Topics

BLI vs. Walthers express reefers


Richard Hendrickson
 

On Sep 20, 2005, at 5:38 PM, Jon Miller wrote:

I've just been looking at
some color video transcriptions of Otto Perry 16 mm movies made in the
late '40s and early '50s in which there numerous REA express reefers<

Richard,
Another question from those color shots (or any for that matter), were
there two numbers or one on the side.
Jon, the lettering isn't always visible in the video (the REA cars were often quite grimy, but the evidence from the videos as well as from the still photos I have indicates that the practice of applying "Express Refrigerator" and the car number to the left of the doors only dated from before WW II. In all the postwar images I have where the lettering is visible, "Express Refrigerator" with the car number below is both left and right of the doors on both sides of the cars.

Richard Hendrickson


Jon Miller <atsf@...>
 

"Express
Refrigerator" and the car number to the left of the doors only dated
from before WW II. In all the postwar images I have where the
lettering is visible, "Express Refrigerator" with the car number below
is both left and right of the doors on both sides of the cars.<

Then that would make the BLI good for prewar and the Walthers good for
postwar. Glad to know I purchased the right ones<VBG>. Also it means they
really aren't the same time period, just very close.

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


Randy
 

The main differences I can see between the Walthers & the Branchline
REA Express Reefers are

1. Different trucks

2. The roofs are shaped different, Walthers appears to be more rounded.

3. The ends are different. Where Walthers appear smooth, Branchlines
are ribbed.

This is going by the picture on Walthers website & the Branchline car
I have in front of me.

Branchline's pictures are on their website & match the car I have.

http://www.branchline-
trains.com/blueprint/expressreefers/express_reefers.htm

Randy Jones
SLC UT


Ed Hawkins
 

On Tuesday, September 20, 2005, at 09:32 PM, Randy wrote:

The main differences I can see between the Walthers & the Branchline
REA Express Reefers are

1. Different trucks
2. The roofs are shaped different, Walthers appears to be more rounded.
3. The ends are different. Where Walthers appear smooth, Branchlines
are ribbed.

This is going by the picture on Walthers website & the Branchline car
I have in front of me.

Branchline's pictures are on their website & match the car I have.

http://www.branchline-
trains.com/blueprint/expressreefers/express_reefers.htm
Randy Jones
Randy,
I think there's some confusion on what the intent of the subject matter
is. The subject was comparing the Broadway Limited vs. the Walthers
versions of the wood express refrigerator cars built by General
American Car Co. in the late 1920s to about 1930. These models are
supposed to be scale replicas of the same prototype car, thus the
geometry should be identical if done correctly. There can and should be
differences in appliances and such, due to upgrades and modifications
that were made over their service lives, including different types of
trucks.

Branchline's REA and ACL express refrigerator model is based on an
entirely different prototype car, which is a welded all-steel car built
by AC&F in 1947-48. Walthers makes another REA model that is based on a
riveted all-steel car built by GATC in 1955 and 1957. These two models
are supposed to be different.
Regards,
Ed Hawkins


Thomas M. Olsen <tmolsen@...>
 

In regard to the information on the REA equipment that I posted from the Roseman Book and the Sunshine instructions, the Branchline website also listed in-service dates for the red-white REA logo and other information regarding when changes were inaugurated for each painting and lettering phase that were mentioned in the September 2005 issue of the Keystone Modeler. I had mentioned this review to Ed Hawkins as he is still researching the inception dates. Here is his reply regarding Branchline's website information in regard to the red and white REA logo and it's initial in-service date:

" Thomas,
I've seen BT's dates as these are the same as given on their web site. I don't buy their 1953 date when the red and white diamond was first applied. My belief is that the date is 1955 based on accurately dated photos. This is the same year when the first batch of 500 steel cars came from General American (the Walthers steel express reefer with riveted sides). I still haven't come across any REA painting and stenciling drawings to confirm the date when this revision occurred.
Ed"

This is a vexing situation for those of us that model in the early 1950s. Part of the problem with photographs of these cars is the same that was talked about on this list in the last several weeks. That is the lack of dates and locations on many of the photographs that are in circulation from many of the people who are selling photographs at train shows and historical meets. As time passes and the original photos and negatives change hands, many of these photographs have gone undocumented and it is impossible to date them correctly.

