Empire Belt RR ALcos

Empire Belt RR ALcos
Custom Painted FA / FB Units

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Wonder Bread Plant

Greetings Blog Followers,

Many many moons ago on a different layout at a different home I purchased and built two Walther's Red Wing Milling kits. One was built in the standard fashion with four side and a roof. The second was built as a building flat to place behind the first kit. At the time, thankfully, I only applied lettering to the standard kit.

Fast forward ten years, a new home and a new layout and the Walther's Red Wing Milling "Flat" had still to be named. As I am trying to incorporate some operations on the New York Central Train Layout it became obvious that trying to figure out the incoming and outgoing rail traffic to an industry without an identity was proving to be impossible for me. Then one day while communicating with Neal M. via TrainLife.com I sent him a picture of the building and asked him if he had any suggestions. Being a fellow New York native he responded back almost immediately "Wonder Bread". You see Wonder Bread was at one time rail served and was located in Jamaica, Queens near the Long Island Rail Road's busy Jamaica Station. An iconic building and a product from our youth it was the perfect name for the era and building. Neal sent me several links about the building including a link for signs. The more I read the more I liked.

The management of the New York Central Train Layout proudly announces it's newest on line customer....
"Wonder Bread"

Here is a 2012 view of the building flat in need of a name and identity

Here is the building with new signs One of the things I learned when researching rail customers served with covered hoppers is that the as built building needed a way to unload the covered hoppers.   

Here is the beginning stages of a simple covered hopper unloading spot. Note the 1/87th scale Neal M supervising the project

A look at the receiving spot for covered hoppers. For those unfamiliar with the process, covered hoppers are loaded from the top at the spot on the left. To unload, hoses are attached to control valves at the bottom of the car and the contents are basically vacuumed from the car. Note the 1/87th scale Neal M. has taken to the loading dock overhang to get a better over all view of the Empire City Train action.

A close up shot of the receiving spot for covered hoppers. Four hoses, a main trunk line that connects with the necessary machinery and tanks via underground piping. The fence is placed to prevent accidental spills from spreading out to the main lines.

 1/87th scale Neal M takes a look at the receiving spot. Seeing the amount of spilled grain and flour he is thankful that the containment fence was installed.

Custom painted New York Central H-16-44s deliver the first load to the new covered hopper receiving spot.

 1/87th scale Neal M checks out the new ladder for Wonder Bread Plant workers to get from the loading / unloading dock platform to the covered hopper hoses

Covered hoppers lined up for delivery /removal from the newly operational Wonder Bread Plant 

Cars being moved under the watchful eye of 1/87th scale Neal M. While the crew is somewhat nervous under Neal M's watchful eye they are also thankful for his efforts in getting this building to be a good online customer. 



  1. John, This is such a great scene you've made. Quite an accomplishment. The NYC would be proud and the new owners of Wonder Bread and Hostess should take a lesson from us model railroaders!! Great job!

  2. Wow John, these pictures really show off your hard work! Great job!

    1. Thank You very much for the positive comments Neal and Bryan. Much appreciated coming from fellow modelers and Train Lifers