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Catalog  >  Model Kits  >  Rolling Stock

GN Cascadian Observation Car - HO Scale
GN Cascadian Observation Car - HO Scale
GN 1064 on the Cascadian GN 1064 on the Cascadian GN equipment diagram

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Produced by Bethlehem Car Works

GN Cascadian Observation Car 1063 - 1064

This kit represents Great Northern café-observation cars numbered 1063 and 1064. These cars operated on the Cascadian (Trains 5 and 6), GN's daylight train between Seattle and Spokane, from 1937 until 1954.

They were received in March 1911 from the Barney & Smith Car Company as compartment observation cars with grooved sheath siding, arch windows and truss-rod wooden frames. Their original numbers were 9026 and 9031, respectively. Both cars received steel sheathing and steel center sills at the Jackson Street Shops in 1923. In 1925 they were renumbered as 910 and 913, respectively. In 1926 they were renumbered again as 1110 and 1113. They were rebuilt as café-observations 1063 and 1064 in 1934 and 1933, respectively.

Both were air conditioned in 1937. It should be noted that in revenue service the cars did have different trucks. Both had six-wheel trucks but 1063 had trucks with an 11’ 0” wheelbase (5’ 6” between axles) while 1064 had trucks with a 10’ 6” wheelbase (5’ 3” between axles).

In 1956 and 1957 the cars were renumbered into maintenance service equipment as O3148 ( a kitchen-diner-office car) and O3154 (a tool-material car), respectively. In maintenance service, both cars lasted into the Burlington Northern era. The cars were sold to Luria Brothers (a scrapper) in 1976 and 1979, respectively.

Photographic evidence indicates that up until the late 1940's (after the streamlined Empire Builder was received) the cars were lettered in gold leaf with "Cafe Coach" on the sides above the car numbers. From about 1950 on they were lettered in dulux gold streamlined style lettering with "Cafe Observation" above the car numbers. Since they did not go into maintenance service until 1956 and 1957, they most likely were painted mineral red with white lettering.

The Kit

The kit has etched brass sides on a Branchline core kit.

More Information

Information on these cars can be found in GNRHS Reference Sheet 382 (June 2013). Copies are available (see column on the right).

Model and photos courtesy of Ken Middleton.

Customer Reviews

Review by  Ray Zeffert
(posted on March 25, 2017)
Kit is is well detailed but is let down a bit by the instructions. It would be nice to have dimensions regarding the Obs end, it also mentioned a milled end but it is not in my kit. Would like to hear from any other modeller who has built this kit.
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