Chesapeake & Ohio Steel Caboose Project Update

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Availability: This project is currently under development, reservations will be taken starting at a date to be announced. If you are a current customer you will automatically receive the announcement materials. If you are not a current customer and are interested in this project, please let us know so that we can forward material to you when available, get in touch with us using any means listed on our contact information.

Price: TBD

Versions Offered: 9

Production Quantity: 100

5/19/18 - Final decisions regarding project placement using multiple builders now for our projects will be coming very soon. Following the latest planned visit overseas, there should be little left to resolve. This and several other projects are included in the discussions. I am hopeful to finally have a workable plan to deliver projects at a more reasonable pace. Please stay tuned.

3/15/18 - With our rolling stock projects finally starting to move in terms of production scheduling, this long awaited project will be next in line after our PFE reefer project. Stay in touch for further developments as things will hopefully start to move faster!

9/19/17 - This is one of several projects that have been held back pending a reorganization of my production situation which has been made necessary by unforeseen and 'painful' delays with past projects. As has been discussed on the General Newspage, I am now close to being able to comfortably move ahead with multiple projects and following an upcoming overseas inspection/organizational visit reservations should begin shortly there after for this project.

11/05/16 - With our two latest rolling stock projects complete and a path forward established for future projects of the type, we are almost ready to start the reservations. The pricing and agreement on details is being finalized and once that is handled it will be time to finally officially launch this project......again! If you have followed this project you know that the same thief builder (E.K. Models) that originally handled our PRR N5 cabin car project and PRR flat cars had also started this project. With that sad episode behind us, it's time for more great projects.

Anyone that is an existing customer will automatically receive the project offering, but if you let me know in advance that you have an interest, I'll do my best to push your information out as early as possible.

11/04/15 - If our C&O steel caboose project is of interest to you, please stay tuned as the reservation process will begin very soon. A general announcement regarding the start of the process will be made here and all existing customers and interested parties will be included in the mailing that will provide the reservation information.

4/11/15 - With our PRR flat car production complete and the delivery pending, we'll be ready to push ahead with our C&O caboose project in the next couple of weeks. Be watching for the start of the reservation process if this is a project of interest for you!

9/10/14 - Based on the current status of our PRR projects, this project will be taken off of hold very soon and the reservation process will begin. Many of the advancements developed for our PRR N5 cabin car project will carry over to this project and I will be sharing more information on that subject prior to the reservations starting. The patience of all of you asking about this project has been greatly appreciated!

1/03/14 - This project has been in a holding pattern as we have been working on the completion of our PRR cabin cars and flat cars. With our long pending projects now moving along nicely, I will be officially launching the C&O steel caboose project near term, this should happen within the month. Stay tuned for further updates.

2/11/13 - The pricing and exact versions to be offered are being finalized now and as soon as this is taken care of, the offering information will be printed. If you are an existing customer you will automatically receive the offering and if you are not, but have requested to be on the list, you will also receive the material. If you are interested and have not made me aware, let me know so you can be added to the offering mailing list. The production is definitely very limited and will not be expanded based on the demand, so be sure to order early if you are seriously wanting one of our C&O cabooses.

More very soon!

12/13/12 - After a long unanticipated delay and with new production arrangements in place, I will be proceeding with this project as previously planned. The reservation process will begin near term so stay tuned if this project is on your 'want' list.

12/10/11 - The sample models for this project are nearing completion as shown below. The top sample is for the PM District service and the lower sample is the standard configuration. On the exterior the distinguishing feature between the two versions is the arrangement of the end ladders with the PM version being the reverse arrangement of that for the standard C&O version. The interior arrangement is also different for the PM version caboose. The samples are shown without the scale wheelsets that they will feature in the final production. The reservation process will be proceeding in the very near future, so if this is a project of interest, please stay tuned as the demand will be greater than the supply for sure.

Shown below is the end arrangement of the standard C&O version caboose with the ladder positioned on the right side of the car.

Shown in this photo is the end arrangement of the Pere Marquette version of the model, with the end ladder positioned on the left side of the car as standard practice would have it on that road originally.

6/18/11 - The first samples of our C&O cabooses are nearly complete, but the photo below shows the carbody exterior and interior side panels after they have been formed and readied for soldering into the final assembly. All of the seam detail is etched and the rivets are punched prior to the panels be formed. There are some real 'tricks' involved in doing the forming without distorting the seams and rivets. The technical capabilities, the tooling and extra production time all add up to why you do not see punched rivet detail on many models currently being produced.

