MODELING: Wilson reefer receives brake equipment

Progress has been slow but steady.   This report covers the addition of brake rigging, hand brake and the start of grab iron installation. There are few details added as well.

brake equipment

The San Juan AB brake equipment was connected with .019″ brass wire.  I used a Chooch brake rigging set (#211) to obtain the levers and San Juan brake clevis to add the rigging.

brake wheel

The Wilson car series apparently used a few different types of handbrakes.  I choose to install a Universal type salvaged off of a Lionel PS-1 boxcar.  The brake step came from the Chooch brake set as did the fulcrum.

The corner plates had poling pockets formed from .125″ plastic tubing. The striker is fairly involved design.  I started with a .020″ x .188″ strip and drilled for the two columns.  The striker block is .100″ x .060″.  It is a foot long.  The miter box comes in handy to make identical pieces such as the posts on the striker.


I started the process of bending and fitting the many grab irons on the car.  You may notice that I am using a finer wire (.0125″) instead of my normal .015″.   I made a small spacer strip .050″ thick to allow me to position each grab iron uniformly.

grab iron install

A End details

More details are next including the ice hatches and running boards.

Happy Trails,



8 thoughts on “MODELING: Wilson reefer receives brake equipment

  1. Gene, an excellent installment on your reefer progress. Thanks for giving the manufacturer and part numbers for your detail components–they are very helpful.


  2. Gene,
    yesterday I have written a comment to an excellent modeled Swift reefer and today I explore a brake installation where I miss a simple however very important part – the pipe connection from train line to triple valve. I’m a bit disappointed by this missing part on a well built model project.
    Here a sample how I prepared a very similar construction on a PFE R-70-2 Super Giant reefer – – a resin kit from Sunshine Model.
    You will find a lot more such brake installations on my website, all complete including the most missing pipe to retainer valve. Here a sample too –
    I think that you should do this small addition. Good succes with the model!

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