Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Models from the Display Room at RPM East


The image above is Moynihan Hall at Penn Station from the start of my journey to this year's RPM East. I took Amtrak and thoroughly enjoyed the trip with no driving on the claustrophobic Penna Turnpike. The meet was held at a new location this year, Westmoreland County Community College. The facilities were quite good and the model display room was the best lit one I have ever seen. It made squinting at details quite a bit easier. The modeling was some of the best I have seen at an RPM. On to the models... all mistakes in names, comments, etc., are mine!

Adam Chilcote of Plate C displayed numerous fine models, including this Tangent 60' GSC flat with AMB laser cut deck, Moloco draft gear, Plate C Peacock hand brake and cushion return springs, K4 and Microscale decals, Sergent couplers and a scratchbuilt 3D printed load. Whew!

Adam scratchbuilt this Cumberland Valley GE gondola

Adam started with an Intermountain tank car frame and added a 3D printed tank, dome, and dome platform detailed with PSC stanchions, Yarmouth steps, Tahoe trucks and Microscale decals

Adam removed the fishbelly from the sides on a Tangent gon to replicate one of the WM's straight side sill gondolas

Matt Hurst's presentation at the meet was about Supplee milk cars and the Huntingdon & Broad Top. He showed off these fine cars to supplement his talk

Matt also displayed this beautiful and highly inventive replica of a PRR X24 auto car that started as a BLI PRR stock car! Kudos for a job well done 

Chip Syme had several models on display including this ACFX "candy striper" tank car 

Chip also brought this PC flat car with Manitowoc load

Dave Owens of Northeast RPM fame had a ton of fire equipment models on display from Magnuson, Ralph Ratcliffe, Athearn, and others

Jackson Glazer modeled this ex-Santa Fe Guilford SD26

John Frantz modeled a Conrail/PC ex-PRR GLa hopper using a Rapido model as the starting point

Local modeler Dennis Lippert had a large selection of models in the display room, including this N&W/Fruit Growers car

Bob Meier displayed this late 60s big Alco in Reading livery

Eric Hansmann ably carried the torch for the pre-Depression era with this D&H Seley hopper using a private run resin mit

Mike Niedzalkoski, perhaps the person traveling the shortest distance to the meet, showed off this N scale Walthers model of Penn Central 3215, a snack bar car rebuilt from a NYC 64-seat coach. Yes, the interior is detailed! 

Mike Hauk presented a clinic on modeling PRR X29 and B&O M-26A and -B box cars and brought along fine models to illustrate his topic

John Flanigan IV used two Bowser hoppers to replicate this WM homebuilt wood chip car. It was lettered with decals from Mt. Vernon Shops

Jack Consoli brought along this in-progress 'bash of a Montour Mikado based upon a Rivarossi B&O S1 class 2-10-2. There's a lot of work here including turning down the drivers to get correct 57" ones, modifying the frame and pilot, and updating other details

Jim Panza showed off this F68CH TTX flat car based upon a Scale Trains model, including plate steel load

Bernie Kempinski displayed some of his stunning Civil War era modeling efforts

Jason Mauser custom painted and detailed this to replicate a PC E8 

Tim Moffat built this model of a Pittsburgh Railways 4200-series car from drawings

Prolific resinator Dennis Williams had numerous models on display, including this Sunshine PRR X37B

Will Jamison scratchbuilt and then made resin copies of the covers to add to this P&LE gon based upon a Proto2000 model

Will also presented a fascinating clinic about the Mather MIne and how he is scratchbuilding a model of it. The preparation plant is shown here

Steve Salotti used a Westerfield kit to replicate Santa Fe class Sk-P stock car 52786

Gus Minardi displayed this very long and amazing replica of the Pennsy TrucTrain. The three locos are P2K GP-30s with PRR-specific details and Microscale decals. The F39 flat cars are Walthers and Overland models with Middle Division decals. The trailers are scratchbuilt, kitbashed, RTR and kits. The N8 cabin is a custom painted brass Alco Models offering

Bob Cronin also had several vehicles and trailers on display

Bob used Resin Car Works parts to model this P&E hopper
Brian Carlson added a nice load and weathered this Tangent PRR G31B

Darrall Swift displayed this scratchbuilt CB&Q box car with Moloco ends. If anyone knows the source of the roof ribs, please leave a comment (unless they're removed from a commercial PS roof!)

Hunter Hughson showed off this in progress PRR rebuilt X29G based on an F&C X29D with new side sill and detailed underframe

Kaylee Zheng displayed this in progress model of a proto freelance Amherst Belt Lines SW1500 using an Athearn Blue Box model as the starting point

John Ainsworth had a display of his 45 years of scratchbuilding in brass, including this Frisco 2-8-2 built in 2009 on a cut-down United frame and mechanism

Tom Haag had a ton of fine models on display. This DT&I 50' PS-1 began as a Kadee undec car that was redetailed, painted, and lettered with K4 decals

For this model, Tom started with a Tangent PC G41A, relettered the hoods to represent earlier ones and used a Walthers coil load

Tom Devenny weathered a Walthers GSC flat car to produce CGW 3011

John Brown displayed his impressive scratchbuilt model of the C&O freight station at Thurmond, WV

Terry Kolenc modified an Athearn blue box car to replicate a UP A-50-15 with a raised roof for service from Boeing in Wichita to Seattle 

Scooter Hovanec produced these beautifully weathered models of railbox and WC cars

Andrew Raith brought this scratchbuilt CNW gon


  1. Great models Ted, thanks for photographing and sharing

  2. Thanks for this great report and photos Ted. I agree, the new venue was fantastic. I understand we had 215 participants from 21 states!

  3. Great write up Ted, 2023 RPM East was a a fantastic meet indeed!

  4. Yes, Darrall's roof panels are shaved from a commercial roof --- one by one --- no casting copies!

  5. Ted - fantastic collection of photos. Much appreciated!


Comments always welcome!