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Model kit hierarchy and heritage

hvyweight41
 

I like to build models. I enjoy researching prototypes and seeing how close to the prototype a kit is. I plan on progressing to the point I can replace ladders, steps, roof walks, trucks and wheels with prototypical details. Also, I want to add details like brake rigging and pipes, air hoses, cut levers, etc. I have amassed a large number of HO kits. They include:
Athearn
Kato
Front Range
E&B Valley
Stewart
Accurail
Bowser
Intermountain
Walthers (white box and red? Box)
Life Like Proto 2000
Branchline Blueprint series
Roundhouse (blue box and yellow box)
Train Miniature Industries? TMI
E&C shops
C&BT Shops
Ambroid
Central Valley
Kadee Lines
The Cliff Line
Prototype Modeler
I can see significant differences in detail and overall quality between brands. However, I also see similarities in things like detail sprues and offerings.
First, is there a general consensus on the quality of these brands? I can see wide differences in skill required and quality of things like painting and lettering.
Are any of these brands descendants of other brands, listed or not? I found one thread discussing one brands genealogy and just today there was a post that mentioned company A using company B's molds to produce new copies of a detail part under company A's brand.
Has time produced better quality products? I.E. are the newer brands better than the brands they succeeded.
For now the craftsman brands:
Ambroid, Central Valley, Kadee Lines, The Cliff Line and Prototype Modeler
have been set aside until I've developed better modeling skills assembling the plastic kits. This is a lot to ask in one post. If there are posts that already answer any of my questions, please feel free to direct me there.
Thanks,
Keith Kempster
Jacksonville, FL


Re: Coupler droop

Tim O'Connor
 

Keith

I have been building blue box kits lately -- (Maybe I should create
a blog?)

Step 1 -- Paint the floor boards a wood color and lightly weather. Also
paint the kit underframe an appropriate color (some railroads painted
them black, others painted them brown). Weather to suit. (I do about
20 floors and underframes in a batch.)

Step 2 -- Turn one Athearn underframe into a jig for drilling 2-56 holes
for Kadee coupler pockets. Attach to the floor (boards under the frame)
and drill and tap the holes. Remove the jig. Make sure you carefully
choose where to drill the holes -- they do NOT go exactly where the
old Athearn post is located, but a little further towards the ends.

Step 3 -- Trim off the pocket on your kit Athearn underframe.

Step 4 -- Assemble the floor and underframe with the truck screws and
make sure the floor boards are under the frame (i.e. this is the
REVERSE of Athearn instructions!!!)

Step 5 -- Attach Kadee's new coupler pockets (#242 or #262 if you want
to use Whisker couplers) so they extend the correct distance from the
end of the floor. Attach them with Kadee PLASTIC 2-56 screws.

Step 6 -- Trim off the Kadee screws on the other side, flush with the
plastic deck. You could use metal 2-56 screws, but trimming them flush
will be much harder. :-)

Step 7 -- Add the weight. This will be INSIDE the car!

Step 8 -- Sand the "wings" off the side of the floor. The entire floor
assembly will now drop snugly, and perfectly, into the body. Glue it
in place. (I trim the claws off the doors first, and glue the doors
in place, before I add the floor.)

Step 9 -- Detail, paint, weather, etc -- The floor should be at exactly
the correct height, and the couplers should also be exactly correct.
(I assume you are using Athearn's blue box trucks which have a certain
bolster height. Other brands may have a different bolster height.)
No shims etc. are needed.

The couplers will not droop, and they will not come out, ever, unless
you unscrew the 2-56 screws holding the pockets in place.

Caution, Athearn blue box cars assembled this way might look so much
better to you that you'll want to toss all your older Athearn cars.

Note many older Athearn cars are NOT glued together -- so you can rebuild
them properly and easily!

