Topics

Accurail 36 foot boxcars

Andy Carlson
 

Folks-
I am sending a snipet from a message sent by a respected friend of mine. He is addressing the uncommon aspects of the all-wood version of the car.



**************************
Because of the way they tooled the dies to do the two "types" of cars. 
 
They did not cut a second die for the sides when used for a car with wood ends, so the wood car body still has the riveted edge of the steel end showing, which of course could be sanded off when you remove the cast on grabs. 
 
But the separate tooled end has wood down to point where a steel end sill might be if there were one.  What's there is a flat smooth plane (flush with the face of the wood siding) with some rivets showing, which is a construction I have never seen in real life.
 
******************************************************
Why is the wood end version to be avoided????
-Andy

 
***********same friend said:
Pick a version: Steel end version, okay+/-,  Wood end version, avoid.  The underframe/brake rigging may be the best part.
 
You're welcome,
 








Dennis Storzek
 

Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum; then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

Dennis


---In STMFC@..., <midcentury@...> wrote :

Folks-
I am sending a snipet from a message sent by a respected friend of mine. He is addressing the uncommon aspects of the all-wood version of the car.



**************************
Because of the way they tooled the dies to do the two "types" of cars. 
 
They did not cut a second die for the sides when used for a car with wood ends, so the wood car body still has the riveted edge of the steel end showing, which of course could be sanded off when you remove the cast on grabs. 
 
But the separate tooled end has wood down to point where a steel end sill might be if there were one.  What's there is a flat smooth plane (flush with the face of the wood siding) with some rivets showing, which is a construction I have never seen in real life.
 
******************************************************
Why is the wood end version to be avoided????
-Andy

 
***********same friend said:
Pick a version: Steel end version, okay+/-,  Wood end version, avoid.  The underframe/brake rigging may be the best part.
 
You're welcome,
 








Earl Tuson
 

Dennis retorts:

Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum;
then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

They don't even have to go that far. IIRC, both the 1913 and 1916 CBC's have the relevant car drawings; both of these
issues are available online. Just basic research...

https://archive.org/stream/cu31924032183208#page/n271/mode/2up

Earl Tuson

Benjamin Hom
 

Plus if our distinguished correspondent won't attach a name to this assessment, why should I care?


Ben Hom



From: "'Earl Tuson' etuson@... [STMFC]"
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 7:56 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 
Dennis retorts:

> Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum;
then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

They don't even have to go that far. IIRC, both the 1913 and 1916 CBC's have the relevant car drawings; both of these
issues are available online. Just basic research...

https://archive.org/stream/cu31924032183208#page/n271/mode/2up

Earl Tuson


Andy Carlson
 

All great suggestions! How about simply posting one photo of the prototype for the 36' Accurail wood end box car? That way we can all become enlightened. I am sure that there must be many RRs whom riveted their wood sides to the corners.
-Andy Carlson
Ojai CA



From: "'Earl Tuson' etuson@... [STMFC]"
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 4:56 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 
Dennis retorts:

> Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum;
then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

They don't even have to go that far. IIRC, both the 1913 and 1916 CBC's have the relevant car drawings; both of these
issues are available online. Just basic research...

https://archive.org/stream/cu31924032183208#page/n271/mode/2up

Earl Tuson


Steve and Barb Hile
 

Eric Hansman has hosted an extensive treatise on the prototypes for the Accurail cars by Ray Breyer, with pictures, on his blog

http://designbuildop.hansmanns.org/accurail-prototype-data/

Some of the 1700 series cars have a more pronounced "edge" where the steel end sill meets the wood sheathing than others.

Should be what you need to see.

Regards,
Steve Hile

-----Original Message-----
From: "Andy Carlson midcentury@... [STMFC]"
Sent: Feb 17, 2017 7:57 PM
To: "STMFC@..."
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 

All great suggestions! How about simply posting one photo of the prototype for the 36' Accurail wood end box car? That way we can all become enlightened. I am sure that there must be many RRs whom riveted their wood sides to the corners.
-Andy Carlson
Ojai CA



From: "'Earl Tuson' etuson@... [STMFC]"
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 4:56 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 
Dennis retorts:

> Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum;
then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

They don't even have to go that far. IIRC, both the 1913 and 1916 CBC's have the relevant car drawings; both of these
issues are available online. Just basic research...

https://archive.org/stream/cu31924032183208#page/n271/mode/2up

Earl Tuson


Douglas Harding
 

Are we choosing to ignore the extensive research Ray Breyer did last year after the Accurail models were first announced? His four pdfs, one for each series, provide numerous prototype photos for which he suggested Accurail’s model could be used to duplicate. A quick look suggests several prototypes for the wood end with a metal plate (or channel) with rivets. Granted Ray states:

 

Straight out of the box none of these four versions will be 100% right; all modeling requires some forms of compromise. However, none of them will be 100% wrong either, and each of the four variants will be appropriate for several prototype cars that were built and used in large numbers before and after World War I.”

