Re: Walthers' Super Chief set

On Mon, 10 Nov 2003 18:57:01 -0600, Rick Jones

My friend who models Santa Fe is drooling over these cars. He noted that the Super Chief carried coast to coast sleepers off the 20th Century and Broadway, and asked if I had any more info on those cars.

"Night Trains" by Maiken, in its wonderful nose count of all Pullmans at a midnight in March 1952, indicates the Chief then carried a 4-4-2 and 10-6 from the Century, a 4-4-2 from the Broadway, and a 10-6 from the Capital Limited. Maiken indicates the B&O transcontinental service ended by the mid-1950's, the PRR service in late 1957, the NYC in April 1958, and that by the end of the transcontinental service, the ATSF portion was on the Super Chief instead of the Chief.

Stegmaier's "B&O Passenger Service Vol 2" indicates the B&O car was always an ATSF "Palm" or "Pine", and that it shifted from the Capital Limited to the Shenandoah on Jan 10, '54 because of the ATSF change from Chief to Super Chief. Is this also the date when the coast to coast cars shifted from the Chief to the Super Chief?

"Broadway Limited" by Rosenbaum & Gallo indicates the coast to coast assigned 4-4-2's were ATSF Naslini, Polacca, Mohave, & Tchirege and the PRR Imperial Pass, - Park, and - Point.

My 20th Century sources are more limited. I'm guessing the NYC 10-6's would be smooth side "River" cars and the 4-4-2's refurbished "Imperial" cars, and that these also were in pool rotation with similar ATSF cars. Can anyone add to this?

From this, I conclude a 1954 to 1957 model of the Super Chief could correctly be all stainless, or include up to 1 tuscan and 2 gray sleepers, depending on the pooled car rotation. Any corrections? Gary Q

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Gareth Quale
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I'm going to go way out on a limb here and say, no. I have tons of pictures of the Chief with NYC & PR cars in it and lots of writings in books to back that up. But I have never ever seen a photo or read anywhere of the Super Chief (or El Capitan for that matter) with a foreign car in it. Just knowing how picky the managment of the Super Chief was I can't imagine they would let the visual image of their crack train be diminshed a car that didn't match. Now if the NYC or PR ran a silver car to transfer it may have been different.

For a time the Super Chief continued to run behind the really old E6's even though they required a helper over Raton, while lesser trains like the Chief behind Fs or the California limited behind the PAs didn't. Why? I am speculating they didn't want the rear facing war bonnet to spoil the solid streamline look. On this point I know they did make exceptions, because I have a few pictures of the Passenger FTs on the point.

In the hundreds of times I personally saw the Super Chief go by (mostly Lamar & Granada Colorado), I never saw it with any cars other than the standard silver set. Of course my personal sightings were way after (1964-1970) the appropriate time for this. But the point being they had enough cars to fill the train themselves. Totally side note - I do know that the Super Chief actually stopped in Granada (a non-scheduled station) once. So there are always exceptions. My favorite train was a numbered train #23? It always came by early in the morning while we were feeding the animals, or digging irregation trenches. It always had a facinating mixture of cars in it.

So all the Santa Fe experts can now tear my theory to shreds.....

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