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Author Previous Topic: Projects in Progress on the Southern Central RR Topic Next Topic: The freelance California Railway & Navigation Co
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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 12/05/2017 :  8:50:28 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

For the purpose of discussion, here is a photo of plans for the AHM car:



So the roofwalk with cross-wise members is real, perhaps the product of a particular car maker that built boxcars for major railroads across the country. This design shows up in the 1879 Car Builders Dictionary so you would find it in the 1880ís. The MP 7400 series of boxcars shows up in the 1888 equipment register.

Regarding the roof, Iíve seen photos of similar ones from your period. I think it might have been sheets of metal with metal or metal-wrapped roof battens covering the joints. The goal was to create a water-tight roof that could flex. There were many variants.

In other words the AHM model represents an actual car that ran in the 1880ís and might have been built for more than one railroad, not just the MP.

A large proportion of the cars on your railroad should be Colorado & Pacific RR. Thereís no reason that you could not adapt the AHM car as a standard boxcar. If you want variety use the Bachmann car as well, numbered in a different series. That happened all the time when railroads changed car builders.

Whether you changed the floor or not on the AHM cars, Iíd replace the door hardware on both.

Iím glad the couplers are working out for you. I use the no. 58 myself although I did not go back and replace the no. 5 couplers Iíd used on cars already.

Mike






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Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/05/2017 :  10:49:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Michael Hohn

Andre,

Craig Bisgeier has used these cars on his layout without modifying the underbody and they look pretty good. You can see some here if you scroll down: http://www.housatonicrr.com/const_journal_13.htm With these examples he left the underbody black so they recede visually.

The roof walk is indeed unusual. I only recall seeing this type on a couple other railroads, notably the New York Central & Hudson River RR and the West Shore RR. Maybe there are more that a good search will uncover. The low body height and side ladders were typical features of boxcars west of the Mississippi in those days.

Mike


Mike:

Somehow I have missed reading this post of yours. I went and took a look at Craig's use of the AHM/Pocher cars: They look surprisingly good just as he did them. Very good.

Thanks for the input and the link!

Andre



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/05/2017 :  11:08:37 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi (again!) Mike!

Thank you VERY much for your informative post up above about the MP car and its forerunners.

Seeing as the little AHM/Pocher car IS a prototype and the roof w/slats WAS in evidence in the 1880's, then I see no reason why I can't adapt them just as you suggest: A (newer) class of car for the C&P. In the words of Yul Brenner as Pharoah in "Ten Commandments": "Let it be written, let it be done!"

Also, right you are, the bulk of my rolling stock will be lettered for the C&P. I'm also leaning in the direction that there will be a good representation of cars lettered for the prototype road Kansas Pacific. (Though I doubt I'll make an attempt to research and replicate specific prototypes of the KP.) The KP will be a primary eastern connection for the ol' C&P. I think I'm going to have to wing it for a western connection... may need to create a fictional connection somewhere way "out west" of my modeled portion of the C&P. Of course, there will also be a smattering of other roads sprinkled in the mix... all in good time.

I'm really enjoying this silly C&P theme/concoction of mine!

FWIW: Barring unforseen passenger train schedules between Jan-April 2018, tomorrow I may be running the last passenger trains that I'll be running for the railroad I work for. Ever since I hired on with this road (almost 11 years ago), I've been the only FS terminal Engineer qualified to handle passenger trains. After I retire they will have to crew psgr trains out of FS with psgr-qualified Engineers from the other terminal. I don't know what to expect inwardly as I bring the last run to a stop at the depot in Van Buren tomorrow afternoon. Can't help but suspect there'll be a bit of sadness.

Andre



Edited by - OK Hogger on 12/05/2017 11:10:14 PM

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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 12/06/2017 :  12:08:36 AM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

I expect there will be a little sadness at least.

Today I announced my retirement at the end of the month after 12 years in my current position, 39 1/2 years at the agency I work for, and about 53 years of intending to be a geologist or learning to be a geologist or being a geologist.

I guess it means more time for our hobby.

Mike


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Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/06/2017 :  06:48:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Well congrats on your retirement, Mike! 53 years in the labor force is a LONG time!

I'll have about 51 years of income w/Federally withholding's under my belt when I pull the pin come May/June. That's not counting the "paid in cash" years before when I was a kid and working at my dad's supermarket in KCMO. In all, I've been in the labor force in some capacity since I was about 12.

Don't know about you, but I'm ready to hang it up and go play!



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/06/2017 :  8:25:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mike:

Lot's a memories drifted through my mind today as what could have been my final psgr/mainline miles rolled under the wheels. Way back in November of 1974, I was sitting in the cab of a northbound Frisco freight train and saw these rails for the first time. Learned much of my railroading on these same rails.

