Frank’s Models, pt 1

Resin Car Works Chief Frank Hodina was recently trackside and grabbed a batch of photos to share on the blog. Here are his notes. Click on any image here to review a larger size.

I hadn’t taken any model photos recently and thought I should document some of my HO scale fleet on a sceniced portion of the layout. I had installed new LED lights on a portion of the layout and I wanted to see how these look under 6500 Kelvin lights. We lead off with Illinois Central 8976, an old, out-of-the-box Life-Like P2K GP-7. Extras details include MU receptacles, speed recorder, air lines to the truck brake cylinders, a new brass horn, cloth sunshades, and Chet French positioned as the engineer. Chet’s a longtime friend and a retired IC engineer. Chet also knows just about everything and anything you could want to know about the IC.

Here is New York Central 868422, an Accurail offset twin hopper with a 1.5-foot section taken out of the middle to match the length of NYC prototypes. The car body was also raised a bit on the trucks to make the car look taller. The NYC built thousands of offset twins that followed the AAR design but were 1.5-feet shorter and 4-inches taller. I believe the railroad was matching the length of a USRA twin hopper. The car is lettered with a Resin Car Works NYC004 hopper decal set.

NYC 918075 is a kitbash of two Accurail USRA twin hoppers to create a three bay, 70-ton capacity car. The model is also lettered with the RCW NYC004 decal set.

IC 70196 RCW Kit 2.01 built right from the box and is lettered with decals from the kit. The only extra additions were weight, couplers and trucks.

IC 90311 an old Sunshine Models Kit 75.1. It is hard to see the difference between the wire grabs on 90311 and those on the previous RCW car, which has cast-on grab irons.

Chicago & Eastern Illinois 97788 is an out-of-the-box, pre-painted Atlas hopper model. Extra details include slope sheet braces, Wine hatch locks, train line, and cut levers.

SHPX 1367 is a stock Atlas 11,000-gallon insulated tank car with a little extra work. These cars have several errors which can be fixed. Atlas applied some gorgeous paint schemes and they would be a shame not to use. This model was recently finished and needs to be weathered.

The biggest error is the car sits too high on the trucks. The way the model is constructed, this is an easy fix. A thick “washer” is cast to the bolster. Remove this and the spacers under the couplers. Install new coupler boxes and fill in the end stills. The rivet strip along the running board is removed as this is actually the middle tank connection. Round the frame corners and add as much extra brake gear detail as you would like. The trucks also will be replaced.

International-Great Northern/Missouri Pacific 53854 is Sunshine Models Kit 54.4. It was also finished recently and needs to be weathered. We can all use a stock car or two on our layouts!

Another round of Frank’s models will be featured in an upcoming blog post.

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10 thoughts on “Frank’s Models, pt 1

  1. What did you use to replicate the cloth sunshades on your GP7 model? Models look great – especially the IGN stock car.

  2. You’re right; every steam era layout can use a stock car. In op sessions on my Alma branch layout I have them hauling lumber (SF had lumber doors in the ends.), watermelons, grain doors, chicken cages and more. They even carried grain if properly coopered. They can haul almost anything that will not be harmed by the weather.

  3. Frank I enjoyed your fine models. Excellent craftsmanship. Thanks for sharing. Look forward to seeing more of your fleet.

  4. Seen Frank’s layout a couple years back. What he had done for scenery sets the bar for me and I sure for a few others. – Mike Z.

  5. You do amazing work. Have several Sunshine kits awaiting construction plus 3 RCW IC hoppers to finish — much less work with cast on grabs. Would like to see more of your rolling stock. Any chance of seeing a C&IM / C&IW coal gon kit in the future?

  6. Very nice fleet you have on your layout. Would like to see more photos of your fleet and layout in a future blog.
    George Toman

  7. Amazing what you did to those hoppers. Great ideas come
    from following your work.–joel

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