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3454 Merchandise Car

3454a.jpg

Production: 1946 & 1947

History
The 3454 Automatic Merchandise box car was one of the first operating cars offered by Lionel in the postwar era. Although it might lack some of the charm or personality associated with later operating cars (such as the milk car or cattle car), it still had an interesting feature for its time -- remote control operation.

The 3454 is a fairly common car, but with a very common problem -- its silver paint. Quite frequently, the silver is in less than collector quality-condition and easily shows all nicks, marks and scratches. Locating a pristine example of the 3454 Automatic Merchandise car is very difficult.

Features
The 3454 box car included the following standard features: silver painted body, metal painted doors, staple-end trucks with coil couplers plus a single brakewheel and metal corner steps. It carries the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) logo.

Additional Detail, Photos & Box Information
There are two variations to the car -- one involving the letter color and the second pertaining to the design whereby the roof hatch is attached to the car body.

Red Lettering, Without Visable Hinge Pin - An extremely limited production run in early 1946. The red lettered version is quite rare.
Blue Lettering, Without Visable Hinge Pin - Produced only in 1946 and is hard to find.
Blue Lettering, With Visable Hinge Pin - Shown in the photo above - The common version. Produced in 1947 and has the hinge pin visible from the side.

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