|Rock Island 155939|
Funaro & Camerlengo photograph on kit box cover
Circa 1950, George Sisk photograph, Charles E. Winters collection
My build of this USRA rebuild 40 ton double-sheathed Rock Island box car, numbered 155945, series 155000-155999, is a Funaro & Camerlengo 40 ton double-sheathed box car, flat resin kit 3061. In addition to the kit instructions, I used data and photo, page 42, in RP CYC 16. Being a flat resin kit, I began by building the basic car body "box." I make the "box" by gluing an end to a side to create a "L" and repeat the process for the other end and side. The two "L" units are glued together to create the basic car body box ( for photos of using machinist blocks to keep assembly square click on label machine blocks). Next, the underbody was fitted via sanding to the box and cemented in place using the coupler pads for proper alignment to complete the car body without roof. Inside the car body, corners were reinforced with Evergreen #164, .080"x.080" strip styrene. And, a baffle made from Evergreen. 040" sheet styrene was added to prevent car body from bowing in. Now, I attached Kadee #262 narrow "whisker" coupler boxes with Kadee #148 "whisker" couplers installed with Zap CA glue to hold them for drilling. I drilled the bolsters and coupler pockets for 2-56 screws and added the Accurail, #150, 2-56x3/16" screws to the coupler boxes. Next I added weights, electrical outlet box punch-outs, to bring the car weight to 3.8 ounces. Finally, Accurail Andrews trucks with InterMountain 33" metal wheels were installed with Atheran, #99002, 2-56x1/4" round head screws.
|Car body basic box.|
Note: click or tap on any photo to enlarge.
|Underbody installed to basic car body box.|
|Corner bracing, baffle and weights installed.|
Now for the sides. The ladders consist of drop grab irons provided in the kit installed in #79 holes drilled below the molded on nut/bolt/washer castings. Two drop grab irons are installed on the left side. The sill steps in the kit did not match prototype photo so I replaced them with A-Line #29000, style A, sill steps. The molded on door handle was carved off and a door handle bent form Detail Associates #2503, .010" diameter brass wire was installed. One final detail item for a rebuilt Rock Island car is the addition of a fascia strip along the roof line. After studying photo of this car I used an Evergreen, #8104, 1x4" strip styrene for the fascia board.
Back to the roof to finish adding the latitudinal running boards. The USRA cars had a special mounting bracket (see photo below) that was not in the kit. I fabricated the mounting bracket by cutting strips .005"x.045" from shim brass and added fasteners made with MEK Goop. Once the mounting brackets were glued in place, the kit provided running boards were installed. Before installing the running boards the corner grabs irons were installed with Yarmouth Model Works, #YMW356, etched eyebolts with shoulder, used for corner grab iron leg. Installing the grab irons on the latitudinal running board before attaching them to the mounting bracket enables you to easily cut off any portion of the grab iron or corner leg that protrudes on the underside of the running board.
|Special mounting bracket for the latitudinal running board.|
With car body detailing done, only the underbody was left to complete. Bake components, Tichy #3013 brake set in kit, were drilled for piping and mounted on the left side (correct for the Rock Island) of the fishbelly center sill. A Sunshine Models bracket was used to mount the brake cylinder. To install a train line, holes were drilled thru underframe members using a drill made from a four inch long, .032" diameter, piano wire. A train line, .018" diameter flora wire in the kit, was installed. Train line unions were added with MEK Goop. Brake levers made from, Evergreen, #8108, 1x8" and #8106, 1x6" strip styrene and a universal slack adjuster made form a .005" styrene was installed. Brake piping from the air reservoir to the control valve was installed using Detail Associates, #2503, .010" diameter brass wire and Tichy, #1106, .0125" diameter PBW was used for the pipe from the brake cylinder to the control valve. All brake rodding is Tichy, #1106, .0125" diameter PBW with a half of a Tichy, #8021, turnbuckle for a clevis to attach it to the brake levers. Finally, a dirt collector, Tichy,# 3013 set, was installed. The dirt collector pipe was connected to the train line with a tee made with MEK Goop.
With car body detailing finished, the car was moved to the paint shop. The car body was first washed with a makeup cotton swab dipped in 91% isopropyl alcohol. Once dry, the underbody was sprayed with Vallejo Model Air, #71.054, Dark Grey Black ( tarnished black). The car body was sprayed with Vallejo Model Color, #70.940, Saddle Brown. After a couple of hours the car body was sprayed with Model Master,4638, Gloss Clear Acryl for a decal application surface. All paint is thinned with a custom thinner mix of distilled water, Vallejo air brush thinner and flow improver. After letting the car dry overnight, decals in the kit were applied using Microscale Set and Sol decal setting solution. Once the decals were dry, a single-edge razor blade was used to cut through the decals on the board lines and decals were again coated with Microscale Sol decal setting solution. When decals were dry the car body was sprayed with Model Master, 4636, Flat Clear Acryl to protect the decals. After letting the car sit to dry for several days, weathering was added to the car body using Pan Pastels and eye shadow makeup.
|RI box car 155945 sitting on Dawkins Siding.|
Rock Island 155945 now joins Rock Island 155939 in service on the Minneapolis & Northland Railroad Company. When looking at the two cars sitting next to each other, the paint color is different. Rock Island box car 155939 was painted in 2014 with Floquil Oxide Red, F110186, no longer available. Rather than matching this color on Rock Island number 155945 with Vallejo paint, I decided to change the color to attempt a faded paint look.
|Cars sitting on Dawkins siding.|
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