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Later Copper Journal 200-series Freight Cars
In 1973, I was very lucky to find a nice Outfit 423E in an attic/ballroom. The 400T is unusual as the tender has the Red-background, brass nameplates. Many think these nameplates were not used until mid-1934.

Outfit 423E contained seven cars 211 thru 217. I added the other four matching cars (214R, 218, 219, and 220) over the next several years.

All eleven cars have nice original boxes -- most with the Orange between chevron tape dated 1933.

Photos are below.

      Full Set  Work Train

 Never in 

         Set 423E   Set 358E

 a late set 

  400E   Loco / Tender  Dark Gunmetal  

211 Flat car Black

212 Gondola Maroon 


Cattle Car

Terra Cotta/Pea Green 

214 Box Car Cream/Orange 

214R Refrigerator Car  White/Peacock    
215 Tank Car White Sunoco

216 Hopper Dark Green 

217 Caboose Red/Peacock 

218 Dump Car Mojave  


219 Derrick Peacock/Dark Green  

220 Floodlight Car Terra Cotta  


Except for the 218, all of the cars have the last type D2 trucks (D-clips, dimples, no slots), with copper journals, brass kingpins and brass washers under the D-clips. Note that nickel-trim cars have nickel journals, kingpins and washers. I once had a D-clip 218, but it was beat up and I sold it. Should have kept it for proof they existed. Photos of it are on the Overview Page. This was in a 'private party' purchase -- the cars had similar greasing marks from 70 years ago.

Most interesting: The last cataloged year of the 81 rheostat was 1933, In 1934, Lionel switched to the 95 rheostat. On the 400E box shown way below, the word BLACK was cut off the rubber stamp and G-M was substituted. In a different font.  And it says "with 81". So Dark Gunmetal 400E's, like this one I found in a 423E set, came out in late 1933 (1933 production was not all BLACK as the books say). This attic find was from wealthy folks who purchased just two Lionel sets from Marshall Field's in Chicago. A 1929 State set, and then for their second son, this 1933 423E set.

Here is the 423E loco and tender -- gathering dust for 30+ years on my shelves. It is Dark Gunmetal (not Black). Note the solid pony wheels. Later versions of these 1933-34 locos came with Black wheels and painted boiler bands. The brass/Red nameplate on the tender is unusual for a loco without painted boiler bands.

Here is the tail-end showing these late copper-journal cars. The 219 Derrick did not come with an Outfit 423E.

The like-new, copper-journal 214R reefer at the left has doors that are a different shade than the body. This is a very rare car -- it has D-clip trucks and its original box is dated 1932.

The copper-journal 216 Hopper and 218 Ballast Car are lurking behind this late 408E loco. The CJ 220 Floodlight car is to the left of the second shelf in the photo

Included with the 423E set was a strange tank car. One nameplate has Black lettering and the other Red. 1933 was the height of the Great Depression and Lionel was using up all the parts it had in stock. Yes, the handrails are intact. You see flash reflection as I am not much of a photographer.

The tank car's box is also strange as it is rubber stamped 215 WHITE in two places, but also has a "separate sale" label on its end. Generally cars that came in sets did not have the extra paper end label. The box manufacture's date is 1932, but this Orange between chevrons tape was not used until 1933.

Here is proof that some Dark Gunmetal 400E's were made in 1933. A close-up of the 400E box's rubber stamping is in the second photo below.

Note that the G-M is in a different font. It looks like they sliced the word Black off of the stamp and crudely added G-M (Gunmetal). 1933 was the last year for the 81 rheostat.

The tender box is dated 1933. the G is for Gunmetal.



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