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    • May 7, 2020 4:43 PM EDT
    • I was sidetracked with some yard work, I got the outdoor railroad's pond up and running for the year. I cut down all the dead plant stalks in the upper pond, A.K.A. marsh. I also dug out some of the peat from the upper pond, so, hopefully, it won't overflow as quickly. I also talked to a surveyor, I need my land surveyed, so I can get a permit, so I can put up a fence, to try and keep out the hoofed forest rats (deer).


      Also I have been fighting with decals on the tender one of my 10 wheelers. It took several applications of Micro Set to eliminate the silvering in the decals. The decals are old, very old, and they don't want to play nice. Then I clear coated the tender. The clear coat caused the base paint to crinkle. I guess I can't use Krylon clear coat over Krylon red.


      Anyway, one of the latest 10 wheelers I got up and running was originally a 12 wheeler (4-8-0)


      I wanted the 12 wheeler drive for another project. So I took a 10 wheeler chassis, filed the odd extra feature off the pilot, painted the wheel centers, pilot and steam chest Krylon gloss navy blue. The steam chest on the original 12 wheeler was silver, but it was all chipped and scratched. I didn't like the look of the silver steam chest, so I went with blue. The Krylon navy blue is a very close match for the blue that Tyco/Mantua used on the cab and tender. As with all my my 10 wheelers, I replaced the motor magnet, the rear driver (to eliminate the traction ring), replaced the headlight bulb with a yellow LED, and upgraded to DCC.


      This is the other one i finished (to this point).


      Now I have 2 black 10 wheelers (one gloss and this one that is flat) that I need to letter with  road names and numbers. I am sure I will come up with an idea for the road names eventually.

    • April 26, 2020 7:11 AM EDT
    • Well, the open frame motors in the Tyco/Mantua locomotives do benefit from replacing the magnets. Replacing the magnets reduces the current draw, and improves the low speed performance of the motors.


      Several "experts" have said that DCC decoders cannot be used on the old open frame motors, supposedly because those motors draw too much current. I haven't had any issues with my economy Digitrax decoders with these open frame motors.

    • April 25, 2020 8:45 PM EDT
    • I often wondered about putting decoders in my penn line steam engines. Never thought about replacing the magnet at the back of the motor. Most of those use much heavier pitman motors. I believe they are DC71 motors. They run so smooth to begin with but I thought the addition of a dcc decoder would be fun.

    • April 25, 2020 8:44 AM EDT
    • Vic Smith said:

      I got one of these, don't think I will ever do anything with it, interested?


      Yes Vic. I am interested. PM me and maybe we can work something out.

    • April 20, 2020 9:23 PM EDT
    • I have heard various scales listed, but 1:76 sounds about right. Yea Ho is like 1:87.1, the .1 doesn't contribute much, so its usually ignored.


      Yea, the test was successful. So now I have a couple more in the works. I wanted to get my AHM/Rivarrossi and Bachmann 4-4-0s up and running, but replacing the motors needs a bit more engineering then I want to devote at this time.

    • April 20, 2020 9:12 PM EDT
    • I got one of these, don't think I will ever do anything with it, interested?


    • April 20, 2020 10:41 AM EDT
    • David Maynard said:

      Yes, the Tyco model is based on Sierra number 3, but its in a slightly larger scale than HO. last night I ran the thing on my test track.

      Wonder if that might be OO's 4mm/foot, 1/76 scale, instead of HO's 3.5mm/foot, 1/87 point something usually ignored, scale?

      Sounds like the test counts as successful.

    • April 20, 2020 10:36 AM EDT
    • Interesting. I knew about the wood 1:1 model they used for filming, but I didn't know about the smaller model. In fact, in the credits of the TV show, the producers thank the hotel that owned the wood 1:1 model.


      Yes, the Tyco model is based on Sierra number 3, but its in a slightly larger scale than HO. The cast in number plate on the boiler front even has the number 3 cast into it.


