Re: Cudahy 36' Meat Reefer -- Branchline (MDC)

Brian Carlson

That came out nice! 

Brian J. Carlson 

On Aug 10, 2022, at 7:49 PM, Bob Chapman <chapbob4014@...> wrote:

Back mid-July, I posted a question about the prototype represented by the Branchline 36' reefer kit that I had in my stash. I learned that with added detail the kit could prototype-model the Cudahy 1946 #5701-5850 meat reefer,  was pointed to a Richard Hendrickson RMC article on the project (5/93), and learned that the BL kit had MDC origins. Thanks to all who responded -- Brian Carlson, Joe Binish, Fenton Wells, Robert Heninger, Dan Smith, Clark Propst, and Steve Hile.

Other references which offered additional prototype photos and comments -- MR 8/87, MM 3/92, Steam Era Freight Car Reference Manual Vol 3, Classic Freight Cars Vol. 3.  

Despite its 1946 build date, the Cudahy car is a design throwback with many 1920's features -- 36' length, wooden carbody, etc. It has some interesting details -- a recessed retainer valve, an angle brace running much of the length of the sidesill, body-brace boltheads at the corners, Acme ventilators (upper-center on each end), and National B-1 trucks.

Richard once again demonstrates his eye for detail and excellent modeling in the RMC article, and anyone else doing the project will find it a valuable reference. Note that his starting point is a truss-rodded MDC "old timer" reefer, which has some carbody differences (roof, hatches, underbody) vs. my later-era non-truss rod MDC kit. I followed much of Richard's lead, but deviated here and there, such as scratchbuilding the ends and retaining the diecast underframe. Decals are K4 and trucks Kadee.   

With my stash of resin kits now running on empty, I continue to have fun reinventing some of the vintage styrene kits.

Bob Chapman
Constr - Unptd.JPGConstr - Unptd End Elev.JPG

Brian J. Carlson, P.E.
Cheektowaga NY

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