5/24/11 - I had anticipated starting the reservation process by now, but with so many other issues to deal with the process has been delayed until now. The final notices for the PRR N5/N5b project are going out now and just as soon as I can get the materials prepared, the offering for this project will go out to existing customers, I expect this to process to be completed within the next ten days. Piling too many financial considerations on customers is always a concern and trying to space projects with that in mind can help, but it is not always possible. The best I can do is provide as much advance warning as possible to allow customers to prepare. On an exciting note, the sample models for this project should be completed early in this coming month and photos will be made available as soon as possible.

2/26/11 - Another issue has been raised regarding this project that I indicated I would throw out for comment rather than simply responding to it. Concern has been expressed regarding the lower than usual quantity and the potential high demand; specifically special consideration has been requested for customers that purchased one of our H-8 models. The subject of future project quantities and brass production in general will be addressed in an upcoming general update, but this is the first project where the concern has been voiced, so the subject is open for comment. Let me reiterate that my commitment to providing existing customers the first reservation rights on new projects has been and will be followed again in this instance, so if you are an existing customer you will be among the first group to receive the offering. The only question is, should there be further consideration beyond that based on specific project support? If this matters to you, let me know.

2/22/11 - Anticipation is obviously building based on the number of regular inquiries I am receiving about when the reservation process will be starting for this project. I have been trying to allow a bit of time to pass between starting the PRR flat car ordering process and launching the reservations for this project. I anticipate starting the reservations for this project in approximately two weeks. All existing customers will receive the reservation information first as has been customary. Just to confirm, there will be a single run of this project and there will be only 100 units produced.

1/25/11 - With my most recent trip to Korea complete, the planning for the production of our C&O caboose project is also complete. This project will be next in line for reservations and that is going to start in the very near future. The versions have been decided on and are now listed on the project information page of this project site and the sample model is near complete at this point, only the underbody remained in limbo, but that has now been dealt with. The quantity is going to be very limited and the project will sell out very quickly, so be prepared if you are interested in this project. This project has been planned with our H-8 Allegheny in mind as well as the C&O 'Kanawha'. There will be only one run of this project completed, so please plan accordingly.

1/14/11 - You may notice above that the number of versions being offered has increased to a total of nine (9). The increase will allow choices appropriate for service periods from the original build date to the late 60's, the final evolution of the 'Yellow' paint scheme. If there is interest in any of the later 'Blue' paint schemes, I will need to know in the very near future, do not hesitate to let me know of your interest. I listing of the intended versions will be included in the next web update.

1/12/11 - The evaluation of reference material in hand is near complete at this point. A decision has been made about a special limited version within the production run and that will be a radio equipped version of the 90200 class. The unique detail associated with this version will be the obvious electronics detail in the interior, but more importantly, the exterior will have generating equipment for electricity, special venting in the carbody for the storage batteries used in the system and a roof antenna. The quantity for this version has not been finalized, but will most likely be ten (10) pieces or less.

The completion of the sample model for this project will commence with during the upcoming visit to Korea. With the laser cut interior parts in hand and the revised underbody specifications, we have everything that is needed to move ahead.

Stay tuned for further updates.

7/30/10 - Shown below is the most recent prototype visited in my ongoing research for this project. Caboose number 90211 is located in Sugar Grove, Ohio which is about a 40 minute drive southeast of Columbus. This prototype is well preserved and is used as an information center for the local area. The caboose was last owned by John O. Riddle a former C&O Superintendent.

Although my visit three days ago was once again focused on the underbody, there were a number of interesting exterior details that I had not seen before. The caboose does have most of the latest upgrades applied before the car left active service, including the aluminum frame window glazing. This is the most original caboose I have seen short of the restored 'cab' at Clifton Forge.

The underside of this C&O class caboose is among the most complicated designs I have reviewed and it has never been modeled in a way that has been even close to being correct. The complicated nature stems from the fact that the main frame is a 'cushioned' design that requires a sub-frame to support many of the components and appliances required during the operation of the caboose. It is extremely difficult to interrupt the design working from either drawings or photos alone, both have to be utilized understand the interrelationship of the component parts.

The situation is further complicated by the addition of late modifications which can not be correctly included on a steam era model. Documentation for these 'mods' are not available so it has to be determined from the original construction techniques, looking at rivet, welding and mechanical assembly detail. After comparing several prototypes now, I have a pretty clear picture of what I need to know. This type of effort is typical for my projects and it is what makes the difference in the our modeling results.

I wish that posting the more than two hundred photos taken on this visit would illustrate what the underside really looks like, but each photo represents a small sampling of detail that needs to be considered in total to make any sense. Viewing our completed model will be the best way to experience what I have described short of visiting a prototype yourself. For anyone interested in seeing one of these cabooses I will be happy to provide more detailed directions to their locations.

