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Saturday, April 16, 2011

A Streamliner for the Orient

A project underway since last summer has been a streamline passenger train which is finally essentially complete.

Most of the cars in it are Zuhr but starting at the front in this first photo we have a Scale-Craft heavyweight baggage. This one has been upgraded with Kemtron trucks, excellent lost wax brass castings, and they suit a car such as this presumably upgraded for use on a streamlined train set (more on Kemtron trucks here). Behind it is an RPO. This car and all the rest of the cars in the train are Zuhr; a photo of this car before rebuilding and also more information on Zuhr OO equipment may be found here. I had to work out doors myself which is why the porthole windows. The cool baggage door is actually the cab side of an old AHM RS-2 that I had in the scrap box. Don’t waste anything!

Moving on, next we have two more 60’ cars. Both have been modified with the bottom side skirts removed and they like the RPO above are on Schorr trucks. In the back we have a 60’ coach and in the front an oddity. As it is actually a Zhur observation with the observation end cut off. These two cars both have partial interiors thanks to a prior owner and all four of these cars look great on the layout.

The last two cars also work fine on the layout but with my somewhat sharp curves they don’t look quite as good as they are full 80' cars. In the front is a diner with an interior which has also been modified with the side skirts removed and in the back a pretty much stock version of what Zuhr called a combination Pullman. This as noted in the earlier article came to me from eBay mounted on what were actually the stock trucks shipped with these cars, which were modified Varney HO F-3 trucks (see this article for a photo). I think some of these passed through eBay recently but the buyer might have thought them to be trucks usable on an OO diesel. They may have passed for passenger trucks back in the day but for me with my modern eyes those really looked odd on the car and the Schorr trucks I was able to add are a great upgrade. (More on Schorr passenger trucks here).

It took quite a while to decide on a paint scheme but I was really interested that they be silver and the red stripe ties them in with the locomotives and enhances the very plain sides of the Zuhr cars. The width was defined mainly by the way the stripe would work on the baggage car, which you can do if you are freelancing. And to Bob O. who suggested the Tamiya masking tape thank you! I had been very phobic about stripes. It was not that hard to do.

You would think since they are lettered for the Orient that this train would be the “Orient express.” And I suppose the fictional locals who might have rode this fictional train might have called it that, but my official fictional name (the KCM&O was real but my version into this era is fictional) for this train is The Plainsmen, in honor of the old, long defunct drum and bugle corps in my home town of Empoira, KS. (But maybe The Plainsman would be better grammatically for a train?).

I hope this set of cars will see many miles of use, and I have certainly enjoyed finally running it these few weeks.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very nice work in the passenger cars. The color is a good match for the Plainsmen color as well. Yes, grammatically it might be better to call it "The Plainsman".