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

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Two great pre-war Graceline boxcars

Up today are a couple eBay purchases from last year, vintage Graceline boxcars with the factory lettering.

First up is a wonderful example of the Graceline B&O wagon top boxcar. This model was introduced in 1939 – see this article to see the original advertising. I had previously purchased an example that was built up and lettered with decals (see here), but this new example not only has the original hand lettering but is in beautiful condition.

Stepping back a second, Graceline sold a line of OO cars with hand lettered sides. This was no small effort on their end and to my mind at least these are highly desirable items. I have a bit more on the hand lettered cars here.

Back to this example, it came to me with loop couplers and only one Graceline truck. I found a good pair of Graceline trucks that matched the original truck that was there and installed Kadee couplers to set it up for operation. I am liking their whisker couplers a lot for OO applications, as in this case I just cut down the box and screwed them on, plus they are compatible with S-C and Lionel couplers (manually). This model will be operated when the mood strikes me to run vintage cars. The only downside being that Graceline trucks of this period have rather heavy flanges that bump on my turnouts (but operate fine, otherwise).

The other boxcar is a Graceline wood boxcar, also hand lettered (the C&NW logo is paper, glued on) and also in wonderful condition. This one is on S-C trucks (with the not-often-seen "thin bolster") and needed no additional attention from me other than adjusting the gauge of a couple wheelsets using my NMRA gauge. Most notable perhaps on this one are the unusual couplers. These I have never seen before and would operate automatically pretty well I would think with other couplers of the same design. Notable for us today, these will mate with Kadee couplers well enough to run the car in a train, so I will leave them be.

No comments: