The Bachmann HO Silver Passenger Car 85' Full Dome Amtrak Phase I models the Full Dome 85' (Big Dome) passenger car used in Amtrak's early days. The Budd Company built 14 of the Big Domes, in two phases, for the Santa Fe Railway with initial delivery in 1954. Unlike earlier dome cars that had only the middle part of the car designed as a dome (and thus limiting seating), the Full Dome Car as the name implies had the dome feature the full length of the car. The cars remained in service on the Santa Fe until 1971, when the cars were sold to Auto-Train. Initially used by Amtrak when Amtrak relaunched the defunct Auto-Train, with conversion of Amtrak's western trains to a bilevel configuration the full dome was no longer an option.
Road Name and Passenger Car History:
Amtrak: The National Railroad Passenger Corporation was incorporated in 1971 to assume the passenger operations of the US railroad companies. Continuing passenger train losses and the threat of the loss of all railroad passenger service caused Congress to pass the 1970 Rail Passenger Service Act. Amtrak, the brand name for NRPC, struggled in the 1970s to take the private railroad's older worn equipment and build a national passenger rail network. During the 1970s-1980s Amtrak introduced new equipment and services. It became clear despite much conservative opposition Amtrak was not going to disappear. During the 1990s and up to today Amtrak has persevered, although a lack of a consistent funding source and consistent underfunding has left Amtrak fighting an uphill battle. Amtrak inherited the full dome cars from the Santa Fe, which it initially used on its Western trains. Santa Fe's pioneering of bilevel trains was the method Amtrak chose to equip all its Western trains. With the entire train being two-level, the role of the two-story dome was incorporated into the new Sightseer/ Lounge Cars, that essentially replaced the full domes.
Recommended for Ages 14 and Up.