Blackstone Models HOn3 Locomotives
Blackstone Models K-27 and C-19 Steam Locomotives

Blackstone Models K-27 and C-19 Steam Locomotives

Blackstone Rio Grande Locomotive

Blackstone Rio Grande Locomotive

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Blackstone Authentic HOn3 model locomotives

Blackstone Authentic HOn3 model locomotives

Blackstone Models is dedicated to the creation of high quality models, craftsmanship with state-of-the-art technology. SoundTraxx sound decoders and speakers, with expertise in model train electronics, with dedication to quality and performance, has evolved into authentic HOn3 model locomotives.

Blackstone Denver & Rio Grande K-27 narrow gauge locomotive

Blackstone Denver & Rio Grande K-27 narrow gauge locomotive

A Little Background In 1903, the Denver & Rio Grande took delivery of fifteen class 125 2-8-2 narrow gauge locomotives built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works. Eventually re-classified as K-27s and nicknamed Mudhens by their operating crews, the new locomotives boasted a tractive effort of over 27,000 lbs. and ushered in a new era of narrow gauge pulling power for the ever expanding railroad. All fifteen K-27s (numbers 450 to 464) were originally equipped with Vauclain compound cylinders but due to high maintenance costs, were soon rebuilt with single expansion cylinders and slide valves. Later, eleven of these engines were upgraded again, this time with modern piston valve cylinders. Today, there are still two surviving and operating K-27s. Blackstone Models is pleased to introduce the K-27 in the modern piston valve configuration. Faithfully reproduced in HOn3 scale, the Blackstone K-27 features die cast construction accented with numerous detail parts. The K-27 is optionally available with state-of-the-art electronics including a SoundTraxx Tsunami Digital Sound Decoder. The Tsunami-equipped Blackstone K-27 sounds as good as it looks and will operate on both DC and DCC controlled layouts. All at a price thats less than a third of todays brass imports!
Blackstone Steam K-27

Blackstone Steam K-27

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Baldwin Class K-36 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC Blackstone Models-- Denver & Rio Grande Western #485 (Royal Gorge Logo) HOn3 TBA (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-301302S)
Baldwin Class K-36 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC- Blackstone Models-- Denver & Rio Grande Western #486 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 TBA (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-301303S)
Baldwin Class K-36 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC -Blackstone Models- Denver & Rio Grande Western #489 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 TBA (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-301304S)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Snowplow, Outboard Valve, Sound & DC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #462 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310109S)Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Snowplow, Outboard Valve, Sound & DC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #462 (Flying Grande Logo)	 HOn3  (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310109S)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Outboard Valve - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #463 (green Boiler, Royal Gorge Logo) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310110S)Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Outboard Valve - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #463 (green Boiler, Royal Gorge Logo) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310110S)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam K-27 Switcher Version, Inside Valve Sound & DCC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #456 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310126S)Blackstone Models(TM) Steam K-27 Switcher Version, Inside Valve Sound & DCC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #456 (Flying Grande Logo)	 HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310126S)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam K-27 Switcher Version, Inside Valve Sound & DCC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #456 (Weathered, Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310126WS)Blackstone Models(TM) Steam K-27 Switcher Version, Inside Valve Sound & DCC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #456 (Weathered, Flying Grande Logo)	 HOn3  (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310126WS)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Inside Valve - Sound & DCC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #461 (Moffat Tunnel Logo) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310127S)Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Inside Valve - Sound & DCC -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #461 (Moffat Tunnel Logo)	 HOn3 (SKU: 678-310127S)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Inboard Valves; Powered w/DCC & Sound -- #455 Rio Grande Southern (Sunrise) w/Plow; Post Wreck Details & Tender HOn3 (SKU: 678-310131S)
Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Inboard Valves - Sound & DCC Equipped -- #455 Rio Grande Southern (Sunrise) w/Plow, Weathered; Post Wreck HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310131WS)Blackstone Models(TM) Steam DRGW K-27 w/Inboard Valves - Sound & DCC Equipped -- #455 Rio Grande Southern (Sunrise) w/Plow, Weathered; Post Wreck	 HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310131WS)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #345 (Flying Grande Lettering) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310201S)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #345 (Weathered, Flying Grande Lettering) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310201W)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #342 (Royal Gorge Logo) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310209S)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #342 (Weathered, Royal Gorge Logo) HOn3 (Disc. when sold out) (SKU: 678-310209WS)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #346 (Post Wreck, Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Back Order) (SKU: 678-310210S)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #346 (Weathered Post Wreck, Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 Disc. when Sold Out (SKU: 678-310210WS)
Blackstone Models Steam Class 70 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Denver & Rio Grande #401 (Late 1910s, Number on Tender, D&RG on Cab) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310211S)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Rio Grande Southern #40 (Weathered, Rising Sun Logo, Numbered Cab) HOn3 Disc. when Sold Out (SKU: 678-310212WS)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Rio Grande Southern #41 (Number on Tender) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310213S)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Rio Grande Southern #41 (Weathered, Number on Tender) HOn3 (Disc. when sold out) (SKU: 678-310213WS)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- With Diamond Stack & Flared Tender, Painted, Unlettered (Russian Iron Boiler HOn3 (SKU: 678-310214S)
Blackstone Models Steam C-19 2-8-0 Consolidation - Sound & DCC Equipped -- Straight-Side Tender, Painted, Unlettered (black Boiler) HOn3 (SKU: 678-310215S)
Baldwin Class K-36 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #481 (Moffat Tunnel Logo) HOn3 TBA (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310300S)
Baldwin Class K-36 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC -Blackstone Models- Denver & Rio Grande Western #483 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 TBA (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310301S)
Alco Class K-28 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #470 (Royal Gorge Logo) HOn3 (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310400S)Alco Class K-28 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #470 (Royal Gorge Logo)	 HOn3   (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310400S)
Alco Class K-28 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #473 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310401S)
Alco Class K-28 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #475 (Moffat Tunnel Logo) HOn3 (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310402S)
Alco Class K-28 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #476 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310403S)
Alco Class K-28 2-8-2 w/Sound & DCC - Blackstone Models(TM) -- Denver & Rio Grande Western #478 (Flying Grande Logo) HOn3 (Adv. Res.) (SKU: 678-310404S)
The C-19 HOn3 Locomotive