Tim O'Connor

Background:I received a large lot of Athearn blue box rolling stock from my father. He's had these for years and decided he'd never build or run them. They all have hook and horn couplers. I want to replace them with Kadee couplers. I tried a set and there seems to be bit of vertical play, aka droop, in the draft box. What is the standard for droop, if any? What are the best methods for correcting out of tolerance couplers? I do have the Kadee coupler gauge and an NMRA gauge.
I've done some research and the options seems to range from replacing the draft boxes to shimming the opening with strip styrene.
Thanks,
Keith Kempster
Jacksonville, FL


Replacing Athearn trucks and/or wheels

hvyweight41
 

Background: I received a large lot of Athearn blue box rolling stock from my father. He's had these for years and decided he'd never build or run them. Most seem to have 70 ton trucks, whether the prototype had them or not. The only exception I have found, so far, is an express reefer which appears to have express trucks.
Is it worthwhile to replace the wheels and/or trucks with the correct trucks?
For example, I have 54' covered hoppers with 200000 lb capacities that come with 70 ton trucks and 33" wheels.
Is it worthwhile to replace them with the correct 36" wheels? With the body mounted couplers, will I need to go with an underset shaft to compensate for the bigger wheel or should I lower the body?
Thanks,
Keith Kempster
Jacksonville, FL
PS I have discovered that many older Athearn kits don't have prototypes. I just want to do a little bit to make them better. I have a bunch of undecorated kits that I will be modifying to be more prototypical.


Re: ACL yellow ventilated box car

Ray Breyer
 

Anyone know where I can get info on the painting of this car? Such as roof,
ends and underbody, were they black or yellow or ? I have only seen one photo
of the yellow cars and can not locate same at this time.
Thanks
Ron Morse
Hi Ron,


I've got about a dozen different photos of these cars in yellow paint; I'll send them to you off list in a couple of minutes.

Essentially, the cars have all yellow bodies, boxcar brown roofs, and "grunge" underframes and trucks. Keep in mind that at least according to the ACF builder's photo collection, the road switched to brown bodies in 1911 (same lettering standards though; looks like they didn't significantly change the lettering until 1927).

Regards,

Ray Breyer
Elgin, IL


Coupler droop

hvyweight41
 

Background:I received a large lot of Athearn blue box rolling stock from my father. He's had these for years and decided he'd never build or run them. They all have hook and horn couplers. I want to replace them with Kadee couplers. I tried a set and there seems to be bit of vertical play, aka droop, in the draft box. What is the standard for droop, if any? What are the best methods for correcting out of tolerance couplers? I do have the Kadee coupler gauge and an NMRA gauge.
I've done some research and the options seems to range from replacing the draft boxes to shimming the opening with strip styrene.
Thanks,
Keith Kempster
Jacksonville, FL


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Walter Cox
 

Thanks Bill, I kind of suspected that.
Walt

In a message dated 7/12/2013 9:15:52 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
fgexbill@... writes:




Neither of the IM PFE models is correct for WFE.

Bill Welch






[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Bill Welch
 

Neither of the IM PFE models is correct for WFE.

Bill Welch

--- In STMFC@..., WaltGCox@... wrote:

That thank you was sent prematurely. All that information was helpful. As
far as PFE cars are concerned if I could get a handle on when the dual color
herald, black and white herald, overland, and modern gothic lettering
schemes came into use that would take care of PFE's R40-10 & R40-23.

It would also help to know when the MDT cars changed from white to
yellow,(or yellow to white) and whether or not Intermountain's R40-23 is correct
for MDT and WFE and if their R40-10 is correct for ART and WFE.


In a message dated 7/11/2013 11:59:23 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
tony@... writes:




Walt Cox wrote:
A secondary question was posed in the Reefer Roundup back in 2007 but
does not seem to have been answered. It concerned what might have been the
beginning of a prototypical model using an Athearn reefer and Details West
4/4 square dreadnaught ends.
Whether this change was intended to model some specific prototype, I don't
know. But if a PFE car is the goal, don't bother. The PFE class with that
end was R-40-10, and InterMountain makes an excellent R-40-10 which has
correct ends.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, _tony@..._
(mailto:tony@...)
Publishers of books on railroad history

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Tony Thompson
 

How late into the 50's was it reasonable to see the color UP emblem on a PFE reefer?
Photos show by the mid-1950s that a large majority of PFE cars had the black-white scheme. The shops must have been very focussed in the early 1950s on updating the paint schemes. But of course some cars can escape notice, even in an operation like PFE where EVERY car went through a PFE shop when returning from EVERY trip. Then if you choose to model the color UP emblem, the problem is, in say, 1958 or 59, that you are modeling an oddity or a rarity. I guess I would be uncomfortable, if it were my modeling, to include a color UP emblem after 1956 or 57.
Others on the list may have different opinions, and if so, please chime in.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

James Fellows
 

Tony,



How late into the 50's was it reasonable to see the color UP emblem on a PFE
reefer?



