Nassau Lionel Operating Engineers
by William Meyer, Richie Williams & Al Schwartz
Lionel Operating Engineers, Inc. (NLOE) was formed in
June 1983, and, from that point on until December 1999,
they enjoyed working and OPERATING their trains on a 40
foot by 60 foot "O" gauge Hi-Rail layout with well over
3000 feet of Gargraves track and more than 120 Curtis
Hi-Rail switches. A change in ownership of the building
they occupied forced them to move. Sadly, very little
of their layout could be saved. NLOE. is presently in
the process of building an even larger layout at a new
location in Levittown, New York, just a short distance
from their old location.
Richard Williams, Club Car Agent, began
a program to produce an annual club car
for their members with a club logo and markings.
Since they are mostly a Lionel Club and
are located on Long Island, it was decided
to use Lionel products and Long Island markings
on their cars.
The first car produced was a Lionel boxcar re-decorated
by Pleasant Valley Process Company (PVP). The decorating
was done over Lionel # 9620-21-22-23 sports series cars.
The car was tuscan red with white lettering to the left
of the door and a black and white L.I.R.R. keystone to
the right of the door. The car is marked #8389 and 51
cars were produced with Symington Wayne plastic trucks.
The built date is 9-7-89 with no variations. A picture
of this car an be found on the cover of the June 1991
issue of "O" Gauge Railroading magazine, along with an
article about their club inside.
Their second car was a 4 bay covered Quad hopper, decorated
over a Lionel # 6-19309 Seaboard Hopper. This was a gray
body with orange lettering and logo. The car was marked
#8390 and 48 cars were produced. 45 cars were produced
with an orange roof and hatches.
is a variation in the decorating of this car. Three cars
were produced with a gray roof and hatches. The built
date is 2-90 and they rode on Symington Wayne plastic
trucks. Cars were decorated by PVP.
The club car was actually a two car set. These consisted
of a bunk car and tool car, both had arch bar trucks and
were illuminated. The re-decorating was done over Amtrak
bunk car # 6-19652 and Jersey Central tool car # 6-19653
cars. Both cars were decorated by PVP and 51 sets (102
cars) had orange sides with gray roof and ends. All lettering
was in black (incorrectly published as gray lettering
in "Greenberg’s Guide to Lionel Trains 1970-1991, Volume
II, on page 34).
car contains the "Dashing Dan" logo used by the LIRR in
the 1950’s & 1960’s, which has the words "Route of the
Dashing Commuter." The bunk car is marked #8391A and #8391B
for the tool car. Both cars have a built date of 6-91.
No variations exist except for the different car bodies
they were decorated over.
NLOE was able to establish a contract with Lionel, LTI
for blank, unassembled cars to be decorated by PVP, therefore
there are no re-decorated cars from 1992 to the present.
This year their club car was a Lionel single dome chemical
tank car. It is marked #8392 and Lionel cataloged # 6-17893.
The car is a black plastic body mold painted gray with
orange ends. The frame, ladders and platform are natural
black. All lettering is in black with LIRR and keystone
background in red. The Club logo and 1992 was stamped
inside both end panels. 55 cars were produced with a built
date of 2-92 and no variations exist.
1993: This was a banner year for
NLOE. Three club commemoratives were produced
because it was their 10th anniversary.
first was a Lionel RS-3 Diesel locomotive with dual can
motors, electronic reverse and a horn. Catalog # 6-52007
was a gray plastic body mold with a standard blackened
metal chassis. The diesel body was painted dark gray with
orange ends. The truck side frames, fuel tank and chassis
are painted dark gray. The handrails and coupler pilots
are painted orange. All lettering is in white. There is
a 10th anniversary logo on the side of the cab under the
locomotive number. The number on this RS-3 is marked 1552
(a break in their number sequence), because it is decorated
after Long Island Railroad’s # 1552 prototype used in
the 1950’s. There is no built date on the locomotive but
the delivery date was 8-93. Decorated by PVP with no variations.
