Passenger car models; painting and lettering

Color & Lettering – Passenger Equipment

Several different shades of green were used by the different roads.

The SR&RL used Brunswick Green, see below.

The KC used Nelson Pullman Green — whatever that was.

A note on the roof coverings.

Gary Kohler in a response to the HOn30 group wrote;- All the documentation on equipment I have, or have seen, mentions tin roofs. This includes, loco, passenger and freight cars, etc., etc. The exception is the rail autos/buses. However, Red Lead roofs were typical of all.  At least one passenger car was rebuilt using canvas — note rebuilt. Although the MEC RPO 6 may have been built with a canvas roof. It would still be red. 

While many used Gold Leaf lettering, several WW&F cars used Aluminum Leaf lettering, but I am sure this changed. Towards the end, none of the cars were lettered!  excerpt from Brian Carter’s page information provided by Gary Kohler, take link for more details.

WW&F #6  Baggage/Mail/Smoker painting

Question: Anyone have the best color to paint this car circa 1915? The best I can find is coach green (any idea on that color) to freight car red. Also what color is chrome yellow? Thanks, Paul Buhrke

Wolf-Jobst Siedler provided this response;-This is an interesting question and I’ve thought about the answer for some time, too… But seriously: Unfortunately, I haven’t yet seen a photo of this car from that era. Apparently the noted 2-ft.-authorities also don’t have one either. The following notes come right out of memory as my 2-ft.-stuff is already packed for an upcoming move.  

What I have is a contact print from the original glass plate taken at the J&S plant. On this one, the car seems to be very dark. I believe this color was called pullman green. I think somebody (Gary K.?) once described it as a mix between dark green and black. Of course the fancy original lettering was there.

After Carson Peck bought the WW&F in 1906 it has been written that the passenger cars received a fresh coat of green paint. Once again, I haven’t seen any photos of the combine from that time, but there is one of matching coach “Vassalboro” (originally #5), showing it lettered as “WW&F _RY_” and numbered as “12”, thus dating the photo post-1906/7.

On this photo, the coach body is painted in a lighter color. This can’t be a negative or print deterioration, as the image also shows an engine tank, and this one is clearly painted in a very dark (probably black) color. The roof color can’t be determined easily, but is very light.   Contrary to the original appearance (where the clerestory window area was painted dark), roof and clerestory window area are painted the same color (!). It seems to be much lighter than the roof red found on the coach at the WW&F Museum (although I don’t know how close this is towards the original color). Therefore, I seriously believe the roof area might have been painted silver or aluminum…   I think the photos showing the Peck inspection train (taken around 1907?) support this.

The described photo (I think it has at least been published in Peter Barney’s WW&F volume) may also fit in your timeframe because the eastern (riverside) stall of the Wiscasset engine house had already received its rear doors (they weren’t in place when the building was built around 1906).

The statements of this car being painted (some sort of) yellow or freight car red belong IMO to later eras: When a group of railfans visited Albion around 1930 (photos are in the Sirman collection), #6 was painted in a noticeable lighter color than following passenger/RPO-combine 7. It seems to be a bit too light for being freight car red. This leads me to the conclusion that at that time #6 was just primed and put back into service. Compared to primer colors here in Germany, this could explain the yellow.

Towards the end of operations, #6 seems to have received a fresh coat of freight car red paint. There is a color slide of the overturned car bodies in Wiscasset’s upper yard showing this clearly.   Of course, I’m always interested in discussing other opinions.

SR&RL 17 & 18 ex SRRR 5 & 6

Chris McChesney provided this information from a Sandy River Railroad Museum article;- They found an area of the coach that had ORIGINAL green paint on it.  The area is the wood underneath the brass bell cord sleeves found at the end of the cars above the doors.  This color was the color applied at the Laconia car works.  The brass bell cord sleeve was applied later.  The article states that the original color is indeed best matched to Floquil’s “Brunswick Green.”


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