PFE 9245x R-30-5 in April 1943 - still in late 1920s paint?

Robert kirkham

Continue to explore what is lurking in the Delano collection, and found this very partial image of PFE 9245X.   It is past the shed, among the nearer cars one track to its left (a little lower and further left than the two aluminum or white coloured tanks).   Being only casually acquainted with the PFE, I went to the ORER first, and then to the PFE book and Tony Thompson’s blog.   Still wondering what I’m seeing.   So, not trying to be provocative but the photo makes me curious. 

My understanding has been that the earlier, more yellow, PFE colour would have been long gone by the mid 1930s (see p.117 of the PFE book by Thompson, Church & Jones, 2nd ed.) but this photo (8-9 years after 47606 cars had been (re)-painted) doesn’t show orange.   I’m thinking: armour-yellowish car sides, bare galvanized roof with bare wood or boxcar red battens, hatches, platforms and running boards, and uh?? boxcar red car end (unless that’s black?).   I suppose it could be very badly worn paint; it is mid WWII after all.

The other explanation -  colour issues with Delano photos - does not provide a satisfying explanation for this photo.  The rendering of colour in the balance of the photo indicates that orange was well within the capability of the film and exposure.  This small piece of loading dock equipment (to the left of the MKT boxcar) demonstrates that:

These other cars provide further evidence of the great range of colour in the photo.  Both are interesting, eh!  

Still having a lot of fun just exploring Delano’s record.


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