I have seen this many times over in hard and soft bound publications while I was making an index of photos of various classes of PRR locomotives and their locations with regard to my modeling period and territory. Credit being given to the wrong photographer and in many cases, not only is the date bogus, but the location and direction of the loco and/or train is also bogus. I have found many instances where the engine numbers changed from one publication to another, although it was the same locomotive photograph.

Tom Olsen
7 Boundary Road, West Branch
Newark, Delaware, 19711-7479
(302) 738-4292
tmolsen@udel.edu


Daniel J Miller wrote:

Jon,

Thanks for pointing out the lettering color difference. The BLI car
definitely has more end lettering, and the car number only on the left
side of the door.
In message 35016 on Oct 18, 2004 Thomas Olsen provided some information
from the Roseman book and the Sunshine instructions for the wood REA
cars on the paint and lettering, which I've copied below. Scheme II
(for plug door cars) was applied beginning in 1947 and Scheme III (with
the red diamond logo) beginning in 1952/3, so Roseman doesn't
distinguish among early green schemes. I suppose that the Walthers car
would represent a WWII repaint according to Roseman, since buff
lettering saw some application during the war. However, no mention is
made of when the end lettering would have been removed and when the car
number was applied to only the left side of the door. Martin's sheet
for his kit version of these cars indicates only that the number was on
both sides. Perhaps BLI is incorrect in only placing the number on the
left? Also, Roseman states that the ends of the car should be black,
not green as on both the BLI and the Walthers cars. So, it seems like
both manufacturers have incorrect paint, with BLI perhaps having some
kind of hybrid lettering. Of course, I'm going only on the information
from Thomas' message; anyone with more information that would support
either model?

Dan Miller


From Thomas Olsen:

Scheme I - Original Painting and lettering scheme (handed down from
American Railway Express):
Body color - deep green A.K.A. Pullman Green. Lettering - Gold,
may have been (at various times
Gold Leaf), Bronze (metallic) gold paint or imitation gold paint
(buff). Lettering was 5" extended
Railroad Roman. This last color (Buff) popular during WWII as a
replacement for metallic paint
and the fragile leaf process. Roof and end color - Black.

Imitation gold colors by manufacturers such as Dupont (Dulux and
Duco lines) and Sherwin-Williams
gave a bright gold appearance, but were fade resistant. Used due to
tendency of Gold Leaf to rub off
when cleaned and bronze metallic paints tended to dull. Scheme I
was replaced in 1947 and again in
1953. Reasons for longevity was that due to fleet size, various
schemes lasted beyond introduction
dates before repainting.

In Martin Lofton's Prototype Data Sheet #27A for General American 53'
Express Reefers (Sunshine
Kits 27.1-27.2), the lettering information for those cars
specifically in REA service, agrees with the
Roseman book with some exceptions:
Specifically mentions re-positioning of the company name
"Railway Express Agency" and other
lettering beginning in 1952, rather than 1953. It states that
the earlier schemes (wood sheathed
cars only) had the company name on the letterboard, with the
words "Express Refrigerator" and
car number on the car side on both sides of the door. This is
the same location as the diagram in
the Roseman book. In 1952, the company name moved to below the
letterboard to the left of
the door with the car number below, just above the bottom of
the car side, equidistant from the
door and the ends. The word "Refrigerator" moved to the right
car side side below the letterboard
with the large herald (as described in the Roseman book)
below, also to the right of the door.
The former words "Express Refrigerator" and numbers were removed
from the lower right side.




Yahoo! Groups Links






Thomas M. Olsen <tmolsen@...>
 

The interesting thing is that both the ACF 1947 Welded cars (now
available from Branchline) and the Wood Sheathed General American cars
(now available from Broadway Limited and Walther's) had been available
until last winter from Sunshine Models in urethane. Martin discontinued
them when he ran out of trucks and instruction sheets.

Tom Olsen
7 Boundary Road, West Branch
Newark, Delaware, 19711-7479
(302) 738-4292
tmolsen@udel.edu

Jon Miller wrote:

"Express

Refrigerator" and the car number to the left of the doors only dated
from before WW II. In all the postwar images I have where the
lettering is visible, "Express Refrigerator" with the car number below
is both left and right of the doors on both sides of the cars.<

Then that would make the BLI good for prewar and the Walthers good for
postwar. Glad to know I purchased the right ones<VBG>. Also it means they
really aren't the same time period, just very close.

