Date   

Re: Rock Island box car? - How about C&NW?

Rob Adams
 

Tim;

I'd wager that it is a former C&NW car built in the 1920's. See Jeff Koeller's article on p. 42 of the September 2003 issue of Mainline Modeler. I believe that Sunshine has produced a kit for these cars in HO. See their kit #49.1.

Kind regards, Rob Adams





Tim O'Connor wrote:


Re: Rock Island box car?

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Aug 26, 2009, at 3:30 PM, Tim O'Connor wrote:

The Ebay seller says this is a Rock Island box car. Anyone
recognize it?

http://i28.photobucket.com/albums/c248/myoungwisc/May%20Slides/
riBracedBoxcar_unk_unk_stamped.jpg
The design is USRA 50 ton single sheathed. Definitely not Rock
Island, which owned no such box cars. And definitely not built for
the USRA, as the ends are 7/8 corrugated, not 5/5/5. I'm not aware
of any US railroads that had such cars, but the Canadian Pacific had
a lot of them built in the early 1920s.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Prototype accuracy: a mfr's viewpoint

Mike Brock <brockm@...>
 

Jim King notes:

"Second, as for collecting info to make kits or RTR "right", this is all a
matter of economics for the manufacturer. There are at least 2 very basic
differences between resin kit makers and mass-production houses like Athearn
and Kadee. (1) resin kit makers usually target prototypes that were
obscure, maybe ran on only 1 road or had several variations that could be
handled by supplying parts that the modeler chooses to apply and..."

Just to avoid misleading those that might not be aware, and while some rather obscure cars may have been produced by resin makers, this cedrtainly is not the usual case. Westerfield has done both the USRA SS and DS box cars, several versions of MP and Frisco SS box cars, and various GN SS and DS box cars, and the UP B-50-20, Sunshine has produced the NP 40 ft box car with radial roofs, CB&Q SS box cars along with various SP SS box cars among the literaly thousands of cars they have produced, etc., etc. I mention only those that I have sitting on tracks within viewing distance.

To add to that, the Standard Tank Car models that SC&F is producing are certainly not obscure and to even suggest that the UP/SP Harriman headend cars that SC&F is producing are "obscure" is tantamount to referring to the the Santa Fe as an eastern RR...and we all know better than that now.<G>.

Mike Brock


Re: Prototype accuracy: a mfr's viewpoint

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Steve Kay wrote:
I have built a large number of resin, P2K, Branchline and flat kits. I enjoy building them, + painting and decaling as well. BUT,if I can get a ready-made car of good quality, I can spend more time doing other modeling tasks. Thus, I have a mix of kits and RTR cars,and will continue to buy that way.
Well said, Steve. My preferences, enjoyments and approach are essentially the same.

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@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Prototype accuracy: a mfr's viewpoint

StephenK
 

First of all, thanks for the insights. It is easy for us modelers to get a totally wrong idea on how things work, since we just see the finished products and not all of the design and research that went before.

Second, I have built a large number of resin, P2K, Branchline and flat kits. I enjoy building them, + painting and decaling as well. BUT,if I can get a ready-made car of good quality, I can spend more time doing other modeling tasks. Thus, I have a mix of kits and RTR cars,and will continue to buy that way.

Steve Kay

--- In STMFC@..., "Jim King" <jimking3@...> wrote:

As a resin kit manufacturer, let me give my perspective on what can and
can't be duplicated prototypically in scale.



First off, keep in mind that all of us modelers are trying to create the
illusion of reality using scale models. It is physically impossible to
reproduce every part .. to scale .. on any car, loco or structure and still
be able to manufacturer it, unless you're working in scale where you can
ride the equipment! An example would be a free-standing piece of ¼" thick
plate in HO, which scales down to .0028" actual size. That's about the
thickness of a piece of cellophane tape. Even with today's rapid
prototyping technology (like I use) and fancy injection molding, getting a
part this small out of a rubber mold or injection mold would be nearly
impossible without breaking the vast majority.



Second, as for collecting info to make kits or RTR "right", this is all a
matter of economics for the manufacturer. There are at least 2 very basic
differences between resin kit makers and mass-production houses like Athearn
and Kadee. (1) resin kit makers usually target prototypes that were
obscure, maybe ran on only 1 road or had several variations that could be
handled by supplying parts that the modeler chooses to apply and (2) the
amount of time and dollars invested in a project to design, tool, produce
and market anything can seem to be just as daunting for either kit or RTR
companies.