 

I do not look to Accurail for the same prototype fidelity one gets with a Sunshine, Westerfield or other resin car kit. But Accurail does make it possible to build a fleet of good looking cars for an operating layout with minimal time and expense. And for that reason I will be a customer as these cars become available.

 

I recall a similar uproar when the Atlas 36’ meat reefer model was debuted. Some questioned the prototype details stating they had not seen a car with those specific features. There were claims Atlas had a well known railroad consultant, yet the person was not named, and so the research was questioned. Eventually a photo was located that appeared to show the Atlas model was correct. When I shared that photo with Richard Hendrickson he concurred it most likely was the prototype. I understand the need to maintain trade secrets, but it would be nice if manufactures and consultants would reveal the identity or sources of their research, esp when the claim is a particular prototype was followed.

 

 

From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...]
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 7:57 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 

 

All great suggestions! How about simply posting one photo of the prototype for the 36' Accurail wood end box car? That way we can all become enlightened. I am sure that there must be many RRs whom riveted their wood sides to the corners.

-Andy Carlson

Ojai CA

 


From: "'Earl Tuson' etuson@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 4:56 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 

 

Dennis retorts:

> Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum;
then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

They don't even have to go that far. IIRC, both the 1913 and 1916 CBC's have the relevant car drawings; both of these
issues are available online. Just basic research...

https://archive.org/stream/cu31924032183208#page/n271/mode/2up

Earl Tuson

 

Schuyler Larrabee
 

Doug Harding wrote:

“ . . .Accurail does make it possible to build a fleet of good looking cars for an operating layout with minimal time and expense. And for that reason I will be a customer as these cars become available.

 Accurail does a lot of work to figure out the prototypes that at the very least, come close.  Not “eight wheels just like the prototype” close, but close enough that you have to know the prototype to be able to judge.

And if you have that prototype photograph, and there are modifications you can make to bring the car closer to a “real authentic model,” well, this IS a list of modelers, is it not?  Make those modifications, write up what you did, and share, please.

Schuyler

Earl Tuson
 

Andy Carlson, perhaps annoyed with the responses, challenges:

> All great suggestions! How about simply posting one photo of the prototype for the 36' Accurail wood end box car? That way we can all become enlightened. I am sure that there must be many RRs whom riveted their wood sides to the corners.

Many on this list understand that Accurail is the sort of company that will make just the sort of tooling decision as was made at the box car model's corner and as was pointed out by Andy's "correspondent."  They cast on grab irons, too.

Pointing out the spurious rivets on the side of the wood-ended car is a statement that should be, can be, and was made here without any negative response.

But, Andy, your anonymous "correspondent" also made a strongly worded false claim regarding the end sill and worded that false claim in such a manner as to foreseeably harm a company's sales.  "Wood end version: avoid."  Factual freight car information was shared to rebut that erroneous claim: the end sill as modeled reflects that of the prototype quite reasonably, when viewing the images provided by the manufacturer.

Isn't that a useful purpose of this list, Andy, correcting falsehoods?  We can always ask the Sheriff...

Earl Tuson

Jon Miller
 

    I have a whole stack of email (I guess when this car was first announced) going back to 2015.  Those interested can do a search.
-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS

John Barry
 

All models are compromises.  They are representations of the full size thing and have varying degrees of fidelity through the choices of the mold maker.  Accurail has a fairly consistent set of compromises that they make across their lines to bring items to market at very affordable prices.  Cast on grabs and ladders are how they minimize costs, as are common molds where they make sense.  The end result in the case of the 36 foot box is superior to the extant MDC offerings if you can find them.  With a little weathering, the cast on details look good, not as good as wire grabs, but good enough for many and even have advantages for heavy operations with a lot of handling.  The detailing of the end sill does match some of the previously presented research, and rivets are relatively easy to remove, more so than a ladder on a corrugated end.  

