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|Description||F3A Missouri Pacific|
|Catalog References at myflyertrains.org||1963|
|Remarks||This model is best described as a hybrid.
It utilizes a Varney shell and a Pikemaster mechanism. For this reason
modifications in the shell were necessary to accommodate the attachment lugs
of the Pikemaster chassis. This resulted in the three round
holes drilled in the side of the shell where the small rectangular holes are
found in Pikemaster locomotives. The sample shown below also shows
square holes at the bottom of the doors, the purpose of which, if any, is
There were two versions of this locomotive.
1. The one below using the front skirt of the Varney shell is sometimes referred to as the "Split Skirt" version. (All Varney shells used for Gilbert locomotives, except the 420 Lackawanna, had a split skirt to accommodate a front coupler.) This required that the Pikemaster frame for this locomotive have its built in skirt removed.
2. The second version uses the skirt built into the Pikemaster frame, which is a full width skirt with a slot for the front coupler. It is sometimes referred to as the "Full Skirt" version. These locomotives have had the shell skirt removed to fit on the unmodified Pikemaster chassis.
There may be a third version that is described by Charles Sommer in his Gilbert HO guide that uses both a Varney Shell and chassis, but I have not been able to confirm this. This may be a prototype.
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