Frisco in Ardmore OK in early 1970's?

Discussion in 'N Scale' started by Paul D, Apr 3, 2016.

  1. Paul D

    Paul D Member

    I primarily model (N scale) Santa Fe in southern Oklahoma in early 1970’s. I want to add a Santa Fe & Frisco interchange representing Ardmore OK. My limited research on the Frisco indicates that the “Arkinda and Ardmore Subdivision” operated a Frisco line that stretched from Hope Arkansas to Ardmore OK via Hugo OK and Madill OK. One source I found said train operation in the 1970’s was as follows: “Trains 3911/3910 operated as tri-weekly locals between Hugo and Ardmore picking up and setting out shorts, switching local industries and working the KOG (TP) and MKT interchange at Durant and the ATSF interchange at Ardmore. Local 3910 worked Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday Hugo to Ardmore and Local 3911 worked Monday, Wednesday and Friday Ardmore to Hugo.”

    I think the line to Ardmore was abandoned in late 1970’s but it was active during the period I am modeling. Frisco also operated a “Motor Car” for passenger service but it was discontinued in Nov 1953 so I do not plan to include the Frisco depot in my layout. Everything will be freight exchange between the ATSF and Frisco.

    I would like to have one Frisco engine (DCC) to work the interchange in Ardmore. Unless the Frisco maintained a dedicated switcher in Ardmore, I assume the engine(s) used on the local trains 3911/3910 were also uses for interchange work in Ardmore. When I google the subject, a GP-7 (orange/white) frequently shows up. However, I have not found where anyone produces a N scale DCC ready Frisco GP-7 in orange/white. If true, I am OK with any other Frisco engine (DCC ready) that would be appropriate for that location and time period.

    What engine would you Frisco experts recommend that I look for to represent the Frisco in that interchange? It must be DCC ready or already installed.
  2. tmfrisco

    tmfrisco Member Supporter

    I don't know if an N gauge Frisco black/yellow exists, but that engine would also work. I hostled at the Tulsa diesel shop in the early 70s, and Tulsa maintained 500 through about 525 or so. We still had some black/yellow GP7s and the orange/white, so you could use either color scheme.

    Joe Lovett likes this.
  3. Paul D

    Paul D Member

    Atlas makes a black/yellow N scale GP-7 with road numbers of #500 and #502. Both road numbers are available as DC ready or DCC equipped so that would do the trick for me. I had shied away from the black/yellow because every GP-7 image I found via Google was orange/white. I have pictures of #592 (circa 1973) and #630 (circa 1976) working the Ardmore area in mid 70's I was assuming that the black/yellow was an older color combo and predated my early 70's period. Obviously both color combo's existed during that period so my assumption was bad.
    Do you know if the Tulsa pool of GP-7 worked the Frisco line into Ardmore or would those units be from somewhere else?
    Thanks for your help.
  4. tmfrisco

    tmfrisco Member Supporter

    Paul, I do not know that the Tulsa GP7s were used on this local, but I do know that we sent the freshly inspected units to many different places. It would be easy to believe that a southbound through freight could have delivered a freshly inspected Geep to Madill, and a northbound freight could have picked up one at Madill to bring to Tulsa for its monthly inspection. At the time frame you are modeling, the Tulsa assigned Geeps were inspected monthly. The afternoon hostler would set out the unit inspected that day by the round house forces and spot another unit in the round house for inspection the next day.

    By the way, there is an excellent thread here at concerning the Atlas GP7s. Someone may know which one it is, but it should be easy for you to find it. Since you are primarily a Santa Fe modeler, you may not be as concerned as a Frisco modeler might be about the few inaccuracies of the Atlas GP7 model. I assume that the N gauge model is the same phase as the HO gauge which is incorrect for the numbers 500 and 502.

    Joe Lovett likes this.
  5. pbender

    pbender Member Supporter

    Here's a direct link to the post where I talked about the modifications I did to my N-scale #500, representing #500 as she was prior to the boiler being removed:
    Atlas GP7's

    There were Frisco GP7s on the Frisco in black and yellow paint up until 1979. I know #632 was one of the last ones painted Orange and White, and it was retired with the last group in late 1979.

    The biggest thing you need to add for a 1970s era GP7 is to add spark arrestors. They came in several variations, so you need to check prototype photos before installing one.

    Also, make sure you pick a number that had a steam generator originally. The non-steam generator equipped ones had very small (700 or 800 gallon I believe) fuel tanks. I think the small tank can be modeled in n-scale, but it might take milling the frame under the motor to do it, so it's not an easy task.

    For the Atlas models in particular, disassemble the shell, remove the walkways from the side sills, and paint the walkways black. That is a huge improvement in appearance.


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