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USAF B-52 simulators in rail cars

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USAF B-52 simulators in rail cars
Posted by NILE on Saturday, May 05, 2018 10:10 PM

I an HO layout with a few USAF rail cars on it.  I thought it could be neat to add these cars, or maybe at least two of them. 

http://www.railpictures.net/photo/378661/

I have not been able to find much on the internet other than a few pictures and short discriptions.  There seems to be three cars, two heavyweight baggage style and one WW2 troop car.  They are all painted air force grey with some SAC markings.  the baggage cars seem to have "modern roofs" and one seems to have been widened and extended height.

I'd like to model these cars in HO scale.  What baggage cars could I use as a started?  All my heavyweight cars are walthers and have the old style roof.  Does anyone know of any websites that has some detail information on these cars?

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Posted by BigDaddy on Sunday, May 06, 2018 9:52 AM

 

The description says they were WW1 hospital cars, not baggage cars.  The brief research I did on WW2 hospital cars does not mention that they were upgraded WW1 cars so I find it fascinating that these were still around in the 60's.

 

"The B-52 simulators cars were converted from WW-I hospital cars in the early 1960’s and had concrete floors to support the delicate equipment. These cars were heavy at 180 tons and had expandable sides at the cockpit section and cabinets that housed the electronics and electro-mechanical servo systems. The Administration Car had additional equipment cabinets, an office area and a small galley area for the escorts. The Crew Car appears to be a Pullman built, WWII Troop Car that was converted."

 

Pictures of WW1 hospital cars look like they were once beautiful cars before they stripped the seats out 
and put in beds.
 http://history.amedd.army.mil/booksdocs/wwi/MilitaryHospitalsintheUS/chapter12.htm
Since there is no resemblance to the original cars, baggage, RPO or sleeper may be the way to go.  

 

 

 
 

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

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Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, May 06, 2018 11:34 AM

Here's some more on the subject:

http://www.fairchild.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/762953/operation-cannonball-the-rest-of-the-story/

 

I suspect the two "Pullmans" were just surplus cars from Pullman.  One is said to be a 1928 car, so that one could hardly have been around for WWI.

About the only remnant I can see from the original cars is the riveted belt rail.  I think just about any old sleeper would do.

 

Ed

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  • From: Omaha, NE
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Posted by dehusman on Sunday, May 06, 2018 11:40 AM

The railroad museum at the Ogden Union Depot in Ogden, UT has at least one of those cars on display.

http://utahrails.net/RLHSGoldenSpikeOgden/passenger.htm

Just as an aside, I have rerailed cars using the X-250 when I was Trainmaster at N Little Rock:

http://utahrails.net/RLHSGoldenSpikeOgden/mow.htm

Dave H. Painted side goes up.

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Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, May 06, 2018 11:53 AM

Doing more research on the cars named in my linked article, above:

 

ALPINE CLOVER was originally a 14 section sleeper.  If it was built in 1917, I would expect a non-pedimented end.  I would build it using a Rivarossi 12-1 sleeper.  It's not a 14 section car, but there's not enough of the original casting left behind after building the car to matter.  It was owned by Pullman in 1950.

ANDREW SQUIRE (no "S") was also a 14 section sleeper.  Built in 1928, I suspect it would have had a pedimented end (which shows in one of the phots), so I'd use a Branchline 14 section car.  It was owned by PRR in 1950.

JOHN M. FORBES was originally an 8-1-2 sleeper.  Branchline made one of these, also.  It was owned by Pullman in 1950.

The "50 foot boxcar" is a former Army troop KITCHEN (not sleeper).  Walthers made these.

 

There's not going to be much left of the basic castings once all the hackin' and hewin' is done.  But that's kind of obvious.

 

Ed

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Posted by mbinsewi on Sunday, May 06, 2018 12:13 PM

I gotta dumb question, the way the cars are arranged in the OP's link, is this the way they were arranged while in use?  It seems like a lot of extra track work would have to be done to do this.

I'm sure I'm missing something.

The links posted so far has been some interesting reading.

Mike.

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  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
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Posted by gmpullman on Sunday, May 06, 2018 2:23 PM

mbinsewi
I'm sure I'm missing something.

It would seem these particular cars aren't going anywhere soon, at least by rail:

 SAC_Fairchild by Edmund, on Flickr

I question the original caption stating that these cars are from The Great War.

http://railwaysurgery.org/Army.htm

After WWII there were hundreds of hospital cars, baggage cars and troop sleepers on the surplus market. Monon Railroad bought quite a few and remodeled them into "DeLuxe" passenger cars.

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=3520176

Many variants survive. Some were turned into power HEP cars, Amtrak used some as baggage cars, many went to the Alaska Railroad, I believe Ringling Brothers grabbed a few as well.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/mbernero/23139133725

You probably could use the recent Walthers baggage car as a starting point:

 B&O_Baggage by Edmund, on Flickr

The Troop Kitchen cars fetch a pretty good price if you can find them. The later express cars with the plated over windows are more readily available and more reasonably priced.

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by mbinsewi on Sunday, May 06, 2018 3:18 PM

As I thought, just set up that way for display and easy public access, DAH.

This has been interesting.  Didn't know these excisted.

Mike.

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Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, May 06, 2018 4:05 PM

gmpullman
 

 

 

 

You probably could use the recent Walthers baggage car as a starting point:

 B&O_Baggage by Edmund, on Flickr

 

 

 

One could do that.  But this project is going to be a LOT of work.  So I think it would be more rewarding to use the cars I suggested as the base.  

That's because baggage cars (see above) are typically a fair bit shorter than sleepers.  I can't say that is necessarily true here, because I don't have one of the B&O baggage cars handy.  Since the prototypes were apparently based on sleepers, they'd likely be the length of sleepers.  

In addition, the layout of the belt rails and lower bat strips pretty much match when comparing the Branchline cars and the prototype.  The above baggage car does not.  These items are about the only details that will survive the massive remodel.  One might as well try to get them to match.

If I were going to put all that work into these models, I think I'd want the "base material" to be as close to the prototype as possible.

 

Ed

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Posted by mlehman on Tuesday, May 08, 2018 6:30 PM

Yeah, not WWI cars, but run of the mill Pullmans from somewhat later.

RBS = radar bombing simulator, a good search term to use as is "SAC bombing radar simulator railroad cars"

These cars were configured in different sets over the years. generally, they got smaller as electronics replaced tubes. Some good links.

Explains the whole deal, more or less

https://geographicalimaginations.com/tag/bomb-comp/

Not much text, but useful cites:

https://geographicalimaginations.com/tag/bomb-comp/

I've got more around somewhere, but time to cook dinner.

 

Mike Lehman

Urbana, IL

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