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Chicago Burlington & Quincy short domes

The president of the CB&Q had his own shops convert a coach into the first "pattern" dome car, "Silver Dome" (a coach), in 1945. This car (and a sister 'homebuilt') did not have depressed flooring below the dome, thus the center area had seating due to the low ceiling, and aisles down each side (car plans are displayed under the 4709).

Within six month, Burlington, Western Pacific, and DRGW placed a combined order of 30 domes to outfit the "California Zephyr", with Burlington's share of the "pool" being 13 cars (and a 14th "protection" car added later). They were delivered in 1948. See the link at the end of this page for an equipment roster.

Preceeding the "CZ" deliverys, Burlington ordered and received 10 domes in 1947 for the "Twin Zephyr", which were the first domes delivered with curved vs flat glass (8 coaches and 2 lounge/observations).

Additional cars were another "home built" coach in 1949 (to "balance out" the Twin Zephyr consists where the first home-built "pattern" dome was then assigned), 4 Budds for the "Kansas City Zephyr" in 1953 (2 coach/buffet/dorm/lounges and 2 parlor/observations), 4 for a "pool" share in the "North Coast Limited" in 1954 (2 sleepers and 2 coaches), 3 for a "pool" share of the "Empire Builder" in 1955 ("Great Dome Coaches"), and 6 for the "Denver Zephyr" in 1956 (2 each coaches, dorm/coffee shops, parlor/observations).

All Burlington domes were built by Budd except the 2 built in their own shops, and those were built from Budd cars with Budd assistance.

Also, the "norm" was for round-end observation cars, but the later KCZ and DZ observation cars were square-ended.

CB&Q 235 "Silver Chateau" square ended obs-11 seat parlor-bar lounge-1 drawing room for 'Denver Zephyr' BN 1286 (not applied), Amtrak 9330, wrecked 1-16-77 in combined Auto Train/Floridian accident 15 miles north of Birmingham AL, estimated damage $85,000 (big in those days). To Tuman Demolition (1979) as an office car - later scrapped.

CB&Q 236 "Silver Veranda" square ended obs-11 seat parlor-bar lounge-1 drawing room for 'Denver Zephyr' - BN 1287 (not applied), Amtrak 9331, to BN (5/93) - stored in Kansas City, BNSF 20 stored 1999 in Topeka KS.

CB&Q 250 "Silver Club" dual dorm-buffet-lounge for 'California Zephyr' - BN 250 (number actually applied!), BN 802 (not applied), Amtrak 9810, off roster stored during 10/81, 3/84 to G.W.Davis/"Island Tours" Little Rock AR (800296), Kasten Railcar, Bill Barmore Anaheim CA (1986) - stored at Monad Railway Equipment (La Mirada CA), Doug Ebert/Charlie Barenfanger Vandalia IL (1991) - remained stored in L.A., Dirk Lenthe (1995) - car stored in Fargo ND.
The CZ lounges (250-51-52) each had 2 dorm rooms, one for the food steward and one for the "Zephyrette". The cars were rebuilt by Burlington as "Cable Car" lounge/food service cars, but without full kitchens like the DZ "Chuckwagons".

CB&Q 251 "Silver Lounge" dual dorm-buffet-lounge for 'California Zephyr' - BN 251 (number actually applied!), BN 803 (not applied), Amtrak 9811 - retired 10/81, Vandalia Railroad/Charles Barenfanger/Doug Ebert, Doug Ebert (1987), rebuilt 1987-88 at Midwest Railcar as an "open end" observation car, Golden Arrow (lease), Doug Ebert/Sierra Hotel Railway "Sierra Hotel" (1991) (800275), Wisconsin Central (lease 7/99). To Montreal Maine & Atlantic (lease) 8/06.

CB&Q 252(1) "Silver Roundup" dual dorm - buffet - lounge for 'California Zephyr' - stored in WP Oakland CA yard after the last run of the CZ on March 21/22 1970. The car was found in flames in April, was a writeoff from being gutted, and was stashed in a corner of the yard while the WP and CB&Q worked out a deal. That "deal" turned out to be WP handing over their example of the same car "Silver Chalet". The car was turned over to the BN, as the "Q" had become BN on 3/03/70. BN actually renumbered the car as 252(2), but retained the "Chalet" name. The hulk of "Q" "Silver Roundup" was resold following the insurance and transfer of titles for the above swap. The "Roundup" was sold 12/14/71 to Purdy Metals, of Chicago, IL. The car was shipped to, and scrapped, at their Mojave, CA facility.

