D&RGW Steel Caboose Paint Schemes

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This page was last updated on November 17, 2020.

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Original paint schemes

(Click on a number series for a number-by-number review of later paint schemes)

Original Paint
Riveted Welded Wood Frame Rubber Frame
01400-01409 X   X   all black 1940
01410-01419 X   X   all black 1941
01420-01429 X   X   all black 1942
01430-01439 X   X   all black 1944
01440-01449 X   X   all black 1944-1945
01450-01459 X   X   two yellow stripe 1947
01460-01469 X   X   all black 1951
01470-01479   X   X all black 1955
01480-01490   X   X single black stripe 1959
01500-01514   X   X single black stripe 1966
01515-01524   X   X all orange 1976

Two Yellow Stripes

The first cars to wear this scheme were the 01450-01459 group built in 1947. The folio diagram indicates that all ten cars got radios. These early cars had roof-top wire & stanchion induction antennas. The induction antennas didn't last long and they were replaced, first by the spike type with a ground plate disc at the top, and then by the familiar fire-cracker type also used on locomotives. Several cars in the 01440-01449 and 01460-01469 series were subsequently equipped with radios and got the two stripes, while all ten of the 01470-01479 series of 1955 got radios and the two stripes. I don't know exactly when the two stripes stopped being applied to older black cars, but the next group, 01480-01489, came with radios in 1959 painted aluminum and Aspen Gold. (Jim Eager, email to D&RGW Yahoo group, March 20, 2008)

Roof Color

Although all of the gold and silver cabooses received a silver roof, they very soon became dirty and looked like they were painted black. All originally had silver roofs.

Aspen Gold and Silver; Four Black Stripes

June 1956
The first D&RGW caboose in the gold and silver with four black stripes paint scheme was D&RGW 01402, completed in June 1956. At the same time, it received sealed windows using rubber frames with rounded corners. The cupola side windows retained their original wood frames.

Aspen Gold and Silver; Single Black Stripe

July 1959
The first D&RGW steel caboose with the single black stripe scheme was likely D&RGW 01480, built by D&RGW in their Burnham shops in July 1959. (First use of black single stripe on freight cars was on repainted 40-foot boxcars in August 1956.)

All-Orange; "Action Road" Logo

March 1972
Freshly painted in orange D&RGW 01426 was identified in a March 1972 photo as being the first caboose to receive the all-orange paint scheme.