Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars


Dennis - When I copied the AC&F builders photos I was given permission to reproduce them in any way I wanted.  If you have the Westerfield AC&F photos disk you can also do so.  - Al Westerfield

On Sunday, February 19, 2017 1:58 PM, "destorzek@... [STMFC]" wrote:

Well, it's been nice reading the heated discussion about the new Accurail car kit. I have to apologize for my rather terse reply Friday... I was feeling like crap, checked the e-mail one last time before leaving work, and Andy's message popped up. Now that I'm feeling better, let's see if I can cover all replies in one message.

I thought it was no secret that this is a New York Central System car - both versions. The NYC adopted this fishbelly underframe before they adopted steel ends, so the cars were built new both ways. The 1400 and 1800 series kits are going to be the same bodies with a straight 15" channel underframe that will allow them to become "stand-ins" for the great number of prototypes that did not have fishbelly center sills.

The NYC had these cars built for itself and subsidiaries by at least five builders, over a span of eleven or so years. Drawings of lots built by both Pullman Co. and Haskell & Barker exist in the Pullman Library of the Illinois Railway Museum... extensive coverage, but incomplete. There are also no builders photos in the IRM collection. The best builders photos are of AC&F cars. There are identifiable minor differences between each lot I have drawings for, and also between those drawings and the AC&F cars in the photos.

The Pullman and H&B drawings, and all the builders photos, show the cars were built with outside metal roofs having prominent clasps holding the ends of the seam caps and additional clasps holding the middle of the sheets at the eaves. These are the original form of a non-flexible outside metal roof, and they did not last long at all. There are numerous photos of the cars still with their pre-1926 data lettering that have had their roofs replaced. In the materials from the Pullman Library were some drawings of rebuildings of NYC truss rod cars with new underframes dated 1922, and those showed the replacement roofs. Manufacturer is not noted, but they look like Murphy XLA, and that is what is on the kits.

I'm sorry, the license agreement with Bombardier Corp, the actual owner of the drawings in the IRM collection prohibits reproduction.Likewise, while the AC&F photos are on loan to us, I know that the St. Louis Mercantile Library, the holder of the ACF builders photo collection, has essentially the same terms, requiring payment of royalties for publication. Accurail is not in the publishing business. We've done our homework to develop the kits, they are what they are, anyone who wants prototype photos will need to do their own research.  Ray Breyer has been generous in sharing what he has, and has mentioned his intention to publish articles about the cars in the future.The material IS out there.

These cars have a channel steel end sill with the flanges turned inward, rather than outward as is common on many other cars. The underframe is exactly the same length on cars with either wood or steel ends, with the end material outside the ends. Since the wood car siding is 9/16" thicker than the steel end sheet, that means the wood car is actually 1-1/8" longer over the sheathing. This was going to cause a problem with the fascia under a common roof. While the H&B drawings show the car siding stopping at the top of the end sill channel, thus overhanging the face of the channel by 13/16", the AC&F photos show much less overhang... of course, without access to the AC&F drawings, it's impossible to tell exactly what they did differently.  To solve my fascia problem. I decreased the overhang of the siding by .005", to about a scale 3/8". This seems consistent with what shows in the AC&F photos.

Also, thanks Tony for pointing out those six square things on the corners are bolt heads, not rivets.

Dennis Storzek

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