Thanks,



Jim Fellows



From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...] On Behalf Of Tony
Thompson
Sent: Friday, July 12, 2013 8:14 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Reefer Roundup revisited





Walt Cox wrote:
That thank you was sent prematurely. All that information was helpful. As
far as PFE cars are concerned if I could get a handle on when the dual color
herald, black and white herald, overland, and modern gothic lettering
schemes came into use that would take care of PFE's R40-10 & R40-23.
The dual emblem scheme with color UP medallion was instituted in 1946, and
the R-40-23 cars were so delivered. The black and white UP emblem was
introduced in 1950, and "gothic" in 1960.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
<mailto:tony%40signaturepress.com>
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Industry Magazines of the 1950s?

Tony Thompson
 

Brian Chapman wrote:
My paternal Granddad was a conductor on the northeast Iowa electric road WCF&N for nearly four decades. As a small fry, as I recall anyway, at his home I flipped through many railroad industry magazines, mags that were large format, similar in size to Look and Life magazines of the era.

I do not recall the names of any of these publications but am hoping someone here might recall titles. I wonder if one of them wasn't an AAR publication. . . .
Only large-format mag I can recall is Modern Railroads.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Industry Magazines of the 1950s?

Brian <cornbeltroute@...>
 

My paternal Granddad was a conductor on the northeast Iowa electric road WCF&N for nearly four decades. As a small fry, as I recall anyway, at his home I flipped through many railroad industry magazines, mags that were large format, similar in size to Look and Life magazines of the era.

I do not recall the names of any of these publications but am hoping someone here might recall titles. I wonder if one of them wasn't an AAR publication. . . .

Thanks much,

Brian Chapman
Evansdale, Iowa


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Tony Thompson
 

Walt Cox wrote:
That thank you was sent prematurely. All that information was helpful. As far as PFE cars are concerned if I could get a handle on when the dual color herald, black and white herald, overland, and modern gothic lettering schemes came into use that would take care of PFE's R40-10 & R40-23.
The dual emblem scheme with color UP medallion was instituted in 1946, and the R-40-23 cars were so delivered. The black and white UP emblem was introduced in 1950, and "gothic" in 1960.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Walter Cox
 

That thank you was sent prematurely. All that information was helpful. As
far as PFE cars are concerned if I could get a handle on when the dual color
herald, black and white herald, overland, and modern gothic lettering
schemes came into use that would take care of PFE's R40-10 & R40-23.

It would also help to know when the MDT cars changed from white to
yellow,(or yellow to white) and whether or not Intermountain's R40-23 is correct
for MDT and WFE and if their R40-10 is correct for ART and WFE.

In a message dated 7/11/2013 11:59:23 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
tony@... writes:




Walt Cox wrote:
A secondary question was posed in the Reefer Roundup back in 2007 but
does not seem to have been answered. It concerned what might have been the
beginning of a prototypical model using an Athearn reefer and Details West
4/4 square dreadnaught ends.
Whether this change was intended to model some specific prototype, I don't
know. But if a PFE car is the goal, don't bother. The PFE class with that
end was R-40-10, and InterMountain makes an excellent R-40-10 which has
correct ends.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, _tony@...
(mailto:tony@...)
Publishers of books on railroad history

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


ACL yellow ventilated box car

Ron Morse
 

Anyone know where I can get info on the painting of this car? Such as roof, ends and underbody, were they black or yellow or ? I have only seen one photo of the yellow cars and can not locate same at this time.
Thanks
Ron Morse
O Scale in Springfield,MO


Re: CB&Q no. 73 truck

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Jul 12, 2013, at 10:56 AM, davesnyder59 <davesnyder59@...> wrote:

Richard, is this Hi-Tech Details? The rubber airhose/mu people? Also went to your HO truck site that I have and drew a blank screen versus your normal PDF, are there problems? I went there because I remember another truck listed as Hi-Tech on your site, but Hi-Tech Details catalog lists no trucks. TIA.
Yes, it is Hi-Tech Details, AKA Jimmy Booth. It isn't in their catalog yet because Jimmy is doing some work on the dies, but he has the original RC dies and certainly intends to re-introduce that truck.

