AC 2915

Here’s another AC 40′ box I finished some weathering on last night.


Like the others earlier this week, this was a TrueLine Trains Ontario Northland boxcar with some custom painting (the large patches over the logo were done by hand to try to simulate how the logos were painted over with a paint roller, and smaller patches over the reporting mark and number masked and airbrushed) and then weathered with a combination of pan pastels and a bit of grime airbrushed along the lower edge of the car and on the car ends.

Interestingly, Ted Ellis has an early 1990s photo of this car on his site where it looks like the number on the car end actually reads 2907. So it appears that this car has changed identities along the way. It looks like it may have been acquired from the Ontario Northland as AC 2907, possibly renumbered into a 10000 series work number and then reassigned back to the general pool and renumbered 2915, possibly replacing a different car that was the original AC 2915. (Dale Wilson sent me an older photo of 2915 that shows a completely different pattern of paint patching, and it’s the same side as Ted’s photo, so it’s clearly not the same car.) I reproduced this confusion on my model as well. Like Ted Ellis’s photo, the numbers on the ends of my car read 2907, but on the sides on a prominent black patch it’s no. 2915.

A trio of (almost) finished 40′ AC boxcars

Enjoying a weekend at home by myself to get back into a few projects. One project that received a fair bit of attention today was finishing off the paint, lettering and weathering on a few of the Algoma Central 40′ boxcars I’ve had in progress for a while. Three cars are now basically complete, with three more in various stages of lettering (included the 9′ door rebuild which will become AC 2917. It’s now on the workbench in green and yellow and half lettered. A little ways to go on that one yet.) When all six are complete, I’ll have four 2900 series general service (but still non-interchange) boxcars and two 10000 series work supply/tool cars.

Here’s a few roster shots of the three finished cars. They’re all TrueLine Trains Ontario Northland NSC 40′ boxcars with custom paint patches and lettering. Weathering is a combination of airbrush and pan pastels.


AC 10352, tool/supply car. The prototype car also has turbine style roof vents and a step below the door which will have to be added. The step won’t be a problem, but I’m not sure how to solve the ventilator detail yet.


AC 10364, tool/supply car. Like 10352, it just needs the addition of roof vents (although a different sort) and a stirrup step under the door to finish off.

The photo loses some of the detail and character of the weathering, and this car actually ended up a fair bit dirtier than the prototype photos of this specific car that I was working from, but it’s not atypical of other cars in the series, and I actually like the final look, so I think I can live with that.


AC 2906, general service boxcar. I sanded the paint patch a little to let some of the original “Ontario’s Development Road” logo show through a bit.

Like the other two cars this car received a general grunge with the airbrush and streaking and detail work with pan pastels. I also tried to get a bit of rust splotching going on in the door using a little bit of acrylic paint and pastels. The weathering isn’t quite to the level of some other things I’ve seen online (some of which will blow your mind) but it’s serviceable and I’m still learning and getting the hang of it.

(This is post #200 published to this blog!)

ONT 9′ Door Boxcar Rebuild (AC 2917)

A while back I stripped the paint on a handful of True Line Trains 40′ Ontario Northland boxcars in preparation for modifying and repainting them as cars acquired second hand by the Algoma Central for LCL and company service. Naturally, these then sat on the workbench for a while awaiting detailing and painting while I tackled other projects. Last night I pulled these back out in order to start finishing off the details and get them ready for painting.


First up is this car which will end up representing AC 2917. This car was built in 1947-48 by National Steel Car for Ontario Northland and rebuilt by the ONR in the early 1960s with a 9′ door opening. This rebuild required reinforcing of the side sill below the door opening and new door tracks. Note that the new doors used were taller than the original doors, being meant for a 10’6″ interior height car while the Ontario Northland boxcars were older cars with a 10’0″ interior height, so the door tracks in addition to being longer to accommodate the larger size of the door are mounted lower down.

The doors on the True Line model are unfortunately molded as part of the car body, so the first step of the major modification was to cut this opening out entirely. The side sills also had to be carefully cut off along the bottom edge of the car body so that new side sills and door tracks cut from styrene strip could be added. I don’t really recall where the doors came from originally, I pulled them out of my parts box where they’ve been for a while.

After removing the ladders and brake detail, original mounting holes were filled in with round styrene rod and the ladders were shortened and reattached. Tackboards on the doors and ends are original parts from the model relocated. The brake wheel housing was also remounted lower down.

This car just requires a few more of the brake detail parts to be re-applied on the “B” end of the car, and also the addition of a new horizontal grab iron on each end (I couldn’t find my small diameter brass wire last night) to complete the detailing. Then it should be ready for the paint shop.

I have a few more cars that basically just need all of the ladder and brake detailing work done which I hope to complete over the next week and then I should have a small fleet of about half a dozen ex-Ontario Northland boxcars for work and wayfreight service.

40′ ex-ONT Boxcars Progressing

This pair of ex-Ontario Northland boxcars has also been receiving some attention lately, with new stencil reporting marks and numbers applied, and some basic weathering with pan pastels. The weathering still has a ways to go, and they also need a little touch up in some areas yet (like some minor patching in the data and re-weigh information to properly date the cars and vary things up a bit more) and the ladders and end details to be re-installed.


As on the model, the real cars were purchased second-hand from the Ontario Northland and just crudely patched out with AC markings. Both of these cars specifically follow the patch patterns of the prototype numbers they represent.

The 2906 is one of roughly 15 former Ontario Northland boxcars put into a series of general service cars; now when I say this, these cars were still basically non-interchange and captive to the ACR, and mostly commonly used for company materials and local wayfreight deliveries.

The 10352 has a work service number, and was likely a tool or work materials storage car. The real car has a pair of turbine style ventilators on the roof which will also still need to be added at some point.

I also have a couple of brown Ontario Northland cars in the wings which will also soon become another 2900 series car and probably another 10000 series work storage car.

Incidentally, this is the 100th post published to this blog!