model train set on track

American Flyer Two-Tone Green 3115

e*Train Issue: Dec 2011   |   Posted in: ,

By Leon Sweet

In my recent article on Nation Wide Lines items by American Flyer, I indicated that I believed that the enameled Golden State Nation Wide Lines cars may have also came with a 3115 engine with four 3115 plates on it.  Since, I had never seen Version C, as described in the Greenberg’s Guide to American Flyer O Gauge on page 103, I naturally assumed that this version was the same color as other 3115 engines.  Even though the Greenberg’s guide described it as two-tone green.  I recently found that my assumption was incorrect, as I recently purchased a complete set with this unusual engine.

It may still be possible that a 3115 engine may have accompanied the enameled Nation Wide Lines cars, but it would not be the two-tone green engine described on page 103 and shown below, because it would not match the color of the Nation Wide Lines cars.

The two tone green engine is green as described by the Greenberg’s guide, instead of the two-tone presidential blue/green colors as normally found on the 3115 engines.  The picture below shows the color contrast between the more common 3115 engines and the two-tone green engine.

unusual green 3115 a
3115 color contrast

This engine was featured in what must have been an uncataloged American Flyer set that was made up for a department store or other special order, as it came with three late Illini cars (baggage, coach, and observation).  The cars are late production due to their gray trucks and light green frames.  The set came to me with a 96 station and two signals and this configuration has me wondering if these items came as part of a larger complete set or if they were purchased separately by the original owner.

I can only guess that this set was manufactured around 1931-1932, due to the truck style and color of the car frames.  I know that I have observed other uncataloged sets that featured the Illini cars and green 3014 engines, and I know of two Montgomery Ward sets featuring Illini cars, one with the 7011 uncataloged engine and the other with a 3195 engine.

All I can say for certain, is that this is a very interesting and uncommon 3115.

1932-33 c. Uncatalogued green 3115 engine and set