At 12:48 PM 5/9/2012 -0400, you wrote:
Which came first IMWX cars of the Gould (later Tichy) cars? I thought the Gould cars camme first.This is fun to try and test my memory without looking it up... my normal source is old MR ads and what not, but those are all in storage while I fix up my basement. I remember the Gould tank car and I think it got its first write-up in Mainline Modeler, which means it has to be 1980 or later. I bought one, sold it unbuilt.... I remember discussions on Compuserve's TrainNet circa 1989 where some guys were saying from now on Tichy was their minimum standard for freight cars, and I commented that they must not have a very diverse fleet. If I had to pick a number I'd say 1985. Just SWAG on my part, but I'm fairly sure that it came after E&B and the first incarnation of Fast Freddie, but before IMWX and Intermountain.
Oh, almost forgot about another flat kit from the mid 80s... the Ramax ACF 2-bay CF hopper. Front Range later did the same car in a one-piece body.
But it's difficult to discuss any of this without getting outside of the steam era since many manufacturers and pioneers crossed the boundary.
When did Sunshine and F&C start? I had no awareness of Sunshine until I attended my first Naperville event in 1994 or 95. F&C I think was around before that, I mainly remember their ads but nobody locally carried their stuff, and I rarely if ever bought anything by mail back then.
Oh, I just thought of something else. Red Ball's B&O wagon top hopper - the one composed of the flat, thin white metal castings that you had to bend to shape. I'm actually thinking 1970s, like 78 or 79 for this one. I think I still have it, never tried to build it... and I think have the F&C version also, ditto.