As a 1944-45 modeler, I look forward to the release of all of these cars in the more modern paint schemes.  When they hit the street, they will join my fleet.  They will run as provided as I construct the layout and build my resin ATSF cars.  When time permits, they'll get upgraded to wire grabs, etc.  Until then, they will help fill the 13.8% of the North American and 7.8% of the US WWII house car fleet.  Yes, our Canadian friends really skew the numbers when they have about half their box cars under 40 feet.
 
John Barry
 
ATSF North Bay Lines 
Golden Gates & Fast Freights 
Lovettsville, VA

707-490-9696 

PO Box 44736 
Washington, DC 20026-4736



From: "'Schuyler Larrabee' schuyler.larrabee@... [STMFC]"
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 10:46 PM
Subject: RE: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 
Doug Harding wrote:
“ . . .Accurail does make it possible to build a fleet of good looking cars for an operating layout with minimal time and expense. And for that reason I will be a customer as these cars become available.
 Accurail does a lot of work to figure out the prototypes that at the very least, come close.  Not “eight wheels just like the prototype” close, but close enough that you have to know the prototype to be able to judge.
And if you have that prototype photograph, and there are modifications you can make to bring the car closer to a “real authentic model,” well, this IS a list of modelers, is it not?  Make those modifications, write up what you did, and share, please.
Schuyler


Tony Thompson
 

Earl Tuson wrote:

 
Pointing out the spurious rivets on the side of the wood-ended car is a statement that should be, can be, and was made here without any negative response.

    Um, those would be bolts, not rivets.

But, Andy, your anonymous "correspondent" also made a strongly worded false claim regarding the end sill and worded that false claim in such a manner as to foreseeably harm a company's sales.  "Wood end version: avoid."  Factual freight car information was shared to rebut that erroneous claim: the end sill as modeled reflects that of the prototype quite reasonably, when viewing the images provided by the manufacturer.

      Well said, Earl. Trashing models is not really what this list strives for, especially when the trash talk is inaccurate.

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





Ray Breyer
 

>>All models are compromises.  They are representations of the full size thing and have varying degrees of fidelity through 
>>the choices of the mold maker.  Accurail has a fairly consistent set of compromises that they make across their lines to 
>>bring items to market at very affordable prices. 


>>John Barry
 


This statement is very, VERY true and accurate, and should probably be stapled above everyone's workbenches so we don't forget about it's meaning and get too full of ourselves.

All models have some level of compromise in them (models, not toys). Some large, some small, some forgivable, some too horrible to ignore. NO model is 100% accurate at the surface detail level, including our beloved resin. (I got a lot less picky about my own inadequate modeling efforts a long time ago, once a principle resin designer walked me through an RPM meet and pointed out exactly how each new resin car was "inaccurate")


Dennis spent a huge amount of time researching these cars before he decided to turn Accurail's time and money into actual models. His compromises weren't made "just because", but because of practical, real world, well thought out reasons. For someone to say to "avoid" the wood-end base model does the entire hobby a huge disservice. These are THE most accurate short boxcars ever released in plastic, and will go an enormous way towards both supporting a far too long neglected period of railroading and in filling absolutely HUGE gaps in most of our rosters.

Will each and every model need at least a small amount of work to bring it up to a proto-sincere modeler's level of accuracy? Of course it will, as will any mass-produced model we run. But isn't that part of the fun of the hobby? And aren't most of here MODELERS? Flicking off a few bolts here and there, adding a few others, adding cut levers, release valves, different trucks, or even entirely new major sub components should be second nature to us all, and nowhere near an annoyance or something to "avoid".

Ray Breyer
Elgin, IL

Jon Miller
 

On 2/18/2017 6:44 AM, Ray Breyer rtbsvrr69@... [STMFC] wrote:

Will each and every model need at least a small amount of work to bring it up to a proto-sincere modeler's level of accuracy? Of course it will, as will any mass-produced model we run.

    And with that thought in mind I would assume that by 1941 most/all would have been repainted.  So if I wanted to buy (am going to do) 2 of each type what ones would I buy?  If all the current ones have the early paint am I going to have to wait for a second run?

    And an off the cuff remark it seems Walthers didn't order enough (very big grin)!

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS

Eric Hansmann
 

After reading through the responses to Andy's original post, it seems the situation illustrates the value of this group. I hope Andy encourages his contact to join the group and learn more.

I see discussions here about the nuances of PS-1 box cars, AAR 1937 design box cars, and many other car designs that many consider as standardized. It makes us understand the car designs are of a standard but many hardware components are determined by railroad preferences. Hence we see different running boards, doors, and hand brakes applied to a variety of freight cars.

