Modelling options - Accurail 4300 series - CB&Q 15000-16499 series?

Robert kirkham

A long, long time ago I remember when the Accurail kits were new, and I didn’t know much about prototype equipment.  Being a CPR modeller, I bought a passel of the them, thinking they looked like CPR cars.  I removed the ladders and installed grab iron type ladders instead, replaced the fish belly centre sills with straight sills, and fully modelled the air lines and brake rods underneath.  And then - before I got to painting - realized they were not like the CPR cars.  They went into a box.  Was that 1992 or ’93?  Wow!

Anyhow, I know I can use the cars to model CNR cars, and will do a bunch up for that road.  But I’m wondering what else they model well.  I’m happy to revise the ladders and underframes as needed.  I see two of my kits have already had the roofs filed down flat, so I guess there was a plan sometime in the last 30 years . . . but cannot recall it now.   

In message 44576, Ben Hom identifies prototype options for a number of Accurail cars.  For the 4300 cars, his suggestions include - well - an MKT car.  The DM&IR car has the steel doors, so an easy modification.  Then there are suggestions that are close but different: LNE, CB&Q, SL-SF, NP, MP. I know little about these prototypes.

In message 44624, Tony Thompson notes that the SP car is at best a stand in for the B-50-14 design. In message 110062 Gene Green notes that: "Richard Hendrickson wrote a two-part article in the February and April 1993 issues of Railmodel Journal that addressed prototypes for the Accurail 4000-4100-4200-4300-4400-4500 series single-sheathed box cars." Makes me miss Richard (and MRJ) afresh! What a legacy.  It can be found at Train Life

Looking at photos, the CB&Q 15000-16499 cars look interesting. But the photo caption of CB&Q 15516 is really mangled and I am not able to tell just what differences I would have to deal with. It mentions another kit for those cars (by another manufacturer) was coming to market. I assume it was a better choice for the CB&Q cars. But not clear why.

A lot has happened since those articles were written. Given I already have the kits and want to do something with them, is the CB&Q car a worthwhile project or something better tackled another way? Any additional resources one should check out before proceeding with the Q car? Are decent decals available?

Likewise, I’d be interested in knowing which cars are similar in height but need a radial roof.

And for the MKT car, what is the car series? And a good source of decals?


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