Author Topic: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?  (Read 1649 times)

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Tom L

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K4 has a new batch of decals, here if your interested

https://k4decals.com/collections/whats-new

I’d like to do up one of these but can’t locate any online photos or even much info about Packerland Packing other than that the current Packerland plant has the virus.

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Judging by the interior dimensions versus the Wilson car (which should be what, 36 or 37’) I’m guessing it’s a 40’ car, maybe? Wasn’t the shorter lengths more common for meat cars though?

 I would be curious about what kind of underframe it had (fishbelly or straight)and what kind of ends and roof it had by its GB 1-1957 date, all wood or steel?

Looking at other pics of NADX cars from that time period, seems like it could be any one of those.

I’ve got undecorated MT 36’ wood reefer with modern steel frame, a 40’ wood reefer with fishbelly frame or a Rapido meat reefer that I like to use. Which would be most appropriate, do you think?

Thanks!
Tom L
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thomasjmdavis

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2020, 07:24:15 PM »
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The build date is -39 (bottom right corner), so I would speculate that construction was more or less like the Rapido car (although I am sure detail differences). Looking closer at the data on the sheet with my bifocals adjusted, I see that nkalanaga's comment below is quite correct, so most likely a 40' car, which would call into question whether it has wood ends like a rapido car, or steel ends...

Here are a couple NADX reefers (courtesy of steamerafreightcars.com, although without Packerland logo) --




My search also brought up photos of Atlas O scale models of NADX reefers (on their 36'), although again not Packerland.  Atlas also has a tank car with a Packerland logo- https://www.westerndepot.com/product_info.php/products_id/34648

NADX is nowadays GE Leasing, but once upon a time was Wells Fargo.  Apparently North American Despatch in between.  North American was involved in a variety of lease agreements with (subsidiary of??) CNW and other railroads north and northwest of Chicago. 
« Last Edit: May 02, 2020, 08:57:17 AM by thomasjmdavis »
Tom D.

nkalanaga

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2020, 12:55:53 AM »
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For what it's worth, the Western Fruit Express 33' IL cars were 40' outside.  WFEX listed them as 44', but that was "coupled length", not over the body, probably so that customers would know what warehouse door spacing they needed.
N Kalanaga
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thomasjmdavis

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2020, 08:34:08 AM »
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For what it's worth, the Western Fruit Express 33' IL cars were 40' outside.  WFEX listed them as 44', but that was "coupled length", not over the body, probably so that customers would know what warehouse door spacing they needed.
Santa Fe 40' cars are also 33' and a couple inches inside length (for ice bunker cars).  So probably a safe guess (assuming the data provided on the sheet are correct) that it is a 40' car. 

Here's an NADX steel 40' car leased to Hormel: http://www.steamerafreightcars.com/gallery/reefer/nadx208main.html

This is another case where the MANUFACTURER must have photos or diagrams of the original car and could provide information (even if not the photo due to copyright) that would give specifics on the construction of the car.  It certainly appears from the photos that are available that NADX purchased fleets of used equipment, and/or built/rebuilt their own. 

I think I need to "un-speculate" my original speculation that it would be of similar construction to Rapido meat reefers (wood ends).  Could be either.

Tom D.

wcfn100

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2020, 11:18:52 AM »
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Has anyone checked the Morning Sun Reefer book too see if there's anything in there?  Mine's packed away but I can try and find it this weekend if no one else has it.

Leased meat reefer are the worsts.  I'd say at the least, the roof has a metal covering by '57.

Jason

Tom L

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2020, 12:48:22 PM »
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Has anyone checked the Morning Sun Reefer book too see if there's anything in there?  Mine's packed away but I can try and find it this weekend if no one else has it.

Leased meat reefer are the worsts.  I'd say at the least, the roof has a metal covering by '57.

Jason

I’m gonna have to break down and get a copy of that book.

Tom L
Wellington CO


Tom L

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2020, 01:24:15 PM »
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I’m gonna have to break down and get a copy of that book.

Tom L
Wellington CO


OK, figured it’s worth $20, so just bought a digital copy. Besides, Gene Green is a great guy, he has helped me out with info in the past, so don’t mind sending him a few bucks.  Need to make a cup of coffee and will give it a look

Tom L

Missaberoad

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2020, 04:23:55 PM »
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Nothing in the Morning Sun book, The Great Yellow Fleet, Ted Culotta's reefer guide or in Richard Hendrickson's billboard refrigerator car book...

Theres a message on the Bull shippers group from someone who says they photographed one in the 1960s.