CB&Q 252(2) "Silver Chalet" dual dorm-buffet-lounge for 'California Zephyr' - CBQ 252(1) "Silver Roundup" was burned in 1970 and replaced with WP 831 "Silver Chalet" which became BN 252(2) (number actually applied!) (2/71), BN 804 (not applied), Amtrak 9812 - retired 5/80, Al Beckert (5/81), Kasten Railcar (1985), David Rushenberg (1985), Northern Railcar (1986), Quad Graphics (800274) (1986) - car was rebuilt by QuadRail Div in the west wing of the old Milwaukee Railcar facility as an open-end (rounded!) observation car.

CB&Q 253 "Silver Cup" single dorm-coffee shop for 'Denver Zephyr' - (see comments on CBQ 254 "Silver Kettle" following), BN 805 (not applied), Amtrak 9813 - retired 10/81, Al Nippert (1/82), Roaring Fork RR, Denver Railcar, Carolina Leasing/Robert Menzies (6/99), under restoration/storage at Illinois Transit Assembly with interior fire damage (dome area only). To ITAC 4/03, then to Les Kasten. Sold 6/04 to undisclosed buyer.

CB&Q 254 "Silver Kettle" single dorm-coffee shop for 'Denver Zephyr' - BN 806 (not applied), Amtrak 9814 - retired 10/81, Al Nippert (1/82), VIA 518 (1987) - stored at Montreal and stripped. Sold to Gateway Coach/Ben Butterworth and moved to ITAC 12/06-1/07.

"Kettle" and "Cup" were a unique pair of cars known as "Chuckwagons", with a lunch counter under the dome area and a full kitchen to the rear of the dome. They served as the only diner service on some trains. The dorm space was for the steward, and a chuckwagon mural was on a bulkhead (the murals were removed during Amtrak refurbishing of the cars).

CB&Q 304 (unnamed) pool service buffet-sleeper for NP "North Coast Limited" - 11/54, pool service car painted in NP colors, CBQ(NP) 380 (1967), BN 1455 (3/70) (not applied), Amtrak 9225 - retired 9/85, ANSCO (11/85) - prepped for movement from LA by Monad, to D&RGW and SP thru merger (10/88), but always ANSCO owned, to Dave Varilek/Empire Builder Private Cars/Vista-Dome Adventures (1994) "Silver Pillow".

CB&Q 305 (unnamed) pool service buffet-sleeper for NP "North Coast Limited" - 11/54, pool service car painted in NP colors, BN 1444 (not applied), Amtrak 9210, Dirk Lenthe (9/93), Doug Ebert/Charles Barenfanger/Sierra Hotel Inc (1997) - stored at Monad Railway Equipment La Mirada CA - possibly to be restored after completion of their GN 1323 coach.

CB&Q 320 "Silver Garden" coach - buffet - dorm - lounge for 'Kansas City Zephyr' - BN 1100 (not applied), Amtrak 9800 - retired 10/77, Gerome Bulock/Building Leasing Corp, Tom Johnson/Rail Dome Corp RDCX 320 (800287) (1987), Branson Scenic Railroad.

CB&Q 321 "Silver Patio" coach - buffet - dorm - lounge for 'Kansas City Zephyr' - BN 1011 (not applied), Amtrak 9801 - retired 10/81, G E Sapp (3/84), Charles Graham/Barbara Goulette/Wayne Penn 1985-88 (maintained by Monad), VIA 523 (1989) - stored inactive in Montreal and stripped. Sold to Mike Gresham and moved to ITAC 12/06-1/07.

CB&Q 360 "Silver View" observation lounge for 'Twin Zephyr' - BN 1190 (not applied), Amtrak 9300 - retired 10/76, Walter Rich/Cooperstown & Charllotte Valley RR CACV 5 "Great Sacandaga", Delaware Otsego/NYS&W 505 (1984), became a CSX asset in 1999. Pending sale to Mike Abernethy (9/2000). Sold to Mike and moved on a 5 year lease to Boone & Scenic Valley Railway, Boone IA (2/2001) - at ITA as of 9/2001 for major reworking before returning to lease service - car to be returned to full CBQ stainless livery, letterboards, etc.

