PRR/N&W H30a Covered Hoppers

Denny Anspach <danspach@...>

Friends, I have taken up Rail Shops, Inc. new HO kit for this exotic looking (to me) and interesting freight car. The kit is a mixture of very clean well detailed "flat" molded styrene parts, but with all the end bracing and a lot of small parts to be cut and folded from extensive frets of fine brass etchings. There are no 3rd party aftermarket parts in the box.

Although a list of part numbers is referenced in the instructions, none is in the kit. Inasmuch as the instructions refer to parts simply by number ("part 2", or "part 33"), I laid out all the parts on the bench and took the time to extract their numbers from the instructions and photographs, and then both mark them directly with a fine pen, make my own written list . A minor irritant, but yet still an irritant.

The styrene is a light gray with a very high shiny finish that I have not seen before, and it is also bendable, a requirement inasmuch as key parts of the major construction require bending. I have already assembled the basic body/box, and so far both the directions and actual assembly are exactly "as advertised".

A selection of appropriate decals can be purchased separately from the Rail Shops website, but none are included with the kit.

I will report later when I start addressing the "origami" phase of construction.

Now, I know nothing about these hopper cars as prototypes, and no documentation is included in the kit. I am also away from any relevant resources I might personally hold in this regard. What can listers kindly tell me? 1) When were these cars produced, and when were they retired?, 2) Were the N&W cars purchased de novo, or were they purchased from then-owner PRR second hand?


Denny S. Anspach, MD
Okoboji, Iowa

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