SoundTraxx - Blackstone Models - HOn3 - 3000 Series Boxcar - Denver & Rio Grande Western (D&RGW #3146) (Boxcar Red Lightly Sun Faded, Moffat Tunnel Herald, Weathered) (SKU 678-340128W)
Available On: June 1, 2012
A Little History
The D&RGW 3000 Series Boxcars
The year 1904 was a significant one for new rolling stock arrivals on the Denver & Rio Grande narrow gauge. Among a total of 1700 pieces of rolling stock ordered from the St. Louis-based American Car & Foundry were 750 boxcars that would become one of the most reliable and identifiable narrow gauge freight car classes to ply the three-foot rails of Colorado. They were assigned road numbers 3000 to 3749. Financed through a New York bank mortgage at $708.50 each, the 25-ton load capacity cars were quickly pressed into service to replace the aging boxcar fleet of the previous century.
By 1924, over two decades of heavy service was evident as the 3000 series fleet begged for replacement or repair. Now re-named as the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad, the company accountants found tax burden relief by rebuilding the existing boxcars over the option of placing an order for new cars. The “rebuilding” of the cars has been lightheartedly described as ‘jacking up the road number and replacing everything underneath’. In actuality, the cars were stripped of much of the wood while the hardware and trucks were re-used to construct relatively new cars. As rebuilt, the boxcars were equipped with sheet metal Murphy roofs while the side and end doors on many were upgraded with Camel hardware. This period marked the only extensive rebuild of this car series and from this point much of the 3000 series fleet continued to serve the D&RGW up to the end of mainline operations in 1968.
From the D&RGW Authority for Expenditure files:
AFE #659 6-30-1924
Apply cast steel bolster center fillers, latitudinal running boards, replace body bolster fillers, striking castings, carrier irons, roof and carlines.
80 cars $18,932.49
AFE #1378 11-30-1924
Apply Camel metal bound doors and fixtures.
81 cars $5704.83
AFE # 2121 6-20-1925 Apply metal Camel metal bound doors and fixtures, roof, carlines, body & truck roller bearings, reinforce body bolster and replace striking casting.
252 cars $72,739.80.
The remainder of the boxcar rebuilds were completed by 1926.
Today, many of these boxcars survive in limited service on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad. In addition, many of them can be found across Colorado and New Mexico on private property or in small museum collections. The studied rolling stock enthusiast can usually spot one a mile away while traveling the back roads of the old narrow gauge country in the Southwest.
The Blackstone Models D&RGW 3000 Series Boxcars
The HOn3 version of this venerable D&RGW boxcar is factory painted and ready to run. The Blackstone Models version represents the cars after the 1920’s rebuild and equipped with the Camel door hardware. They have returned to D&RGW standard specifications and the remaining prototypes in an effort to create a detailed and accurate boxcar that will please the discriminating modeler. Certain road numbers even feature paint shade variations representing years of sitting under the hot Colorado sun! Accurately placed and scaled hardware, underbody detailing, and fine nut and bolt applications put the Blackstone Models 3000 series boxcar in an exclusive class of its own. Cap everything off with their free rolling arch bar trucks and Kadee® couplers, and all you need to do is pull it out of the box and cut it into your consist!