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Bachmann China P64 Box Cars

Prototype Information

At the time the models were produced, the P64/65 box cars were the latest class of standard box car in China, having recently been superceded by the P70 class cars. The P64's were painted in brown or black livery and handled cargo that needed to remain dry (this sometimes includes military personnel!). While most countries have moved away from box cars in favour of containers, they remain a common sight in China. The P65's were painted dark green with yellow livery and used in 'Railway Express Luggage Service' (RELS).

Model Production

P64 Box Cars
Release Date Production Number Production Run Scale Road #s Livery
2002 CF00101 1st HO (1:87) 3413450 Brown
" " CF00102 " " " " 3413451 " "
" " CF00103 " " " " 3413452 " "
" " CF00104 " " " " 3410220 Black
" " CF00105 " " " " 3410221 " "
" " CF00106 " " " " 3410222 " "
2003 CF00107 2nd " " 3410621 " "
" " CF00108 " " " " 3410622 " "
" " CF00109 " " " " 3410623 " "
" " CF00110 " " " " 3424145 Brown
" " CF00111 " " " " 3424146 " "
" " CF00112 " " " " 3424148 " "
April 2011 CF00113 3rd " " 3425516 " "
" " CF00114 " " " " 3425518 " "
" " CF00115 " " " " 3410626 Black
" " CF00116 " " " " 3410628 " "
October 2015 CF00117 4th " " 3432065 Brown
" " CF00118 " " " " 3467373 " "
" " CF00119 " " " " 3427721 Black
" " CF00120 " " " " 3450756 " "
" " CF00121 " " " " 3430169 " "

P65 Box Cars
Release Date Production Number Production Run Scale Road #s Livery
2002 CF00201 1st HO (1:87) 3501277 Green Yellow
" " CF00202 " " " " 3501278 " "
" " CF00203 " " " " 3501279 " "
" " CF00204 " " " " 350036 " "
" " CF00205 " " " " 350037 " "
" " CF00206 " " " " 350038 " "
2003 CF00207 " " " " 3501287 " "
" " CF00208 " " " " 3501288 " "
" " CF00209 " " " " 3501289 " "
April 2011 CF00210 3rd " " 3500001 " "
" " CF00211 " " " " 3500002 " "
October 2015 CF00212 4th " " 3501133 " "
" " CF00213 " " " " 3501966 " "

Model Review

General
These box cars were the first mass produced HO scale Chinese freight car, although 'mass-produced' may be too strong a term. The first run sold out fairly quickly, considering that Chinese model railways was still in its infancy at this stage. A second run followed about a year later, although asides from the road numbers and repositioning of the description labels on the box, they were more or less the same.

In late April 2011, Bachmann China announced a third run of these cars, with two new road numbers per livery. The new P64's are also lettered as 'P64AK' - the K denoting fast service type bogies (and, yes, they're equipped with said bogies). Unfortunately, they've also equipped the latter run with pizza cutter wheels.

Details
The body is a one piece casting, with everything apart from end ladders/footsteps grab irons on the roof and brake gear, molded on to it. Unfortunately, the doors are also part of the body shell, so therefore can't be positioned in an open positon, unless you're up for some major kitbashing. Asides from this, the models are very well done. The undercarriage has separately applied braking gear, although most of this is lost when the car is on the rails. However, if you're one of those who experience frequent derailments, you should find this to be rather nice. The basic body style is very well reproduced and the paint is very evenly applied. Lettering is very sharp and clear. My main criticism is with the green color on the P65's which looks like it was pulled from a nuclear reactor. I've yet to see a P65 with anything remotely bright as Bachmann's interpretation! The third run P65's are still being being turned out in the same green color.

Performance
These cars are nicely weighted and roll very freely. The metal wheels are low profile (except third production run) and roll over just about any HO scale track you can throw at them. (Bachmann - we really, really miss these)

Coupler Conversion
The Bachmann EZ-mate couplers can be replaced with Kadee #5/58/158 couplers.

Other Notes
These cars tend to sell out quickly. While they have a few minor deficiencies, they are very worthy cars for any 1990+ prototype Chinese layout.

Review Summary


The Good News

The Bad News
Common freight car type, nicely executed Godawful green color scheme for P65
First prototypical Chinese freight car in HO scale! Doors are non-functional
Beautifully applied lettering Ladders are incorrect color (should be as body color)
Low profile wheels (except latest production run) High profile wheels (latest production run only)

Model Photos


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