Refrigerated cars on the Cibola are operated by both the company and private owners. The railroad only provides express reefer service in conjunction with its twice weekly passenger train. Interchange cars from both the RGS and D&RGW are moved with regular freight service, but I have not modeled any of them. The balance of the reefer traffic is generated by two private operators who own their cars. They are traditional “billboard reefers” which were rare on narrow gauge lines but not unheard of.
Here is the Cibola owned car. It is an AMS reefer repainted in passenger colors for express service. I have a set of passenger trucks for it but some imagineering will be required to get them on and adjust coupler height. For now I am running it with regular freight trucks.
The private cars are also by AMS. The first is from a poultry company, Mitford’s. It ships dressed birds including turkey, duck and geese to markets as far away as Denver and Ogden. I started with a painted unlettered model and made the graphics in power point. These were printed on Testors transparent decal paper. A little touch-up was required where the decals crossed over the door hinges and latch. Weathering is a light spray of grey to represent road haze.
The second company operating reefers is Miss Martin’s Orchards, a producer of fruit products like jam and jelly as well as vegetable products including pickles, jalapeno relish and apple cider vinegar. Here again I made the graphics, this time printing them on Testors Opaque decal paper. The white background helps to brighten the multicolored logo.
While both companies would operate a fleet of several reefers these two are all that I am modeling. Currently I have no plans to add anymore reefer cars to my collection. If i do they will be private owned from additional businesses because the billboard reefers add so much visual appeal to the layout.