Tangent first released their model of Pullman Standard's distinctive PS-2CD 4000 in 2010. Another release in new roadnames has just hit hobby shop shelves. Much of the first run sold out quickly. These should be no exception. The new run is available in Burlington Northern (Cascade Green), Chesapeake and Ohio, Chicago Burlington and Quincy, Chicago Great Western (CNW), Chicago and Northwestern, CSX, KCS, Milwaukee Road, Nickel Plate, and Wisconsin Southern.
Manufacturer's list price is $42.95 per car. Tangent also offers discounts for multiple-car purchases on their own web page.
I've previously reviewed Tangent's ACF gondola and this covered hopper is every bit its equal.
Pullman Standard first introduced the PS-2CD 4000 in 1962. Pullman built more than 2000 by the time production ended in 1964.
The car's symbol indicates that this is a Pullman Standard covered hopper (PS-2) with Center Discharge (CD) chutes and a 4000 cubic foot capacity. Tangent also makes a model of the PS-2CD 4740 and 4750 cars.
These cars have a weight capacity of 100 tons. With their high weight but mid-sized capacity makes the cars well suited for a variety of loads including phosphates, grains, dried chemicals and other bulk commodities.
Many of the cars remained in service for up to forty years - long enough to see service into this century. Over that time, many changed hands through sale or merger leaving lots of modeling options.
Rather than list all of the fine details this model has, perhaps it would be easier to list the things they lack. I've looked long and hard at these covered hoppers trying to find a detail they've missed. I haven't found it yet.
The model is simply exquisite. From the fine detail on the roof walk and hatches down to the hangers for the coupler cut levers, This car is packed with fine detail. Although some of the added details are plastic, the most fragile have been thoughtfully made from wire.
It is hard to single out any specific detail that stands above the rest. Perhaps most impressive are the brake system details on the B end of the car. The high-mounted hand brake wheel and connecting linkage is some of the finest I've ever seen. Of course all of the components and piping for the air brakes are there too, including the line to the retainer valve and the trainline along one side sill.
Paint and Lettering
As you'd expect, the paint and lettering on these cars are as good as the details. The color on the CSX samples I purchased for this review is a nice match with similar cars in service. All of the lettering is very crisp. Though I had to strain my eyes to read it, even the smallest print is sharp and legible.
The CSX cars also feature some data and "EASE UP" warning stickers on the car ends, below the slope sheets. Looking closely at these, it appears they are separately applied decals. They are a nice touch.
Operations and Enhancements
There is really nothing the modeler has to do but take the car out of the box and put it on the track.
CSX's cars were getting on in years and used mostly in phosphate service in my modeling era. With that in mind, a little weathering will go a long way towards enhancing the features already found on the model. Other than this basic step, there is little anyone could do to improve upon this fine model.