The C-19 HOn3 Locomotive

The C-19

The D&RG re-organized as the Denver and Rio Grande Western in 1921. In 1924, the ten remaining Class 70 (and 74) engines from the 1881 group became numbers 340-349. They were also given a new power designation as C-19. The names originally assigned to the locomotives had fallen out of general use in earlier years.

Three C-19s Head North

Between 1936 and 1937, three C-19s were leased to Colorado & Southern’s South Park Line to assist the fabled road’s tired locomotives in the autumn of its once storied existence. Numbers 343, 345, and 346 remained in their D&RGW livery and road numbers throughout their sojourns between Denver and Leadville, Colorado. The leasing road applied the unique C&S style Ridgway Spark Arrestors to the engines in keeping with the standard practice for its own locomotive fleet. Unfortunately the borrowed C-19s were not particularly popular with C&S crews due to their propensity to derail. This problem was generally attributed to the non-flanged No. 2 and 3 drivers traversing the relatively worn rail profiles over the aging C&S track work.



No. 346 captured in Montrose, June 12, 1934. Her appearance would be altered following 
a wreck on the C&S two years later. 
Photo by Gerald Best - Courtesy California State Railroad Museum.

On July 25, 1936, the 346 was working as a helper out of Como on an eastbound freight. After cutting off from the rest of the train at the top of Kenosha Pass, the 346 began to run light toward Denver. The engineer quickly lost control of the consolidation and the 346 overturned on a curve barely a mile below the summit. While the engine suffered significant cosmetic damage, the heaviest casualty was the loss of life for engineer Eugene McGowan. After repairs in the Burlington/C&S Denver shops, the 346 returned to C&S rails sporting a new steel cab and a relatively odd-looking steam dome cover and sand dome, as well as various other parts to replace those destroyed on Kenosha Pass.

The three C-19s served on the Colorado & Southern until April of 1937, at which time they were loaded up on a flatcar and shipped back home to Alamosa.

C-19 Twilight Years

During the late 1930s, the D&RGW was reeling in the wake of slack business due to the Great Depression years. As a result, a considerable amount of D&RGW locomotives succumbed to the scrapper’s torch. By the summer of 1941, only five C-19s remained in service between both the RGS and the D&RGW railroads. RGS 40 lasted until 1943 when it was significantly damaged in a wreck near Durango while double heading with ten-wheeler RGS 20.


K-27 Mudhens History

K-27 Mudhens History

K-27 Mikado History

Mighty Mudhens

by Jeff Johnson

‘Those things are little monsters’. While this reference to a mere 63-ton locomotive in the steam heyday of the early 1900’s may have seemed to be a bit of an exaggeration, enginemen of the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad had cause for excitement on the narrow gauge.

In April and May of 1903, Baldwin Locomotive Works delivered fifteen 2-8-2 Vauclain Compound locomotives to Salida, Colorado. Numbered 450 to 464 and resplendent in their freshly applied livery, thus began the ultimately checkered career of the Mudhen. Originally designated as class 125 (the “K-27” designation was adopted in 1924), they were the largest narrow gauge power the D&RG had purchased to date.

So what was the buzz all about? Up to this point the D&RG narrow gauge had utilized the ever-present 2-8-0’s and 4-6-0’s from the 1880’s to carry the burden of motive power for the line. The narrow gauge men had not experienced locomotives of this relatively grand size and wheel arrangement, much less the newer Vauclain Compound style of using steam. Although a higher rate of pay was awarded to enginemen operating the compounds, it can be easily presumed that crews found it disconcerting that the bigger power would also reduce the amount of engines (and thus labor) needed to handle the expanding business on the railroad. 