Moving back a few decades to the 36-foot box cars, we see something similar as railroads had embraced a type of design but technology was advancing with steel components that enabled the freight cars to withstand the forces of longer trains. While the box may look nearly the same across many railroads, there were differences in center sills, door movement (left or right), side sills, trucks, roof, ends, and more. Add in the automobile box cars and ventilated box cars, and your variety ever increases. Yet the basic box design may look the same. 

It's these nuances we tend to embrace and discuss here. Adding or subtracting details to our models to reflect specific prototypes is what drives many of our modeling projects. Here's the link to access the four summaries of the prototypes Accurail has announced for the initial road names on the new 36-foot box car models. Paging through one of these summaries will show the variety of prototype car detail in an era of non-standardization.

http://designbuildop.hansmanns.org/accurail-prototype-data/


I hope Andy's contact comes on board to experience the conversations and knowledge shared here. I came on board before the list moved to YahooGroups and have learned a great deal. I don't always use the details, as my 1926 modeling focus limits my desire to learn about later prototypes. But I do absorb stuff like a sponge and often pass along info or a link to answer a question for another modeler. Sharing the info with others is one of the best things we can do for our hobby.


Eric Hansmann

El Paso, TX





On February 17, 2017 at 6:57 PM "Andy Carlson midcentury@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:

All great suggestions! How about simply posting one photo of the prototype for the 36' Accurail wood end box car? That way we can all become enlightened. I am sure that there must be many RRs whom riveted their wood sides to the corners.
-Andy Carlson
Ojai CA
 



From: "'Earl Tuson' etuson@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2017 4:56 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Accurail 36 foot boxcars

 
Dennis retorts:

> Maybe your correspondent should order up a set of drawings from the Pullman Library at the Illinois Railway Museum;
then he would see the wood end with exposed steel end sill is correct.

They don't even have to go that far. IIRC, both the 1913 and 1916 CBC's have the relevant car drawings; both of these
issues are available online. Just basic research...

https://archive.org/stream/cu31924032183208#page/n271/mode/2up

Earl Tuson
 


Charlie Vlk
 

I've been spending a great deal of time reading old railroad journals lately.
It is amazing the variety of designs that existed, even within a short time period on a given major railroad.
The Master Car Builders all had their own ideas and creating "standards" for the simplest detail parts involved long, drawn out hard fought discussions. Every external feature of a common box car was different.....roof, running boards, ends, dead woods, brake gear, draft gear, trucks, underframing, bolsters, doors, sheathing, hardware, length, width, height, and on and on.
Interchange was a nightmare as the MCB members had to deal with carrying hundreds of different styles of repair parts for couplers, knuckles, draft gear components, journals, brasses, brake system components, etc., to fix foreign road cars.
If ONE prototype car was absolutely modeled down to the last bolt the modelers of that road would complain that the wrong class (or even lot number) was chosen.
How we molders have changed when we were grateful for Kar-Line and Bev-Bel for decorating Athearn and MDC 40' box cars in different road names, paint schemes and road numbers than what Irv and Clarence offered over and over!!!!
Charlie Vlk

Ray Breyer
 

>>And with that thought in mind I would assume that by 1941 most/all would have been repainted.  
>>So if I wanted to buy (am going to do) 2 of each type what ones would I buy?  If all the current ones 
>>have the early paint am I going to have to wait for a second run?
>>Jon Miller



Hi Jon, 

It looks as though there will be repainting required for many people on this list, at least in the short term. Accurail hasn't released all of their production art yet (they're still working on it!), but what's been released to date is a mix of older and newer schemes. Do keep in mind that some of these cars lasted a LONG time; long enough that several new MCBA standards went into effect in their service lives, so dimensional data had to keep getting refreshed.

Here's my take on the paint schemes that Accurail has released so far:

1301, NYC: this model has a 1912 build date and a 1922 reweigh. This is the second paint scheme that the car would have worn (NYC 257783 was originally LS&MS 89783). This paint scheme is most appropriate through all of the 1920s; the newest photo I have of a NYC car wearing this type of scheme is 1933.

1302, NKP: I vetted this model art, and made sure to steer Eric Cote towards a later paint scheme. This car lacks the large left side corporate initials, so the paint scheme is good for 1940-1954 (the reweigh is 1945. These cars actually dropped off the NKP roster in 1950, but some survived as roofless coke cars until the mid-1950s). Simply adding the large corporate initials and backdating the reweigh date can push the car's paint back to 1927 or so.

