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Topics: 67   Replies: 114
posted on Jan 15, 2018:

This B&O snow flanger has been inspected and stands ready for work. The model was re-built from 1952 Train Craft tool caboose kit in the 1990's. New siding was put on, a front window cut into one end, with smaller caboose sized windows installed, along with other details. The front plow was built in brass from B&O drawings.

The prototype began as a Class M-8 boxcar number 42005 built by Pullman in September 1897 and rebuilt to Class M-8B number 98294 at Chicago in 1913.
In 1929 it was converted to snow flanger SF 43 by B&O at Locust Point MD.
In 1941, it was converted to become a class C-14 caboose number C-1652 at Keyser WV for the WW II years. By December 1945 it was changed back to snow flanger 43, stationed at M&K Junction in West Virginia.

The last of its kind, here is prototype SF-43 awaiting a move to the B&O Museum in the early 1990's. Before it could be readied for the trip to Baltimore as a special-handling flat car load, it was burned by vandals to become a total loss in 1995, two years short of its century mark.

Ed B
Ready for Snow
Topics: 41   Replies: 55
posted on Jan 6, 2018:

While looking at photos of old steam locomotives on the internet, I came across this photo of a small engine with a 2-4-4 wheel arrangement and I decided build a 2-4-4 engine for my collection.
I searched for some time trying to find a photo of the engineers side but these two photos were all that I could find.

This is going to be a brass model so I scrounged thru my parts to see what I had to work with.
I found a working 0-4-0 chassis, two parts for a cab, a boiler and foot boards from a switch engine kit made by Thomas Industries, and a truck for the rear that looks similar to the photo.

This chassis is from a kit that was made back in the late 40's or early 50's and it used a large open frame electric motor that mounted on the angled plate on the rear.
I want to use a newer ' can motor ' so I removed the angled mounting plate and made up a square plate to mount the can motor with.

The new motor is mounted on the chassis and I'm test running it.

I found a piece of cast brass that will work well for extending the back of the chassis frame.
The two sides of this piece are different heights and they are tapered from one end to the other.
The piece is clamped in the vice and I'm milling the two sides so they will be even.

This frame piece is fastened onto the back of the chassis and it extends out beyond the drive wheels quite a ways.

Unlike real railroad track that has long sweeping radius curves, model railroad track has short radius curved track.
With the the four drive wheels sitting the track, the rear of this chassis is going to swing out past the track on these tight curves.
Obviously I can't put a coupler on the back of this engine because the frame swings out past the the track on the curves.

So I machined the flanges off the two rear drive wheels and mounted the rear truck in the center of the frame like it is designed to be mounted.
As you can see, all four drive wheels are still on the rails on the straight track.

As this goes around a tight curve, the chassis is supported by the front two drive wheels and the rear truck and you can see that the two rear drive wheels have slipped completely off the rails.

Viewed from above, you can see that the rear of the frame now stays in-between the rails so there shouldn't be any problem with pulling some railroad cars.
I'm going to put some lead in the boiler, right over the two front drive wheels to help with traction.
I'm also going to put electrical pickups on all four wheels on the rear truck.

Looking thru my parts, I see that I only have three front trucks that have only two wheels and they are all for larger locomotives than this so I'm going to have to build the two wheel front truck.

Starting with a piece of 3/8 hex shape brass, it is machined to the correct length on the lathe and then a hole is drilled thru it for the axle shaft.

Then a piece of ' T ' shape brass is soldered to the hex brass.

Here are the finished parts for the front truck.
The small round piece of brass next to the screw will thread onto the screw to form a shoulder bolt for mounting the truck on the chassis.
The small hole in the center of the hex brass piece is so I can oil the axle shaft after it is all put together.
I'm using the large piece of brass so it will have some weight to help the front truck track properly.

This is how the two wheel front truck looks all put together.

The original photos shows that this locomotive has a step pilot on both the front and the back and in my supply of pilots, I found two that match.

The one on the left is upside down so you can see the two ' bumps ' at the top on the back from where the brass was injected into the mold.
There are two couplers and two shoulder screws for mounting the couplers.

I clamped each pilot in the vice and milled off the two bumps on the back.

The mounting bracket if formed from a piece of sheet brass and soldered to the back of the pilot.
one of the shoulder bolts is solder in the coupler pocket so I can mount the coupler and put a washer and nut on it to hold the coupler in place.

he pilot is then fastened to the back of the frame with two flathead screws.
The sheet metal for the tender will fit down onto the top of the pilot and cover these screws.

When I first started building trains, I made up a block of wood that fits on the track and has a coupler mounted on it.
This is the gauge that I use to get all of the couplers at the same height.

The front pilot has a piece of sheet brass soldered to it also and it is then soldered onto the top of the two front frame rails.

If you look closely, you can see the short piece of brass that I hed to add the the front frame rails to extend them out to the back of the front pilot.