 
Vauclain Compound Style, H.L.Curtis Photo, Gunnison 1905. Photo Courtesy John Maxwell Collection.

Necessity is the mother of invention (and hard work), so right of way improvements and a little mechanical “getting used to” were among the adjustments the railroad men had to make while breaking in the new machines. Track upgrades were dictated by the fact that the new engines required a minimum 52lb. rail weight for safe operation.The outside frame arrangement of the running gear meant that the counter-weights (or “cranks”) were well outside of the total width of the rails. The low-slung appearance of these cranks turning just above the ties gave the engines the appearance of almost “waddling” down the sometimes tenuous narrow gauge track. From this observation, the ultimately well-known moniker of “Mudhen” was adopted by operating crews when referring to this class of motive power.

Changes For The Mudhens

The original Vauclain Compound design was conceived in the interest of increasing the efficiency of steam’s expansive force. The more common locomotive design (simple) exhausted the steam after it expanded once in the driving cylinder. The Vauclain Compound system first admitted steam to a smaller high pressure cylinder, then used the steam again in a larger low pressure cylinder prior to being exhausted to the atmosphere.



Slide Valve Era, Otto Perry Photo, June 6, 1923, 
No. 463 at Chama, New Mexico. 
Photo Courtesy Denver Public Library

Only a few years after the locomotives’ arrival, some impractical design issues with the Vauclain Compound begged for new solutions. The unexpected result of much higher maintenance with this cylinder and driving arrangement forced the railroad to consider another option. Thus, beginning in 1906, the class 125 locomotives were eventually changed to a simple, single expansion design with “D” style slide valves. This change was in keeping with the design of the other narrow gauge power and served the engines well for over a decade.

In 1917, the Denver & Rio Grande engaged an independent auditor to evaluate the railroad and recommend improvements to keep the line competitive. Among other suggestions, the advice to convert these fifteen 2-8-2’s to piston valves and Walshaert valve gear was partially heeded. By 1929, all but four of the Mudhens sported the piston valve arrangement. Other gradual modifications brought about new, larger tenders and super heater installation. Locomotive number 462 was the only piston valve conversion that did not receive super heating. The 450, 451, 457, and 460 remained with the simple slide valve arrangement (and lack of superheating) to the end of their relatively short careers.



Piston Valve Era, Otto Perry Photo, 
September 5, 1936, No. 463 at Montrose, Colorado
Photo Courtesy Denver Public Library

While eventually being used faithfully across the entire narrow gauge system, newer, more powerful locomotives delivered in the 1920’s had relegated the now comparatively small K-27 to less prestigious service. The toll of the great depression on the Colorado narrow gauge sent many of the locomotives into storage at Alamosa. The 450, 451, and 457 never returned to the rails beyond the early thirties. By the mid 1940’s, four K-27’s had been scrapped, two were sold to another railroad, and two others were primarily in yard switcher service. However, a struggling little cousin railroad helped keep the Mudhens waddling along.


ALco K28 HOn3 locomotive

ALco K28 HOn3 locomotive

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The K-28 Class Locomotives, delivered to D&RWG in 1923

The K-28 Class Locomotives, delivered to D&RWG in 1923

D&RGW 475, Moffat Tunnel Herald 
Friends of the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad, Richard L. Dorman Collection, 
Photo by Robert W. Richardson

The K-28 Class Locomotives, nicknamed the ‘sport model,’ were ordered from ALCO and delivered to the D&RGW in 1923 for multiple uses throughout the narrow gauge system. Mostly known for pulling the famous passenger train, The San Juan, they also saw service pulling the Shavano, the Chili Line, and Silverton mixed trains, as well as many different freight assignments. Included in this release will be Nos. 473, 476 and 478, which survive today on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. The other engines replicated in this release will be Nos. 470 and 475, which served the D&RGW until 1942 when they were transferred to the U.S. Army for use on the the White Pass & Yukon Railroad. Following the war effort, these locomotives were shipped to the Lower 48 and scrapped.

These ready-to-run models will be equipped with a road pilot, doghouse, precision can motor, maintenance-free lighting, and a DC/DCC SoundTraxx® Digital Sound Decoder™.

Expected delivery is late 2014.

BIG DISCOUNT AWAITS YOU!
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Prototypical Model Trains

(www.prototypicalmodeltrains.com) provides HO model trains that illustrate authentic detail, color schemes, sound, scale motive movement, that generates the ambience of a passing railroading era able to be reconstructed with such detail to become realistic and alive before you. Authenticity exists in the numerouse details exhibited with each product we sell designed and modeled from original engineering drawings and historical photographs.