William F. Mantey wrote us recently with the following information and sources concerning the origin of the KCM&O box car which has caused so much speculation in our pages.
He quotes three pages from the Official Equipment Register in the years 1944, 1955 and 1958. The 1944 Register on page 148 lists the following cars as belonging to the Norfolk and Western, 41000 to 41995, class XM cars, steel, 42'3" in outside length, 8'2" top of eaves, 10'2" extreme width with door openings of 6' wide and 8'7" tall, and a 100000 lb. capacity, there being 979 cars in the set.
The 1955 Register on page 66 of the Norfolk and Western listing gives the same number of cars 41000 to 41995 with the same information but with only 40 cars now left in the set.
The 1958 Register of the Ferrocarril de Chihuahua al Pacifico, S.A. on page 478 lists cars for that railroad with the numbers 41,000 to 41,983, class XM, steel, 42'3" outside length with the other dimensions the same, there being 48 cars listed in this set.
The one thing which is not satisfactorily explained is the y/ & substitution, but as Dick Hendrickson suggests an N&W repaint would account for that. Also reporting marks do not seem to appear on the ends.
Being an avid Santa Fe modeler, Bill had to have one and the photo of his model is below. A Train Miniature X29 box car provided the framework, with the doors modified from Bachmann's as in Jeff Freeman's article in April 1979 PM. Decals were from the scrapbox.
If anyone else has a model of this car now in circulation, PM would certainly be interested in publishing it in our photo section.