New resin news | NSC-built “AAR 1937” CNR boxcars

There’s more good news for S scale enthusiasts, in the form of forthcoming resin kits for the “1937 AAR” boxcars built for the Canadian National Railways by National Steel Car of Hamilton, Ontario. And there’s even better news:

These kits come from a well-known manufacturer of high-quality HO scale resin freight car kits that is dipping its toe into the S scale waters for the first time.

Yarmouth Model Works* will actually offer two versions of this 40-foot, 10’0″ inside height all-steel car – featuring different roof styles and brake configurations.

The first version covers two series totalling more than 1,300 cars. These featured flat panel roofs and the brake system’s reservoir mounted perpendicular to the frame:

NSC - early series with flat panel roof

NSC - early series - underframe

The second version covers four series totalling more than 4,400 cars. These featured a Murphy raised panel roof and the brake system’s reservoir mounted parallel to the frame:

NSC - later series with raised panel roof

NSC - later series - underframe

The prototype cars feature the distinctive “NSC-2″ end. National Steel Car used this proprietary end on the 10’0″ and 10’6” inside height boxcars built between 1939 and 1950. The patterns for casting these models incorporated a 3D printed master for this unique end:

NSC-2 end - early series car

The prototype for these models could be found across North America and the Canadian Rail Car Pictorial – Volume 2 shows them running in revenue service into the 1980s.

Pierre Oliver of Yarmouth Model Works visited this week and let me photograph the in-progress models he is building to write the instructions and use as samples. They’re beautifully done, with crisp casting and fine detail, including many photo-etched parts.

As I mentioned off the top, this will be the first foray into S scale for Yarmouth Model Works. A successful sales run of these kits will definitely encourage Pierre and his colleagues to bring more top-quality resin kits to market – and he and I have already discussed possibilities.

Meantime, I know I’ll be adding several examples of both versions of these NSC steel boxcars to my layout when they’re released. The release date has not yet been announced but it’s highly likely to be before the end of the year.

NSC car - early version

NSC car - later version

(*Check the “Links” section on this blog’s home page for the most up-to-date links)

New resin news | The CNR “1929” Boxcar

A few days ago, I posted a teaser about some new S scale resin freight car kits that will hit the market soon.

One of these is the CNR “1929” boxcar – a 40-foot, single sheathed model:

CNR 1929 - test build - 01

According to Canadian Rail Car Pictorial – Volume 2, the Canadian National Railways rostered more than 9,600 of these. The CNR contracted three major builders – Canadian Car & Foundry, Eastern Car Company, and National Steel Car to produce these, and all were built in the 1929-1931 time frame. Prototype photos show them with either wood or steel doors.

The Pictorial notes that the majority of this fleet lasted until 1983, moving grain from western Canada. In earlier decades, though, they would’ve been seen all over North America – and the fleet is large enough that any modeller of the steam era in the United States can justify one or two for their layout. Modellers of the CNR working in 1:64 will want considerably more, of course.

The kit is being manufactured by Yarmouth Model Works* on behalf of David Clubine at Ridgehill Scale Models*. This project started life with Ridgehill, working with another manufacturer, but then stalled until Yarmouth Model Works was brought on board. Ridgehill will handle all sales for this one.

CNR 1929 - underframe

Pierre Oliver of Yarmouth Model Works visited this week and let me photograph the in-progress model he is building to write the instructions and provide a sample to Ridgehill. It’s beautifully done, with crisp casting and fine detail, including many photo-etched parts.

I know I’ll be adding several examples of this kit to my layout when it’s released. The release date has not yet been announced but it’s highly likely to be before the end of the year.

CNR 1929 boxcar

(*Check the “Links” section on this blog’s home page for the most up-to-date links)

Six years of blogging

On this day in 2011, I started writing about Port Rowan in 1:64, with a post called “Breaking Marley’s Chains”. You can find that post – and other early ones that outline the thinking that evolved into this layout – on the “First Time Here?” page.

I’m pleasantly surprised at how the layout has taken shape while remaining true to the ideas I set out in those early posts.

Coincidentally, I spoke last night at a local social club for railway modelling enthusiasts and railfans, and one of the subjects I touched upon was the power of coupling a blog to a layout project. I think this blog remains my most important tool for modelling Port Rowan in S scale.

That’s due, by the way, to all of you who read and comment on my posts – offering insight and information. Thanks for that. This blog has generated more than 670,000 page views and 6,700 comments – and my knowledge of Port Rowan, S scale, and modelling has benefitted tremendously from this exchange of ideas.

Just over a year ago, I wrote a post about the power of blogs as a modelling tool, called “Tips for blogging about our hobby”. If you missed it, click on the dogs, below…

 Blog-Barking

New S scale resin on the way

Someone I know sent me a few photos of boxcars in-progress on his workbench. Here’s what I can tell you:

– These are the test-builds for soon-to-be-released kits in S scale.
– They’re for prototypes that are being offered for the first time in 1:64.
– As the photos suggest, one is a single-sheathed car, while the other is steel-sided.
– They feature sharply-cast resin with details in resin, wire and other media – including custom-produced photo-etch.
– Modellers of North American prototypes are going to want some of each.

Mystery boxcars - steel

Mystery boxcar - single sheathed

Here are a couple of photos of the frames on the steel cars. Note the variation in placement of appliances:

Mystery boxcar - steel - frame detail 1

Mystery boxcar - steel - frame detail 2

And here’s a view of the frame on the single sheathed car. (The image is a bit fish-eyed – that’s the lens, not the model!)

Mystery boxcar - single sheathed - frame detail

I’ll post more details over the next few days…

Big Sound for a BURRO


(You may also watch this video directly on YouTube, where you may be able to enjoy it in larger formats)

I upgraded my River Raisin Models S scale BURRO Crane with a LokSound decoder and two speakers. I wrote a feature on this, which is the cover story in the September, 2017 issue of Railroad Model Craftsman magazine. Check out that issue for details:

RMC September 2017

In the above video, you can hear the sound. (I’ve cranked the volume on the decoder for the purposes of recording this video. In practice, I run the crane at a lower volume – more suitable to the layout environment.)

The sound is not correct for a BURRO – it’s the EMD 567A six-cylinder diesel that’s found in an SW-1. But it’ll do just fine for now – and when ESU offers a correct BURRO sound file, I can simply reload the decoder (and post a new video, of course). That’s pretty cool…

For more details on the BURRO Crane, follow my BURRO category link.

(If you’ve just found my blog through the Craftsman article, then welcome aboard! Have a look around – perhaps starting with the First Time Here? page – and enjoy your visit!)

Three months in three weeks

I’ve now moved three more months’ worth of photos off Photobucket and onto my own servers, so I’m almost to the end of March, 2012. It has taken three weeks of spare time – between other activities – to re-code about three months worth of posts.

Slowly, but surely. It is taking time away from modelling, however. I’m making very slow progress on the Leedham Feed Mill – not enough to warrant another post at this time.