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From the Archives of Dave's Trains, Inc.

Hammer & Sickle Image Soviet Boxcar Hammer & Sickle Image

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About This Car

The boxcar included in every Stalin-era and Khrushchev-era train set produced by the Soviet Union in the 1950's and 1960's was an all-metal car with sliding doors and functional latches. The sides of the car are decorated with the Soviet emblem and other identification markings heat-stamped in gold. The car also has nickel bumpers and nickel truck journals plus cast wheels. Note that the coupler design was apparently copied from American Flyer!

This very-realistic piece of Soviet rolling stock came with two window-like cutouts on each side -- presumably because the prototype was used for transportation of livestock and people as well as goods. A recent movie -- "Enemy at the Gates" starring Ed Harris -- features various trains including this exact-style boxcar!

The car is 3 inches wide by 3 5/8 inches high and the overall length (coupler to coupler) is 10 3/4 inches. The quarter and year of production were often stamped on the bottom of the car. This Soviet item was first produced in 1951 and continued to be made as late as 1969. The basic design remained unchanged throughout that entire 19-year period. Therefore variations will only result from different markings and different color combinations.

Photos of Soviet Boxcars
Photo of Soviet Maroon Boxcar with MEP
ABOVE: Early Maroon Boxcar with "MEP" marking
Photo of Soviet Boxcar with MEP on Left
ABOVE: Rare Early Boxcar with "MEP" marking on Left
Photo of Soviet Boxcar with r MOCKBA
ABOVE: Boxcar from 1965 with "r MOCKBA" marking
Photo of Soviet Boxcar without MEP
ABOVE: Later Boxcar without "MEP" marking


--- Early Version with "MEP" (1951-1957?)

The early version of the Soviet boxcars had the initials "MEP" (in Cyrillic for the Ministry of Electrotechnical Industries) stamped into the sides of the bodies. This marking was generally located on the lower right on each side. However one of the early version cars has been discovered with the "MEP" marking located on the lower left on each side! The early version was produced as late as the 3rd quarter of 1957 but it is unclear if it was produced after that.

The car bodies come in various shades of brown -- either chocolate brown (common), burgundy (scarce) or reddish-brown (rare). The roofs came in several shades of gray -- with either a glossy finish or a flat finish. The entire frame is painted black.

Photos of the markings on Soviet Boxcars
Photo of 'MEP' and 'r MOCKBA' markings Photo of USSR Logo on Boxcars Photo of Unknown Soviet Symbol
"MEP" / "r MOCKBA" Markings ~~~~~ USSR Logo ~~~~~ Soviet Symbol for ?

--- Later Version without "MEP" (1958?-1969)

The later version of the Soviet boxcars came without the "MEP" markings but it is unclear as to when those initials were first omitted from the sides of the car bodies. In addition, one set from 1962 and another set from 1965 contained rolling stock without the "MEP" markings but with the "r MOCKBA" (City of Moscow) markings. It is not known if boxcars from other years were decorated that way. The later version boxcars were produced through 1969 and most of them came with chocolate brown sides and glossy, light-gray roofs. In addition, the bottom of the frame was left unpainted on some of the later boxcars.

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This page is an information document only; nothing on this web page is being offered for sale. This page and all of the other pages from Our Soviet Archives were developed to assist you in understanding the components of the train sets produced in the Soviet Union during the 1950's and 1960's. These sets are known today as "Stalin-era" sets and "Khrushchev-era" sets. We have used pictures from our old files and personal collection to construct this area of our website. If you are interested in buying something, please view our inventory listings to see what we currently have for sale.

This web page was last updated on September 9, 2005. If you have suggestions for improving this page or if you see any errors, please contact us.

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