      Last night I ran the thing on my test track.


      Odd thing is when I ran it anti-clockwise, it would stall in the curves. Running it clockwise there were no issues. I discovered that the lead wheel on the lead (pony) truck, would rub against the metal tab of the replacement brass pilot. Since none of the curves on the club's set ups are supposed to be as tight as my test track, I probably didn't need to worry about it. But I still filed back the edges of that tab so that the lead wheels no longer rubbed against it. Also, somewhere along the line, I lost the headlight lens. After running it for about a half an hour, it ran nice and smooth. She just needed to get some exercise to work out some of the stiffness in her parts.

    • April 20, 2020 8:02 AM EDT
    • Speaking of the Hooterville Cannonball, and museums, and movies, and I've probably told about this, at least once, on here somewhere before, the same fellow, Richard C. Datin, who built the original models for the original Star Trek TV show also built miniatures of the train and the Shady Rest Motel for the Petticoat junction TV show. That is covered on pages 106 to 112 of book "The Enterprise NCC 1701 and The Model Maker" by N. Datin McDonald and Richard C. Datin, Jr. Dick Datin was also involved in getting the Nevada State Railroad Museum set up and open.

      Locomotive model was used for several scenes, among them a homecoming where it snapped a banner across the track.
      Datin wanted to build model at 1/12 scale but cost led to smaller scale of 7/16 = 1 ft.
      Model was used to keep from having to pay to going up to the real one's location for filming.

      Book says producers had a full size mockup locomotive, they got secondhand, of a somehwat different configuration than the prototype at Jamestown, CA.

      Page 111 has photo of Datin taking photo of the model on a bench out in a grassy lot.

      Photos of the real 4-6-0 on page 109 show the Tyco/Mantua model to most likely be patterned on it.

      Page 107 has photo of model of Shady Rest Motel.



    • April 20, 2020 7:37 AM EDT
    • A movie crew? Have you been reading my mind again? On my modules, I have a small siding next to where the train station will be The plan is for me to put a red dog parking lot there, with a film crew, some actors, and park the Hooterville Cannonball there. Also, since this is museum theme, I also plan on having a work crew on the other side of the modules, painting some rolling stock.


      Thanks Forrest.


      Gluing the washer into the boiler back-head seams to work rather well. Some of my better ideas are simple ones.


      Yes, my idea with colouring the wires black was to mimic the water and air lines.

    • April 19, 2020 7:44 PM EDT
    • David Maynard said:

      Well, I am still undecided on how to letter my latest rebuild. Originally it was going to be lettered for the Union Pacific. Right now I am still considering if I want to do that.

       If I ever get the roundhouse built, I will be able to populate it now.

      Well, one way to deal with that is to model a movie effects crew getting ready to paint the tender with the name the script calls for, after the museum rented the loco to them for the filming.

      (which in the end merely moves the considering from adding a roadname to how to model the movie crew doing the job)

      That magnet thing was a good idea. Yes, the black wires are an improvement; they get lost in the shadows as well as allude to the water and air brake plumbing between loco and tender.

    • April 19, 2020 10:20 AM EDT
    • Well, I am still undecided on how to letter my latest rebuild. Originally it was going to be lettered for the Union Pacific. Right now I am still considering if I want to do that. But, she can't sit in limbo forever, I have other projects to do. So...

      One of the issues I have had with these things is keeping the boiler back-head in place. At one of the shows I had a momentary flash of brilliance. OK, maybe not brilliance, but I had a good idea. Since the back-head slides onto the back of the open frame motor, and the magnets are at the back of the open frame motor, then why not make the plastic boiler back head magnetic? Then it will stay in place. So I took some #4 washers and glued them to the inside of the boiler back-heads. Now the motor magnets will hold the boiler back-heads in place.



      Now that that issue is resolved, I attached the tender frame and locomotive with the draw-bar and wired up the DCC decoder, along with the LED driver.



