When can we expect such BRAND NAME freight cars such as the OSCAR MAYER reefer car and other cars advertising a product restored to their old colorful glory?
I think it would be cool to someday see a string of BRAND NAME cars rolling down the main line during equipment parades.
BRAND NAME cars? Do not forget our BORDENS milk car, and HAVOLINE OIL tank car, both of which are maintained and restored and operate in our trains. COOK VARNISH is still mechanically sound but needs another cosmetic paint job due to remaining outdoors in the weather. And our INDUSTRIAL MOLASSES restored car meets your criteria.
Any new car project for restoration needs to be evaluated for scope of the work and our available resources. Most of the OSCAR MAYER and SWIFT reefers need a LOT of work, so are not at the top of the list right now.
If a corporate sponsor came forward with a grant, that could change overnight.
Bob, maybe the Freight Department might want to consider contacting the OSCAR MAYER Company itself, to see if they would be interested in a corporate donation to restore what could be a rolling advertisement for their company and still produced products.
Wally, that is a very good idea, and one that would seem to be a natural fit. Oscar Mayer was considered a "Chicago" company although I believe they were last headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin before the wave of corporate mergers. For over ten years they have been part of the Kraft Family of companies, probably for longer than that.
The very same idea has been considered at IRM, say about five years ago, but the fellows to try to make the contacts and prepare a proposal were stymied and nothing developed from the idea. We had prepared cost estimates and a timeline for the work.
With additional layers of corporate approvals, the task can be difficult and take a long time. There is no officially sponsored or connected philanthropic foundation of either brand that might support the work, that I am aware of. I think it might be easier to sell the idea to be funded from an advertising or marketing budget, but again, where do you even begin to make the contacts?
Actually the Weinermobile visited us in the last two weeks, pics on the HICKS website.
To pursue this we need someone with the time to make a commitment to follow through. It is never so simple as making one phone call. We need a proposal with costs, timelines, and our contributions. We need that approved by our Board. We need to make a contact in their corporation. Then there is usually a substantial amount of paperwork, forms, and submittals. Then a wait for the next grant cycle, sometimes only once per year.
Anyone wants to step forward, we will work with you, but at this point I cannot in fairness take this on singlehandedly.