The United States Railroad Administration designed and built a standardized caboose and some were supplied to the Ulster & Delaware Railroad. When the U&D was acquired by the New York Central in the 1930’s, they also inherited those same cabooses. I am under the impression that they were absorbed into the general pool of crummies and could be found system wide. 20097 was an actual number for one of these USRA cabooses; another one that I am aware of is 20093 (ex U&D 653).
This is a resin kit from Funaro & Camerlengo. A fun build that was also a challenge from a planning point-of-view. I had to think ahead about how to paint the model with respect to when the windows and roof were to be installed; I felt that I could not mask the window glass as they might fall inside the body and would be inaccessible once the roof was on! So I painted the interior flat black, painted the area around the windows Oxide Red before installing the glass, installed the glass, masked the window frame (covering the glass, but not touching it), glued the roof on, painted the rest of the model, and removed the window frame masks just before weathering.
From the photo above, extra bracing was added to help keep the sides square. An extra support for the roof was added in the middle of each roof area as the styrene material supplied for the roof was quite thin (.010″, I think). The cupola was not CA’d at this time, only after the previously listed painting process was done, with the window areas painted and masked, and just before gluing on the roof pieces.
I added AB brake details from a Tichy detail set (picture above). The trucks are Kadee Caboose trucks with 33″ rib-backed wheels. I also added Cal-Scale air lines, cut levers from brass wire, Sergent Couplers, and True Line Trains markers (below). The markers are colored (front to rear) green-green-red as per MCRR and Line West practice (NYC proper was yellow-yellow-red).
Overall the body was painted Oxide Red with the underbody and roof painted Grimy Black. The decals are from left-overs and the Microscale Roman Lettering in White set. NYC caboose models are often seen with the NYCS logo, but this was, I believe, in late 1950’s-60’s. They are also shown with yellow painted hand rails and steps. This was standardized in October of 1942. As I am modeling June of 1942, I went without the safety yellow accents. Tamiya TS80 Flat Clear lacquer was sprayed overall and then True Line Trains Flat Glaze was applied to the lower parts. I find that acrylic flat clears are milky and not that clear. However, they produce a dusty finish that I like. I also slightly dry-brushed the walk ways and steps on the car ends Testors Model Master Dark Gull Grey enamel to represent paint worn away from these frequently used areas.
This car will normally be found with a Mikado and Snow Plow X662.