History of Prototype Freight Car Modeling

gary laakso

Don't forget the Central Valley one-piece plastic under bodies to upgrade all the blue box Atheran and Roundhouse boxcars. I must have purchased a dozen to upgrade plastic boxcars and they came in handy when resin kits let the builder place the components on the underframe.

gary laakso
south of Mike Brock

----- Original Message -----
From: lnbill
To: STMFC@...
Sent: 5/9/2012 12:39:44 PM
Subject: [STMFC] History of Prototype Freight Car Modeling

As some of you will remember from posts I made in the fall of 2011, I want to put together materials to create a history of modeling freight cars more accurately and more prototypically. I now have some good materials about the early offerings of Al Westerfield and the materials that publicized the releases of Westrail and Dennis Storzek. F&C is putting some materials together for me and I will be talking w/Martin about Sunshine's initial offerings.

Here are somethings I need your help with.

Materials related to Roller Bearing models--instructions, ads, kit lists, etc. It would especially be helpful to know when they started advertising. Also photos of built-up models.

Materials related to the Rail Progress hopper kits. (Do I have the correct name for this line?) Again built up model photos would be appreciated.

It could be argued that two seminal articles related to how our niche in the hobby has developed were Dennis Storzek's article on 5 things to do to improve existing styrene freight car models. This appeared sometime in the 1980's. Can someone provide scans of this article?

Bill Clouser's articles on using rubber molds and polyester (was that the material?) to make copies of parts, components, etc. Not sure of the dates or how many articles there were. Ned scans of at least one of these.

Arguably Prototype Modeler magazine helped change the thinking and orientation for some of us. I would love to have scans of the cover of the first few issues of this.

The seminal styrene kit I think it could be argued was the "Innovative Model Works" 1937 boxcar kit. When was this kit introduced. Does anyone have any good stories about the development of this model by Jerry Porter they can send me?

Can anyone furnish me with info about the beginnings of McKean, Front Range, and C&BT, i.e. the people involved, initial offerings, and or course nicely built up models.

Anecdotes about these pioneering styrene efforts and the people involved would be appreciated.

One more item and this may start an argument. Do we know who night have first used the term "Prototype" to describe the approach to what we are doing, either specifically to modeling, or more generally to the model railroading hobby.

I am planning to talk about this history from the 1/87th scale perspective because that is what I know. Tentatively this will be a presentation at Naperville and Cocoa Beach and I will consider how to make the presentation available to others for them to do a presentation.

Bill Welch
2225 Nursery Road; #20-104
Clearwater, FL 33764-7622

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