Vent car question

Dave Nelson

Were any USRA boxcars converted to Ventilator cars?


Dave Nelson

Benjamin Hom

Dave Nelson asked:
"Were any USRA boxcars converted to Ventilator cars?"
Yes, in a roundabout way.  ACL 1850-1899, USRA DS boxcars rebuilt to Class O-14B steel express ventilated boxcars.  These were the subject of an early Sunshine Models kit:
FEC ordered 40 ft DS ventilated boxcars modified from the USRA DS design, but these were built new as ventilated boxcars and not conversions from existing cars.  FEC wasn't allotted any USRA boxcars.  HO scale model available from Westerfield.
Ben Hom


FEC was assigned 500 single-sheathed boxes in the initial USRA allocation list. The allocations were shuffled several times during 1918-20, and FEC eventually received the 500 USRA ds-based ventilators in May 1920.

David Thompson


The 500 ACL Class O-15 DS vents (Nos. 43735-44234)should also to be added to the list.  Although they did not start out as USRA DS boxcars, like the FEC cars, they were "USRA DS clones" with the exception of having 7/8 ends, Wine ventilators in the ends, and side vent doors.  Westerfield sells kits of these cars.

Off topic but somewhat related to the discussion of ventilated boxcars, a measure of the ACL's dedication to the ventilated boxcar can be demonstrated by the fact that in 1946 the railroad selected 10 Class O-25 steel boxcars (Nos. 21230-21239) and converted them to ventilated boxcars by applying wine ventilators in the upper panel of the dreadnaught ends and ventilated doors to the side.  Unfortunately, neither photographs nor ACL correspondence indicating if the experiment was a success have surfaced to date.

Buddy Hill

Ravenel, SC