History of Prototype Freight Car Modeling

Andy Carlson

Hi Bill,

Epoxy was the material Bill Clouser used for his castings, even to the end of
his casting career. When I first saw his O scale Dreadnaught end castings, I was
convinced that Bill must have been God.

The IMWX car was tooled by Frank Bromer of Intermountain as a "divorce
settlement", in lieu of cash, when Jerry left Intermountain as a founding

And please, don't forget Al Armitage's contributions to our hobby; without
styrene few resin kits would have made it to market.

-Andy Carlson
Ojai CA

From: lnbill <fgexbill@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Wed, May 9, 2012 9:39:47 AM
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

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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