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Re: Cumbre & Toltec Coaches

March 15, 2017 11:08AM avatar
As info, the D&S received all the historic cars (San Juan, 212, 126, etc.) as mentioned from the DRGW, in addition to coaches 330-337 that were built by the DRGW at their Burnham Shops in Denver in 1963. These are steel cars that were built to the same historic look so as to fit in with the historic cars already in use. Also, the DRGW constructed (at Burnham) open observation cars (400-405) in 1963 and 1967. These were cars constructed from former DRGW standard gauge cars. Trucks for both these and the 300 cars were donated from retired and sold DRGW passenger cars, such as the 280 and 284 as well as former passenger equipment that were converted to work train service. In my mind, all of these cars are historic as they were built for or by the DRGW between 1880 and the end of DRGW service in 1981.

Now, the D&S. After Mr. Bradshaw purchased the railroad in 1981, it was determined that more passenger equipment would be needed. Between 1982 and 1986, 10 new open observation cars, patterned after the DRGW cars, were built by the D&S in the new D&S car shops. In addition, 3 new coaches were built (630, 631, 632) as well as a new combination car (213) between 1984-86. These cars were patterned similar to the DRGW 330 cars, with steel frames constructed at Telluride Iron Works in Durango. Unlike the all steel DRGW cars, they were finished out with wood siding by the D&S car shop. All were fitted with new passenger car trucks constructed by the D&S.

The D&S also took some of the former passenger cars that were converted to work service (257, 270, 291) and purchased other historic DRGW cars from private owners (311, 566, 64) and completely rebuilt them to their historic appearance between 1981-86. The 2 Vista cars came along later.

Being a private company (both DRGW and D&S), they had the money and the unlimited resources to operate, maintain and build new equipment that was similar to the historic cars or open cars to fit their needs and demand. The C&TS, being a state owned operation, did not have those luxury’s at the time and made do with what they could using the limited resources at hand.
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