Friday, July 19, 2013

Ex-CP Smooth-Sides

VIA's ex-CP smooth-side coaches and baggage cars are one of my favourite early-VIA era subjects. I wanted to learn more about them, and I included what I learned in my second book. Of course, there's always more to learn, and this past week I was able to participate in a discussion of these cars. Specifically, were they in VIA service and did they receive a VIA paint scheme? Answers: Yes, and No.

Contributor Bruce Chapman was kind enough to contribute some fantastic photos for my book, showing some of the ex-CP baggage cars languishing at Montreal's Glen Yard. Notice how the maroon stripe below the windows (and letterboard at roofline) bled through the CP Rail silver paint, which was in turn covering the CPR maroon. While theoretically on VIA's roster, photos like the one above show us that these cars rarely if ever turned a wheel in VIA service. I included paint information, disposition and a roster in my book.

Wouldn't these cars have looked good with a blue VIA letterboard and yellow VIA logo? Unfortunately, due to their lack of mechanical capability with the rest of VIA's fleet, as well as other factors, they were early departees from the VIA roster, finding homes on regional railways and other new owners.


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Roll the Presses again

There's never a bad time to send a good email. In this case, it's to Bryan over at Allan Graphics, asking him to 'roll the presses' once again.  (Bryan knows I like using that saying, archaic though it may be in the digital age.)

My copies of Trackside with VIA: Cross-Canada Compendium have dwindled to the point where I need more.  This part of early summer has been filling my inbox with inquiries about more book orders.  I'm pleased that the interest is continuing, and yes, I have copies available.

A couple of sharp-eyed readers have pointed out errata that I'll be correcting in this new printing.  In a book of this size, it's a good sign that there are only a few revisions to make, all in the name of accuracy!


(Photo: Strobe light-equipped GM plus MLW power congregate at Spadina in June, 1980.)