Modeling a CNR 40' Boxcar
Twenty years ago, the sight of a CNR 40' boxcar in Green Leaf livery brought back memories from my childhood and I was hooked back to HO modeling.  At that time I bought every CNR boxcar Athearn manufactured in BB kit.  With time passing and experience I discovered that those cars had a lot be desired and looked for better kits.  Finding a good basic kit for the 1937 AAR boxcar design is not easy though and finding one at 60$ us is not an option for me.

I had kitbashed an Athearn BB kit not so long ago for a freelanced road and I thought I could use another kit to model a CNR 40' boxcar.

The idea transformed itself into a project when I visited Exporail, the Canadian Train Museum in St-Constant, Quebec and saw a prototype of the car manufactured in 1939.  Here are some photos.




The Athearn BB kit for the 40' boxcar is pretty close to the 1937 AAR boxcar design and I thought that, with some modifications, I could get a nice model.  No intent here to get a perfect model of the prototype but something good enough.

I had a good candidate on hand and I was able to begin the journey.


If interested, follow me.
Guy from Southern Quebec.
Hi Guy---looking forward to this rebuild.
Hello Guy,
It is always a pleasure to follow your builds.
I'm looking forward to see how you will be using your skills to transform this ordinary kit
into the prototype we see in the pictures taken at Exporail.
The car has been stripped off its paint, sill extensions and poling pockets have been cut off, roofwalk removed, grabirons and lower door railing carved off.  I choose to leave the ladders and end brake rigging in place as i thought that trying to carve them off would make more harm than good.


I moved the external weight typical of Athearn BB kit to the inside of the car and added some more weight to match NMRA recommendations

I made new railings for the door and glued a Tichy Train Group door I had in my parts box.  I also plugged holes in the roof and made new roofwalf supports.


I placed a planked floor where the weight was originally and installed a "complete" brake rigging.  Take note that the reservoir is located on the same side with the cylinder and valve.  This was the case with CNR AAR 1937 boxcar from 1937 to 1940.


A Tichy train Group Wood roofwalk replaced the original one.


I finally added metal grab irons, stirrup steps, side roofwalk supports and plastic bracket grabiron.



The car is now ready form a coat of primer.
Guy from Southern Quebec.
Hello Guy---I really appreciate your "step by step" pictures and directions---they are very helpful for us "wannabe" modellers.Great work.
A light coat of Tamiya Surface primer Light Grey.  This is the only primer I have tried yet and I am very happy with it.

I always prime the cars I build.  In this case it was mandatory to do so as there were bare metal parts.

Guy from Southern Quebec.
Here is the final result.


Not an exact replica of the prototype but close enough for the use on my layout.  Decals are from Black Cat Decals execpt for the Green Leaf which is from Sylvan Scale.  I lettered the car for #477629 instead of #477632 (prototype) for ease in applying the decals.

Although it is not prototypical, I am quite happy with the results.  Certainly better than a plain Athearn BB kit.
Guy from Southern Quebec.
Beautiful work!

Life is simple - Eat, Drink, Play with trains

Occupation: Professional Old Guy (The government pays me to be old.)
Hello Guy,

that is outstanding work Applause 

This is Lutz (the real one) and at once a test if the ominous signy will stay away.
Beautiful workmanship Guy, thank you for sharing the pictures and info with us.
Hello Guy, Very well done. Real craftsmanship there. 
A very fine addition to the fleet Guy---you should be very proud of your workmanship.
Very nicely-done, Guy.   Applause Applause Applause

I've always considered Athearn's boxcar to be useful as-is, but also suitable for some upgrades that can lift it to an even better level.


EDIT:  Gack!  The excess crap is finally gone!!! 2296_ 2296_

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