Wickham Car

Wickham Car

My recent post about the lovely speeder that my friend Stephen Gardiner printed for me reminds me that at some point I want to model a Wickham car, like the one shown above.

I believe the railway museum in Smiths Falls, Ontario has examples from both the CNR and CPR (at least, they did about a decade ago, but I don’t know if they’re still there*). I think it’s a handsome piece of non-revenue equipment and – in S at least – it would be straightforward to motorize it.

I’m a member of the Wickam group on Yahoo so I’m already doing my research. But if anybody has information about these cars – especially drawings – I’d love to hear from you!

(*UPDATE: Thanks to Guy Papillon, who shared a link to the museum with more information about the Wickham cars in its collection. It appears the museum has CP M-297 and CNR #23.)

15 thoughts on “Wickham Car

    • … or at least with a camera, measuring tape, and note pad. Research, old school style!
      Assuming they’re still there, or course…

  1. Great Britain post-WWII had substantial debt.

    “The US loaned $4.33bn (£2.2bn) to Britain in 1945, while Canada loaned US$1.19 bn (£607m) in 1946, at a rate of 2% annual interest.”

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/6215847.stm

    One way that Britain paid off this war debt was to sell manufactured goods everywhere that it could, especially in the Commonwealth. I’ve a set of UK-made Britool socket sets in 3/4″ and 1/2″ that I inherited from my father-in-law, which he’d purchased in the 1960’s. My wife occasionally uses a UK-made Kenwood Chef heavy-duty mixer of the same vintage. My daughter’s apartment has a “Briton” brand hydraulic door closer on the front door. These door closers show up still in schools–and even some CN facilities.

    Railways of the Commonwealth countries bought into UK-made goods, too. Australia had six-wheel Dick, Kerr Works (English Electric) UK-made shunter loco’s and Walker diesel-hydraulic railcars on its Victorian Railways. John Vincent tells me that Canadian Pacific used UK “Whitworth” tools and threads on its steam loco’s. North British diesel locomotives were exported to parts of Africa. And the Toronto Transit Commission–of course they bought UK-made Gloucester Railway Carriage and Wagon Company of Gloucester, England cars for the original Yonge subway line, but you might be surprised to learn that they also used a UK-made signalling system for it.

    Look at any modern CN structure erected after WWII and you’ll find some UK content. CN must have purchased shiploads of UK-made roll-up steel doors and used them across the system. I saw the builder’s plate on such a door on the baggage room of the Moncton station. CN’s original mainland steel caboose built in the early 1960’s ( a steel copy of its wood vans) had UK-made Oleo cushion draft gear. CN was likely under some subtle pressure to purchase UK-made goods to help Britain out.

    So it follows that CN and CP bought a few UK-made Wickham cars to support Britain in its time of financial need.

    The Wickham cars are just a small part of a bigger picture.

  2. Trevor,
    Somewhere in my train room is an HO kit for a powered BCR/PGE Wickham Car produced by Jeff Briggs several years ago. It is resin and etched metal and if a picture of the kit parts is of any value I’ll dig it out.

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