Re: Old Trains, New Parts?

Andy Harman

I too have some stash of vintage HO freight cars from the 1950s and 60s, but my reason for having them is nostalgic rather than prototype modeling. As such I look for complete original cars in good condition, built or unbuilt. Athearn metal line, MDC when it really was "die cast", Revell, Varney, Hobbyline, Ulrich etc. I do occasionally set up some code 100 track and operate these cars behind a Mantua Pacific or other blacksmith-era power. One thing I have done is put Kadees on everything. I may be nostalgic but I'm not a masochist. I always despised horn hook and Mantua loop couplers, and that's one headache I don't need.

This really started with the Ulrich GS gondola, which I think was a well detailed and good looking model in its day, and unlike its modern superplastic or even brass counterparts, it actually had operating drop doors.

I really can't think of any instances in which I'd use this vintage stuff to make a state of the art prototypical model. Doesn't mean it can't be done, but that's not really what I'm wanting from them. They are what they are, and I consider the vintage stuff to be a separate hobby. I didn't cut my teeth on Lionel like so many of my generation and before, so I have no childhood memories there to try and reclaim - Lionel was something the other kids had. My childhood memories are of these old metal, metal and wood, and early plastic rolling stock.


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