Project Description

Complete restoration of car interior and exterior.  A portion of the interior will be restored as a horse car for display purposes.  The remainder of the interior will be facilitated to be used as an area for additional cabinets and other types of displays.

Historical Photos

SPMW 5984, at Tempe Station, 1/17/81.  Photo by: Bob Trennert      

March, 16, 2015

Car in red primer paint.

Rebuilding horse stall inside the car.  Metal brackets are in red primer.

Exterior of car receives green paint (as originally delivered to SP). Roof and trucks reveive coat of black. Fiberglass horse, known as "Old Paint", is staged to greet visitors on Ariona Railway Day.

June 14, 2003

One of the interior door pockets has been removed, allowing access to the flooring underneath.  A section of the subfloor (about 2' x 15') has been cut out, revealing the extent of two wooden supporting beams requiring replacement.  The new beams will be planed to size from oak and bolted in place.  The subfloor will be then patched with plywood.

Hopefully, this area is the worst that will be encountered.  There is evidence that this area has been worked on previously.

June 1, 2003

The top two layers of flooring have been removed for half the length of the car.  Repairs will be made to that section before proceeding to the other half.  The next step is to cut out seriously rotted sections along the edges of the subfloor, replace supporting timbers as required, and install new sections of subfloor.

April 19, 2003

More of the top layer of the original floor has been removed, with debris carted to the dump.  No new surprises: the center of the sub-floor looks quite good, with serious rot only along the edges.  Some more metal patches have been removed from underneath, allowing a better view along the edges.  One major wood beam is completely gone.

At least one of the door pockets will require removal to access the rotted areas underneath.  Eventually, all of the pockets may require removal, as the rotted areas seem to be concentrated around the six doors and their pockets (which make up a significant portion of the car's length).

Found "brand-new" wood screws, spilled on the floor in 1937, trapped between the layers of flooring.

April 7, 2003

A small section of the original top layer of the floor has been removed, and some of the bottom-side patches have been removed.

 This has yielded the following new information:

 1)         The thin wooden slats between the top and bottom layer of flooring were used to introduce a crown to the floor, presumably to aid in drainage.  Since drainage is no longer a concern, this feature does not need to be reproduced in the replacement floor.

 2)         The original sheathing on the bottom side of the floor is metal, rather than a tarpaper as originally thought.  This will make removal more difficult.  Many of the patches are no longer secured to the underlying wood, but are still firmly attached (i.e. with rusted screws) to remnants of the original sheathing.  (In other words, they’re really loose, but require great effort to detach completely.)

 3)         The bottom layer of wood, as revealed so far, is in surprisingly good condition, even along the edges.  This suggests that much of the bottom layer does not need to be replaced, and that spot repairs may be practical for the areas known to be completely rotted-through.

 Work will proceed to remove more of the top layer, to get a better view of the worst areas.  At this time, none of the bottom layer will be removed.  Replacement of the bottom sheathing is an unknown.

March 31, 2003

    The ceiling restoration is complete: all the original fiberboard has been replaced with galvanized steel.  Thanks to the efforts of the volunteers from Boeing and some Eagle Scouts, the interior of the car has been painted with primer.

    Analysis of the condition of the floor has begun.  The current top layer of tongue-n-groove flooring was added on top of the original floor, sometime during its service life.  About half of this top layer has been removed, exposing the original floor.  This has revealed many details of the horse stall mounting hardware, as well as the urine drains and holes for steam-heat pipes (and other mystery holes).

    Sadly, the condition of the original floor is very poor, with several areas along the edges completely rotted through.  This includes some of the large wooden structural beams that support the floor off the steel frame.  In addition, the many metal patches applied to the underside of the car are falling off.  The poor condition of the floor is presumably attributable to the car’s use for transporting horses, with the resulting mess that no doubt created.  Otherwise, the car appears to be water-tight.

    Work will be commencing to evaluate a complete restoration of the floor, to include the replacement of all floorboards, many or all of the supporting wooden beams, and the sheathing underneath the car.  A small section at the south end will be removed to allow a thorough evaluation and development of a restoration plan.

    When and if a complete restoration of the floor commences, additional help will be solicited from interested museum members.  This is a huge undertaking, but it is felt that a complete restoration is in the best interests of the museum, and will provide the greatest opportunity for future uses of the car.