MODELING: Tribute Modeling

I would guess that most of us have come across a person who has left a lasting impression upon you.  Jim Zwernmann felt that way about Frank Peacock who was a friend and astute historian of railroads.  Sadly we lost Frank in December 2021.  Frank gave some of his massive photo collection to Jim before passing.  Recently Jim decided to build a car that both Frank and he admired.  It is a St.Louis Southwest (SSW) work caboose.   The car appears to be a cutdown boxcar that might have been used in wrecker service.

I think you can see how it might appeal to modelers and historians.   Jim decided to build the car for his collection and as an entry in the annual O Scale event in the Chicago area.  He has collected a number of first place and best of show awards participation in the March Meet contest.

Here is an overall shot of the scratchbuilt car.  Like most of Jim’e cars, this was built from styrene almost exclusively except for trucks and couplers.

This shot gives you a sense of the construction approach.  Adding grain effect to the styrene creates the illusion of old wood found in vintage cars of the the era. Precision and neatness are hallmarks of Jim’s modeling.

The underrame is typical of wood frames with truss rods to support the load.  Since there weren’t any detailed photos of the prototype available, Jim built a tradiitonal style using designs common in the early 1900s.


Here is the completed car in Jim’s P48 layout.  The angle showns the interesting pattern of weathering on the metal roofing.

Thanks for stopping by and seeing Jim Zwernemann’s Proto48 modeling.

Gene Deimling


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