By Pierre Oliver
Funaro & Camerlengo have offered this resin kit for over 20 years now and it still stands the test of time. It surpasses the RTR version on so many levels. And I can get the car from F&C with three different ends and two door styles. And I get to build it!
In part inspired by the S scale 8 hatch reefers and as part of the
ongoing stocking of Manifest #402, I've built four F&C HO 8 hatch
reefers for my fleet.
Armed with knowledge gleaned from the car history included in the S scale kit I altered a number of details in the F&C kit.
The bracket grabs were upgraded to Kadee bracket grabs and the kit
ladders were replaced with 8 rung ladders with integral stirrups offered
by Des Plaines Hobbies.
For brake levers I used my etched levers and Tichy turnbuckles were
cutoff and used to replicate clevis' on the brake rods. You will note
that the reservoir is in an unusual position. This is correct for the
early series of CN reefers and 40-foot boxcars. I also made all my own
mounting brackets for the brake components from styrene. The braces for
the heater were fabricated from strip brass.
The most involved detail change was for the hatch rests. You'll see that
there's a pair of little angles attached to the carlines of the roof
for each hatch. The kit does include cast resin parts for this, but
they're a tad lumpy and there isn't enough of them. Each car requires
16, the kit had only 14. So I made my own.
To insure that I wasn't caught short I made 80 hatch rests. 80 pieces of
1x3 6" long and 80 pieces of 1x6 6" long. Glue them together in an L
and attach to the roofs.
The things we do!
But they look good, so I don't regret the effort. The car body was
painted with CN Grey #11 and the floor was painted with CN Red #11.
The cars are waiting for decals. I had purchased four sets of decals from
Black Cat Publishing, but do you think I can find them? So I reordered
which means the errant decals will surface any day now.
Postscript: I did indeed find the missing decals this morning, nine months after the fact. Which just means I'll have to order more reefers from F&C!
About The Steam Era Freightcars Blog
This blog discusses all aspects of North American freight cars of the steam era, from the dawn of railroading through 1960.
It is intended to support the efforts of model railroaders who wish to produce the most prototypically accurate freight cars possible.
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