Inspiration for our modeling projects can come from many different sources. A desire to work in a new medium, a photo of a structure that just has to be modeled or a desire to recreate a scene in miniature that has personal significance. In the case of this model, it was an announcement by Gerald Glow on the Yahoo Steam Era Freight Car Discussion Group (STMFC) of a decal set for the Wabash 8000 series Double Door boxcars that got me going.
These cars were of an order of 300 cars built in the Decatur Shops from January to June 1950. As built the doors were labeled "When empty return to Detroit", which for me, made them perfect for my layout which models a portion of the Wabash line across Ontario connecting Buffalo and Detroit. As I model 1951 the build date was perfect as well.
This is the opening of an article just published in the October 2011 issue of Railroad Model Craftsman. The article covers in full the kitbash of a Wabash 8000 series Double Door boxcar. Maybe this will inspire you to try something along the same lines.