Date   

Re: Northern Pacific Lettering

Dennis Storzek
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "railsnw1" <railsnw@...> wrote:

Hello,

I have a couple questions on the lettering for Northern Pacific cars.

1st, when cars were repainted a stencil was applied such as this:

S.T. 7-53 DU

I know the S.T. in this case is South Tacoma and July 1953 but can
someone explain the paint code for the last letters? I have seen DU
on a 1949 reefer car and DL on a 1947 reefer. I thought I heard that
mineral red boxcars are DX.
How large was the lettering, and where was it placed on the car? I
assume this is NOT the normal re-weigh date.

Railroads occasionally did tests with different paint products,
especially in the fifties and sixties when new products with synthetic
pigments were being introduced. For a while during this period the Soo
Line was stencilling a paint code on repainted cars; this was 1" or
1-1/2" lettering, same as the RPKD stencil, located low on the car
side just to the left of the ladder and consited of the station symbol
for the shop doing the painting, date, and a code for the paint. This
sounds similar.

Dennis


Northern Pacific Lettering

railsnw1 <railsnw@...>
 

Hello,

I have a couple questions on the lettering for Northern Pacific cars.

1st, when cars were repainted a stencil was applied such as this:

S.T. 7-53 DU

I know the S.T. in this case is South Tacoma and July 1953 but can
someone explain the paint code for the last letters? I have seen DU
on a 1949 reefer car and DL on a 1947 reefer. I thought I heard that
mineral red boxcars are DX.

2nd, on the "B" end of cars in the 60's I have seen stenciled at the
bottom as an example:

DRAFT GEARS INSPECTED
NP S.T. 3-5-64

I have looked through various photos of all types of cars and I can
only find this stencil with dates in the 60's. Does anyone know when
this was started?

Thanks,

Richard Wilkens


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Denny Anspach <danspach@...>
 

The difficulty that I reported with the #78 Kadee coupler was NOT related to the coupler per se, but how with its relatively-long shank this coupler has a much reduced pivoting radius when it is prototypically and deeply inset into a prototypically-narrow box- as has been successfully done in Jon Cagle's resin tank car kits.

The #78 coupler (when in its native box) projects far beyond its striker plate than would be expected on the prototype. IMHO, Kadee has done this probably to ensure that the coupler will swing sufficiently to accommodate the short-radius market. The price paid for this is that the head sticks out -akin to the long neck of Ichabod Crane- and in the process expands the distance between cars, and also allows the gaping mouth of coupler box to be fully and quite visibly exposed in the process. If one is to focused on accurate prototype appearance, neither is acceptable.

If one is going to model couplers and their boxes close to, or in a prototype manner- and they look like it-, the following are reasonable and quite defendable goals:

1) Coupler head close to scale size.

2) Coupler face extends no more than 29/30" from striker face.

3) Coupler box is narrow, commonly the same width of the centersill.

There are varying and balancing operational tradeoffs when these standards are applied, but rather than denying reality, it is more honest to acknowledge that these are the issues to be debated (and perhaps the prices to be paid) if we are to continue pursuing prototype accuracy in all that we do.

OK, I am coming off my morning coffee high-

Denny




Denny S. Anspach MD
Sacramento


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

sparachuk <sparachuk@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Richard Hendrickson <rhendrickson@...>
wrote:


Round and round isn't the problem. Stephan. It's getting them to
couple and uncouple reliably. And of course, as Tony Thompson points
out, that isn't really a problem if you have easy access to poke and
prod with your uncoupling skewer, since having to open knuckles and
align couplers was entirely prototypical on tight radius curves. It
only becomes a problem when you're trying to couple and magnetically
uncouple cars on tight radius track that's difficult or impossible to
get to. But for some modelers that can be an issue.

Richard Hendrickson
Richard: Sorry, I thought folks were expressing concern about the
running of the cars on small radii. It gives me cold chills to even
contemplate uncoupling/uncoupling on 18" radius curves!

Stephan Parachuk
Toronto


Re: Canadian Prewar AAR Boxcars

sparachuk <sparachuk@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Quesnelle, Claude" <brossard77@...> wrote:

Brian,

The RMC back issues you are after are the Aug 93 and Feb 94 ones.
Aug 93 hilites the different series of boxcars (ends, roofs, doors,
etc) with photos of each different spotting feature. Feb 94 is almost
a play-by-play on how Stafford kitbashed various kits into both the
10' and 10'6" boxcars, listing different detail parts used. The
article mentions the different resin parts (roof, ends, doors) that
were previously prepared by CPRMG, but now by Sylvan (Sylvan's online
catalog lists their part number, and cross reference the old CPRMG #).
There are also photos of in-progress (well, all details attached,
prepainted) models. Also new from when the articles were written are
the Black Cat Decals. All the different paint schemes (as listed in
the article, schemes 1 thru 6) are all available. In my opinion, both
articles are must haves. If you are having difficulty locating back
issues, please contact me off-list and we can see what we can do.

The CNLines articles show the same things, but back issues are now
only photocopies. I have these too, but the copy I have I must say is
pretty beat up for my using it so much. Good qualitiy photocopies
showing the details, but the colour photos of the RMC issues can't be
beat.

Claude
Canadian boxcar fans: Yesterday I was talking to the owner of Sylvan
and he says his inventory of these parts is running down. His interest
these days centres more on vehicles. I don't want to create a panic
but perhaps it would be best to order these parts soon before it's too
late.

Stephan Parachuk
Toronto


Re: Canadian Prewar AAR Boxcars

Claude Quesnelle
 

Brian,

The RMC back issues you are after are the Aug 93 and Feb 94 ones. Aug 93 hilites the different series of boxcars (ends, roofs, doors, etc) with photos of each different spotting feature. Feb 94 is almost a play-by-play on how Stafford kitbashed various kits into both the 10' and 10'6" boxcars, listing different detail parts used. The article mentions the different resin parts (roof, ends, doors) that were previously prepared by CPRMG, but now by Sylvan (Sylvan's online catalog lists their part number, and cross reference the old CPRMG #). There are also photos of in-progress (well, all details attached, prepainted) models. Also new from when the articles were written are the Black Cat Decals. All the different paint schemes (as listed in the article, schemes 1 thru 6) are all available. In my opinion, both articles are must haves. If you are having difficulty locating back issues, please contact me off-list and we can see what we can do.

The CNLines articles show the same things, but back issues are now only photocopies. I have these too, but the copy I have I must say is pretty beat up for my using it so much. Good qualitiy photocopies showing the details, but the colour photos of the RMC issues can't be beat.

Claude

Way back in 2007 Pierre Oliver said:
I have need of dozens of these cars in all their variants and will
continue to create them using the aftermarket parts and details as
described by Stafford Swain in RMC all those years ago now. It will
cost about the same and I'll the fun of building the cars. And I get
to use the lovely decal sets from Black Cat Publishing.
I did a search on the MR Train Index site and came up with 65 hits for
Stafford. I need some help narrowing down the back issue(s) I need to
find.
Was this the article in the August 1993, February 1994, or July 1988, of
RMC? He also hade multiple articles in RMJ in the 90's. Thanks
Brian Carlson


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Dennis Storzek
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Richard Hendrickson <rhendrickson@...>
wrote:

Round and round isn't the problem. Stephan. It's getting them to
couple and uncouple reliably. And of course, as Tony Thompson points
out, that isn't really a problem if you have easy access to poke and
prod with your uncoupling skewer, since having to open knuckles and
align couplers was entirely prototypical on tight radius curves. It
only becomes a problem when you're trying to couple and magnetically
uncouple cars on tight radius track that's difficult or impossible to
get to. But for some modelers that can be an issue.

Richard Hendrickson
I want to add some comments, and Richard's message is as good an intro
as any.

Coupler swing issues are closely related to both minimum radius and
coupler overhang, that is the truck kingpin to coupler dimension of
the different equipment that is expected to couple together.

If all you want to do is run a fleet of freight cars with the common
5'-6" kingpin to striker distance, you could probably glue Kadee
couplers (either size)rigidly on the car center line; no box needed at
all. The Kadee knuckle profile has much more clearance than the
prototype, and there is enough wiggle room for them to accommodate any
curve the cars can negotiate. They may not couple and uncouple
reliably on the tightest curves, but neither do the prototype.

A problem occurs when you introduce equipment with a longer coupler to
kingpin distance. Four axle steam loco tenders typically present the
same geometry as a freight car at the end of their tender, but the
coupler on the pilot beam displaces much further on curves. The
couplers on four axle diesels displace much further toward the outside
of a curve than the couplers on freight cars, and the couplers on six
axle diesels are worse yet. In order to stay coupled, the coupler on
the locomotive needs to swing far toward the track centerline, but
most people who want close to prototype dimensions on their freight
cars also want the same on their locomotives, so this limits the shank
length and swing available in the locomotive coupler. When the coupler
on the locomotive reaches the end of its swing, the coupler on the car
coupled to it will actually swing toward the outside of the curve in
an attempt to stay coupled to the locomotive. If there is not enough
swing, the couplers will drag the car off the track toward the outside
of the curve.

