Ulrich Track Cleaning Car


Ulrich’s line was just getting started in the late 1940s and included signal kits, when this Track Cleaning Car was introduced. The HO-scale piece of rolling stock came as a collection of mostly metal and wood components and was sold without trucks (similar to many kits of this era). The release is noteworthy for being one of the first attempts at solving the challenge of track maintenance for model railroad pikes. The tank on the bed of the car served to carry cleaning fluid and dispensed this solution through its base to a pad mounted to the car’s underframe. As the car moved around a model railroad, the pad (soaked with cleaning fluid) wiped grime from rail heads to improve electrical conductivity.


ABOVE: From a 1956 catalog, here’s the entry showing the then-new trailer-on-flatcar model.

For more on Ulrich, check out HO Collector‘s 4th Quarter 2020 edition and the article, “An Introduction to Ulrich” by Tony Cook. You can purchase individual issues of HO Collector and other White River Productions’ magazines and books by visiting your local hobby dealer or going to the publisher’s website.