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    • January 4, 2020 10:38 PM EST
    • Joe Zullo said:

      Very nice! I'm jealous.

      Me too, Joe!!

    • January 4, 2020 5:12 PM EST
    • Very nice! I'm jealous.

    • January 4, 2020 1:10 PM EST
    • With my departure from the smaller scales that I modeled logging operations in(cant hardly see HO scale well enough to enjoy it), I have shift that modeling to my G scale layout, with a mix of welsh narrow gauge when the mood stikes! I picked this old girl up from Peter K's estate sale.   She has a few issues that I am slowly correcting those.  I do have her running again under steam, but new piston rings are needed and a different throttle lever for RC control, both on order from Tripple R Steam Services.   A friend made the decals for me on his vinyl cutter.  The Climax is based on C&N #2, a baby 50 ton 3 truck model for 3' gauge.  Aster modeled it in 1:23rd scale, so she looks good with LGB disconnects or cars from Kalamazoo/Hartland Loco Works.   I have one of the new Davenports on order from Roundhouse for delivery in early fall of this year.  That one will become Hickory Lake Lumber #1.   Mike



    • January 1, 2020 10:14 PM EST
    • Looks like locomotives the Navy used at the Pearl Harbor coaling station.  For reasons lost to history, the coaling station used standard gauge track, while the common carrier Oahu Rail & Land Co., every military installation and almost all of the plantations used 3' narrow gauge!  The other exceptions were Honolulu Rapid Transit (4'), the Army coastal mine maintenance facility (4', soldier powered), and the Waianae Sugar Plantation (2.5').  Not that any of this matters, other than to say I could justify buying this...if I valued my jaw!    Have fun with this one, Mike!

    • January 1, 2020 5:05 PM EST
    • Here is the new Roundhouse locomotive for 2020, An outside frame Davenport 0-4-0 saddle tank locomotive.  Fully outfitted with water top up and sight glass, inside walschearts valve gear and slide valve cylinders(same set up as the Lilla quarry Hunslet loco.   I put my preorder in for one!      Mike


    • December 26, 2019 4:56 PM EST
    • Thanks Eric! I can manage the small stuff short of silver soldering.  I really wish I had a good "elmer" with a machine shop and silver soldering set up to lead me thru building my own locomotive.  I may have a line on another fixer upper, waiting on pics, details and a price discussion.  It needs just a bit more work than this engine required.    Mike

    • December 26, 2019 3:28 PM EST
    • Good work Mike!  you sure can learn a lot with this kind of Job!  any full scale historic railway would be happy to have you!

    • December 26, 2019 3:20 PM EST
    • I tore the engine down to a bare rolling chassis today, straighted the bent frame rails and reassembled the chassis, checking for binds and squareness along the way at several stages. took this pic before refitting the boiler to the chassis. The way the frame was bent, which started halfway between the two axles, threw the timing off as one cylinder was moved toward the rear and the other pulled forward. So while it would run, it was choppy at slow speed. After the steam test a few min ago, she is smooth running, all the way down to the peg on the steam gauge as I let pressure get used up after shutting off the gas. Once she cools down, I will refit the cab and swap out the scale knuckle coupler on the front for a LGB one as that is what all of our rolling stock uses other than the logging cars that are link and pin. Mike

      frame before repair, you can see how "off" the pilot beam is when compared to the cylinders, the cylinders were moved just as much in relation to the valve rocker arms. 


      After the tear down and straightening, pilot deck and cylinders are squared up now. 