If you don't really know what sort of equipment or curves you need in
the future, it's best to stick with the dimensions that the
manufacturers have developed over the last half century; Kadees or
clones or Accumates in standard width boxes. If you want closer to
scale appearance of equipment, be prepared to be limited to closer to
scale (larger) radius curves. 18" radius in HO scale is equivalent to
a 130' radius curve; this is close to the minimum curve used on the
Chicago elevated system, and while electric locomotives with short
wheelbase trucks and wide swing couplers can handle freight cars on
curves this tight, it's unrealistic to expect a six axle SD-7 to do
so. This holds true for use of the semi-scale couplers as well;
Accumate PROTO:HO, Kadee 78, and Sergent scale working knuckles in
semi-scale draft gear all have somewhat less swing than the good ol'
Kadee No.5, and will require some testing to determine what the
minimum radius for reliable operation with the intended motive power
will be before designing the layout. My own personal standard is a
minimum 24" radius and number 5 turnouts for industrial trackage; this
allows trouble free switching using the pilot couplers on the small
steam that I run on locals, and the engines look so much better on
these broader curves.

Dennis


Re: GM&O 21000-22419

Ed Hawkins
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 10:53 PM, Brian J Carlson wrote:

I'm trying to plan my next boxcar project a little better than the
current
one. I'll be building a GM&O 21000-22419 series car from the
Branchline kit.
I already have the 4/5/5 door. I also have a side view of 21022.
However, it
is pretty much a straight on side shot so I can not tell what brake
wheel
and running boards the cars had. can anyone help?

Also, the trucks in the photo look like National C-1 trucks, based on
what
appear to be holes in the side frame, and a jog in the side frame
adjacent
to the bolster. (Compared to photo 32 in the Freight Car trucks
article in
RPC 4) Any thoughts on modeling a National C-1 in HO?
Brian,
Doors:
21000-21749 YSD (an earlier version than supplied by BT)
21750-21999 7P Sup.
22000-22419 YSD (an earlier version than supplied by BT)

Hand Brakes:
21000-21499 Ajax
21500-21999 Miner
22000-22419 Ajax

R/B & B/S:
21000-21499 U.S.G.
21500-21999 Apex
22000-22419 U.S.G.

Trucks:
I don't have firm data on trucks, but I fairly certain they were all
A-3 Ride-Control.

Regards,
Ed Hawkins


GM&O 21000-22419

Brian J Carlson <brian@...>
 

I'm trying to plan my next boxcar project a little better than the current
one. I'll be building a GM&O 21000-22419 series car from the Branchline kit.
I already have the 4/5/5 door. I also have a side view of 21022. However, it
is pretty much a straight on side shot so I can not tell what brake wheel
and running boards the cars had. can anyone help?

Also, the trucks in the photo look like National C-1 trucks, based on what
appear to be holes in the side frame, and a jog in the side frame adjacent
to the bolster. (Compared to photo 32 in the Freight Car trucks article in
RPC 4) Any thoughts on modeling a National C-1 in HO?

Brian J Carlson P.E.
Cheektowaga NY


Re: MP Eagle Merchandise colors

Ed Hawkins
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 7:49 PM, asychis@aol.com wrote:

The yellow (also referred to as cream) is on the door that
interrupts the blue bands on the sides

But the reference to "cream" is not the same as the striping on
diesels. It
was a brighter yellow, correct? Closer to reefer yellow. I was kind of
surprised by the references to silver or aluminum in the Sunshine
instructions.
Other than the roof, there was no silver on these cars.
Jerry,
As far as I can determine the yellow (sometimes also called cream) on
the doors was the identical color used for striping on passenger cars
an MP Diesel locomotives. The terms "cream" and "yellow" were used
synonymously on MoPac painting diagrams. I don't know where Sunshine
came up with silver or aluminum on their instructions. There wasn't any
silver specified for use on these cars. The yellow color was a
relatively pale shade and faded quickly to even a more pale shade. The
Sherwin-Williams yellow paint specified on the MP stenciling drawing
was G41AC15 if that means anything to anyone 50-plus years after the
cars were painted.
Regards,
Ed Hawkins


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 5:54 PM, sparachuk wrote:>
I have to say I'm mystified by the idea that #78 couplers don't work
on 22" curves. When I worked in a hobby shop our store window layout
had 22' and 18" radius curves. I regularly brought in cars I had
equipped with #78s and they never caused any trouble. Mind you, the
trains just went round and round but they never derailed.