Also Accurail made this car as a special run. Might be wothwhile asking Dennis Storzek about it...

Might also be woth checking old issues of MRR and RMJ...


Edit: heres the link to the Accurail cars
http://www.accurail.com/accurail/trainfest.htm
« Last Edit: May 02, 2020, 04:25:56 PM by Missaberoad »
Ryan in Alberta

nkalanaga

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2020, 12:58:54 AM »
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A lot of the iced reefers kept wood ends to the end of icing.  That wasn't because the owners were too cheap to replace them, but because wood doesn't rust.  Meat in particular almost always used salt with the ice, or brine tanks, to get colder temperatures.  The salt water ate right through steel, both from meltwater at the bottom, and spilled salt/brine from the top.  Also, wood is a better insulator than steel, giving it another advantage.  Some of the WFEX cars were rebuilt as late as 1950, by FGEX, and kept their wood ends, even after receiving the modern "Big Sky Blue style" lettering in the late 60s.  On the other hand, they also had ice bunker reefers with steel ends, and their first all-steel cars were built in 1936, so it wasn't an "old vs new" thing.

But, in your case, since it served a meat packing plant, I would feel comfortable with wood ends, if that's what you like, or can easily get.
N Kalanaga
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Tom L

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2020, 02:14:13 AM »
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A lot of the iced reefers kept wood ends to the end of icing.  That wasn't because the owners were too cheap to replace them, but because wood doesn't rust.  Meat in particular almost always used salt with the ice, or brine tanks, to get colder temperatures.  The salt water ate right through steel, both from meltwater at the bottom, and spilled salt/brine from the top.  Also, wood is a better insulator than steel, giving it another advantage.  Some of the WFEX cars were rebuilt as late as 1950, by FGEX, and kept their wood ends, even after receiving the modern "Big Sky Blue style" lettering in the late 60s.  On the other hand, they also had ice bunker reefers with steel ends, and their first all-steel cars were built in 1936, so it wasn't an "old vs new" thing.

But, in your case, since it served a meat packing plant, I would feel comfortable with wood ends, if that's what you like, or can easily get.

Yeah, looking through the Morning Sun book (worth every bit of the $20) and it’s amazing how long some of those wood cars lasted in use. Heck, there’s even a photo of a Western Fruit Express car with truss rods taken in 1954 and the car is in very good shape.

I’m not going to get too worried about it and just use a MT 40’ wood reefer, since I have a few in the parts box.

Thanks for all the suggestions and info everyone.

Tom L.

nkalanaga

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2020, 01:47:20 PM »
+1
Truss rod underframes weren't common by then, but a lot of them lasted into the 50s.  A few made it into the 70s in MOW service.  The secret is that, while wood centersills were banned, truss rods per se weren't.  There were quite a few cars, especially flat and box cars, built with straight steel centersills and truss rods, instead of fishbelly center or side sills.  Those could be run until they "aged out". 

The design was quite common on foreign railroads, especially the more lightly built narrow gauge lines, as it was much lighter than the fishbelly sills.
N Kalanaga
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thomasjmdavis

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2020, 03:36:24 PM »
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Truss rod underframes weren't common by then, but a lot of them lasted into the 50s.  A few made it into the 70s in MOW service.  The secret is that, while wood centersills were banned, truss rods per se weren't.  There were quite a few cars, especially flat and box cars, built with straight steel centersills and truss rods, instead of fishbelly center or side sills.  Those could be run until they "aged out". 

The design was quite common on foreign railroads, especially the more lightly built narrow gauge lines, as it was much lighter than the fishbelly sills.

Here's a photo of cars built by Southern in mid 1920s- with truss rods, but also a steel center sill-
http://www.steamerafreightcars.com/gallery/boxauto/sousumain.html
Tom D.

peteski

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2020, 03:58:40 PM »
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I visited the K4 website and their "secret electrostatic printing method" (superior to Alps printing) piqued  my interest. I ordered one of their mutlicolor decals to see what the secret is all about.  The description (electrostatic) sounds like a laser printer with white toner cartridge.
. . . 42 . . .

nkalanaga

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2020, 12:17:04 AM »
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Tom:  I didn't realize that design was used that late.  But if the Southern was building boxcars that way, reefers wouldn't be unlikely.
N Kalanaga
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Tom L

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Re: New K4 decals, anyone have a proto info about this reefer?
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2020, 02:09:27 PM »
+3
I found a photo, probably the one used for the decals. On the Lakes States Railway Historical Society website, I should have thought to look there sooner. A Atlas or MT wood reefer should be close. Cool!

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Tom L
Wellington CO