Friday, March 14, 2014

STATE TOOL AND DIE 200 Ton Hot Metal Car - Part 1

This new release from State Tool and Die came out last fall.  I finally got around to ordering one.   Initially the bottle part of the car had a double taper.  After my experience on my scratch built four truck car, I immediately understood why this was done - wheel clearance.   If you remember with my car, I'd followed Treadwell plans online, exactly as possible.  Only after I saw the notation of 28" wheels on the drawing did I figure out the standard 33" wheels I was using were the problem.   So in using standard trucks, ST&D must have run into a similar problem.   After being taken to task online about no prototype, they reengineered the car with a single taper.   The new version says, "Revised" on the packaging.  From what I understand they will send you new ends if you have one of the original cars.

The kit was $50, and is packaged in the standard ST&D baggy.   The parts are the usual heavy grey plastic.   They are nicely molded and not much flash to clean up.  The instructions are easy to read and the fit of the parts is good.   The turning equipment on the one platform is fairly plain and consists of three separate pieces.  There are no registration marks so you might want to just place everything first so the final assembly makes sense.  

The only parts I didn't use are the thin square sheets that fit around the spout.  I've seen this type of thing on more modern photos of prototype cars, but not back in the 50's.    I also didn't use the steel weight provided for inside the bottle.  I will just use lead birdshot until I like the weight.    The kit is basic in that there is no brake equipment, hand rails, grabs, steps,..etc.   I will be adding these.  Also, I'm considering backdating the car a bit to riveted construction - stay tuned.

I'll end with a poor quality photo I took driving across the Walt Whitman Bridge into Philly of a rail transfer yard in Camden on the former property of New York Shipbuilding.   It's used for loading a variety of imported cargo onto railcars.  Lately they have been bringing in steel slabs by ship, from I don't know where, and loading them into gons, destined for AK Steel (Kentucky?)  I'm thinking possibly from Brazil?    The slabs are shipped out in unit Extras.   If you look closely you can see the diagonal siding that the crane straddles and slabs laid out for loading along the track, in addition to the stacks in the middle of the photo.   Rail traffic has been booming here in south Jersey - first the oil trains, and now coal and slab trains.


flattop said...

Too bad the slbs did't come fom Bethelem or some other now defunct steel mill town.Just sayin'

Jim Musser said...

Yes, I guess that would have been nice. Railpace did a write up on the South Jersey slab trains and apparently the slabs are coming into Camden by ship from Russia.

Unknown said...

Jim im a steel modeller from australia and unfortunately its hard to get hold of hot metal cars would i be able to get the dimensions of the 200 ton kit please so i can scratchbuild