Slow orders

I’ve been trying to write this blog post for a few weeks. You know how things get delayed. A few things come out of the blue and less important tasks — like this blog — gets put on hold. As soon as I catch up, a couple more issues arise. I feel like I’m on a treadmill that won’t turn off.

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Upgrading Accurail shorties

Dave Parker has been busy upgrading a few Accurail 36-foot boxcar models, adding details to reflect specific prototype practices. Here’s Dave with the details.

For fleet-building purposes, I like the Accurail shorties well enough but, when I considered seeing three or four of them strung together on a layout, I thought “boring!” Yes, there can be some variation in the trucks, and in the center-sill (straight vs fishbelly) but, when viewed broadside, they are otherwise identical.

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Port Richmond yard images

Port Richmond, November 15, 1926. Collection of Eric Hansmann.

I picked up a few neat photos at the St Louis RPM last summer. I used these in my RPM Chicagoland presentation and thought I’d share them with some notes. Photographs were often taken to document projects in many cities. In these cases, the Reading Company hired a photographer to snap progress photos of a new project at their Port Richmond yards along the Delaware River in Philadelphia. You can see some concrete footers extending through the above image that will connect a new grain pier with a grain elevator. Click on any image here to view a larger size.

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Weathering Ideas

Photo X4939, Railfan.net ‘erielack’ E-Mail List Photo Archive

I recently came across this 1926 image featuring a couple of boxcars on the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western railroad in New Jersey. Let’s take a good look at the weathering on these cars. They have obviously seen some mileage as the lettering is faded. Some streaks are visible from water and a little dust is apparent. But there’s much more here that we can model. Click on any image here to review a larger size.

The images on this blog post were originally taken by William B Barry, Jr., in his service as a DL&W company photographer. Thousands of historic DL&W photographs have been scanned my NPS Steamtown and can be found through the Erie Lackawanna E-Mail List Photo Archive.

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Southern Ventilated boxcars

A Southern ventilated boxcar can be seen in the lower right of this circa 1925 image. Keefer, Potomac Yards, Alexandria, Va. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <https://www.loc.gov/item/npc2008013406/>.

Fenton Wells has presented an interesting kitbash at a couple recent RPM meets. He shares his tips and techniques to transform an Accurail 36-foot boxcar into a Southern ventilated boxcar. Click on any image here to view a larger size.

Ventilated boxcars were once a common element of the freight car fleet. Several southeastern railroads had thousands of ventilated boxcars on their rosters to move fruits and vegetables from packing plants to wholesale grocers in northern areas. Distinctive screened doors and end vents set them apart from typical boxcars. Most of the ventilated boxcars were older cars of double-sheathed wood construction, thereby standing out all the more over the years as the national freight car fleet modernized with taller steel-sheathed cars.

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