Re: Walthers Hideous Tank Car

Richard Hendrickson

On Mar 28, 2014, at 11:12 AM, Garth Groff <sarahsan@...> wrote:


After a long break for other interests, I have returned to trains and 
rejoined this group. It will be great to become reacquainted with old 
friends, and make some new ones.

So I'm sitting here looking at a Walthers tank car. When I cleared out 
my Athearn-quality cars years back I kept this car. I figured it would 
be good to have a dozen or so "expendable" cars that guests or kids 
could run on my layout and not cause me to have a coronary if they were 
damaged, and at that time I was building a portable layout to take to a 
now-defunct train show I often attended. Besides, it is a Sinclair car, 
and my sweetheart is a Sinclair by descent. She always liked this car, 
and it never hurts to score points with one's spouse.

I know the tank scales out to about 11K gallons and the dome is 
oversized. What intrigues me is the underframe and tank saddles. Is the 
underframe close to any prototype, especially one not done with more 
quality by the IM or Proto cars? I'm wondering if anyone has ever 
considered shimming the saddles and dropping a more prototypical tank 
onto this underframe to get something a bit different. Detailing on the 
frame itself is a bit clunky, but the corner steps, and some of the rods 
and piping, could be replaced by wire for a layout-quality car.

Thoughts? Ideas? Raspberries?

First of all, Garth, welcome back.

I don’t have an example of that Walthers tank car in front of me, but my recollection (reinforced by the illustrations in the Walthers on-line catalog) is that the underframes are severely clunky and don’t even remotely resemble any prototype underframe.  And reworking that underframe into anything even vaguely prototypical would, in my opinion, require a lot more effort than would be warranted by the results.  YMMV, but if it were my model, I’d replace it with a prototypically accurate model of a Sinclair car (e.g., Proto 2000 10K AC&F Type 21). 

Richard Hendrickson

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