SEABOARD AIR LINE COACH 831
Seaboard Airline Railroad ordered coach 831 from Pullman in 1937 as an order of the prototype lightweight "American Flyer" PB (Prototype Batch) LW (lightweight) along with 5 others, 830-835, These cars were made famous by Lionel Lines and their "American Flyer Set". Though the PB LWs were built in 1937, the actual production batch didn't get underway until the 1940s, once wartime metal restrictions were removed.
These type of coaches, not specifically PB LWs, of which there are only 2 left, are extremely common. The coach was the industry standard and hundreds of different variations exist, from the heavyweight era to the modern Amfleet lightweights used by Amtrak. Some had chair car seats, clerestory roofs, arch roofs, commuter seats, washrooms, Jim Crow Segregation, or mechanical air conditioning (as 831 did). Hundreds of these vehicles exist today, and still serve as the backbone of the tourist and excursion railroad industry. As the movement first started in the 1960s it was mainly heavyweights like 2102, but these days most tourist lines operate air conditioned lightweights similar to 831, but being production models as only 2 prototypes survive, 831, and 833 in Florida, both of which are static displays. These are perfect because they are air conditioned, have large windows, and seating for 74 passengers.
The Railroad Historical Center restored 831 in 2016 and she sits proudly wearing Seaboard Green with a 1950s "Tropical Blue" interior. Being built in 1937, when the production series started the prototypes were internally remodelled to match 1940s and later 1950s styling. The streamlining over the wheels was removed by the 1950s as that fad died away, showing the main reminder of her prototype construction, the wheels and bogies, both of a distinctly heavyweight 1900s-1930s design. Below 831 can be seen restored (left) and before (right) as well as below as the 3rd piece of equipment in our railroad display.
^ Before Restoration ^ ^ After a Complete Restoration ^
^ Restored in Authentic Seaboard Green, No 831 sits Ready for You ^