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Home > Richmond Shops > Paint Shop > Interior Recoat

    The interior treatment of Pullman sleepers in the standard steel and lightweight eras were simple and plain compared with the elaborate wood carvings of the Victorian era cars. The first steel cars used solid colors for the interior, but people thought them to plain. There was also an initial hesitation in the acceptance of steel cars.
    Hand painting the steel to look like wood made the cars familiar looking again, but it was a time consuming process. A method was created to mechanically paint the panels and still give pleasing results.
    During the depression, the simulated woodgraining gave way to simple utilitarian colors of tan and green.
    The streamline era of the mid 1930's brought with it an explosion of color and design in interiors as railroads fought new competition from the airlines and the automobile.
    After WWII the railroads placed huge orders for new cars with he car builders. Color and design were an intregal part of the marketing strategy to fight the growing competition.
    Below are Color Drifts from the Southern Pacific post - war car interiors. Southern Pacific Color Drift Control panels set the standards that Pullman followed when repainting SP equipment. The SP cards are 4" x 6" and are stored in black envelopes with instructions "Color Panel should be kept in envelope when not being used for comparison." SP Panels ran from #1 to #235 and included freight and M of W colors. The numbers referred to the book of Intermix Color Formulas.
    The drifts were scanned and attempts were made to keep the colors as true as possible. Your monitor may also affect the colors you see.

Color Drift Contol
tan_pullman_drift
This card is for the Tan Scheme issued September, 1950 and used on Pullman-Standard built post war sleepers SP 9030 - 9056 incl., SP 9118 - 9120, SP 9400 - 9403 and NP 364,365 (Northern Pacific sleepers in the Oakland - Seattle Cascade pool). The color panels are full size on the card. They have been reduced here for quicker page loading.
beige_pullman_drift
beige_pullman_bar
Beige Scheme issued September, 1950 and used on Pullman-Standard built post war sleepers SP 9030 - 9052 incl. and NP 364,365 (Northern Pacific sleepers in the Oakland - Seattle Cascade pool).
gray_pullman_drift
gray_pullman_bar
Gray Scheme issued September, 1950 and used on Pullman-Standard built post war sleepers SP 9030 - 9032 incl., SP 9037 -9045 incl., and SP 9300 - 9306 incl.
beige_sunset_drift
beige_sunset_bar
Beige Scheme issued April, 1950 and used on Budd built post war sleepers SP 9000 - 9004 and SP 9025 - 9029.
blue_sunset_drift
blue_sunset_bar
Blue Scheme issued April, 1950 and used on Budd built post war sleepers SP 9005 - 9014.
green_sunset_drift
green_sunset_bar
Green - White Scheme issued April, 1950 and used on Budd built post war sleepers SP 9015 - 9024.
aug1958_exterior_drift
aug1958_exterior_bar
In August of 1958 a new Drift Control was issued for the Standard Exterior Color Scheme for Southern Pacific Passenger Cars. At the time SP had four passenger paint schemes; Two tone gray for the Lark, Cascade and older standard Pullmans; Silver and red for the Sunset Limited and Golden State (The Golden State had lost its' unique red/silver scheme in 1953; Orange and red for the Daylight's; and a large amount of cars still in SP Dark Olive. Cars in the City of San Francisco pool continued to be painted UP Armour yellow and Harbormist Gray. The new SP standard scheme was based on a simplified version of the Sunset Limited scheme. The body was painted Stainless steel with a scarlet stripe through the letterboard on which was painted "Southern Pacific" in lettering gray. The trucks and underframe were dark gray.
    Richmond shops would not paint many of the cars before closing in December, 1959. The SP would look for more economy in their passenger service before giving way to Amtrak in 1971.

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