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GSR Pullman Coaches

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I have 2 N gauge Pullman coaches made by Graham Farish (before take over by Bachmann) I had used the photo in Desmond Coakham's book as reference for livery etc.

I recently came across this link to an earlier post about Pullman coaches. The thread was started some years before I joined the forum.



There are a couple of issues not covered in the thread which would help make my models abit more accurate.

The first is the roof colour, the current colour is a sort of grey/green that a number of British outline models seem to come with. Was the roof repainted to a black or dark grey colour?

What is the difference between the GSR Cream and Brown livery and the British livery? On my coaches the brown is Umber and the cream is similar to butter milk. Desmond Coackham refers to the colour as Umber and Cream and states the photo is of the coach in its original livery and that they remained in that livery from the time of purchase until painted green by CIE

Were there matching boards ( if that is the right term)below the waist on the Irish version? 

Was the word Pullman only used on the coaches from the time they were bought by the GSR until repainted?  The photo in Desmond Coakham's book shows just Pullman yet he states the photo was taken in Kingsbridge (No date given) but in the text he refers to possible touching up and obliterating of the old name and armorial devices either side of it. 

Any help would be appreciated

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The GSR painted carriage roofs a mid-grey, and this would have applied to the Pullmans too. They never had the dedicated British brown and cream Pullman livery here as such; but (a) they did initially have the word "Pullman" on them; jhbSenior recalls lettering above window level in gold shaded black and red (standard GSR carriage livery font) saying "Great Southern Pullman" at an early stage, when maroon though. (b) While it wasn't actually the formal Pullman livery, by coincidence the GSR had their own brown and cream livery for a short time (about 1927/8 to mid 30s). This had apparently the same shade of brown as the GWR in Britain, and the brown section (lower) was separated from the cream above by a one-inch black line. Another two black lines were placed immediately above window level, and just below cantrail level, there being no brown above the windows like on the British ones/ Roofs, as always, mid grey.

Indeed, it was only well into the CIE era that roofs began to be black. While in the darker (bus / loco shade) CIE green pre-1955, roofs were generally grey, but some photos appear to show black appearing then. When the ghastly unpainted "livery" appeared on new-builds, the roof was unpainted too! After that, with the lighter green, roofs black, which carried on, obviously, right through the "black'n'tan" era.

Back to the Pullmans, then. You can have the above brown & cream (black ends too), the standard GSR (LMS shade) maroon with black ends and dark grey roof, or the darker CIE green. None survived to have the lighter CIE green. With both GSR liveries, "Great Southern Pullman" or "Pullman" adorned the sides above window level, and unlike the British ones none of them had names, or "Car No. 444" on the sides. 

I'm pretty certain that the Pullman crest was never displayed on them. The actual Pullman organisation didn't control them like in Britain - they were fully acquired after only a short time by the GSR, after which repaints would probably have had no "Pullman" wording at all. 

The "umber" was simply cream, which had got weathered! In steam days, anyone who has ever seen a coach in regular use will see this happening. Look at old pics of Donegal coaches when in use, or for those of us lucky enough to see South African steam in the 1970s / 80s / 90s, same. They carried both the GSR brown and cream (as opposed to Pullman brown and cream) AND the GSR maroon at different times prior to repainting in green by CIE at some stage between 1945 and 1946/7.

"....Were there matching boards ( if that is the right term)below the waist on the Irish version?...."

Not sure what you mean by that? 

Edited by jhb171achill
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Ah - matchboarded panelling? Yes, the Irish ones had that. I don't know if all of the British ones did.

Get rid of the Pullman name / crests and gold lining, paint the roof darker grey, and repaint the brown above the windows in cream, and you've got a reasonable approximation if an Irish one in GSR days. Might be as easy to just paint it green with light green lining!

Edited by jhb171achill
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jhb and WRENNEIRE thanks for your help.

I will keep the Umber and cream livery and make the roof a mid to dark grey. The ends will be black also, they are currently umber. 

I already have the part above the windows in cream but with the word Pullman in umber. As the coaches did have the name on them for at east a short while I will for now keep it.  The coach names, crests and armorial as well as the gold ling have also been removed.



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I will post some pics of work todate. I do not think I have any pics of the coaches in their totally original condition.

The end windows are different to those shown in Desmond Coakham's book but I will leave them as they are for the moment because I am not sure I could get the right look in N gauge. I will include pics of the ends.Again i do not know about the gang ways.


I was not aware of the article by Colm Flannigan. Would it be possible to get a copy post on this forum.



To some extent yes although I thought that the issues I am now raising were not covered.

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Thanks I can wait.




Some pics. I do have a pic of the original coach so the first two are the side and the end. i had to lighten the end to make it clearer.











The next two are the work I have completed todate. Both these photos have been lightened for clarity but in doing so the roof colour has become  grey which it is not in reality.







Sometime ago I did make an attempt to change the end, to block out the small upper window, but this was not a success given the size of the end in N gauge. So i will just leave any other changes for now.

I have painted the chassis brown again this was done sometime ago



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