McKeen Car

Jerry Barnes

Jerry Barnes

Garden Railways, Live Steam, Jukeboxes, Record Col
27 Oct 2009
832
13
USA-central Nebraska
thescrr.com
These were made in Omaha, NE around 1900 to have a cheaper way to run passengers/freight not using a steam engine. They were gasoline powered. I had made one from plastic years ago a friend made some shells from metal and I got one to work on. I also got a Aristo FA diesel to use the trucks to power it, probably wtih battery power. There are some welded seats inside and it has a nice cast brass pilot. The rest is up to you to complete.
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PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
22,702
229
Tamworth, Staffs.
Looks interesting.. Do you have picture of the prototype?

That second picture.. You could put masts (and sails) on it.. ;):giggle::giggle:
 
Zerogee

Zerogee

Clencher's Bogleman
25 Oct 2009
16,502
51
North Essex
Looks interesting.. Do you have picture of the prototype?

That second picture.. You could put masts (and sails) on it.. ;):giggle::giggle:
Haha, that was exactly my first thought on seeing the pic too.... I thought someone was building a model paddle steamer, and wondered why it was on here? ;)

On further inspection.... looks a fascinating model, Jerry, and I second PhilP's interest in some prototype photos (my google-fu is weak today...).

Jon.
 
Zerogee

Zerogee

Clencher's Bogleman
25 Oct 2009
16,502
51
North Essex
OK, not all that weak.... I should have just bothered to try in the first place...


Weird and fascinating! Not being a US-profile enthusiast I wasn't familiar with these at all....

Jon.
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
22,702
229
Tamworth, Staffs.
Ah!
My search had an 'L' in it! :rolleyes::shake:

Looks really 'top-heavy', with lost of daylight under it. - Guess they did not travel fast?

The 'power-bogie' looks tiny.. Until you spot the picture with the works-crew next to it, and the 'car' up in the air.

Very 'steam-punk' looking.
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik
27 Oct 2009
24,428
290
North West Norfolk
The drawback wit these vehicle model-wise is their length o_O

However, i believe the odd specimen turned up on narrow gauge lines (3ft) :nod::nod:

Now that's an excuse to have another look through my books >:)>:)
 
P

Paradise

Registered
28 Jan 2010
577
41
WOW! Ahead of it's time in some ways. The streamlined axe head front, sunken passenger entry and the portholes preempting the luxury shipping era to come in the 20's.
That cow catcher could bounce the strays back into the paddock. :)
One restored was saved and restored by the initiation of a 15 year old. Interesting history vid below.


 
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Scot Lawrence

Scot Lawrence

Registered
30 May 2018
64
10
50
Rochester, NY USA
A local shortline in my area (Finger Lakes region of central NY state) had two of them in the early 20th century.
I have considered making a model of one! someday..
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Tas devil

Registered
7 Oct 2015
119
5
67
Tasmania
The drawback wit these vehicle model-wise is their length o_O

However, i believe the odd specimen turned up on narrow gauge lines (3ft) :nod::nod:

Now that's an excuse to have another look through my books >:)>:)
I didn’t know about 3ft gauge versions- interesting. I did know that 2 were used by Victorian Railways in Australia, so would have been 5 foot 3 inch gauge. They were considered very unreliable, and only lasted 3 years or so in service.
cheers

Peter Mack
 
idlemarvel

idlemarvel

Registered
13 Jul 2015
1,586
67
Ascot
P

Paradise

Registered
28 Jan 2010
577
41
Queensland Australia had 5 McKeen Railcars on their 3'6" narrow gauge and Victoria Australia had 2 on a few of their 5'3" broad gauge country lines.
The VR broad gauge ones had buffers fitted and also had a different passenger entry compatible with the high platforms on the VR network. They only lasted a few of years due to unreliability and high running cost, eventually having motors removed and used as passenger cars on a suburban line.

McKeen railmotors

Victorian Railways McKeen Rail Motor Cars Operating Manual.
VR McKeen Cars - Operating Manual




 
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idlemarvel

idlemarvel

Registered
13 Jul 2015
1,586
67
Ascot
The more I look at this thing the weirder it gets.
It seems to have one driving axle on the front bogie (so is it an A1'2?) and a "cow-catcher" and driving position at the front only which implies it was designed to travel in one direction, so it would need (quite a big) turntable or reversing loop / wye to operate.
 
P

Paradise

Registered
28 Jan 2010
577
41
The more I look at this thing the weirder it gets.
It seems to have one driving axle on the front bogie (so is it an A1'2?) and a "cow-catcher" and driving position at the front only which implies it was designed to travel in one direction, so it would need (quite a big) turntable or reversing loop / wye to operate.
Yep. They had to be turned around. :nod:
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik
27 Oct 2009
24,428
290
North West Norfolk
Oh, you've made me go and get the books out now.

But no, it was the Virginia and Truckee that I have pictures of, and that was standard gauge .......... petrol (gasoline) powered.