ATSF Bx49 Again or Still


Greg Martin
 

Thanks to Tim O'Conner and Richard Hendrickson for sending me some scans of photographs of the Bx-49's from their collections all were great photos. With the information and the available drawings I can wade through the material, formulate a game plan and give the conversion a try. Again, my thoughts are to help burn off some of these older kits I have been storing for years with no definitive plan for. I don't plan to just dump them off, I am still an addict, not quite ready to attempt the first of the twelve steps I suppose.

In the research I have noticed that the cars were built beginning in 1948 (thanks Ben), but it came to me... I wondered why did the Santa Fe rebuild the "kit-cars" with some parts we might have considered nearing if not obsolete at the time. For example, the STANRAY full Panel Roof panels the 4/4 IDE's, but what caught my eye was the YSD "lightweight door". I am just wondering if the parts were perhaps a could of years ahead of the program or if the program was so ongoing from other classes that these parts were just left behind in the stores department? OR perhaps there was such a high demand for these types of programs at the time the perhaps STANRAY had either more than one plant working on parts or perhaps more than one press working on ends an roof panels at the time.

Now I realize we can't roll back time and perhaps the records are gone to check, so speculation prevails, but I have noticed that other shops were ahead of the curve, so to say, with newer parts than these cars seem to exhibit... For example the KCS, who rebuilt their 92 AAR double sheathed cars about a year later, rebuilt their cars with 4/3/r ends and diagonal panel roofs. Perhaps it was the Santa Fe was actually ahead of the curve and I tend to believe this was the case. They always seemed to be forward looking. Perhaps they pressed their own parts, I don't know but some thoughts would be helpful.

I would really like to explore this discussion a bit further with all of the readers here as the subject of rebuilt cars is very interesting as many of the rebuild programs stretched well into the 1950's and many may have resulted in the 40-foot to 50-foot stretched cars of the WP and the P&LE for example. But if we decide to split the conversation to into the original 40-foot rebuilt program and the stretch program can we at least please change the heading? 3^)

Greg Martin

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