1. as a vehicle.
(a) [early 17C–19C] (UK Und., also ratler) a coach.
(b) [19C] a cab.
(c) [mid-19C+] (also rattle) a passenger train or carriage of the train, esp. in phr. the rattlers.
(d) [mid-19C+] (Aus./US) a freight train or carriage of a train.
(e) [late 19C-1960s] (US) the Manhattan elevated railway; any urban cable car or streetcar.
(f) [1900s] (US) a police van.
(g) [1910s–20s] (US Und.) a tramp who rides on freight cars.
(h) [1910s–20s] any tram.
(i) [1920s] (US) an automobile.
(j) [1920s] a bicycle.
(k) [1920s+] the New York or London underground railway.
2. in fig. uses.
(a) [19C] a blow.
(b) [late 19C] something serious or impressive.
(c) [late 19C] an admirable person.
3. [mid-19C; 1920s] an amorous man; a promiscuous woman.
(US Und.) a thief specializing in freight wagons.
[1920s+] (Aus.) to travel on the railways without paying.
[late 19C+] (orig. Aus.) to travel on the railway without paying.
[1900s-20s] to defraud the railway, to travel for free.