My View from the Caboose

My View from the Caboose

Railroad preservation, restoration and history - and more!
Welcome
A freshly painted D&RGW 3148, Bendena, Kansas. August 15, 2015. Welcome to my blog. I’ve always been interested in trains, but it wasn’t until 1999 that I got St. Joseph and Grand Island Caboose 48....

Welcome

A freshly painted D&RGW 3148, Bendena, Kansas. August 15, 2015.
A freshly painted D&RGW 3148, Bendena, Kansas. August 15, 2015.

Welcome to my blog. I’ve always been interested in trains, but it wasn’t until 1999 that I got St. Joseph and Grand Island Caboose 48. I had worked on restoration projects for city governments and private individuals, but this car was the first car I owned. Over the years, as I got involved in more projects professionally, I ended up with the cars I have now. It’s a little difficult to keep railroad cars on your property along the Front Range of Colorado, which is one of the reasons I moved with my family to VERY rural Northeast Kansas. People ask all the time what I use the railroad cars for (a museum? a restaurant? what?) but they are just my hobby. Now I combat the elements to keep the railroad cars in good shape. I started this blog to share the progress I’m making, and to share some articles and stories I find interesting.

Along with the railroad cars, I also started the restoration of a 1923 Model T.

GPG 2c

Above (or at the end of this page, depending on what device you’re using to view this), you’ll see links to the different sections of this blog. Who knows what else might show up here.

The north side of the depot, July 2016. This is the same side as seen in the 2012 view in its original location. The brick walkway in front was made from bricks salvaged from the depot’s original foundation.
The north side of the depot, July 2016. This is the same side as seen in the 2012 view in its original location. The brick walkway in front was made from bricks salvaged from the depot’s original foundation.
A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part V; The Life & Times of D&RGW 1646
D&RGW 1646 was built in December of 1903 by American Car & Foundry of St. Louis, Missouri. No. 1646 was right about the middle of...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part V; The Life & Times of D&RGW 1646"
A Tale of Two Gondolas Part IV; the Life & Times of D&RGW 768
Denver & Rio Grande Western drop bottom gondola No. 768 was built in 1904 by American Car & Foundry as part of a group of...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas Part IV; the Life & Times of D&RGW 768"
A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part III; The cars arrive. Now what?!?!
The two cars were moved to Como on July 26 and 27, and I got my first good look at them on August 2 when...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part III; The cars arrive. Now what?!?!"
A tale of two gondolas Part II – Pick a car, any car. Just not that car…
By early July, planning for moving the cars from Florence was underway and everything was going along well. Then I got a call from the...
Read More "A tale of two gondolas Part II – Pick a car, any car. Just not that car…"
A Tale of Two Gondolas; Part I
It started out simply enough; a chance to preserve a Denver & Rio Grande Western narrow-gauge railcar in a completely original state, essentially untouched since...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas; Part I"
The Lifespan of a Boxcar Floor
When wooden railroad cars were the industry standard, it was generally accepted that the cars had a 20 to 25 year lifespan. A major rebuilding...
Read More "The Lifespan of a Boxcar Floor"
A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part V; The Life & Times of D&RGW 1646
D&RGW 1646 was built in December of 1903 by American Car & Foundry of St. Louis, Missouri. No. 1646 was right about the middle of...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part V; The Life & Times of D&RGW 1646"
A Tale of Two Gondolas Part IV; the Life & Times of D&RGW 768
Denver & Rio Grande Western drop bottom gondola No. 768 was built in 1904 by American Car & Foundry as part of a group of...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas Part IV; the Life & Times of D&RGW 768"
A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part III; The cars arrive. Now what?!?!
The two cars were moved to Como on July 26 and 27, and I got my first good look at them on August 2 when...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part III; The cars arrive. Now what?!?!"
A tale of two gondolas Part II – Pick a car, any car. Just not that car…
By early July, planning for moving the cars from Florence was underway and everything was going along well. Then I got a call from the...
Read More "A tale of two gondolas Part II – Pick a car, any car. Just not that car…"
A Tale of Two Gondolas; Part I
It started out simply enough; a chance to preserve a Denver & Rio Grande Western narrow-gauge railcar in a completely original state, essentially untouched since...
Read More "A Tale of Two Gondolas; Part I"
The Lifespan of a Boxcar Floor
When wooden railroad cars were the industry standard, it was generally accepted that the cars had a 20 to 25 year lifespan. A major rebuilding...
Read More "The Lifespan of a Boxcar Floor"
C&S 8027 Part IV
It’s a boxcar again - now what? Why, move it to Kansas, of course. By late 2010, C&S 8027 was looking pretty good. While there...
Read More "C&S 8027 Part IV"

A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part V; The Life & Times of D&RGW 1646

D&RGW 1646 was built in December of 1903 by American Car & Foundry of St. Louis, Missouri. No. 1646 was right about the middle of a group of 400 gondolas, numbered 1500 to 1899 built for the Rio Grande between November 1903 and January 1904. No. 1646 cost the railroad …

A Tale of Two Gondolas Part IV; the Life & Times of D&RGW 768

Denver & Rio Grande Western drop bottom gondola No. 768 was built in 1904 by American Car & Foundry as part of a group of 100 cars intended to haul coal. In its original configuration, the drop doors were operated by long levers on the ends of the car. Beginning …

A Tale of Two Gondolas, Part III; The cars arrive. Now what?!?!

The two cars were moved to Como on July 26 and 27, and I got my first good look at them on August 2 when I came back to Como for a track workday. 1646 looked good at first, then I climbed the side and looked inside to see that …

A tale of two gondolas Part II – Pick a car, any car. Just not that car…

By early July, planning for moving the cars from Florence was underway and everything was going along well. Then I got a call from the group that I was purchasing 1083 from. They told me that apparently the owner of one of the sites in Florence where the cars were …

A Tale of Two Gondolas; Part I

It started out simply enough; a chance to preserve a Denver & Rio Grande Western narrow-gauge railcar in a completely original state, essentially untouched since it last ran over Cumbres Pass in a freight train over half a century ago. While D&RGW narrow gauge freight cars are not exactly uncommon, …