Empire Belt RR ALcos

Empire Belt RR ALcos
Custom Painted FA / FB Units

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Penn Central 10-6 Sleeper Car Project

Greetings All,

As my knowledge of railroading, model railroading and the prototypes that I model increases some of my older paint jobs no longer measure up to the later efforts. Whether it be due to quality of the work or new knowledge that the actual paint scheme on a specific car did not exist some of the older jobs are now ready for a redo.

Case in point is an A.H.M. 10-6 sleeper that I received as a throw in during an internet purchase. The car had been painted in the NYC 1938 20th Century scheme which was cool. A prior owner sanded most of the paint off which was not cool. So around 2010 I figured I'd make it a Penn Central sleeper and paint it silver with a jade green stripe thru the window band like some of the I.H.C. passenger cars I've seen. Sounded good and it looked pretty good for awhile. A few years later I bought two Walthers PC 10-6 sleepers in the PC passenger green. I gave them names and numbers that matched the prototype. All was well until I recently looked close and hard at the A.H.M. car. Now it's a much cheaper version of the 10-6 Sleeper Cars but I like using it with the two Walthers cars. So I looked at my available decals and PC photos on various internet sites with the idea of adding an appropriate name and /or repainting if necessary.

After looking and looking I realized that the PC (and the NYC for that matter) did not have this type of slab side car painted silver. OK. so here were my options. #1 Leave it as is. #2 repaint in PC passenger green. Not going to happen as I cannot find a match to that color and it would not look good with the Walthers PC 10-6 sleepers. #3 Repaint in two tone NYC gray. Nope, can't match the colors either.

Continued research led me some patched out brown PRR sleepers with PC decals. And I have decals for sleeper car names James Park Jr and Tioga Rapids available. I really liked the James Park Jr car shown here;
This car uses white PC decals which I have so I thought this was the perfect car for this project. But who was James Park Jr?

For this information I reached out to several fellow modelers and lo and behold John Bruce came through in the clutch; James Park Jr was a pioneer in the American steel trade. He was a generous benefactor and leading citizen of Pittsburgh. Thanks John!

Now that we have all that straightened out let's get down to the project.

A.H.M. 10-6 Sleeper at Empire City Station. 1/87th scale PC Ralph seems to be saying John you can do better!
The PC sleeper sandwiched between 1/87th scale Sir Neal's "Nassau County" and a NH baggage car
The Walthers PC 10-6 sleepers that started all the trouble.
The two Walthers cars with a NYC 4-4-2 sleeper car roll into Empire City Station several years ago. Look closely behind the NYC car and you can see the A.H.M. sleeper car.
The now flat brown A.H.M. 10-6 Sleeper

After painting the patch outs on the car the painters tape took some of the paint off when being removed. Here I tried to spray over it. No Good!
So I sanded down both sides and repainted
Success!! Repainted brown with patch outs and yellow stripes. 
 Very happy with the stripes and patch outs 
Penn Central decals and James Park Jr #4316 added 
 Window frames painted gray, interior and roof re installed the 'James Park Jr' 10-6 Sleeper is at Terminal Yard. Below the 1/87th scale gang check out the newest passenger car to come out of the paint shop. We can see Tower Operator 1/87th scale Larry D has his hand raised to ask the question on their collective 1/87th scale minds, 'who's James Park Jr'? 
 1/87th scale John B points to the name and gives the guys a lesson on James Park Jr. 
The new 10-6 sleeper right where I envisioned it rolls thru Bedford NY between the two Walthers 10-6 sleepers.
 On the lower level under the High Line leaving Empire City Station   
 In conclusion I am quite pleased with the results of this project. I like the way the car looks and it serves a purpose as well. Looking at the above photo we see the car on the lower level inside track between the two Walthers cars. By placing the A.H.M. car here with it's talgo mounted couplers it allows the train to negotiate the 22" radius curves that are on the inside track. 

Thanks for reading!!


  1. I don't about 1/87th scale PC Ralph, but I say the car turned out very well indeed. Nice to learn who James Park Jr, was so you can run the car with a full awareness of its significance. Nice one John B.! One of the enjoyable parts of the hobby is sharing information and learning about the prototype.

    1. Thanks Ralph! It was a nice project that worked out well with collaboration from our 1:1 rail fans and modelers.

  2. Hello John,

    Stumbled across this post while doing some family research. James Park Jr. was my great great grandfather. I had some knowledge of a railroad car named in his honor but this was quite a pleasant surprise. Where is this "project" being constructed? Best regards, Park Morrison

    1. Hello Park,

      Glad you came across the the blog post. The 'project' car is a 1/87th scale replica of the 1:1 car as that car looked around 1972. https://chuckmanchicagonostalgia.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/photo-chicago-train-penn-central-passenger-and-flat-cars-in-yard-aerial-1972.jpg
      I'm not sure what happened to the original car after that. The 1/87th scale model resides in my basement on my model railroad.