barrels
  • 6472 Refrigerator car
  • 6555 or 6465 Sunoco Tank car - the 6555 was included in 1950 sets, the 6465 included in 1951 sets
  • 6457 Lionel Lines caboose
  • Plus: 0 gauge track, UCS track, smoke pellets, lubricant, billboards and instruction booklets.
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