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Catalog numbers / LKW Walter models

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    Posted: 27 Oct 2017 at 4:25pm
In my recent Blog post on unit trains, I mentioned some of the problems of equating catalog numbers with car numbers. I won't repeat all of those points.

But, sometimes I think that manufacturers are trying to drive model railroads (who care about not duplicating equipment numbers)-- and model railroad shops -- crazy.

I just found another example.

Under catalog number 76741, Roco has produced an HO model of a modern DB AG Sdkms pocket car with an LKW Walter trailer. I purchased one of these from Reynauld's earlier this year. This item has been sold out at the Roco factory for several months.

My model has the car number 81 80 475 3 292-9, with trailer number LKWA 2090300-5.

Well, Roco recently did a new production run, still with catalog number 76741. But this time the car number is 81 80 475 3 295-2 and the trailer number is LKWA 209811-1.

Roco's factory Web site does show an illustration with the new numbers, but there is no mention that this is a new run with different numbers. (I have no idea what is being printed on the boxes, but I would hope that it is 76741.1.)

I suspect that many retailers who do not always have time to keep up with every detail of thousands of products may still have the old Roco illustration on their Web site. And, some may indeed have one of the original production run models in stock. But anyone ordering a model with this catalog number -- through a retailer that does not have any of the old models in stock -- would now get the new version.


Just to make things more interesting, Roco also offers an articulated intermodal car with two LKW Walter trailers, with Roco number 67398 -- which you cannot find on the Roco factory Web site, if you only search by "LKW Walter" and not the catalog number.

Meanwhile, I noticed that at least one European hobby shop is accepting advance orders for Roco 76429 and 76430 -- both new versions of an articulated intermodal car with two LKW Walter trailers each. These items do not show up on the Roco Web site at all. (These may well be special limited production runs for a particular retailer or group of retailers.) I also could not find any mention of these models in any of the recent Roco new model announcements.

A small-run European manufacturer, Rocky-Rail also offers HO cars with LKW Walter trailers. So, with all these options you could actually produce a serious train of intermodal cars with all LKW Walter trailers. (In the past, Roco has also produced some cars with LKW Walters swap bodies.) I'm not sure whether they make their own trailer models or buy these from Roco.


LKW Walter is an interesting business. This Austrian-based logistics company (Spedition) is active over most of Europe. The company owns a large fleet of swap bodies and trailers -- but no long-distance tractors. The short hauls at the end of intermodal moves are contracted out to other local companies. That's somewhat ironic, as LKW is a German abbreviation for Lastkraftwagen which means truck (lorry in British English). So, LKW Walter means trucking company Walter.

LKW Walter models appear to be popular with European modelers -- as indicated by the range of these available from multiple manufacturers. My own interest started with the fact that a good friend of my parents was named Walter (first name, not last name as is the case with LKW Walter).

-- Ernest




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