My model railroading activity has been almost non-existent lately. I did however get a few packages in the mail recently that have sparked my interest. That, and a mild forecast for the next several days and perhaps longer is motivating me to get back into my hobby. My fascination with the 86' big ugly's has led me to collecting other hi-cube boxcars.
LBF made a nice 60' version which is long gone now in N scale, but you can still find them on ebay. I weathered a TTX and a BNSF several months ago, and found a set of 5 more painted for NS. I have the trucks off of them and will be fading them soon I hope. They didn't cost a lot and will add variation to my manifest trains. I also found a few shorter LBF 50' hi-cube boxcars in CNW paint and CHTT. I found these brand new online. The cost again was appealing, and they come with Micro Trains trucks which is worth a lot just by themselves.
I picked up a half dozen Exactrail hi-cube cars as well. First, I found a CN version which has been sold out for some time now, and was a great find in my opinion. The rest of the batch were all TTX, and the latest run by Exactrail. I was pleasantly surprised to see the model has been upgraded to body mounted couplers.
Lastly, I picked up a BN 86' box which I plan to destroy with fading, graffiti, and lots of rust. I also bought several more sets of Blair Line graffiti decals (not pictured). I found I like these better than the MicroScale graffiti decals.
So overall, not a lot to brag about as far as actual modeling progress, but lots of goodies to add to my already overweight project collection. Hopefully I'll get around to working a few of these models in the upcoming days.
Here is a comparison shot of an original run and a current run Exactrail 50' TTX hi-cube. The car hasn't changed much, but a nice improvement is the body-mounted couplers. The paint and lettering seem to be a bit more crisp, which was about perfect anyway.