With regard to my HO Freight Car Trucks article, the original version went away when I post a revised version which, unfortunately, requires a new address: ttps://docs.google.com/file/d/0Bz_ctrHrDz4wcjJWcENpaDJYbUU/edit?pli=1. Or see Tony Thompson's e-mail citing the address for it on his blog.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Walter Cox
 

Thanks to all who replied to my original

In a message dated 7/11/2013 11:59:23 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
tony@... writes:




Walt Cox wrote:
A secondary question was posed in the Reefer Roundup back in 2007 but
does not seem to have been answered. It concerned what might have been the
beginning of a prototypical model using an Athearn reefer and Details West
4/4 square dreadnaught ends.
Whether this change was intended to model some specific prototype, I don't
know. But if a PFE car is the goal, don't bother. The PFE class with that
end was R-40-10, and InterMountain makes an excellent R-40-10 which has
correct ends.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, _tony@...
(mailto:tony@...)
Publishers of books on railroad history

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Hendrickson truck update [Was: CB&Q no. 73 truck]

Tony Thompson
 

Dave Snyder wrote:
Richard, is this Hi-Tech Details? The rubber airhose/mu people? Also went to your HO truck site that I have and drew a blank screen versus your normal PDF, are there problems? I went there because I remember another truck listed as Hi-Tech on your site, but Hi-Tech Details catalog lists no trucks. TIA.
This is kind of my fault, because my upload to Google Drive did not quite work right. However, Richard Hendrickson has again updated and made minor changes to his article on HO scale model freight car trucks. An added feature is the inclusion of the new Tahoe Model Works Barber S-2 truck with Spring Plank, a truck SP (and other roads) liked and applied to a number of classes of freight cars. You can access Richard's article through this link to my blog:

http://modelingthesp.blogspot.com/2013/07/another-update-to-richard-hendricksons.html

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Reefer Roundup revisited

Bill Welch
 

Walt, I am not sure if this responsive to your question or not.

I have been fortunate to assemble a collection of Perishable Schedules for the L&N, SRR, ACL and SAL. Here is what I have gleaned from these for perishables headed to Montreal. These three schedules are for the 1948-49 season.

On the Southern for their #56 leaving Jacksonville on Tuesday at 5 PM it would arrive at Potomac Yard at 6 AM on Thursday. The B&O left Pot Yard with the train at 10 AM the same day and eventually three trains would arrive in Montreal with Florida Perishables.
1. 9:30 PM on Saturday via the B&O-Rdg-CNJ-D&H-CN
2. 10 PM on Saturday via B&O-Rdg-CNJ-NH-CV-CN
3. 5 AM Sunday B&O-Rdg-CNJ-D&H-CP

On the ACL with their Train ACD-10 leaving Jacksonville on Tuesday at 8:45 AM this block of perishables would be brought into Pot Yard by the RF&P on Thursday. Six trains ultimately bound for Montreal proceeded thusly.
1. Arriving 5 PM Saturday via PRR-D&H-CP
2. Arriving 11:30 PM Saturday via PRR-D&H-CN
3. Arriving 11:45 PM Saturday via PRR-NH-CV-CN
4. Arriving 11:45 PM Saturday via B&O-Rdg-CNJ-NH-CV-CN
5. Arriving 11:30 PM Saturday via B&O-Rdg-CNJ-D&H-CN
6. Arriving 5 AM Sunday via B&O-Rdg-CNJ-D&H-CP

The SAL named train "The Marketer" left Jacksonville on Tuesdays at 4:30 PM scheduled to reach Pot Yard via the RF&P 11:59 PM on Wednesday. Five trains took the perishables to Montreal.
1. Arriving 9:30 PM Saturday via PRR-D&H-CN
2. Arriving 4 PM Saturday via PRR-D&H-CP
3. Arriving 10 PM Saturday via PRR-NH-CV-CN
4. Arriving 11:30 PM Saturday via B&O-Rdg-CNJ-D&H-CN
5. Arriving 10 PM Saturday via B&O-Rdg-CNJ-NH-CV-CN

The refrigerator cars would course been randomly from the Fruit Growers Express/Western Fruit Express/Burlington Refrigerator Express System. I tell people the approximate ratio of car ownership was FGE-15/WFE-7-8/BRE-2 that is perhaps a point of departure for a mixture of reporting marks. Including a random ART, PFE, MDT, NWX, SFRD car or cars would be appropriate.