    • December 22, 2019 5:36 PM EST
    • Mike Toney said:

      Here is a short video of her running on the railway.  My whole yard is a mud pit, so just a short run, thankfully no stalls or issues over on the far side of the layout.      Mike


    • December 22, 2019 4:20 PM EST
    • Here is a short video of her running on the railway.  My whole yard is a mud pit, so just a short run, thankfully no stalls or issues over on the far side of the layout.      Mike

    • December 21, 2019 7:57 PM EST
    • I ran her on rollers today, the area around my railway is a swamp as we are thawing out at the moment, so its not a friendly place to walk right now.  A board walk is planned around 3/4 of my raised railway next spring.  She ran well on the rolling road but is having issues keeping up with steam demand.  There is zero wear in the side rods, so very little apparent use, but I am loosing steam somewhere.  Simon over at Anything Narrow Gauge in the UK suggested putting new O rings on the pistons, and the lines where they go into the reversing block between the frames and see if that solves some of the excessive steam consumption. I think its the seals in the reversing block myself.  The pistons seem to have lots of power and the chuffs are pronounced, not muffled like it has blowby.  

    • December 21, 2019 5:34 PM EST
    • Fingers crossed for a successful test run!

    • December 21, 2019 2:28 AM EST
    • More progress on the old Pearse Switcher. Got the RC all done with front and rear lights lighted.custom cut vinyl decals made by a friend installed. Still need to repair the broken roof hinge, the rear arm is broken off/missing. I need to make a duplicate of the front arm and solder it to the roof bracket so the roof will stay on while running. I replaced the scale couplers with a LGB one at the rear and a Bachmann one in link pocket on the pilot beam. Both are hooked up to the cut levers and function just like the real ones. Track test and hopefully a video tomorrow while she is off at work. Mike

    • December 24, 2019 12:42 PM EST
    • Mine that I had went around 10' diameter curves just fine, but do not think she would like 8 foot very well at all.   She also did the just a hair under 10' on Jim Sanders portable layout ok.     Mike

    • December 24, 2019 12:22 PM EST
    • Anyone happen to know what radius the Reno needs?  1.2meters?

    • December 24, 2019 10:49 AM EST
    • Thanks John - I need some of that.  However, I think I can cover the valve chests with some thin brass that I paint glossy black.  It's got a whole lot of brass on it - too much around the cylinders for my taste.

      My Reno just arrived from Peter Ks estate (thanks, Sam,) and has a beautiful patina from years of sitting around.  The domes really look that color. The scrollwork betweeon the drivers is polished copper.



      So I go in the laundry to see if I still have some Brasso, and what do I find:



      That's what makes it go - maybe I should see if I can fire an alcohol loco?  Naw - convert it to butane is the plan.  I found a perfect size burner for a Wilesco stationary engine to replace the wicks.  Just need to figure out how big a gas tank will fit.


    • December 23, 2019 2:35 PM EST
    • Pete, 5 bucks at Hobby  Lobby:


      Black Onyx Patina For All Metal

      Described as an ink that sticks to metal. Will be susceptible to scratches... but easier to remove than paint, if needed.

    • December 23, 2019 11:18 AM EST
    • The polished brass was part of the era that Reno comes from.  Engines were assigned and the crew and engine wipers spent hours keeping it all polished up.  I think the polished brass is what makes the Reno "POP" and look great.   I agree on the Pearse.  While the declared "scale" might have been 1:20.3, the engine like the Colorado, scales out nicely with LGB, Kalamazoo(as it was pullilng in my video) and USA rolling stock that would have been the normal stock on a USA garden railway of that era.    Mike

    • December 23, 2019 10:13 AM EST
    • Mike, thanks for the photos.  I like the Reno - mine arrives tomorrow.  Wonder if I can tone down some of the brass, like the valve chests?


      I lightened one of the pics with Photoshop (attached) as the curved cooktop behind made it tough to see the rooflines! I'm still of the opinion that Pearse were aiming for 1:22.5-ish scale, as LGB were the dominant supplier 20 years ago.  But whatever scale, it does look good. 

    • December 21, 2019 10:39 PM EST
    • Here are some pics for Pete, he wanted to see the size comparison between an LGB engine, the Pearse switcher and a true 16mm narrow gauge model in the form of a Pearse W&L Earl.  Also is a pic of my old Reno I used to have with a set of Kalamazoo shorty coaches coupled up.  Enjoy!