I'm sure credible manufacturers apply due diligence in researching a
prototype, such as buying drawings and photos, field research, book
research, etc. All of this takes time so having as many prototypes paint
schemes for 1 "basic" car is key to "the big guys" being successful. It's
obvious to even the most novice modeler that the retail price is a direct
reflection on how much effort went into a particular RTR car. Compare a
Kadee boxcar at $30+ with separate everything to a Branchline "Yardmaster
series" with everything molded on at less than half the price. Designing,
producing and assembling all those parts takes a lot of effort and money, so
why shouldn't the retail price be higher? This is also true for resin kit
makers .. the same is true for us "little guys". I put just as much effort
in designing patterns as what would be required for injection molding but I
stop short of producing RTR models, else the retail price would far exceed
$100 … each.



If we lived in a perfect world, we'd be able to "dial up" some CAD program
with an infinitely large library of parts, combine them in the mixture we
want for our special XYZ-car or engine, send that info to a machine that
would build the shell and underframe and spit it out either painted/lettered
or unlettered for custom builders. All of this for $20. I doubt any of us
in the "50+" crowd (I'm 50) will live long enough to see that happen so, in
the meantime, let's be happy with the HUGE amount of offerings everyone has
made available in just the past 5-7 years .. but also keep striving for
better. That's just the American way!



Jim King

Smoky Mountain Model Works, Inc.

<http://www.smokymountainmodelworks.com>





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


Re: Rock Island box car?

mcindoefalls
 

--- In STMFC@..., Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...> wrote:

The Ebay seller says this is a Rock Island box car. Anyone
recognize it?
USRA S/S, no? With newer trucks and AB brakes.

Walt Lankenau


Rock Island box car?

Tim O'Connor
 

The Ebay seller says this is a Rock Island box car. Anyone
recognize it?

http://i28.photobucket.com/albums/c248/myoungwisc/May%20Slides/riBracedBoxcar_unk_unk_stamped.jpg

Tim O


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Douglas Harding <dharding@...>
 

Bill, glad to see you took no offense at my comments.

And I appreciate your in-depth look at the manufacturing side. Many of us modelers have very little knowledge of what is involved
in seeing our favorite boxcar become available in the scale we prefer.

Doug Harding
www.iowacentralrr.org


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Charlie Vlk
 

Kadee cars are not in the same product category as other brands...... the line is a low-production high customization botique operation which makes some spectacular products... at a corresponding cost.
We are fortunate to have some companies that can have mostly vertically integrated operations capable of producing product in the US, but most companies cannot afford to have such low volume complex tooling and produce so few copies of unique items.

I recall the hue and cry from HO guys when the P2K kits came out that LifeLike had the nerve to charge seven bucks for an unassembled model!! And, while the marketplace has shifted more towards to the paying for quality end of things there still is some resistance to high end freight cars (although some cars are selling quite well in spite of a (gulp!!) $45 price tag!!).

I was talking more about the mid-range cars that have higher production and more general distribution....

Charlie Vlk



Well.....Let me see.......How many problems have we seen with Kadee's offerings?Armand Premo

.


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Charlie Vlk
 

Sorry, I see Bill S. did jump into the fray.... this evil of responding to something that has happened is the result of getting over 250 emails a day and reading them from the most recent to the oldest so that you can keep the "ones I will get around to responding to or doing something about" in the inbox instead of burying in a folder forever....
Charlie Vlk



[

OK, I've been watching this one for a while, and laughing occasionally. I'll now throw in my two bits, predicated by the fact that I am no longer at Branchline, but still proud of what we accomplished way back when (or so it seems...)





.


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Charlie Vlk
 

Tim-

It wasn't meant as a slight to Branchline or their product line.....

I know they have many variations in their tooling and an extensive line.

But when you get down to matching a particular car / roadnumber / paint scheme to a model there are all sorts of details that work against a model being dead nuts accurate for the prototype.... even if the basic carbody is more or less correct. Location of tackboards, door hardware, and other small details cannot be accurate for many different roadnames much less cars in different lots or portions of a single lot in some cases.

I seem to recall a thread here commenting about the number of boards in a tackboard on a new product.

Given the small window when any given date / location of reweigh and repack stencils are valid, my inclination might be to leave them off entirely.... but that is balanced off by the fact that the greater market does either does not care if such small lettering (even in HO) is kosher for their time period or would rather have the "texture" of it being there until they "get around to" reworking the stenciling.
It is probable that many manufacturers are not going to have the photos to do multiples of the same car with data that matches a particular roadnumber anyway as finding good, clear shots of enough cars within a series and producing individual art for each car is not likely and best left for the advanced modeler who can refinish the car to their own tastes.