Hope this helps.

Bill Welch

--- In STMFC@..., WaltGCox@... wrote:

I have spent the evening searching the archives for useful information as
to collecting a representative collection of U. S. roadname (fruit and
vegetable) refrigerator cars FGE, PFE, SFRX, ART? MDT? which would or could
have run into Montreal and now have a pretty good Idea of what I'll need. My
main problem now is which paint schemes available on the various models
would be suitable for 1959. I am not interested in covering all possible cars,
just what reasonably might have made it into Montreal.

A secondary question was posed in the Reefer Roundup back in 2007 but does
not seem to have been answered. It concerned what might have been the
beginning of a prototypical model using an Athearn reefer and Details West 4/4
square dreadnaught ends.

If anyone can shed any light on these issues it sure would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance, Walt

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


SP B-50-25 12 panel 40' boxcar with corrected details

Andy Carlson
 

Hello,

I have a package deal which I am offering to anyone reading this post.

Intermountain tooled their 12 panel box car for a Great Northern prototype. After running decorated kits and RTRs in many GN schemes, they offered some SP and T&NO versions. Intermountain did tool up a 3/4 IDE of the configuration the Espee utilized, but overlooked offering a correct pair of doors and also simply reused the GN 12 panel ladders, which are 8 rungs for the sides, are only 7 rungs for the ends (GN bottom step was a drop grab--SP used full 8 rung ladders for their ends).

Both GN and SP 12 panels included Superior doors, which were OK for a few GN numbers, but the larger majority of both RR's 12 panels had Youngstown doors, which Intermountain did not offer.

I have the following supplemented HO Intermountain SP B-50-25 undec box car kits:

#1)  Undec new12 panel kit with the following extras--Red Caboose Rectangular panel 40' AAR roof. One extra sprue of 8-rung ladders to address the short ladders on the ends issue. One pair of the SP/T&NO version of the 3/4 IDE. One Pair of SouthWest Scale Productions 5/5/5 Interim Improved Youngstown doors (The so-called "Overnight" doors). One pair of Barber Lateral Motion Tahoe Model works # 009 50-ton cast steel truck, less wheelsets.

#2) Same as above, but with 5/6/5 SouthWest IYDs.

#3) Same as #1, but with 4/6/6 SouthWest IYD

No decals or couplers are included.

Priced at $27.50, 1st class air mail shipping included. I accept checks and money orders. For a small fee I can also accept PayPal. Contact me off-list (Please) for more info. <midcentury@...>
Thanks,
-Andy Carlson
Ojai CA

Price is $24.50 each supplemented kit--including 1st class shipping.


Re: Borden " Butter Dish" Chemical Tank cars White Only?

Charles Hladik
 

Ed,
That may have been the Steam Shack in Rutland, Vermont and probably
made by New England Rail Service. Don Valentine should know and Mal Houck is
probably correct.
Chuck Hladik
Rutland Railroad
Virginia Division

In a message dated 7/12/2013 3:01:01 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
ed_mines@... writes:




A hobby shop in New England offered decals for the different colors of
these cars. If I'm not mistaken they said there were also white and/or silver
(aluminium) versions of these cars in addition to orange.

Ed Mines

--- In _STMFC@... (mailto:STMFC@...) ,
Indian640@... wrote:

Would Anyone know if any of the "Butter Dish" Milk Tank cars that Borden
transferred from Milk hauling to Elmer's Glue hauling, "Chemical
Division"Would Anyone know if any of the "Butter Dish" Milk Tank cars
that Bord

To my knowledge, they were at one time painted with a orange tank body
on a
black frame.

Mal Houck

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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