Replacement Plastic Handrails for Athearn models

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by pdt, Jun 8, 2004.

  1. pdt

    pdt Member

    When I first saw the retooled Athearn SD40-2 with its new molded plastic handrails, I knew I wanted to replace the steel OEM handrails on my older SD40-2s. Later, the GP38-2 was released as an RTR model with molded handrails. That did it. I decided to order four sets of GP38-2 handrails and one set of SD40-2 handrails. They arrived yesterday (I ordered directly from Horizon Hobby).

    First of all, they look great. Second, they fit snug in the molded stanchion holes. The stanchions on the SD40-2 tend to lean a bit if I use the factory drilled hole in the cab, so I'll be drilling my own to ensure vertical stanchions. The GP38-2 handrails fit perfectly, though. These models are at least 13 years old and have been painted and stripped many times over the years (I had to learn to paint somehow!). Some have even had the steel handrails mounted in the past (which can enlarge the holes slightly). Still, everything fit well.

    So, if you have an older SD40-2 or GP38-2 that you'd like to upgrade with nice handrails but want to avoid the piece-by-piece assembly of Smokey Valley's sets, try the Athearn handrails.

    Oh, one more good piece of news: the GP60M and GP60B handrails are shown as separate parts available at Horizon (back ordered, though). Hopefully, the CF7 will be next. I have some old RPP models that could use some upgrading...
  2. Fred_M

    Fred_M Guest

    That's good to know. If I had ordered them they wouldn't of fit. :D FRED
  3. Summit

    Summit Member

    What is the part # for those plastic GP38-2 handrail sets?

    Thanks much.

    Elko, NV
  4. pdt

    pdt Member

    Incidentally, one of the sets of GP38-2 handrails I purchased was an experiment of sorts. I have a GP39X model I constructed from an Athearn GP50. The frame/walkway remained the same as a standard GP50 Phase I (with the standard blower housing, not the angled one), so I wanted to see if a plastic GP38-2 set would work. Sure enough, it does. The end handrails will have to be modified since they have the double bend in them for the small step out end of the GP38-2 instead of the large rounded anticlimber shape. I'll probably just bend a new wire rail and thread it through the stanchions. But, despite not fitting exactly because of the shape, they *do* fit...


    Here's the straight dope from the Horizon site, which is actually more comprehensive than the parts page on the Athearn site. Go figure...

    HO HANDRAIL SET, GP38-2/BLACK [ATH46100] $5.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, GP38-2/CSX GRAY [ATH46104] $5.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, GP38-2/WHITE [ATH46106] $5.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, GP38-2/L&N DK GRAY [ATH46114] $5.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD40-2/BLACK [ATH64030] $6.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD40-2/UP GRAY [ATH64032] $6.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD40-2/CSX GRAY [ATH64034] $6.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD40-2/WHITE [ATH64036] $6.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD40-2/CP RED [ATH64037] $6.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD40-2/C&NW GREEN [ATH64041] $6.75
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/BLACK [ATH80521] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET,SD50/UP GRAY [ATH80522] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/CR BLUE [ATH80523] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/WHITE [ATH80524] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/KCS GRAY [ATH80525] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/SBD GRAY [ATH80526] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/C&NW GREEN [ATH80528] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD50/CSX GRAY [ATH80529] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD70/SD75/BLACK [ATHG63852] $6.98
    HO HANDRAIL SET, SD70/SD75/SILVER [ATHG63853] $6.98
    HO SD70M HANDRAIL SET, UP/GRAY [ATHG63855] $6.98

    I notice they now have the SD50 handrails listed, which is nice, but I'm waiting for the CF7 and AC4400 handrails!

    Also, note that there are actually more colors for the SD40-2 and GP38-2 than are listed here. I originally intended to purchase Conrail blue handrails for one of my GP38-2s and a BN green set for one of my SD40-2s. But, they aren't listed, even though you can find them on the Walthers site (out of stock, of course).

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