Perhaps Bill S. can weigh in here since he was responsible for Branchline's direction in the freight and passenger car products....

Charlie Vlk




Charlie

That's a strange thing to say. Detail-obsessed modelers are the very
reason that Branchline was able to bring out such excellent freight
and passenger car models, and why Branchline spent a lot of money to
redo their first 40 foot box car kit. I have a lot of resin cars but
I also have plenty of Branchline, Red Caboose, P2K, Intermountain,
Athearn, Atlas and other excellent models to keep them company. And
I am very interested in correct reweigh and repack stencils!!

Tim O'Connor


.


A delurk of sorts (was Prototype info from model mfgs)

umtrr <gji@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., "Charlie Vlk" <cvlk@...> wrote:

(snip)

Most manufacturers do not maintain a website that shows all past models and they have little economic motivation to do so.
I imagine that if it was really important some who feel so would take digital photos of each new car they acquire and post it to a photo archive as a service to the community.
There are some N Scale websites and lists that are doing just that. One reviews Micro-Trains monthly releases (giving a narrative description of each car, and often times correcting the fairly extensive description that M-T provides on their boxes, and much ORER and other research (citing chapter and verse of where photos appear in books, articles, internet) and attempting to piece together the range of dates possible for the paint scheme presented.

Who is THAT nut? Oh, wait, that's me!

I suppose this is as good a time as any to "delurk" however briefly. I am the author of The Unofficial Micro-Trains Release Report which I've been offering as a monthly e-mail-- "free and worth at least that much" since 1996. The UMTRR is, as Charlie noted, my attempt to provide review and commentary on the compendium of Micro-Trains' monthly releases in N, Z and more recently HOn3.

I've been a member here principally because this is among the best online forums available for prototype information, often not discussed anywhere else.

As much as I'd like to own every publication out there, or at least every one referenced on this list, the fact that Micro-Trains can and does release a very wide variety of rolling stock based on prototypical cars necessarily makes me a generalist at best in terms of what I can research. As Charlie noted, one data point I strive to find-- and do not always reasonably come up with-- is the "Approximate Time Period" in which the prototype on which the Micro-Trains model is based actually operated.

So given that there is a limited budget for hard copy materials, supplemented by subscription revenue of zero dollars per year, most monthly issues contain at least one citation of the information discussed on this list--with proper credit, I hasten to add. While I can't be sure of this I certainly hope my references and recommendations to STFMC have steered readers and perhaps even some contributors over to this venue. But in any case, please know that the scholarly discussions of freight cars that occur here are very much appreciated and properly referenced in the bytes of the UMTRR. On behalf of the entire "UMTRR Gang" my thanks to everyone here.

I don't post here since I find myself very much in the category of "you guys have forgotten more than I'll ever learn" in the area of Steam Era Freight Cars. (It probably doesn't help that I was born after the end of the STFMC date span.) I have certainly used the list archives, as was the case last month when Micro-Trains released a steel gondola in the red and white "Koppers Coke" scheme that was discussed here several years ago. (My summary: "stand in" for various reasons, the degree to which I leave up to the reader after providing a comparison to the prototype.)

Charlie mentioned also that there's no real incentive for manufacturers to post images of releases which are no longer available, and that's certainly understandable. Fortunately, Micro-Trains has given me permission to post the images of all their releases which I've done for all years back to 2001 on the UMTRR's companion website. I also did a fair amount of pushing of Micro-Trains to publish an all time database of their releases, and helped them get that off the ground; they are one of the few manufacturers I know who make that available for free online.

Speaking of websites, feel free to have a look at mine:

http://www.irwinsjournal.com/umtrr

...but only if you promise not to laugh. OK, not to laugh too hard, anyway.

I'll close, and return to lurking, by saying that I have a great deal of respect for what you do both here on STMFC and in the other work you have done to advance the cause of Prototype Model Railroading. While I agree with Charlie that the majority of model railroaders won't attempt to approach the level of dedication to the prototype that is evidenced here (and that includes my readership base), there is no question that the work of the STMFC has greatly helped to raise the bar.