CB&Q 361 "Silver Vista" observation lounge for 'Twin Zephyr' - BN 1191 (not applied), Amtrak 9301 - retired 10/76, Building Leasing Corp/Southern Furniture Co Conover NC (800300). Car is stored inside building and is not visible. Has never been converted to HEP operation.

CB&Q 365 "Silver Terrace" square ended observation parlor-1 drawing room for 'Kansas City Zephyr - BN 1192 (not applied), Amtrak 9320 - retired 9/85, Rail Voyages/Larry Smith Silver Spring MD (5/93), Branson Scenic RR 1/99. Did not enter active service on Branson Scenic until 2002.

CB&Q 366 "Silver Tower" square ended observation parlor-1 drawing room for 'Kansas City Zephyr - BN 1193 (not applied), Amtrak 9321 - retired 9/85, Dirk Lenthe (5/93), Mike Abernethy, for sale at Illinois Transit Assembly (9/2000). Sold to Gateway Coach/Ben Butterworth 2/06, car remaining at ITAC.

CB&Q 375 "Silver Horizon" sleeper-observation for 'California Zephyr' - BN 375 (not painted BN), Amtrak 9250 - retired 9/85, Nav Fosse/Cedar Rail Enterprises (1986), sold to J Baldwin (1986), to Dirk Lenthe Fargo ND (1988) (800077), Transcisco (1990). Car moved to San Antonio and gutted as Transcisco started to re-build the car. Purchased by Les Kasten during 1991 after Transcisco bankruptcy, moved to Illinois Transit Assembly and stored, sold 1998 - rebuilt as a "stuff & mount" with deep carpets and ADA compliant restrooms and access, shipped 8/99 to Pinal County AZ for use as the Maricopa (Phoenix "remote") Amtrak station - observed on "Eagle" 11/99 in El Paso - on "garden" tracks at LAUPT as of 4/2000 - on siding in Maricopa 9/2000 - finally entered service as station 10/2001.

CB&Q 376 "Silver Penthouse" sleeper-observation for 'California Zephyr' - BN 376 (not pained BN), Amtrak 9251 - car retained for Amtrak President W Graham Claytor for conversion to Amtrak Business car 10002(2) - plan fell through as there were too many height restrictions and an Amfleet car became available, BN (5/93), stuffed & mounted as a "deli car" (inside outfitted with tables and a deli counter for BNSF employees at lunch) at BNSF Ft Worth TX (1999) as "Prairie View" - BNSF 21. Note: an interesting comparison is between the 1969 interior photos by S Peter Nyce and the 1993 views by John Praggastis.

CB&Q 377 "Silver Solarium" sleeper-observation for 'California Zephyr' - BN 377 (not painted BN), Amtrak 9252 - retired 4/78, Nav Fosse/Cedar Rail Enterprises CREX 377 (800333) (11/85). Was on Branson Scenic for a period. Operates in private charter service. Sold to Roy Wullich/Rail Journeys West Santa Clara CA 8/02 and began leased operation as tailcar on AOE II cruise train for remainder of the year, then began private charter operation. In 2003 shopped car for a minor 'tuneup' - upgrades/repairs included:

~PC-1 and PC-2a inspections
~complete truck rebuild on both trucks
~conversion of brakes from D-22 to 26-C
~rebuild draft gear
~rebuilt/reclaimed couplers
~new 60 KW generator
~MU wiring completed (for push-pull service)
~repaired/replaced fluting where fork lift gash was.
~collision post inspection
~trucks and underbody painted
~and a lot of other "small stuff"!

(The Denver economy was now "stable" and the car was ready for business).

CB&Q 378 "Silver Lookout" sleeper-observation for 'California Zephyr' - BN 1288 (not applied), Amtrak 9253 - retired 5/80, Carl Weiffenbach (5/81) - car was burned and needed total interior restoration - was done as a "contemporary" (aka expensive "rv") with shag carpeting, plush upholstery, dome area with lounge tables and "pit" seating with overstuffed lounges, etc. Sold to Dirk Lenthe (800282) (1990).

Please e-mail us any additional info or corrections.

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