4/28/10 - My research on the underbody continues, this has proven to be one of 'those' issues that I have routinely run into during the development of my projects. I have one more prototype caboose to visit to make certain that our design is absolutely correct, this will be the fourth prototype that I have surveyed. After struggling with this aspect of the project development for a number of weeks now, I have a much better understanding of why the similar models already produced are so inaccurate, the data has not been easily obtained. I will be posting prototype photos to this project site in the very near future, many of which have resulted from my research outings. The reservation process will start within the next 30 days and it is limited to just 100 pieces total for all versions, if you are interested you will have to be quick!

3/15/10 - Over this past weekend while attending the Chicago O Scale March Meet, new questions arose regarding some underbody reinforcement detail that has been previously documented during research outings. The question is whether this reinforcement is part of the original construction or part of the work done during the final major servicing (post steam era) before leaving service. Another research trip is planned for this week to visit two additional 'survivors' located in the Columbus, Ohio area, of which at least one is suppose to be an original configuration. These are the final details that need to be resolved before we can push forward with the production of this project. Hopefully there will be good news to report in a few days. I hope to make the time in the near future to post a number of the photos taken during these research outings.

2/20/10 - Updates on this project are behind time, but our work has continued. The design drawings have been modified and updated which allows us to move forward with our sample model. In the past we would have already had an early sample completed, but as the cost of producing brass models continues to escalate, we are doing everything possible to cut costs without sacrificing quality so we can hold our prices as low as possible. More and more of our development is being done with the use of software rather than 'cutting metal' and the cost savings are pretty obvious as a result.

We are getting close to the time when I will start taking reservations, it should be within the next 30-60 days. You may have noticed that the production quantity for this project is lower than in the past and that is for a very simple reason, only models that are reserved will be produced. There will not be any extra inventory once the production is complete, so please plan accordingly. Updates should be coming more frequently from this point forward.

6/16/09 - Our C&O steel caboose project, like several others, has been on hold for several months, but I am happy to announce that it is back on track! The project is in line now to start the reservation process and we will be providing more project details in the coming days, leading up to taking reservations. As previously mentioned, the design is complete and we are moving forward with the first sample parts.

11/02/08 - Shown below is C&O prototype caboose number 90213, it is privately owned and located on a tree farm/nursery located on the south side of Columbus, Ohio. I made the effort to visit this prototype to compare the interior arrangement of this 'cab' with that originally specified in the builder's drawings. Also a better understanding of the complicated underbody design was needed so viewing this second prototype for comparative purposes seemed to be the best approach.

This particular prototype has had a number of modifications made, but the basic integrity of the original construction is complete. You can note a number of late modifications just in this photo, including the lighting on the roof overhang. The caboose is painted in the later yellow paint scheme. This visit was very useful in gaining a better understanding of the original construction, unfortunately the caboose was arranged in such a way that a good profile photo was not possible.

9/24/08 - Shown below are the basic GOD's for this project, the project design is complete. We have had a number of inquiries about the size and timing of the production in terms of availability of models as future C&O projects are developed and released by us; as with all of our projects, there will be only one production run. As we did with our Norfolk & Western caboose project, we allowed a reasonable quantity to be used with future projects not yet completed at the time the N&W cabooses were produced, many customers anticipated the production of our N&W class 'A' and the need for cabooses for use with those models. The exact production and reservation schedule has not been finalized, but we are looking near term. Additional information will be offered shortly after further discussions with our builder.

(Shown above is the C&O project GOD)

(Shown above is the Pere Marquette District project GOD)

11/09/07 - Our planning continues for this recently announced project and the further we progress, the more excited we are at the prospect of having an appropriate caboose to pair with our C&O power. We have to acknowledge from the outset the assistance that the C&O HIstorical Society is providing, in particular that of the Archive Manager Mr. Mac Beard. We are further committed to seeking ways in which we can help the society with it's mission. The color image of the 90200 series caboose on our project homepage is of the completely restored caboose that is in the C&O Historical Society collection in Clifton Forge. Be sure to check out the society web site to see more caboose photos: www.cohs.org. Whether you are a customer of our's or not, please consider a supporting membership in the C&O HIstorical Society. We also have to acknowledge that invaluable assistance once again of Mr. Jerry Ballard who was also a guiding light on our Allegheny project. Jerry is the most knowledgeable individual on the 'real thing' that I have ever had the pleasure to meet.

We have updated some of the project information details on the information page and there will be more to come very soon. Check back frequently for the latest information.

11/01/07 - This project is currently in the research and development phase, it will follow our PRR N5/N5b cabin cars in production. There will be multiple versions and paint schemes covering a wide time frame from the beginning of the 'Super Power' steam era into the first phase diesels. More updates will follow as the project progresses.