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Discussion Starter #1
My latest projects are the Santa Fe business cars; Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe. A friend of mine has always wanted to model these cars and so I thought I would look into it for him. I am planning on building these business cars from USA Trains sleepers. I am also going to use resin casting so that I can make duplicates easily.

Below are some pictures of the cars and some interior blueprints. I do not know a great deal of history behind these cars, so if anyone would like to share some history or photos, I would love to hear from you.

I will try to update pictures of the project as much as I can. I will not have a great deal of time to work on this project until Christmas break however. If you have any ideas or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to tell me. Michael





 

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keep us posted. the hard part will be working with the alunuman ends. I did one car with the smooth sides.
 

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I have a new book on all of the Santa Fe business cars. If you need any specific info/photos send me an email at [email protected]

Not sure if you know this already, but the Santa Fe and Topeka were Budd built while the Atchison was a Pullman car. Santa Fe and Topeka rode on 6 wheel trucks, while the Atchison rode on 4 wheel wheel trucks. Might be hard to do the Santa Fe or Topeka with a USA car because of the trucks. The Atchison had 2 large windows at the observation end which could also be an issue to model. Before the Topeka and Santa Fe were built, the Atchison used to be named Santa Fe.


Sounds like a great project.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have that book on order from the SFRH&MS, but until it arrives, I might take you up on your offer. As for the trucks on Santa Fe and Topeka, I am thinking about heavily modifying the AristoCraft commonwealth truck. Then I will use resin casting to make duplicates. As for Atchison, I am not going to bother with the windows. I just can’t see making perfect cuts in the aluminum frame. With that said, I am looking forward to this project!

Here is the USA sleeper. I am using a California Zephyr sleeper because it most closely resembles the corrugation used by Santa Fe.


This piece will become the new observation end.


I am using this HO scale counterpart to get a feel for shapes and size. I know that it is not 100% prototypical, but it gives me a great starting point.


Close up of the observation deck:
 

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Michael,
I wunder if it would help you out if you could order the tail section from a USA Penn. Congressional Observation
Thanks Rex

 

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Discussion Starter #6
Rex, that is a great idea but, why make things so easy?
I actually just carved the roof piece from a block of balsa wood. It will eventually be made from resin. I also did a rough outline of the rear deck railing.







 

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Excellent work! A very elegant solution for an unusually shaped object.
Joel
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Matt, you are definately correct. I wish we had more super detail parts!!

I am happy with how the roof came out, so I moved onto some more pieces. I added two windows to the end of the car. I will need to fill the gap between the piece and the aluminum car body later.


I also worked on the rear platform.


 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have made quite a bit of progress over Christmas break. I have just about molded every piece I need with the exception of the rear railing. Once I got used to the process of making the molds, it was easy. Here are some pictures:







Here are a few of the finished molds.

 
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