Re: Richfield tank car lettering color

Garth Groff or Sally Sanford <sarahsan@...>


One has to be careful about preserved equipment in museums. Sometimes repaints can be quite dodgy. I remember the WP caboose at Travel Town has gone through a couple of repaints, and IIRC the paint job was not always faithful (nor is the car number correct, but that's not the museum's fault).

This sometimes has consequences. Sacramento Northern GE steeple cab is 653 preserved by the Orange Empire Railway Museum at Perris. When in service this motor had yellow-orange scare stripes. Just before it was donated, the parent WP ran it through the paint shop in Sacramento and used "Zephyr" orange for the stripes, a much richer orange. Later the museum compounded this error by using similar rich orange when the motor was repainted locally. This became the "correct" color in the minds of many fans, since it was all they had ever seen (ignoring that 652 and 654 were then still wearing their in-service paint at the Western Railway Museum). When painted models of the steeple cabs were imported around 1990, the paint scheme was faithfully done in yellow-orange as the motors all wore while in service. The models did not sell as well as expected, as some modelers pointed to 653 and complained the paint was inaccurate.

Yours Aye,

Garth Groff 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

On 2/1/18 7:55 PM, Barry Roth barry_roth@... [STMFC] wrote:
Within the last few years there was a Richfield tank car on display at Travel Town in Griffith Park, Los Angeles. I know because I snapped a pic of it, not for modeling purposes but because the I hoped the ROX lettering would impress a certain Roxann. Relying on memory, I would say the lettering was white. 

Unfortunately I can't find that image now (and Roxann and I are not all that close either) and have found none online. Maybe a member in the LA area could take a look. 


On Feb 1, 2018, at 3:51 PM, Tony Thompson tony@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:

Garth Groff wrote:


Does anyone know if there are Richfield archives? Perhaps there are surviving tank car lettering specifications. Successor ARCO is headquartered in La Plama, California, though it is now a subsidiary of BP.

       A decade or so ago, there were VERY complete Richfield archives in the old Richfield building in Los Angeles (a handsome black and gold Art Deco building, IIRC . . . black gold, get it?). Those archives survived the demolition of the old building and were moved to the new Arco skyscraper. But at that time, there was no company archivist who could supervise delving into the records, so no one was allowed to do so. Don't know if those archives still exist.

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-6538; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history

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