Thursday, July 30, 2009

CN Business Cars

CN operated a number of business cars for various company uses: track geometry and evaluation, rules instruction, entertaining shippers, and assigned to each region for official use by company officers. Bonaventure, shown trailing 24-roomette Invermay on the Super Continental at Portage la Prairie,Manitoba in 1978 was a stainless-steel business car. CN 6515 and VIA 6607 and 6502 were on the head-end (top photo and below). Read more in this postscript.
Here is Coureur des Bois (runner of the woods) in a rendition of the 1954 CN passenger scheme. Don't let the paint scheme fool you, this car is passing through Kingston in 1997, deadheading behind the power on CN No 308:
CN business cars ended up in VIA blue and yellow, sometimes with a small CN logo. In 1984, I photographed four CN business cars deadheading ahead of the caboose on a freight westbound from Winnipeg on CN's Rivers Sub. Note the unusual yellow-lettered car names, and complete absence of CN or VIA logos. Pierre de la Verendrye and David Thompson:
Coureur des Bois and Sandford Fleming:
Theatre-seating area of Sandford Fleming:
Tawaw is seen here fulfilling its role as a marketing/research car, in this case likely entertaining cars from the nearby Kingston Alcan aluminum plant. While spotted on Kingston's team track on April 11, 1989, the execs lunched on lobster.
The CN rep's Chrysler K-car is parked nearby. The large stencilled CN on Tawaw's end confirms that a VIA paint scheme does not necessarily a VIA car make:

CN 15015 is just ahead of the caboose on an eastbound freight approaching Kingston in March, 1980:
Later that year on June 20, 15110 and 92 were in that familiar position just ahead of the caboose, on an eastbound freight at Portage:
In the Ontario-Quebec corridor, business cars tacked on an intercity VIA train were a common sight. Here are a few sample consists:
February 11, 1990: 6540-6530-6 conventional cars-96.
June 13, 1990: 6450-6429-8118-8120-9640-Union Club-3253-5437-5621-3211-95-Sandford Fleming.
May 31, 1991: 6442-Allan Manor-5444-3219-5586-Saint James's Club-Chateau Salaberry-Chateau Varennes-94.
April 24, 1993: 6429-8621-3460-3319-3326-3359-3303-3305-94, westbound at Kingston as an eastbound freight approaches the station on the south track:
April 2, 1994: Tawaw and 94 were on the spur west of Toronto Union Station, near L'Hotel. 94 is shown on this spur on November 25, 1994:
Running extra...
Surprising even to me, following my last post on my Winnipeg Terminals layout, I decided to "move" the layout about 1200 miles west. It will be reborn and will depict CP's waterfront yard and operations along Burrard Inlet, as well as CN and BN interchange with CP, and the carferry service to Vancouver Island in the early 70's. Google "RR Horne" and you'll find some juicy, jaw-dropping photos of BC operations that convinced me to model urban operations in another busy Canadian city.
For the third day in a row, temps in BC exceeded 30 degrees Celsius. Reminds me of the time I rode in a VIA coach without functioning air conditioning up the Fraser River valley one sunny afternoon. Never had a better excuse to open up the Dutch door in the vestibule.


BArailsystem said...

That CN K-car was awesome! Great read Eric, for some reason I hadn't read this one yet.


Eric said...

Well, it's never too late to comment and you're the first, Ben.

The K-car was cool, but the stinky lobster tails on the ballast were not!

Thanks for your comment,