I wouldn't say I was actually "sad"... but there were lots of memories and emotions that went through me over the course of the day and for sure as I carried my grip back to the crew truck to return to the yard office over at Fort Smith.

Come April I will roll my last wheel period!

Andre



Edited by - OK Hogger on 12/06/2017 8:25:57 PM

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CavalryTrooper25
Crew Chief

Posted - 12/07/2017 :  09:48:45 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by deemery

The roof is still a bit funky, got any plans for it?

dave



Generally speaking, what I do with this car is much the same as has been discussed here, however, I add PRR specific type details.

As to the roof walk, what I do is sand it smooth, as to me it looks like a poor attempt at a metal grate style walk. Since that is totally wrong for this era, and it is too wide, I had to figure out an alternative. After sanding it off, I add vent notches along the edges, then fix a wood roofwalk on top. This allows it to appear to be a ventilated house car. I also sometimes add vent panels on the sides near the bottom (ground) edge, to give the full effect of a ventilated box.

This has worked for me as a means of fixing the most obvious fault with this car. The roof itself looks to me as a wood roof, with the tarred canvas cover, with battens then nailed on to hold the canvas down.

Horse




Edited by - CavalryTrooper25 on 12/07/2017 09:52:39 AM

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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/07/2017 :  6:39:52 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi 'ya Horse!

Thanks a bunch for sharing your input. I'm not familiar with the roof walk ventilated boxes of which you speak, but I certainly understand the "shave n' file" routine well.

Earlier, I got to wondering just what exactly I have on hand in regards to boxcars. So, I just came in from my Hobby Shack after having taken an inventory. Here's where I stand with things "on hand":

* 20 Pocher 34' boxcars. (Two of them are "in process" to become "roll ready".)

* 5 Bachmann 34' boxcars (Three of them are ready for paint, 1 close to it, one stock.)

* 4 Mantua 28'(?) boxcars.

* 2 Central Valley 34' boxcars. (1 in-process.)

I think I have 3 more Bachmann 34-footers on the way, and two more Central Valley's.

So, I think my direction is pretty clear:

* Spend the better part of my efforts toward the Bachmann 34' cars, the CV's, and the Mantua's. That will give me 16 non-Pocher cars for the fleet. The two Pochers in-process can be brought along with these, giving something like 18 boxcars that would be "roll ready". I can then decide whether to start on the Pochers, or bring in some more non-Pocher cars/etc and do the Pochers as I see fit.

Hey... the world is my oyster!!

BTW: I'm LOVING tackling this new layout theme (well, a new theme for me): TOC19 steam in Colorado.

You see, ALL of my previous 4 functional layouts spread over the past 50+ years have all been diesel. I was long overdue for a change.

All fer now... back out to my Hobby Shack!

Andre



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masonamerican
Fireman



Posted - 12/08/2017 :  05:40:00 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You are keeping yourself busy Andre! I have been absent for too long now. I have quite thick fingers and need the LARGE keyboard at the stationary to write something comprehensible on the forum. With a one year old toddler running around one doesn't get much time there

Great info on the boxcars. I both the Rivarossi one and the Bachmann. Haven't done anything with them yet though. On the Mantuas I remember Don Ball had an article in the MR many years ago on sprucing up the Mantua oldtime boxcar. If you haven't read it I can email you a copy.

Congratulations Mike on retirement! If our government here get what it wants here I'll won't retire until I'm 75

HŚkan



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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/08/2017 :  06:39:55 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hakan!!

So glad to see you posting again! Here's to hoping your government doesn't screw you with that retirement plan. Sounds like our government isn't the only one full of Bozo's.

Yup, as you can see in my posts, I'm enjoying the adventure.

I need to take a few pics showing before/after on the little fleet of Bachmann cars on my hobby desk.

Also had an idea for one of the Pochers:

Using one for a donor (donor in case this doesn't work!), here soon I'm going to cut one down to 30' or so and see what all would be involved and what such a car would look like. There would also be less roof to deal with as a side benefit!

Anyhoo... glad to see you please don't wait so long before dropping in!

SAME GOES FOR YOU OTHER AWOL "REGULARS"!!!

All fer now. Got to go live some more of my childhood dream (i.e. go to work) before it's all over in a few months! (Then it will be my turn to retire!)

Andre



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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 12/08/2017 :  07:55:10 AM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Andre,

Surgery sounds like a good plan. Gives you variety.

Mike


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Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

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railman28
Fireman



Posted - 12/08/2017 :  12:58:05 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
OK Andree, Here's my 2 cents on the AHM OT boxcars. A long time ago (but in this galaxy) I visited these and the Bachmann, and the Mantua oldtime/civil war freight cars. I concluded that they all can be turned into fine models with a lot of work. Too much work. Bottom line for me that the time was better spent building a BTS, Rio Grande Models or Bitter Creek kit. I know you need to save money (don't we all) and you need a lot of cars but when you add up all the cost of new detail parts and decent trucks are you really saving money?

But, it's your hobby and each to his own be true.


It's only make-believe

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Michael Hohn
Fireman



Posted - 12/08/2017 :  5:40:24 PM  Show Profile  Visit Michael Hohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I tend to agree with Bob. Once youíve built a few kits you might find you are not satisfied with the rtr plastic models. With a good paint job and lettering the rtr cars look pretty good in a train.

But do many modifications and youíre better off with a kit or even scratch building.

Mike


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Nobody living can ever stop me, as I go walking that freedom highway -- Woody Guthrie

Country: USA | Posts: 3764 Go to Top of Page

OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/08/2017 :  6:28:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Interesting question boB! (BTW, Bob... good to see you drop by... been a while. Still remodeling??)

Anyway, your question got me to thinking in terms of "how much"?

Lessee'...

* I averaged about $9 a car outlay. Bought several "lots" that made the shipping reasonable, too. Let's pro-rate the shipping and make it $12 a car.

* On the AHM/Bachmann I use the OEM trucks. If a talgo truck I snip off the talgo and use the supplied coupler boxes with the 58 series. Outlay: $0.

* On Mantua cars I've been using plastic MDC archbar trucks that I have on hand by the dozens. For now: $0 outlay.

* I'm re-wheeling everything code 88, so even if I purchased a car kit that included trucks w/metal wheels, it would probably need to be re-wheeled with 88's anyway. In view of this foible, I'm not going to factor in wheels as I would have been spending the money on re-wheeling anyway. Outlay: Fixed for either toy train reworks or kit cars.

* Same for couplers: I'm equipping everything with 58 series couplers, so again, even if a kit included couplers... they would probably be the standard #5-type anyhoo. Outlay: Again, a fixed cost for either toy train reworks or kit cars.

* Decals: I think most kit cars come with decals? So, that would be cost I need to factor into the cost of my reworks. However, I will be using a sizable stash of alphabets decals I have on hand before I need to start purchasing decals again. I don't really know how to factor this into the equation. Eventually I will be having some "Colorado & Pacific" decals custom printed.

Now, in view of all the above, let's throw another $3 per car into the mix to account for anything I'm overlooking/whatever. That so, I might have $15 in a car?

Now let's talk time. Basic rework times first...

* I can have a Bachmann ready for paint/decals in about 30 minutes of work time (not counting glue drying time) IF I stay hooked-up... which I don't... I like to take my time and enjoy the process.

* Should be about the same for an AHM/Pocher as a Bachmann IF I accept the "as done" OEM frame-to-shell mating as well as the OEM roof/roofwalk.

* Mantua's take a bit more time because I saw off/dress the bolster so the fool things don't sit so high once re-trucked.

Paint/decals...

* I see paint/decals as a time constant between reworks and kit cars, unless the kit car comes painted/lettered such as Central Valley's old cars.

I don't have any experience (yet) with Bitter Creek, or Trout Creek Engineering, or Amesville, etc, kits, so I don't know what sort of time it takes to assemble such. What are your experiences in that realm?

SO...

It could be I have a notable savings in $$ outlay (I think kits are around $20 to $30 PLUS trucks?), but I don't know what kind of time to expect to dress/assemble a kit like Bitter Creek, or Trout Creek, Amesville, etc, therefore I can say with much accuracy if I'm saving time. I suspect I am, but again, just don't know.

Thoughts?


Andre



Edited by - OK Hogger on 12/08/2017 6:30:09 PM

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OK Hogger
Engine Wiper

Posted - 12/08/2017 :  8:24:39 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Speaking of train set cars... here's some pics of my abuilding fleet of Bachmann conversions.

First up, simply a comparison pic of one that's essentially ready for paint (left) and a stock Bachmann on the right.



One of the things I do is to add the look of individual boards, bolts/nails, and some woodgrain to the roof walks. The modified roof walk is on the right:



And here's an overall shot of what's on the Ye Merry Olde Hobby Bench as of a few minutes ago:



For the brake staff I simply use brass rod, a brake wheel from the gazillion MDC parts I have, some eye bolts to hold the staff in place, and a step also from my MDC parts stash. Here's a pic of those parts in place:



That's a Kadee #5 still on this one... cause I ran out of 153's! (A bulk pack is on order.)

Darn. Should have shot a pic comparing the #5's to the 58 series short shank #153's so you could get a look at the size differences and the visual impact between the two.

Oh well, all fer now!

Andre



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