Cheers,
George Irwin
The Unofficial Micro-Trains Release Report


Re: Prototype accuracy: a mfr's viewpoint

Armand Premo
 

Assembling?Ah Ha,that's the rub.There are many of us who enjoy building kits.This accounts for the success of the resin model producers.Those with little time to build are in a different league.Many of us have few ready -to- run cars on our layouts for several reasons.Price,Accuracy and Selection .I would like to hear what others think on the subject.Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
From: Jim King
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 11:40 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Prototype accuracy: a mfr's viewpoint


As a resin kit manufacturer, let me give my perspective on what can and
can't be duplicated prototypically in scale.

First off, keep in mind that all of us modelers are trying to create the
illusion of reality using scale models. It is physically impossible to
reproduce every part .. to scale .. on any car, loco or structure and still
be able to manufacturer it, unless you're working in scale where you can
ride the equipment! An example would be a free-standing piece of ¼" thick
plate in HO, which scales down to .0028" actual size. That's about the
thickness of a piece of cellophane tape. Even with today's rapid
prototyping technology (like I use) and fancy injection molding, getting a
part this small out of a rubber mold or injection mold would be nearly
impossible without breaking the vast majority.

Second, as for collecting info to make kits or RTR "right", this is all a
matter of economics for the manufacturer. There are at least 2 very basic
differences between resin kit makers and mass-production houses like Athearn
and Kadee. (1) resin kit makers usually target prototypes that were
obscure, maybe ran on only 1 road or had several variations that could be
handled by supplying parts that the modeler chooses to apply and (2) the
amount of time and dollars invested in a project to design, tool, produce
and market anything can seem to be just as daunting for either kit or RTR
companies.

I'm sure credible manufacturers apply due diligence in researching a
prototype, such as buying drawings and photos, field research, book
research, etc. All of this takes time so having as many prototypes paint
schemes for 1 "basic" car is key to "the big guys" being successful. It's
obvious to even the most novice modeler that the retail price is a direct
reflection on how much effort went into a particular RTR car. Compare a
Kadee boxcar at $30+ with separate everything to a Branchline "Yardmaster
series" with everything molded on at less than half the price. Designing,
producing and assembling all those parts takes a lot of effort and money, so
why shouldn't the retail price be higher? This is also true for resin kit
makers .. the same is true for us "little guys". I put just as much effort
in designing patterns as what would be required for injection molding but I
stop short of producing RTR models, else the retail price would far exceed
$100 . each.

If we lived in a perfect world, we'd be able to "dial up" some CAD program
with an infinitely large library of parts, combine them in the mixture we
want for our special XYZ-car or engine, send that info to a machine that
would build the shell and underframe and spit it out either painted/lettered
or unlettered for custom builders. All of this for $20. I doubt any of us
in the "50+" crowd (I'm 50) will live long enough to see that happen so, in
the meantime, let's be happy with the HUGE amount of offerings everyone has
made available in just the past 5-7 years .. but also keep striving for
better. That's just the American way!

Jim King

Smoky Mountain Model Works, Inc.

<http://www.smokymountainmodelworks.com>








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Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
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Prototype accuracy: a mfr's viewpoint

Jim King
 

As a resin kit manufacturer, let me give my perspective on what can and
can’t be duplicated prototypically in scale.



First off, keep in mind that all of us modelers are trying to create the
illusion of reality using scale models. It is physically impossible to
reproduce every part .. to scale .. on any car, loco or structure and still
be able to manufacturer it, unless you’re working in scale where you can
ride the equipment! An example would be a free-standing piece of ¼” thick
plate in HO, which scales down to .0028” actual size. That’s about the
thickness of a piece of cellophane tape. Even with today’s rapid
prototyping technology (like I use) and fancy injection molding, getting a
part this small out of a rubber mold or injection mold would be nearly
impossible without breaking the vast majority.



Second, as for collecting info to make kits or RTR “right”, this is all a
matter of economics for the manufacturer. There are at least 2 very basic
differences between resin kit makers and mass-production houses like Athearn
and Kadee. (1) resin kit makers usually target prototypes that were
obscure, maybe ran on only 1 road or had several variations that could be
handled by supplying parts that the modeler chooses to apply and (2) the
amount of time and dollars invested in a project to design, tool, produce
and market anything can seem to be just as daunting for either kit or RTR
companies.