      I am getting neater with my installs, my first few Tyco installs look awful.


      I coloured the wires that go from the locomotive to the tender with a Sharpie, that way I don't have multicoloured wires exposed. I think it looks better with them black.


      Then I snapped on the tender shell, and tucked in the wires.


      Then I put the top on the tender.


      Since she needs a number, so I can program the decoder and know what number I programmed into her, I put a dry transfer number 7 on the back of the tender. I chose 7 since she is the 7th Tyco/Mantua steamer I have reworked and put a decoder into.



      While working on this locomotive, and Devoning the Hooterville Cannonball, I also got another Mantua locomotive upgraded with new motor magnets, a replacement rear driver, LED headlight, and DCC decoder install.

      If I ever get the roundhouse built, I will be able to populate it now.

    • April 26, 2020 11:52 PM EDT
    • Thanks, John, but this is no better than the great wood work you do.  Need to see that tower in the flesh..........whenever the world comes back.....l.

    • April 24, 2020 10:18 AM EDT
    • Very nice work, Dennis! I'm ashamed of mine now.

    • April 22, 2020 12:42 PM EDT
    • In addition to the SWC3DBackshop's lokie kit, Etsy internet, (earlier post in forum), I also obtained 2 of their RTR flat cars.  Once again, crisp good looking models.  They come assembled with ball bearing journals.  Metal wheels give end product a nice, "heft."  Track well.  Not able to leave well-enough alone, I set out to add something to personalize them for my railroad.  (Even though they are quite fine as delivered)  So I first attached Ozark 7111 stake pockets.  In order for the pockets to have a full length attachment, I added a strip of polystyrene along under the side sills.  This can be seen in one of the photographs.  Paint is Tamiya T-6 matt black spray-can paint.  The wood decking is Cedar ripped with wild abandon on my 10" Delta Contractor's table saw.  Glued down using Zap-a-Gap pink bottle, "thin," adhesive after, "roughing up," the Resin deck surface.  I admit I used Zap-a-Gap for fastening because it was sitting in front of me.  Some of you professionals may know of a better adhesive?  For me, it worked.  A couple, "boards," were naturally warped and the resulting, "rise," on one end I intentionally left that way.  After all, my railroad often hires cheap, low I.Q. labor, (that's me), and use lumber, "seconds," off the local saw mill's green chain;  no attempt was made for fancy decking.  This is a working railroad.  I experimented with several coloring solutions I had kicking around the basement.  Not sold on any until my RR employees said they'd created a good preservative around the shop by mixing up 50/50 diesel fuel and creosote.  Still about giving, I almost tripped over a little bottle of, "Minwax Wood-Sheen Rubbing Oil Stain.  Rosewood flavor.  Hmmmm.  Tried it;  used it.  Looks diesel-creosote'ie to me.  Then I took a fine point black ink Sharpie and made little dots on boards to simulate fasteners.  Model comes with coupling links and pins which work just fine.  Easy now to make side boards and any number of interesting loads will find their way on board.  I also recently noticed that SWC3DBackshop is now offering various loads.  I like my flat cars.  

    • April 22, 2020 5:30 AM EDT
    • Hey, it's just like Gn15 except bigger! That is a nicely done model. Doing a Google image search for feldbahn, if you haven't already done that, will bring up a lot of photos to pull ideas from.

