217 Boston & Maine


Production: 1959

The 217 Boston & Maine Alco AB diesel is a one-year-only offering from 1959. It is noteworthy because it was the first postwar Alco diesel produced with a B unit. Additionally, the 217 and 226 diesels -- both having the Boston & Maine roadname -- are the only postwar Alco diesels that do not have the full roadname spelt out on the diesel and only the railroads logo.

The 217 Boston & Maine is an excellent running locomotive. However, these later-style Alcos clearly lacked the quality, detail and durability of the Lionel Alco diesel produced in the early 1950s. Finally, as with most of the later Alco series diesels, the front apron is usually the weak point and are frequently found cracked or completely missing. Any later series Alco diesel with intact front aprons are difficult to locate.

The 217 Boston & Maine included one powered A unit and one non-powered B unit. Standard features on each unit include: unpainted blue body, black painted top and front sections, white stripe by the roof and white lettering, front and rear die-cast non-operating couplers plus a large B & M railroad logo on each side.

The powered unit is also equipped with two-axle Magnetraction, three-position E-unit, headlight plus a sumulated horn on top of the cab.

Additional Detail, Photos & Box Information
The blue mold color on the A and B units are susceptible to some degree of fading. It is somewhat common to find an original set having mis-matched blue colors on the A and B units. Additionaally, there were slightly different shades of blue mold colors when originally manufactured by Lionel.

The length of the 217 Alco units when coupled together is approximately 23" long (coupler to coupler).

Only Known Variation - All 217's are molded in a blue shell with painted black sections and white numbers.

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