Round and round isn't the problem. Stephan. It's getting them to
couple and uncouple reliably. And of course, as Tony Thompson points
out, that isn't really a problem if you have easy access to poke and
prod with your uncoupling skewer, since having to open knuckles and
align couplers was entirely prototypical on tight radius curves. It
only becomes a problem when you're trying to couple and magnetically
uncouple cars on tight radius track that's difficult or impossible to
get to. But for some modelers that can be an issue.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

sparachuk <sparachuk@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Kurt Laughlin" <fleeta@...> wrote:

----- Original Message -----
From: Richard Hendrickson

Though there is at least one model railroad publication . . .
----- Original Message -----

These days, that's what - about 25% of the industry?

KL
I have to say I'm mystified by the idea that #78 couplers don't work
on 22" curves. When I worked in a hobby shop our store window layout
had 22' and 18" radius curves. I regularly brought in cars I had
equipped with #78s and they never caused any trouble. Mind you, the
trains just went round and round but they never derailed.

Stephan Parachuk
Toronto


Re: Freight Cars Built in Railroad Shops

Roger Hinman <rhinman@...>
 

one nit, Richard. After 1936 (1940s and 1950s) NYC cars were built by
Despatch Shops Inc (DSI) which took
over the MDT Shops. DSI had no business connection to MDT except they
were both 100% controlled by stock ownership
by NYC . DSI continued to be MDT's primary car builder until the 50s.

Roger Hinman

On Feb 22, 2009, at 12:44 PM, Richard Hendrickson wrote:

On Feb 22, 2009, at 6:13 AM, Dennis Storzek wrote:

(regarding the Soo Line's postwar box cars)

Since these cars were built in-house rather than being ordered
from a
builder, it appears that production was more or less continuous
over a
span of years, so things like lettering changes just happened when
they happened.

Interspersed with the production of 40' cars were several groups of
40' insulated cars (XLI), 50' XLs, and 50' double door cars with the
door openings centered for paper loading. The 40' combo door cars
built in 1959 were about the end of the in house production, but
after
buying a few small lots of PS-1's from Pullman and some RBLs from
PC&F, they cranked up again in 1963 to build 50' exterior post cars,
which continued for another sixteen or so years. North Fond du Lac
was
building cars almost continuously between 1948 and 1979.
The large number of steam era freight cars built by the railroads in
their own shops, rather than being purchased from commercial car
builders, deserves more attention than it has generally received.
And, as the Soo Line example shows, the railroads that followed this
practice weren't always among the country's largest. Another example
is the St. Louis Southwestern, which both built and rebuilt many cars
in its Pine Bluff shops. Of course, a majority of the new cars
acquired by the New York Central System in the 1940s and '50s were
built in the Merchants Despatch shops at East Rochester, and MDT was
a wholly owned subsidiary. Other RRs that began building or
completely rebuilding cars in their own shops as early as the 1930s
included the Pennsylvania, Milwaukee, Santa Fe, Union Pacific,
Southern Pacific, Burlington, Wabash, Lehigh Valley, Texas & Pacific,
and Northern Pacific, and I'm sure I've overlooked some. During the
depression, it was a way the railroads could get new (or totally
renewed) freight cars that they otherwise couldn't afford and, at the
same time, keep their shop forces on the payroll. After World War
II, an additional motivation for building their own cars was that,
for years, the commercial car builders had more orders than they
could well handle and were months, if not years, behind in making
deliveries. Perhaps it's more accurate to say that the railroads
assembled the cars in their own shops from kits, since underframes,
ends, sides, doors, roofs, and appliances like truck parts and
wheels, draft gear, hand brakes, and air brake equipment could all be
delivered ready to use by the various railway parts manufacturers.
Still, assembling freight cars was a major undertaking. However, it
had the advantage that the railroads were able to exercise their own
quality control and also to specify combinations of design features
which the commercial builders were reluctant to provide as,
especially after WW II, they much preferred to build cars of their
own increasingly standardized designs (the Pullman-Standard PS-1s
being an extreme example).

Richard Hendrickson





Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 4:05 PM, Anthony Thompson wrote:

Richard Hendrickson wrote:
Yes, and fortunately the manufacturers are beginning to adjust their
thinking as well (e.g., Kadee). The gulf continues to widen between
serious scale modelers and toy train buffs. As you aptly point out,
hardly anyone on the STFC list is interested in trying to couple and
uncouple freight cars on 18" - 22" curves.
Get a grip, you mainline guys. Industrial trackage is often very
sharp radius, and what may be a sound position--avoiding mainline
curves in HO below 30 inch radius--cannot serve in many switching
situations, including those accurately copied from the prototype. Just
to cite one recent published example, consider Bob Smaus's LA
industrial trackage.
But the prototype wrestles with drawbar centering in those
situations, too. I must say I rather enjoy the occasional need to
manually center couplers in Otis McGee's tight Dunsmuir yard (far
enough from toy trains for you, Richard?).




