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






Yahoo! Groups Links









Daniel J Miller <djmiller@...>
 

Richard, Jon, and others,

Glad that's straightened out, and glad that (both!) the cars do appear
to be correct. Thanks for all of the information.

Dan Miller

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com]
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2005 12:34 AM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [STMFC] Digest Number 2676

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Jon, the lettering isn't always visible in the video (the REA cars were
often quite grimy, but the evidence from the videos as well as from the
still photos I have indicates that the practice of applying "Express
Refrigerator" and the car number to the left of the doors only dated
from before WW II. In all the postwar images I have where the
lettering is visible, "Express Refrigerator" with the car number below
is both left and right of the doors on both sides of the cars.

Richard Hendrickson


Jon Miller <atsf@...>
 

had been available
until last winter from Sunshine Models in urethane.<
I believe that certain models that both Sunshine and Westerfield have in
resin will be done in injection plastic. The guesses are which ones, when,
and in my lifetime<G>. Plastic model makers try and guess which ones will
sell enough of to have a profit. We are lucky in that we are seeing well
done cars that we never expected to see. How long this lasts will be
anybody's guess.


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


Gatwood, Elden <Elden.Gatwood@...>
 

Jon and all;

In some of my recent interactions with manufacturers and sellers I am
also being told very disturbing stuff like "flat cars don't sell",
"gondolas don't sell", and "tank cars don't sell". Is this true?

If what they say, that boxcars and reefers are the only ones that
generate a good enough profit to interest them, is what is guiding
decision-making in regards to injection-molded plastic kits, then
realistically, we should probably not expect that any of them is going
to do anything BUT that in the future.

The question is; what is left in that realm that a major manufacturer
would consider worthy enough to do? If we can eliminate flats, gons,
and tank cars, what would a plastic maker consider from what is left on
the table?

Elden Gatwood

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Jon Miller
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2005 8:22 AM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] RE: BLI vs. Walthers express reefers

had been available
until last winter from Sunshine Models in urethane.<
I believe that certain models that both Sunshine and Westerfield
have in
resin will be done in injection plastic. The guesses are which ones,
when,
and in my lifetime<G>. Plastic model makers try and guess which ones
will
sell enough of to have a profit. We are lucky in that we are seeing
well
done cars that we never expected to see. How long this lasts will be
anybody's guess.


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






Yahoo! Groups Links


Tim O'Connor
 

Elden

If flat cars don't sell, then who do we have to thank for
Proto, Red Caboose, Walthers, Atlas, and Intermountain
flat cars? And Athearn recently spiffed up their TOFC cars
and is offering the old MDC cars with R-T-R loads.

I'm not convinced that (1) vendors know what they're talking
about or (2) even if they do, would they reveal what they are
really thinking to a consumer with access to email lists? After
all, we've all heard

"Nobody cares about prototype accuracy"
"Nobody cares about that level of detail"
"Nobody will buy a plastic freight car for $40"

and so on and on... and the next thing you know, someone
surprises us with an amazing new model.

I can't keep up with all the new stuff, and I'm going to have to
sell off a good amount of older models that have been replaced
with far better models. I would have thought the market was so
saturated that we'd be seeing far fewer new releases, but the
opposite appears to be true. Where it is all going I do not know,
but someone is buying almost everything that is made.

Tim O'Connor

Jon and all;

In some of my recent interactions with manufacturers and sellers I am
also being told very disturbing stuff like "flat cars don't sell",
"gondolas don't sell", and "tank cars don't sell". Is this true?

If what they say, that boxcars and reefers are the only ones that
generate a good enough profit to interest them, is what is guiding
decision-making in regards to injection-molded plastic kits, then
realistically, we should probably not expect that any of them is going
to do anything BUT that in the future.

The question is; what is left in that realm that a major manufacturer
would consider worthy enough to do?


Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Tim O'Connor wrote:
If flat cars don't sell, then who do we have to thank for
Proto, Red Caboose, Walthers, Atlas, and Intermountain
flat cars? And Athearn recently spiffed up their TOFC cars
and is offering the old MDC cars with R-T-R loads.

I'm not convinced that (1) vendors know what they're talking
about or (2) even if they do, would they reveal what they are
really thinking to a consumer with access to email lists?
Some of what vendors tell you is to make your eyes glaze over and your legs take you away. Some of it is natural "protective coloration" to disguise actual intentions. And some of it is plain old hot air, which I have sometimes thought is devised on the spot to see how a modeler reacts. From Tim's list, I'd say I doubt (1) in most cases and would strongly vote for (2).

