Re: MKT cars

Ken Roth

Rob and Co.
I'm going to jump into the fray since I recently completed a model of the MKT 79xxx war emergency box car.  This project was inspired by a black and white photo of an obviously yellow-painted MKT car in Tom Dill and Ed Austin's "Southern Pacific In Oregon Pictorial".  The picture in question was taken sometime in the early 1950's in Eugene, Oregon which answers the question of whether the cars were still yellow in the late 40's.  As to the accuracy of a model based on the Intermountain War Emergency box, I would say "not without modifications".  It would need at least replacing the underframe with a fish-belly reefer underframe such as Accurail or Branchline.  This requires some length adjustment and new cross members.  Bill Welch's thread earlier this year identifies some other body changes that should be done.  After study of prototype photos given to me by the late Richard Hendrickson, I elected to scratchbuild the sides to come closer to the spacing of the prototype trusses, and used a Red Caboose AAR roof.  I did use the Intermountain ends, however.  The unusual grabs and ladders on the car are also scratchbuilt. Decals are mostly from an old Oddball decal set which is no longer available, but I had to make my own decals to get the correct dimensional data. It ain't perfect, but I'm attaching a couple of photos anyway.  I am not quite satisfied with the paint color on my model.  I used TCP MKT yellow, but was informed by a friend with very good color perception that it is not so close.  So ... more weathering is in order.   Ken Roth

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