IHC Passenger Cars

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by justind, Nov 2, 2001.

  1. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    What do you recommend?

    It would seem that there are a number of you who are not particularly satisfied with your IHC passenger cars. Is there something else you would purchase if you had it to do again?

    I have bought nothing yet ( I know that I am going to get a set of Oscar and Piker for Christmas !! ) as I'm not sure what is good and what to avoid, except maybe IHC.

  2. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    After I posted my question about which passenger cars you prefer I remembered that I had am old passenger car I bought in 1961 and had stashed away.

    My question here has to do with appearance, not of the old undec car, but about the very short piece of curve it is sitting on in the picture. This is the only place on my entire layout that I am concerned about having tied in a curve that is unrealistic. It looks just fine with "normal" freight cars and all of my limited motive power, but I'm just not sure about a passenger car. It is probably academic anyway as I would have to make some major modifications to change it, but I would also like to learn if I have made a mistake :)

    What do you think?


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  3. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member


    Hello George:

    Your turn looks ok to me. I was told that a 32" raduis is idea for IHC cars. However, you can get away with 22" raduis track. In this picture you will see Atlas's 22" raduis as an "S" turn. I had many problems to get it to work. After the bugs were gone, it just looks funny! :)


    To answer your question if I like IHC cars? There ok, but is there anything better. I want Rock Island!

    Happy Thanksgiving!
  4. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member


    Don't know what happen? Here's the picture!


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  5. IMRL393

    IMRL393 Member

    "To answer your question if I like IHC cars? There ok, but is there anything better. I want Rock Island! "

    - Andy

    Andy (and all) - I've just bought some Walthers Budd silver RI cars, the passenger and the diner. So far, I'm very impressed !

    The quality is far above that of IHC (at least, the "normal" ones - I have the PS corrugated sides models in passenger and observation - don't any of the "heavyweights" to compare).

    Although the ROCK used a lot of Pullman Standard cars, they DID use some Budd. There are photos of the passenger and diner Budd cars in the "Rock Island Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment" by Hile, Hickcox and Miller (also available from Walthers).

    From what I have read, each RR had their own minor design changes, so it would be impossible for Walthers to mirror each road exactly. For example, I've read that the Walthers passenger car is closest to AT&SF, and the diner another road, but that is probably true for the IHC cars as well.

    I plan to use these cars with my IHC observation car and my P2K E8A to make a "Quad City Rocket" consist. Walthers is coming out with a Budd baggage car next year - might add it, too!

    Anyhoo, there IS another choice, at least for silver!

    - George B (aka IMRL393)

    (Not to be confused with that fine gentleman, George! My old Dad said that "even an act of Congress" couldn't make ME a gentleman - he had noticed that the government had deleted that part from "modern" - read Viet Nam era - officer commissions! His WW2 Navy commission had made HIM one - that, and being a Southerner, of course!)

  6. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member


    You know, by George, you are absolutely right. All these years I thought I was a gentleman and I just took a closer look at my original commission (1959, Ike was President) and nowhere is the word used. It talks about patriotism (thats become a popular word again), valor, fidelity and abilities. but nothing about a gentleman :)

    Oh well. I guess I never did spend any time trying to act like one, so no loss here!

  7. George

    George Member

    Greetings, Y'all!

    IHC. Well, they certainly have those of us on a budget over a barrel, don't they?

    Let's look back. AHM > Rivarossi > IHC. How many of you are aware of this progression? I purchased my first AHM coach around 1969 when there was a selction of perhaps 5 roadnames at most. The run from those molds went right up to before this new ACF based run of smoothside passnger cars. What made these cars exceptional years ago, was that they featured METAL WHEELS, insulated on one side for interior lighting, not the junky plastic they use now.

    I spoke to one of the owners of IHC several years ago about this unfortunate change in the product, and he defended the decision to chince on wheels to "Hold down the cost per unit." I countered; "Keep the quality, and charge the consumer." My idea didn't fly with him.

    Do I like IHC cars? Sure I do. I can now purchase, for the first time in plastic, a full length ACF smooth side diner and dome. The old IHC dome was a Budd replica. Until this run, brass was the the only choice, and I'm not an orthodontist, as I like to tease... We should praise IHC for the nearly full variety of roadnames, her to fore were only available to those with air brushes, decals and raw talent.

