Re: Accurail kit 4498

Dennis Storzek

On Tue, Mar 24, 2020 at 12:48 PM, Dave Parker wrote:
At the risk of piling on: Clark, I assume that you have a 4598 (there is no 4500 series).
These kits are now 29 years old, being released in 1991, IIRC. They were originally released as the 4000 series (wood ends and doors) 4200 series (7/8 steel ends and wood doors) and the 4400 series (steel ends and doors, At some point over the intervening years, we upgraded all the lettering art work. To avoid confusion between the old and new kits, they were all given new stock numbers, ratcheting each series up 100.
The only one of these models that I know to be prototypical is the 4100 series which, with a little work, makes a decent model of some CN cars built ca. 1918-27 (see attached).
The 4000/4100 series is truly the CN car. At the time I wanted to do a CB&Q car, but in those years builder's drawings weren't as easy to come by as they are now. I had worked with the late Stafford Swain and Ken Goslett to obtain drawings of the 1916 Canadian Government Railways car I did as a resin kit (Safford wanted a later car with the Hutchins roof but they couldn't find drawings) and they never stopped looking, so by the time I was working on the Accurail tooling, they had drawings for the more common CN car of the 1920's.

The 4200/4300 series car with the 7/8 corrugated ends is also a CN prototype, but more obscure. These started life as low roof door and a half automobile cars, but the CN quickly found they were too small; auto cars universally grew to 10'-0" IH during the twenties, so the CN rebuilt them as 6' door boxcars, retaining the corrugated ends. We gave some thought to doing the door and a half version, but it's really an atypical car with its low roof and there were not a lot of potential road names. Don Valentine of New England Rail Service settled the matter by bringing out his conversion kit.

This whole project was done with 3M's Tartan Tool process; sintered steel cavities formed over positive masters, very much like resin kit masters, and I had a Youngstown door pattern that was adaptable. Staff, Ken, and I discussed the possibility that the CN had replaced the doors on some cars, but we never did find any photos. However, in 1991 there weren't a lot of options for easy assembly models of pre-war prototypes, and this third version could be a stand-in for a lot of things, although those DM&IR cars may be the closest match. The idea was the third version would be cheap and easy to do. If I would have known what it was actually going to cost, I probably would not have done it.

Dennis Storzek

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