Re: Accurate STMFC freight car list

Douglas Harding

I purchased copies of John's various publications at the time (mid 90's).
Thought I had discovered the magic answer to accurate information about
models and freight cars. The books were essentially photocopies of material
he and members of the RPI club assembled, from much research focusing
primarily on existing models while answer the question of how accurate is
it. Being photocopies the photos were dark and muddy, difficult to discern
much good information. As soon as a book was published, they began doing
updates, and just as quickly discovered how futile it was. Manufactures
continued turning out new product. More accurate information continued to
see the light of day. They kept finding more information and more cars and
more models, .... Etc. I think it was about that time they went to a Website
format, concluding they could not keep books up to date. And don't forget
this was started as a labor of love using volunteers.

Today those books gather dust on the shelf and I depend upon this list and
RPM events for the latest up to date and accurate information. I do not
subscribe to the RPI website, but other members of this list do and they
share information gleamed from that list. As do many who are
studying/researching their favorite railroad, freight car, or subject
matter. Add to that we have authors like Tony Thompson who are producing
excellent books, finely printed, with tremendous research and photographs. I
may not model the SP, but I have the books along with many others for many
other railroads.

Doug Harding

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