The online magazine on the history and operation of vintage scale model trains in American OO gauge

Friday, January 29, 2010

The Eastern OO Gondola

In a prior post on Eastern I have a photo of an Eastern OO gondola kit. While I was interested to have a built up car, I only had that one sample kit and I am always reluctant to build up a kit, preferring to keep one of any kit I come across in the archive.

I played it fairly safe with what I bid on by phone from the Morlok auction. My box of purchases arrived and it was like Christmas but better as it was all OO! Mainly I purchased kits and one other lot of special interest to me which I will post about on Sunday. Most of the kits were still kits but a few were built up cars in kit boxes and others were partially built. Among the last two categories were this Eastern gondola and three started gondola kits.

In the first photo we have the built up car and two of the started cars. This car is not often seen as it is post war and also when it is seen it is not necessarily in good shape. It is a pretty easy model to spot with the Eastern frame.

This particular car is pretty solid other than the cardboard sides have warped a bit. It did not take much effort to get it layout worthy. It was on Schorr trucks but I changed it over to be on a good pair of Eastern/Famoco trucks from another car that came in the lot. That car is sort of a sad story actually [see UPDATE], someone had spent a lot of effort to scratchbuild a hopper car from balsa wood and it is not very salvageable due to being partially crushed in storage. I will save it, maybe there is a way, but the trucks were a great pair and match this car perfectly. I prefer to run cars if possible on the brand of trucks that are the same as the car.

Back to gondolas, the second photo is of this same Eastern car in a view to compare it to a brass Schorr gondola, which was also in one of the boxes from Morlok and is a great example of the car. This also needed very little work to ready it for layout use again (coupler height only). The Schorr car is finer in detail (a Japanese brass import--more here) and this is pretty easy to see in the photo.

More tomorrow from the Morlok auction.

UPDATE: Since I mentioned that hopper, a photo of it as well. It was built of balsa wood with Eastern roof ribs, ladders, and end sills. There is no reasonable way to restore this. The other side is in better shape but also damaged. It speaks to the importance of careful storage, with a side point being don't scratchbuild cars from balsa wood.

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