This winter I concentrated on upgrading a few decoders and adding keep alive circuits. A good project but not anything to show here.Then, this summer I started a new project. I had a few double door boxcars (known in that era as Automobile and/or Furniture Cars) so I decide to run an auto parts train and gathered them all up. And then I decide I wanted this train to be as prototypically correct as was possible without going to extremes.
Here is that first train rolling through Gaviota. At that time I knew that two of the cars were not models of anything the SP had but I kept these two wood cars in the train for sentimental reasons. They were among the very first kits I put together for my future railroad in 1981 or 2
I then bought a car that I thought would work, but, doing my homework after buying I discovered it wasn’t an accurate model for the SP. A little more research turned up that it was instead a model of a Santa Fe car. So I stripped most of the lettering off and repainted and decaled it for the Santa Fe
Masked to paint the roof. For some reason the Santa Fe in this era had black roofs and silver, or galvanized steel, roof walks
And the finished product
The second addition was very old, metal kit made by Athearn in the 50s and/or 60s. I found one on eBay that was already built and I got a kit to build.
Next up was adding some additional cars, particularly from eastern railroads. Fortunately, the Proto 2000/Walthers Proto kits and ready to run cars are mostly correct so I added several like these NYC cars
Another eastern railroad I needed was the Pennsylvania. The Bowser model is also relatively correct but has cast on details. I decided to cut off the cast on details and add some new ones.
After cutting off the cast on details, I had to sand the areas relatively smooth, and then repaint that area as I couldn’t find a good set of decals to use so I needed to save all the lettering. Naturally, finding a paint that was exactly the same color turned out to be not possible but I did come close and with some heavy weathering I don’t think it is too noticeable.
I recently learned that theSP, and other railroads also used some single door cars for auto parts shipping. The SP used this boxcar, anther mostly correct model from Proto 2000
The train is now up to 18 cars. I plan to add just a few more but that will have to show on the 2023 page.
The final project for the year was replacing one of the helixes. I was having some delamination ssues with the original helix so the new one is built in a different style. In the process, I added one additional turn to reduce the grade a bit. So far I have been very happy with the new helix.