Re: Anyone Want A First Generation SFRD Mechanical Reefer?

Tim O'Connor

This poll reminds me of practically the same poll taken some time ago, asking us
which early Santa Fe mechanical we wanted. I think I voted for the "weird" cars -
the Santa Fe built some cars with 52 ft or 54 ft length, not like anyone else's.

Different length cars must have made warehouse owners really happy trying to get
a string of cars parked in front of their loading doors! :-D

IMO this will never happen unless someone does it in resin or 3-D.

Tim O'Connor

On 4/4/2020 2:29 PM, Bob Chaparro via wrote:

Anyone Want A First Generation SFRD Mechanical Reefer?

I am good friends with a person working for a major model manufacturer. His area of expertise is product development.

For years he and I have been discussing the possibility of bringing to market an accurate HO scale first generation SFRD mechanical refrigerator car. The cut-off year would be 1960.

The car would be produced in styrene and probably only in R-T-R form.

From our discussions this project almost came to fruition a few years ago but stalled due to competition from other projects.  

Times have changed and now this has become a real possibility.

There are "foobie" cars offered by Athearn and Walthers, but I share a belief with others that there is a market for a more accurate car.

First, I want to hear from you which first generation mechanical reefer is of most interest to you and specifically why you are interested in a particular car.

Your choices are the following SFRD classes:

Rr-31 (5 cars - 1955)

Rr-54 (30 cars - 1953

Rr-56 (150 cars -1955)

Rr-60 (25 Cars - 1958

Rr-61 (25 Cars - 1958)

Rr-65 (100 cars - 1960)

Rr-66 (100 cars - 1960)

I'm fairly certain there are builder's drawings of all these classes but that will need to be verified.

Factors influencing the manufacturer's decision will be how many paint/repaint schemes are possible (including MOW), and cost of modifying the tooling to produce insulated boxcar versions and cars representing other railroads.

Once the manufacturer selects one of these choices I will ask you to submit your photos, especially those with dates, so the manufacturer can evaluate paint schemes and modifications to the as-built prototype.

If there is enough good prototype information available there is a real probability a specific car will be produced.

Thank you.

Bob Chaparro

Hemet, CA

Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts

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