1306, B&A: this car is wearing its as-built 1914 paint scheme, meaning that it would have been repainted after the new 1922 MCBA standards, and again after the new 1926 MCBA standards. (I'd assume that some as-painted cars would have survived to 1925, give or take).

1310: CCC&StL: this car has the same general paint standards as the NYC car. It's actually a little newer, since this car has the lot number above the herald (something not generally applied to NYC cars until after 1922, IIRC). Again, the dimensional data should be changed for layouts after 1932.

1701, NYC&HR: the HR was dropped in 1915, and patch painting to renumber and re-brand these cars started immediately. I don't have any HR-lettered car photos in my collection from after 1920.

8086, limited run three pack, P&LE, CI&S, PMcK&Y: these three cars are all in their 1910 & 1912 as-built schemes, so are good to the early 1920s.


So for right NOW, Accurail has decided to focus on supporting the early rail portion of this hobby. That's a VERY good thing, since prewar modelers have been sadly neglected by major manufacturers for far too long. But never fear: since these cars had service lives in excess of 40 years, there's plenty of room for either Accurail, a decal manufacturer, or some special run reseller to letter these base models in alternative, younger or older paint schemes.



>>And an off the cuff remark it seems Walthers didn't order enough (very big grin)!
Well THAT'S good news! Not really surprising though: these cars are light years ahead of the circa 1905-1910 Roundhouse boxcars, and very useful for a large group of modelers. I know that my early rail modeling friends are all very excited to get their hands on a few crateloads of these thing!

Ray Breyer
Elgin, IL

John Barry
 

Jon,

Hopefully our wait won't be too long.  The NKP artwork shows a 1945 re weigh date.  I can easily change that last digit or ignore, but the remainder of the paint looks spot on to this ATSF modeler.

Here's hoping the L&N comes with the modern lettering sooner rather than later.  In the Jan 45 ORER they had the 4th largest number (7636) of less than 40' cars behind CP (33,279), CN (25,249), and Southern (13075).  NYC was fifth (4722) followed by NH (3478), ATSF (2861), NC&Stl (2864), and Erie (2275).  CB&Q, D&H, C&O,GTW, DL&W, MP, N de M, BAR, SOO and CV all had between one and two thousand cars, listed in decreasing order.  SLSF came close with 949 and rounded out the top 20. 

One other interesting tidbit, the mighty Sumpter & Choctaw's box car fleet was equal to the SP with three each short box cars.  (Don't look at longer car lengths though;-)

I've not reviewed all of Ray's great work, but those close enough cars that match the above roads are high on my wish list. 

I am going to have to get out the Bx-O/5/14 kits from Westerfield to see if the Accurail is suitable for a kitbash.  Adding the fishbelly side sill would be a faster way to get a few more shortys on the road.  Have to check the other dimensions and detailing though.

John Barry

North Bay Lines
Golden Gates and Fast Freights
Lovettsville, VA



On February 18, 2017, at 10:25 AM, "Jon Miller atsfus@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:


 

On 2/18/2017 6:44 AM, Ray Breyer rtbsvrr69@... [STMFC] wrote:

Will each and every model need at least a small amount of work to bring it up to a proto-sincere modeler's level of accuracy? Of course it will, as will any mass-produced model we run.

    And with that thought in mind I would assume that by 1941 most/all would have been repainted.  So if I wanted to buy (am going to do) 2 of each type what ones would I buy?  If all the current ones have the early paint am I going to have to wait for a second run?

    And an off the cuff remark it seems Walthers didn't order enough (very big grin)!

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS

Bill Welch
 

Too bad the monkish distinguished respected anonymous correspondent is so isolated. What has it been, a year perhaps for the uncloistered among us, since we started receiving periodic alerts from Eric Hansmann about the products of Ray Breyer's research in the cars that could possibly be modeled from the anticipated kits Accurail would be releasing. To my memory this was quite unprecedented—the advanced word of the kits followed by an folio of photos and historical information in four discrete digital packages. Even though I knew many of the cars would not fit my Oct. 1955 time period I remember looking forward to Ray's treasures.

Bill Welch


Jon Miller
 

On 2/18/2017 8:21 AM, John Barry northbaylines@... [STMFC] wrote:
The NKP artwork shows a 1945 re weigh date.  I can easily change that last digit or ignore, but the remainder of the paint looks spot on to this ATSF modeler.

    I'm missing something (or old brain) but where is the artwork, available for viewing, for the NKP car?

    Support with early paint is great and one would hope for most/all+ of the production costs to be covered with these runs.  I can wait [grin], but not to long as I'm 75!

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS