Re: What tank cars would be most appropriate for roads operating around Chicago...

Tim O'Connor

To add to what Bruce wrote:

Numerically in the 1930's, the vast majority of tank cars were
not Type 21's and Type 27's which were more or less "state of the
art" designs. With the advent of oil pipelines, many thousands of
earlier tank cars became "underemployed" and the number of new
tank cars built in the 1920's to 1940's was only a fraction of
the earlier production numbers. And the earlier cars looked very
different, since many (most?) of them had radial rivet seams
(around the diameter of the tank) instead of horizontal seams
like the ACF Types 21 and 27.

Unfortunately in HO scale, for other builders and other designs,
the only option is resin kits, and there aren't that many of them

Generally you can trust the lettering on the Proto 2000 models but
you're taking a big chance with Intermountain models! It helps to
have an appropriate Equipment Register (ORER) for your era so you
can check up on the owners and car numbers.

Tim O'Connor


Do what I do, search the archives BEFORE you buy <G>! As for what to
look for, the vast majority of tank cars were privately owned, which
is reflected in the models offered. Those private fleets changed
over time with mergers, so again, what is appropriate for the 1930s
is completely wrong for the 1940s, etc. Certain tank car lines
served certain oil companies, usually regionally, so if you are
modeling specific facilities then you need to look in the archives or
ask about that company. If you're modeling based on the national
fleet as described in the archives (as I do for WWII), then you're in
deep doo doo since you need buckets of UTLX cars, but the IM UTLX
marked type 27 is incorrectly painted, and there is no RTR model of
the common UTLX X-3 class cars (there is a resin kit). What that
leaves you with is SHPX marked cars as an excellent starting point.
For other specific owners, search the archives with "tank car
midwest" and enjoy the reading material you will generate ;^)

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL

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