Re: Rock Island aluminum box cars

Clark Propst

Something that hasn't been mentioned is the article in the 11-84 issue of MM on the Alton cars. The as-built photo in the article, although b/w, sure looks like all paint applied is red. The article sates when re-stenciled for GM&O the color remained red.

Paul might like to know car 1200 had a Superior 7 panel door. I didn't do anything with the doors on my M&StL models, but thanks to Paul mentioning it I may revisit those models...Would be a matter of cutting up and re-arranging a bunch of door pieces. I've done it before...

I have a lot of info on the M&StL cars thanks to Gene Green. Of interest to this conversation are these paragraphs from a company memo.

"These cars are to bear our standard stenciling, including "Peoria Gateway" insignia, and are to carry numbers, even numerals only, 1000 to 1018 inclusively.
The mechanical department is requested to give this stenciling information to the Reynolds Metals Company, and also advise them in respect of the proper painting of the underframe and trucks."

No where in any of the correspondence does it mention color. I do have the stenciling drawings of the cars which has the company information stenciling in green and all other lettering and metal parts painted black.

From the Reynolds specifications: P A I N T I N G.
"29. All metal in contact with metal must be covered with one coat approved protective paint before assembly. A substantial proportion of zinc chromate must be used in such protective paint. Car body shall be stenciled as directed by purchaser and required by A. A. R. standards. Car body other than necessary stenciling is not to be painted. The underframe and truck shall have two coats of approved paint. The inside of the roof shall receive coat of insulating compound as per list of specialties."

I painted my car with "Model Masters" buff able aluminum.

To be applied when called for in specialties.

Another company document talks about a car damaged from being `cornered' on the Lehigh Valley in Feb 55. It said the dies for the cars had been scrapped and repairs would cost $6,480.00. If they repaired the car with steel parts instead of aluminum they would bill the LV $2000. Cars cost $4405.33 each intially !
I have a great slide of a different numbered car repainted in the green scheme (post 52). Or as Gene says "A black car with green sides". So, apparently at least two of the cars where repaired with steel parts and given a complete repaint.

Also of interest is the inside height measurement. The Reynolds specs say 10'6". M&StL cars are stenciled 10'5". Builders photo in MM article shows Alton car stenciled 10'5". Photo of car rebuilt by GM&O in 60 with black lettering has 10'6".

Clark Propst

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