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Saturday, September 10, 2011

A Bobber Caboose (and more) from the OO Niagara Valley

In a group of cars that came to me recently was this great bobber caboose.

As can be seen in the photos, the car is lettered for the Niagara Valley (no car number) and has a label on the bottom Fred E. Schorr, Millersburg, PA. I wrote his son Ed Schorr about the caboose, relaying a few key details, and heard back right away: “The history on the caboose is - my dad built the caboose for Jack Winsor of Burlington, Ontario, Canada. He was the brass hat of the Niagara Valley. They were good friends for many years. And yes, the trucks are a modified Scale Craft passenger trucks.”

Knowing the story makes the car even better. In that time frame, after WWII, there were a good number of American OO gauge modelers in Canada. So this car made its way from Pennsylvania up to Ontario and now has made its way to Arizona.

You can pick up a lot from the photos, but the element you can’t see in the photos and is actually hard to see in person is that the car has a full interior with tables, closets, etc. One of the chairs up in the cupola has come loose and there is no easy access the interior to fix that element. Also this car has lights! They flickered on the first time I set it on the rails with a train running. The lights help a great deal in seeing the interior details.

As noted there is no car number. It was presumably a gift and perhaps Winsor was to add his own car number. In any case it is a car I am happy to have, a rare gem among OO cars. For another vintage bobber caboose see this article and I will be coming back to more of the cars received from Bill Gilbert soon.

UPDATE: In items donated to the OO SIG were these two boxcars as well, both from the layout of Jack Winsor. They are worth a brief look.

In front note that the THB boxcar has his NVL logo as well. The body I think is Nason, but it has a nicely scratchbuilt frame and Eastern/Famoco doors. The car came to me with no trucks or couplers, which I added. Winsor got a little crazy with the decals ... click on the photo to see more clearly the car number and such.

Behind is a Swift refrigerator ... or is it a boxcar? It actually is a Picard body with an Eastern frame, with boxcar doors and lettered as a reefer. And each side has a different style of boxcar door ....

The THB car I will keep with the caboose, and the other car will go over to the OO inventory. I believe Winsor enjoyed the cars and they are, in fairness, nice vintage pieces.

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