I’m sure credible manufacturers apply due diligence in researching a
prototype, such as buying drawings and photos, field research, book
research, etc. All of this takes time so having as many prototypes paint
schemes for 1 “basic” car is key to “the big guys” being successful. It’s
obvious to even the most novice modeler that the retail price is a direct
reflection on how much effort went into a particular RTR car. Compare a
Kadee boxcar at $30+ with separate everything to a Branchline “Yardmaster
series” with everything molded on at less than half the price. Designing,
producing and assembling all those parts takes a lot of effort and money, so
why shouldn’t the retail price be higher? This is also true for resin kit
makers .. the same is true for us “little guys”. I put just as much effort
in designing patterns as what would be required for injection molding but I
stop short of producing RTR models, else the retail price would far exceed
$100 … each.



If we lived in a perfect world, we’d be able to “dial up” some CAD program
with an infinitely large library of parts, combine them in the mixture we
want for our special XYZ-car or engine, send that info to a machine that
would build the shell and underframe and spit it out either painted/lettered
or unlettered for custom builders. All of this for $20. I doubt any of us
in the “50+” crowd (I’m 50) will live long enough to see that happen so, in
the meantime, let’s be happy with the HUGE amount of offerings everyone has
made available in just the past 5-7 years .. but also keep striving for
better. That’s just the American way!



Jim King

Smoky Mountain Model Works, Inc.

<http://www.smokymountainmodelworks.com>





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


Re: Morning Sun tank car book?

Frederick Freitas <prrinvt@...>
 

TIM,
 
        I have a feeling that what these folks are talking about is the Ted Culotta book;
steam freight cars refference manual, volume 2 tank cars. I have a copy and highly recommend it as essential reading for the STMFC model builder. They are available on Ted's website.
 
Fred Freitas

--- On Tue, 8/25/09, Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...> wrote:


From: Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...>
Subject: [STMFC] Morning Sun tank car book?
To: STMFC@...
Date: Tuesday, August 25, 2009, 11:26 PM


 




I've seen a few mentions here of a tank car book published
by Morning Sun. What is this book? I've never heard of it
before, and can't find anything on a bookseller web site.

Tim O'Connor


Re: DL&W 53000-53259

cinderandeight@...
 

Brian,
The equipment diagram for these cars shows the truck side frames to be
a mix of ACF-21359-AE, and Symington-Gould TF5318, with Sym.-Gould
bolsters. Three cars had Chrysler high speed trucks (#53004, 53090, 53126). The
cars were built by Magor Car Corp. in Jan.-Feb. 1950. Ten cars were
equipped with DF loaders and renumbered 84975-84984.
Rich Burg


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Armand Premo
 

Absolutely Tim,but some are more correct than others <G> BTW.Sunshine offers some fine repack information.The other subject of credit for assistance Westerfield,Speedwitch and Sunshine all seem to be able to acknowledge sources of information.Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
From: Tim O'Connor
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Tuesday, August 25, 2009 11:51 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Prototype info from model mfgs


Armand Premo wrote

>> Well.....Let me see.......How many problems have we seen with Kadee's offerings?

Armand

You mean (1) paint color (2) lettering (3) trucks (4) brakes (5) running boards
(6) all of their PS-1 box cars with 7' doors? Or were you just asking a rhetorical
question?

There ain't no such thing as a perfect model.

Tim O'Connor






------------------------------------------------------------------------------



No virus found in this incoming message.
Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 8.5.375 / Virus Database: 270.13.64/2320 - Release Date: 08/22/09 18:04:00


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Tim O'Connor
 

Armand Premo wrote

Well.....Let me see.......How many problems have we seen with Kadee's offerings?
Armand

You mean (1) paint color (2) lettering (3) trucks (4) brakes (5) running boards
(6) all of their PS-1 box cars with 7' doors? Or were you just asking a rhetorical
question?

There ain't no such thing as a perfect model.

Tim O'Connor


Re: Prototype info from model mfgs

Tim O'Connor
 

Charlie Vlk wrote

My guess is that we are talking about a small potential market,
because the people that are interested in the correct repack dates
on cars are probably not buying a Branchline-level boxcar anyway
(with no slight to Branchline)
Charlie

That's a strange thing to say. Detail-obsessed modelers are the very
reason that Branchline was able to bring out such excellent freight
and passenger car models, and why Branchline spent a lot of money to
redo their first 40 foot box car kit. I have a lot of resin cars but
I also have plenty of Branchline, Red Caboose, P2K, Intermountain,
Athearn, Atlas and other excellent models to keep them company. And
I am very interested in correct reweigh and repack stencils!!

Tim O'Connor


Morning Sun tank car book?

Tim O'Connor
 

I've seen a few mentions here of a tank car book published
by Morning Sun. What is this book? I've never heard of it
before, and can't find anything on a bookseller web site.

Tim O'Connor

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