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


Richard Hendrickson
 

On Sep 21, 2005, at 8:58 AM, Gatwood, Elden wrote:

In some of my recent interactions with manufacturers and sellers I am
also being told very disturbing stuff like "flat cars don't sell",
"gondolas don't sell", and "tank cars don't sell". Is this true?

If what they say, that boxcars and reefers are the only ones that
generate a good enough profit to interest them, is what is guiding
decision-making in regards to injection-molded plastic kits, then
realistically, we should probably not expect that any of them is going
to do anything BUT that in the future.

The question is; what is left in that realm that a major manufacturer
would consider worthy enough to do? If we can eliminate flats, gons,
and tank cars, what would a plastic maker consider from what is left on
the table?
Relax, Elden. Facile generalizations about what sells and what doesn't are worthless, regardless of where they originate. It's obvious that the manufacturers of injection-molded HO scale freight car models have used up most of the cheap shots like AAR box cars and PFE reefers, so decisions about what prototypes to model are now harder to make and involve a lot of variables (some of them not at all obvious to either retailers or consumers). But notice that almost all of the major manufacturers have produced models of flat cars, gondolas, and tank cars, and continue to do so (e.g., the forthcoming Athearn 65' mill gons and Life-Like insulated Type 21 tank cars). I can also assure you that all of them are hard at work on R&D for new products (some of which will surprise you) and are seriously gathering data on prototypes for possible future projects. The choices they will make aren't easy to predict, but common sense dictates that we won't get models of odd-ball prototypes owned by obscure railroads (e.g. BA&P wood sheathed box cars), nor will we get models of every freight car the Pennsy ever owned, as is apparently hoped for by some of the more dedicated (=deluded?) SPFs. However, barring profound changes in the economics of producing injection-molded scale models, you can count on it that there will continue to be a variety of new models, quality will continue to improve, and prices will continue to float upward.


Gatwood, Elden <Elden.Gatwood@...>
 

Guys;

I didn't say I believed them, just that they said it to me. I suspect
that you all are correct that there is a bit of obfuscating going on
here, as they continue to make a few of these cars available, regardless
of their statements to the contrary; however, these blanket statements
bother me, because they are not necessarily borne out by reality, but
may be blindly followed by some of those that listen to that stuff.
Just one producer that believes that a gondola might not sell
potentially affects the depth of offerings in that department. And we
need a more representative "package" of offerings to do what we all want
to do; model a prototypically accurate fleet for our locale and era.
Granted, to do so is close to impossible, but some of you are getting
there!

I am also glad to hear that some projects to come may be bucking this
"conventional wisdom". Otherwise, I'd be back to buying mostly resin,
and none too happy about the effect on my wallet, either.

Thanks for the insights, all.

Elden Gatwood


armprem
 

Hoppers?Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
From: "Gatwood, Elden" <Elden.Gatwood@hdrinc.com>
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2005 11:58 AM
Subject: RE: [STMFC] RE: BLI vs. Walthers express reefers


Jon and all;

In some of my recent interactions with manufacturers and sellers I am
also being told very disturbing stuff like "flat cars don't sell",
"gondolas don't sell", and "tank cars don't sell". Is this true?

If what they say, that boxcars and reefers are the only ones that
generate a good enough profit to interest them, is what is guiding
decision-making in regards to injection-molded plastic kits, then
realistically, we should probably not expect that any of them is going
to do anything BUT that in the future.

The question is; what is left in that realm that a major manufacturer
would consider worthy enough to do? If we can eliminate flats, gons,
and tank cars, what would a plastic maker consider from what is left on
the table?

Elden Gatwood


-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Jon Miller
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2005 8:22 AM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] RE: BLI vs. Walthers express reefers

had been available
until last winter from Sunshine Models in urethane.<
I believe that certain models that both Sunshine and Westerfield
have in
resin will be done in injection plastic. The guesses are which ones,
when,
and in my lifetime<G>. Plastic model makers try and guess which ones
will
sell enough of to have a profit. We are lucky in that we are seeing
well
done cars that we never expected to see. How long this lasts will be
anybody's guess.


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






Yahoo! Groups Links











Yahoo! Groups Links








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