Points well taken, and of course industrial trackage can be, and has,
been modeled with great accuracy by Bob Smaus and others. However,
whereas manual coupler fiddling goes with that territory, it's
undesirable in main line situations and absolutely unacceptable in
relatively inaccessible staging yards, where even 30" r. curves in HO
are way tighter than on the prototype.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Richard Hendrickson wrote:
Yes, and fortunately the manufacturers are beginning to adjust their thinking as well (e.g., Kadee). The gulf continues to widen between serious scale modelers and toy train buffs. As you aptly point out, hardly anyone on the STFC list is interested in trying to couple and uncouple freight cars on 18" - 22" curves.
Get a grip, you mainline guys. Industrial trackage is often very sharp radius, and what may be a sound position--avoiding mainline curves in HO below 30 inch radius--cannot serve in many switching situations, including those accurately copied from the prototype. Just to cite one recent published example, consider Bob Smaus's LA industrial trackage.
But the prototype wrestles with drawbar centering in those situations, too. I must say I rather enjoy the occasional need to manually center couplers in Otis McGee's tight Dunsmuir yard (far enough from toy trains for you, Richard?).

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, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 3:05 PM, Kurt Laughlin wrote:

----- Original Message -----
From: Richard Hendrickson

Though there is at least one model railroad publication . . .
----- Original Message -----

These days, that's what - about 25% of the industry?









Actually, more than that, Kurt, since it's the publication with the
largest (though steadily declining) circulation and also, with a
couple of notable exceptions, the least prototype-modeling-oriented
editorial staff.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Covered hopper gates

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 2:17 PM, Schuyler Larrabee wrote:
I'm doing some research on the likely dimensions of a particular
covered hopper, looking to assist a
small kit maker in producing a model. One question that came up is
whether the sliding hopper gates
on these cars were a standard size from the various manufacturers.

I've looked at my copies of the '43 and '61 Car Builder's Cycs. On
page 298 and 496 of the '43 Cyc,
it shows "Enterprise Bulk Commodity Outlets" as applied to a two-
bay 70-ton AAR LO. (Does anyone
know what prototype car the drawing is for?) The drawing on 298
dimensions the hoppers as 13" x
24", longitudinally by laterally.
















Schuyler, all of the Santa Fe's early 1958 cu. ft. covered hoppers,
whether built by AC&F or GATC, had standard Enterprise discharge
gates, whose outlet dimensions were 13" X 24". That dimension also
turns up on in the folio diagrams for two and three bay covered
hoppers of several other RRs, so I think it is safe to assume that
(1) the Enterprise gates were the industry standard and (2) the
standard dimensions of the discharge openings were 13" X 24". That
doesn't, of course, definitively answer the question of whether the
particular cars with which you are concerned were so equipped.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Freight Cars Built in Railroad Shops

Scott Pitzer
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, RUTLANDRS@... wrote:

Now, there are a couple of statements that should cause some folks
to quit
questioning the delivery times of certain kits.
=======================
The Lofton-Sunshine Car Co. has been slow on deliveries in this post-
war period. (And by "war" I mean Grenada.)
Scott Pitzer


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Kurt Laughlin <fleeta@...>
 

----- Original Message -----
From: Richard Hendrickson

Though there is at least one model railroad publication . . .
----- Original Message -----

These days, that's what - about 25% of the industry?

KL


Re: Kadee minimum body box widths

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2009, at 9:37 AM, Denny Anspach wrote:
IMHO, this is just another area where the ongoing search for the
"prototype" in appearance and operations should be moving us to adjust
our thinking: e.g. advocating that the sophisticated models and
accessories that we so favor, also be aimed to something well above
the least common operational parameters.







Yes, and fortunately the manufacturers are beginning to adjust their
thinking as well (e.g., Kadee). The gulf continues to widen between
serious scale modelers and toy train buffs. As you aptly point out,
hardly anyone on the STFC list is interested in trying to couple and
uncouple freight cars on 18" - 22" curves. Though there is at least
one model railroad publication that hasn't caught on yet, the days of
perpetually re-inventing Plywood Pacific layouts on ping-pong tables
are long gone.

Richard Hendrickson

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