My Northern Pacific Butte Montana Layout.

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All I meant was that determining a grade from that photo was difficult for me as I was unfamiliar with the layout.

Yesterday I had to run down to my sons house to look at his new toy, a fishing boat. On the way I decided to stop and take some photos of the two Northern Pacific Cabooses used as show pieces for the towns they are in. The first is a Series 1000 to 1049 tall cupola caboose. It has been painted for the Burlington Northern and is numbered 11368. I would like to decipher what Northern Pacific caboose this one is.

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Cupola end.

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11368 is located in the small community of Verndale, MN. This caboose has some differences from the Northern Pacific version it originally was in that there is plate steel welded to the end rails on both ends. Also as some point in time the wood roof walk was replaced by a metal roof walk. The small window on this side view above would be where the Hopper Toilet would be.


The none Cupola end.


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This caboose is one of the newer 1049/1099 series cabooses. It was built with a shorter cupola. This is the opposite side of the caboose from 11368, showing where the two windows are placed. This caboose is located in Staples Minnesota, the first division point west of the twin cities. Note that when the city of Staples Minnesota did some maintenance on this caboose, the turned the Smoke Jack 90 degrees from the way it should be. The cover should be 90 degrees from the direction of travel.

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There is no road number visible on this caboose, however, the end railings are correct for the Northern Pacific era. These cabooses where built in the very early 1950s, the tall cupola cabooses where built first.

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I have used Athearn Cupola Cabooses to Kit-Bash into both of these styles of cabooses and am considering doing another of the tall cabooses for a potential article in Model Railroader if I can be instructed in what they want as far as photos for the article are concerned.
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Can anyone else who has written articles for Model Railroader describe the process? We are getting close to closing the season down at the lake and I will start spending more time back home, here. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to