    Constructive criticism to IHC, go back to the metal wheel sets of "yesteryear". Return to one piece molded interiors, and while we're at it, how about a new type of glazing/roof assembly?

    The glazing is glued to the roof. The assembly is released by pushing on tabs on the bottom. If you don't get the tabs just right, simultaneously, the vocabulary slides into something unacceptable in church.:mad:

    Wouldn't it be nice if you could remove the roof separately, and have the window glazing sandwiched between the exterior wall, and an interior wall? That's how it is in reality. The interior wall would add some sorely needed weight, and it would be easier to detail the interior, access for added lighting, as well as an easy way to show off the interior to visitors. And while we're at it, how about CLEAR plastic for the windows to view the interior, instead of this fogged up snow-day look with semi-frosted glazing?

    I haven't seen the Walther's cars yet, but want to get a few. At over US$30 dollars per car, it had better have a convincing diaphragm, interior, and constant lighting.

    If that curve is too tight, but looks right for your freight, you have created an ideal freight spur. Try and move the station. "S" curves are only found around marshes and along mountain sides and river banks. They're usually broad for speed, and to prevent your passengers from spilling their Pepsi on themselves!

    Try to think realistically when laying track, and if the curve is too tight, cover it with a tunnel, hide it with a string of buildings, or even a backdrop.

    Do I like IHC? Yes. For the first time in years, we have a full length curved ended smooth side observation car. I prefer the previous run of smooth side cars, but HEY! There's ACF fans out there who were bound to brass for their wants, and we need the variety, so deal with it for a few years! What I don't like are small issues as the roof assembly, plastic wheels, and personally, I don't care for the gun-slit ACF style windows on the new run of cars.

    Face it. We all like IHC, but like EVERYTHING in life, there is always room for improvement.:)
  8. justind

    justind Member

    no worries

    Bob, I wouldn't worry about that curve. As long as your trackwork is good I bet you can run anything you want across it as long as you remeber to keep the scenery down around the curve so yoru car doesn't grab things. Despite what people say I can run the IHC that I have on 18" radius all day w/o derailing it. That might change once I tighten the trucks...
  9. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Bob, After studying your picture of your curve it looks a little sharp.The over hang on your passenger car give it away.but since that is a athearn car you should be fine.As these cars are not full lenght and was made for the athearn train sets of the 50s and the begining of the 60s.the sets came with 18"r curves,which the cars ran on with out any problems.:D
  10. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    Thanks Brakie. I don't think it will cause me any operational problems, it is just that there is that one very small arc in the curve where you get that slight overhang. On the other hand, to try to move it now would be a big problem as those parallel tracks pass under a trestle just a few inches to the right and I would have to make a major modification to open the curve slightly. I think when I am operational no one will see what the picture shows anyway as it is not necessarily a place you would want to stand to see most of the operations on the layout.

  11. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Bob,You are correct,once you get that trestle in no one will notice.I also notice you have plenty of room between tracks,you should do fine.:)
  12. klakin

    klakin New Member

    IHC Help

    I have also had a very hard time with IHC passenger cars. I have found a few things that help.
    You can replace the plastic pins that hold on the trucks with coarse thread computer screws. If you have spent any time taking computers apart you know what I mean. If you have an old computer check the screws that hold the case together, hard drive, CD, etc. This way you can adjust the "wobble" in the truck.
    Also ADD WEIGHT. If you don't have the interiors, pennies are great. If you do, you can get small lead pellets at the hobby store. Fill the caverns in the car body and the interior with the pellets and seal it with tape. I have found that 5.5-6 oz is good.
    Kadee#508 couplers will replace the horn hooks. They are nice because you can also adjust the spacing between the cars.
    Good luck!
  13. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    You can get the lead cheaper if you go to a sporting goods store or gun shop that sells reloading supplies; and buy a bag of shot. I have used shot to weigh my passenger cars down. I hold the shot in place in the various nooks and crannies with 5 minute epoxy. I think the size of the pins that hold the trucks in place is the same as #6 screws. You can pick up #6 screws from the hardware store, tap the hole where the pin would go in and use the screws to hold the trucks on.
  14. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

    That's my suggestion, also, use screws. If the holes are too big, plug 'em and
    re-drill and tap.
    You can tighten one truck until has no wobble but just rotates freely. then tighten
    the other leaving just a very slight amount of wobble. This allows the car to run level on the track without wobbling but still have all 8 (12?) wheels in contact. :)

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