Re: Any special purpose for trucks?

Bill Keene <wakeene@...>


Do not let the thought of doing your own research be a scary thing. There are a number of reasonably user friendly resources out there. The STMFC folks are one of them that I rely on regularly. They are great in sharing the knowledge. One just has to ask a specific question. There are no “general” answers when it comes to steam era freight cars. 

Most manufacturers of model kits provide some information about the trucks that were installed under the prototype of their kit. Recently, I have noticed that several of the resin kit manufacturers are even suppling the correct trucks either as part of the kit bundle or as an added option. 

Photos of a specific car are for the most part available. Or a quick question to this group or to the specific railroad special interest group will provide the answer to what truck was under that specific car you are asking about. 

The Tahoe Model Works web site is a good start as TMW provides many of the trucks that were installed on freight cars during the steam era modeling period. Mighty fine trucks I must add. The TMW data sheets on each of the trucks they manufacture has been a good resource for me. 

As one modeler that is more or less truck stupid, I rely on photos and Richard Hendrickson’s wonderfully helpful photo reference — mentioned in an earlier response to your question — of a great cross section of the freight car trucks available to the modeler. If I do not have info from the kit manufacturer regarding the trucks, I first fine a photo of the car in question, then refer to Richard’s reference document, and choose the necessary truck to complete the modeling as accurately as possible. It is a simple and easy process. The materials that I find are then copied into a reference file that is kept in a binder for digging about again during a later modeling effort. Yup! My memory is not the best. Thus a small reference library is a must. 

Hope that the above has been of help and perhaps has raised your confidence level. Modeling steam era freight cars is nothing to fear … except … it can become addictive.

Cheers & Happy Modeling,
Bill Keene
Irvine, CA

On Aug 6, 2017, at 11:53 AM, Mark Drake markstation01@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:

Understood Nelson, I'll use them as I please on private road cars, my google search didn't yield the results I was looking for I had hoped to find some assistance here but such is life.
Signed- Mark L. Drake Still in Florida USA

On Sunday, August 6, 2017 2:30 PM, "Nelson Moyer npmoyer@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:

Mark, there is no easy alternative to doing your own research. For example, the CB&Q used different trucks on different lots of the same class of boxcars and gondolas, and yes, they used National on some cars. CB&Q XA-15A, XM-31, and XM-32 had National on some lots, but you need the lot number and/or know the road numbers in those lots to know which ones got National. Same with CB&Q GS-5 and GS-8 gondolas. Same with power hand brake hardware where the same lot could have three different power hand brakes. Model from photographs, if your prototype reference library is limited. Find photos of a couple of cars you like with whatever trucks you’re trying to use, get those cars, and install your trucks if they didn’t come with the right ones. There is no ‘special purpose’ for the trucks you list. They were used on a variety of cars, or not. You can’t generalize.
Nelson Moyer

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