second car was a Lionel illuminated bay window caboose
marked #8393 and cataloged # 6-52020. It is a gray plastic
body mold with die-cast Timken type trucks. Caboose sides
and ends were painted orange, roof and end platforms were
painted gray. Lettering is black and has the "Dashing
Dan" logo and their 10th anniversary logo. 66 cars were
decorated by PVP with no variations.
third car was a re-issue of their 1st 1989 boxcar with
minor changes for their 10th anniversary. This car was
available for club members and for the first time in their
club’s history, was available to the general public. This
was because of the numerous requests they received from
people wanting to purchase this car ever since it appeared
on the cover of the June 1991 issue of "O" Gauge Railroading
Magazine. This car marked #8393, not to be confused with
their 1993 caboose, which is also marked #8393. The reason
both cars have the same marking is because the Club’s
numbering system has some significance. 1983 is the year
their club was formed, therefore the first 2 digits are
"83" and 1993 is the year the car was produced, therefore
"93", is the last 2 digits. Catalog #6-52019 is a white
plastic body mold with a metal floor. A small amount of
cars came with the newer plastic floor that Lionel would
use in the future, except for their 6464 series cars.
This car is the same as their #8389 boxcar except the
LIRR keystone, background is in red, the addition of their
anniversary logo, and the car is marked #8393. 425 cars
were decorated by PVP with a built date of 6-93, with
no variations. This car was equipped with the newer style
Lionel plastic trucks.
The Club car was a catalog #6-52026 trailer on flatcar
(TOFC) decorated for the Grumman Corporation and is marked
#8394. This car started as a red plastic flatcar body
mold and a white trailer mold with metal undercarriage.
The flat car is painted gray with white lettering and
the trailer is painted Grumman blue with white Grumman
lettering and a logo of the Grumman Tomcat with the inscription
"Any Time Baby." Their club logo is on the front of the
trailer. 144 cars were produced by PVP with a built date
of 6-94, with no variations and is equipped with die-cast
sprung trucks. A late addition to the #8394 Grumman TOFC
was a Grumman tractor # 6-52072 in white with a blue Grumman
logo on the doors.
NLOE produced 114 Lionel vat cars cataloged # 6-52061
and decorated for the "Stern Pickle Products Company"
of Farmingdale, Long Island which was marked #8395. Lionel’s
blue plastic body mold was painted with white sides and
a silver roof. The car lettering is red with the vats
decorated in yellow and green. The car has die-cast sprung
trucks and a built date of 6-95 with no variations. Once
again PVP did an outstanding job in decorating this car.
1996: No freight car was produced
as the club began a 4 year program of passenger
cars. These cars are Lionel 60 foot smooth
sided aluminum cars similar to the series
issued by the TCA The car numbering system
was reversed for these cars to distinguish
them from any freight cars also produced
during this 4 year period.
first car in the passenger car series is a skytop observation
car decorated for the LIRR in their 1964-65 World’s Fair
color scheme. This # 6-52076 is a gray car with an orange
stripe running the full length of the windows. The #9683
car’s lettering is orange with the inscription below the
windows "Your Steele Thruway to the Fair Gateway." 89
cars of "Montauk" were decorated by PVP with no variations.
The second car in the passenger car series is a #6-52112
Lionel full Vista Dome car decorated the same as the 1996
car. The car is marked #9783 and 102 cars were produced
with the name "Ronkonkoma."
is the 50th anniversary of their club’s home. Levittown
was a model community for GI’s returning home to New York
after World War II. The Meenan Oil Company of Wantagh,
L.I. installed the original home heating systems in these
houses and was celebrating it’s 63rd anniversary. To commemorate
this event, NLOE produced a Lionel single dome chemical
tank car with Meenan Oil Company logos and Levittown markings
as well. Equipped with die-cast sprung trucks, this car
was available to club members and the public as #6-52122.
The car is white with green ends and lettering. 884 cars
were produced at the Lionel factory in Michigan with a
marking of #8397.
