Friday, January 30, 2015

The Pennsylvania Railroad H30 Covered Hopper Cars

From 1934 to 1952 the Pennsylvania Railroad built 1325 40' H30 class covered hopper cars. They were of riveted construction and included external 45 degree outside bracing. They were unique! They had a 70 ton capacity and were used to weather protect relatively light products such as cement. As a rule of thumb, the tuscan cars were pre-1950, followed by the grey paint scheme.

Fox Valley Models has been kind enough to produce these unique cars in several paint schemes including both the grey and tuscan versions of the Pennsylvania Railroad. They made it into the Conrail era but were gone by about 1981.

Although I am actively trying to downsize my freight car fleet by about 300 cars, I could not pass up the opportunity to purchase a pair of these unique cars since they fit right into my modeling era and were cars I watched frequently travel by my childhood homes.
Loads of cement being delivered to Buzby Bros. cement mixing plant

Parked in the South Woodbury Yard
PRR H30 Covered Hopper Car

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Christmas Postscript

The last of the crazy Christmas moves just took place on my Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines. We needed the work train for this one.

My son (the other family nerd) and 2 of his 6 kids arrived from Florida for a post-Christmas visit with presents. This year's prize was a USS Enterprise spatula which now takes it's prized place along side of my Enterprise pizza cutter (see the December 2012 post), my Klingon Bat'leth letter opener and the Star Trek "Battle Stations" motion sensor.

Neither of us will ever grow up.
Now the PRSL can return to the 1950s.

Friday, January 2, 2015


In my 30 years of armchair railroading and the 15 years since, I have collected about 30 Woodland Scenics (and Classic Metal Works) specialty vehicles and figure sets. Most of the vehicles have made it to the layout but few of the figure sets have. With Woodbury, Westville, and Brooklawn scenery pretty well along, it is time to start emptying the figures drawer. My January 31, 2013 blog entry (Where's Waldo) covered some initial figure installations. This week we added a farmer's market (with produce truck) at the Woodbury station. I don't remember the timeframe, but I do remember certain days where produce and flowers were hawked in the station parking lot as sanctioned activities.

The Suds n Shine car washers were added to the appropriate colonial houses in the Manayunk section (sooner or later I will find a way to do the Manayunk bridges) and a set of canoers on the Schuylkill River below. I think the Schuylkill may be too rapid for canoes here but skulls did race (Dad Vail Regatta) below this point.

Family boating (and dock) and another set of canoers were added to the Big Timber Creek scene in Brooklawn (there was/is an actual marina upstream on the other side of the train trestle).

At my age handling the N gauge trains is only a minor issue but placing/gluing these N scale figures is a challenge that is slipping beyond my abilities. I actually prefer the slightly larger Asian 1:150 figures.