Here is the boiler and foot boards that I'm using from the Thomas locomotive kit.
The foot plate was fastened to the underside of the boiler with two screws and small square nuts that gripped the inside of the boiler.

The foot boards are fastened to the underside of the boiler with the two screws and special nuts and I also soldered the cross braces to the underside of the boiler.
Both parts were cleaned up before I did any soldering on them.

The stanchions for the handrail on the sides of the boiler are threaded and are fastened on with small nuts on the inside of the boiler so I put them on before I fastened the foot boards on.

A piece of brass is soldered into the bottom of the boiler and is drilled and tapped for the screw that holds the boiler onto the chassis.

The boiler is now fastened in place.

The Thomas locomotive kit uses two cast pot metal pieces for the front and rear of the boiler.
I'm using a brass smoke box front and it has four tabs on the back of it to center it in the front of the boiler.

However, this front is made for a cast boiler so the tabs are not out far enough to hold it in this thin sheet metal boiler.
I turned down a piece of scrap brass so it fits inside the boiler and than machined it so the boiler front piece fits into it.

The machined brass ring is soldered onto the back of the boiler front and it now fits snugly into the front of the boiler.

The smoke box front now fits snugly into the front of the boiler.

A piece of flat brass was machined to fit on the back of the boiler and soldered in place.

Then another piece of brass sheet was cut to size for the floor and this was soldered onto the back of the boiler and made so it is fastened to the back of the chassis with a screw.

The cab that I'm using has a nice window visor on the fireman's side that is a brass casting but it is missing this visor on the engineers side.

To make another visor, I start by putting ' rivets ' along the edge of a small strip of brass to match the rivets on the cast visor.

The strip is cut to size and a notch is cut on either side of these rivets.

he rivet area of the visor is bent up so the visor will angle out when it is fastened to the cab.

The two ends are bent down and trimmed off to form the completed visor.

This is then soldered to the side of the cab over the engineers window.

2-4-4 locomotive build
Topics: 2   Replies: 16
posted on Dec 29, 2017:

I am attempting to upload photos, but it is very difficult. I am a new member, so forgive me. I have always loved miniatures. In the past, I worked for large Industrial Companies as an Architect/Designer. One of those companies was PITNEY BOWES. More than 20 years ago, before closing their Factory Museum in Stamford, CT, I was asked if I wanted the entirety of the 1/4" scale factory model display. I accepted, and have been the owner ever since. Because of the vast size (more than 10,000 items) I have determined that the best choices are to either sell the pieces individually, or divide it up into many small factories. The items are all vintage, and many pieces were created by the company "Visuals" which is long gone. I will try to load more photos if I can.
1/4" Scale Miniature Factory
Richard E
Topics: 69   Replies: 29
posted on Dec 24, 2017:

Canadian National Pacific 5603 is rolling to a stop at St. Paul Depot. CN 5600 pacifics were one of the few without all weather cabs
This is a custom painted K-Line Pacific, Although not completely accurate it is very close.
Canadian National, Eh!
Topics: 67   Replies: 114
posted on Dec 10, 2017:

In the mid-1950's, B&O up-graded its Washington DC-Pittsburgh PA service with RDC units. The RDC trains were marketed as "Seedliners." Budd built two RDC-2 baggage coach units with small kitchens and dinette seating for 24. Their numbers were 1960 and 1961. This model was built from a Mac Shops extruded aluminum kit and has a detailed interior.

B&O Speedliner
Topics: 41   Replies: 55
posted on Dec 3, 2017:

This is a project that I started a long time ago and it got packed up before it was finished when we moved.

The project got started when I bought a set of Shay trucks off ebay that were for standard O-gauge track instead of narrow gauge track.
The three cylinder steam engine assembly is a kit from PSC and soldering it all together so that the crankshaft still rotated and everything else still moved was the hardest part of building this locomotive.

I ran across this while unpacking some of my train things a few weeks ago and decided to finish it.
The chassis is made out of pieces of brass stock.
The shaped roof of the cab is from a bottle of perfume that was shaped like a steam engine with some plastic pieces attached to it.
The rest of the cab is made from flat styrene pieces.
The boiler is made from pieces of PVC plumbing with the steam and sand domes, smoke stack and headlight from an old AHM Cassy Jones locomotive kit.
The oil tender is made from part of a Lionel tender and other parts from plastic truck models.

The rear truck had the gearing for powering it but I had to make up a mount for attaching an electric motor to it.
Here I am fitting the cab to the chassis.

Brass detail items are used to finish out the boiler.

By clamping a pencil in a small vice, I can mark where the holes need to be drilled in the boiler for the hand rail stanchions and they are all at the same height regardless of the boiler diameter.

Then I put the locomotive in a special jig for drilling the holes in the sides of the boiler.

All that is left to do is paint it and assemble everything.

Shay locomotive
Richard E
Topics: 69   Replies: 29
posted on Nov 30, 2017:

A the storm has cleared over Lincoln Park

A Photoshoped sky can add realism and drama.
Clearing storm.

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