This is the third car in their passenger car series decorated
the same as their first two cars. Car #9883 contains the
name "Hicksville" and is Lionel # 6-52123. This car is
a dining car with production at PVP and 100 were produced.
was also the 15th anniversary of NLOE and to commemorate
this, once again, they chose to produce a Lionel TOFC
with Grumman Corp. markings different from the #8394 TOFC
issued in 1994. This time the flatcar is Grumman blue
with white lettering and the trailer is white with a Grumman
logo used in the 1950’s and the familiar "Tomcat" logo.
This car also comes with a tractor painted Grumman blue
with white Grumman logos on the cab. The car is marked
#8398 and is Lionel # 6-52144. This car was produced at
the Lionel factory and was available to the public as
1115 were produced.
This was to be the 4th and final car in their passenger
car series, but NLOE members wanted a 5 car set, so it
was decided to produce 2 cars, each with a different number
and name. Both these cars are to be a Lionel coach decorated
the same as their first three cars. The first coach is
second car is #99832 "Penn Station." Both cars have the
Lionel #6-52145 and were decorated by PVP.
the issue of 2 Grumman Corp. TOFCs in the past, Northrop
Corp., which acquired Grumman Corp. a few years ago, NLOE
felt it only fair to produce a TOFC with the new Northrop
Corp. name and logos. They felt honored to be asked once
again and responded by offering a Northrop Corp. TOFC.
This car was available to members and the public but was
not advertised. Instead, order forms for this car were
established from the order forms of their 1998 15th anniversary
TOFC. In other words, anyone ordering their 1998 TOFC
received ordering information for the 1999 Northrop Corp.
TOFC. The car number is #8399 and Lionel #6-52166. 984
cars were made by Lionel in Michigan.
Three club commemoratives were issued. A Grucci Fireworks
boxcar was designed and manufactured by Lionel in Michigan.
What a better way to celebrate the Millennium than with
fireworks by Grucci, a world famous fireworks company.
This is a 6464 style boxcar with metal frame, door guides,
brake wheel and die-cast sprung trucks. The #6-52186 boxcar
had the marking #2000 and 959 cars were made with no variations.
Next, something was needed to head up their
club passenger car set, so 200 F-3 diesel
shells were ordered from Lionel to be decorated
by PVP. These are decorated in the color
scheme of the LIRR used on their "C" liner
diesels, a light gray body with an egg shell
color on the roof and part of the nose.
Lettering is in white with the LIRR map
logo under the cab windows. These were issued
as an "AA" set, and a total of 100 sets
were produced. Lionel’s catalog is #6-52173
but the units will be marked #2000 and #2001.
third car issued for 2000 was an "O" gauge aluminum baggage
car to add to their passenger set. A feature of this car
is that it is illuminated and has window inserts in the
doors. This is the first time Lionel ever illuminated
a baggage car since they were first introduced in the
early 1950’s. The cars were lettered "United States Mail
Railway Post Office." It was cataloged #6-52174 with a
marking #0083. 102 cars were decorated by PVP.
The Central Railroad of Long Island boxcar is a transition
boxcar because it carries the "Central Railroad of Long
Island" name which became the "The Long Island Railroad
Company" which eventually became the Long Island Railroad.
The 6464 style boxcar was manufactured by Lionel just
after they moved their operations overseas. This may very
well be one of the first 6464 style cars to come from
China. The Lionel #6-52232 car is marked #8301 and 705
2002: The 8th car for their passenger
series is an "O" gauge aluminum Vista Dome
in the "Worlds Fair" deco. The Lionel #6-52235
will come with markings of #0283 and the
name "Forest Hills." 93 pieces will be decorated
New York and Atlantic Railway boxcar is once again a 6464
style boxcar and has all the metal and rivet detail of
their previous cars and is designed after one of the newest
railroads to spring up. The NYA&R took over the freight
service of the LIRR, which is mostly a passenger railroad.
The Lionel #6-52256 boxcar is in current production and
will be marked #8302. If you ordered the Central Railroad
of Long Island car and the later New York & Atlantic Railway
boxcar, you may have one of the oldest and newest trains
the LIRR had.
for the NLOE Club Car Matrix."