    • April 21, 2020 11:49 PM EDT
    • I posted my initial entry into this Resin kit world here back on March 13th.  I purchased the kit on-line from Etsy, seller SWC3DBackshop.  I won't repeat the kit details I described in that post other than to say I continue to be impressed with the quality of the kit.  Crisp, substantial, well designed pieces that fit with precision.  There has emerged a quiet but intriguing band of 7/8th followers roving the back roads here in Northeastern Washington state in the dark of night.  They apparently invaded my otherwise dedicated attention to normal, "G scale."  I think that is how I happened to find myself immersed now in 7/8th.  Sneaky, they are.  However, I have found myself having more fun with this kit and a few of this manufacturer's other offerings more than I can remember in a long time.  My very first Resin kit, and I found it very easy to work with.  With luck, photos will accompany this post.  I'll repost Joe McCummins photo of the kit pieces as delivered, followed by progress photos of my locomotive.  I have completed about 85% of it, having only small details to add, some of which are my own pieces.  Note that if the kit is built as delivered, it looks very good, "as is."  I did add friction bearing journals box covers.  That is because I like friction bearing journal box covers.....   I also added "tool boxes," under the running boards in the rear, one on each side of the locomotive.  Good place to throw chains, Misc. tools, and various other trappings including the open-end wrench shown in the photograph.  This location, both fore and aft, would also be an ideal spot to substitute sanders in place of tool boxes.  One sander in each corner of the lokie.  Perhaps sanders may become available.  A re-rail frog is another possibility, and on and on.  That's what i like about the model - it is easy to dream up simple things to add. 

      My goal was to operate this locomotive RC, using the new Revolution DCC hand held transmitter and their, "in-the-loco," receiver.  These are their 59xxx series products.  The receiver allows me to interface my 14.8V LiPo battery pack with my ZIMO MX644C decoder mounted on the ZIMO screw terminal adapter board as sound extensions of the Revo product.  Speaker is mounted just inside the lokie's grill/radiator, projecting sound forward.  Battery pack is split, with one sitting on each side of the interior of the engine compartment.  Revo receiver sits atop of battery pack.  Inside the cab, the, "instrument/control panel," is removable, and the empty space within easily gobbles up the ZIMO decoder.  Now I only need to tuck the wiring in for a more tidy installation.  This arrangement allows the engine hood to be slid sideways, and once off, the receiver can be easily unplugged and taken elsewhere for use with another locomotive application.  To power down the locomotive I unplug the battery inside the engine space.  A switch for that purpose would be an improvement, - I just have not done that yet, if I do it at all.  One photo should show the lokie underside where added weights can be seen.  I got the weights from my local tire shop.,  They are, "tape-weights," that were removed from customers' cars and thrown in a bucket for recycling.  Flat cars that appear in some photos are also from the same seller, and quite nice.  I will try a separate post for them.  I am extremely pleased with the result of having spent some enjoyable hours building this kit.  I may add some lettering, plus whatever else I think of.  For now, I hope this post is useful.  At least it shows how far it has come.  I like this Kritter a lot and the size makes life really easy when I want to take it and a couple cars to another Club member's home to run, rather than a large, heavy locomotive and cars.   

    • April 18, 2020 7:32 AM EDT
    • Missile sponge, designed to take the hits. I see. In a related note, I put "sacrificial rails" on my modules. Sometimes during tear down after a show, someone in a rush to tear down, doesn't remove the connecting rails between modules before disconnecting the clamps that hold the modules together. Then they end up ripping the rails off a module. So the last 2 inches of my rails are not connected to the rails on my module with rail joiners. They are just glued in place. A few shows ago, a well intentioned newbie ripped off the sacrificial rails from one end of my modules. Replacing 2 inches of rail was a whole lot easier then replacing the turnouts that abut the sacrificial rails. So my design did just what it was intended to do. The sacrificial rails "took the hit", protecting the rest of the track-work and turnouts.

    • April 17, 2020 8:52 PM EDT
    • David,


      "Missile sponge" is a Navy term for the ships that were supposed to take the hits - absorbing missiles as a sponge absorbs water - to allow the carrier to carry on her mission.  In my case, it is the lower cost, battery powered items that let the kids have trains of their own that worked in the garden, absorbing the blows of well intended toddler hands, and thus minimizing the risk of damage to more expensive items.  We are aging out of that period of our lives, which allows me to consider repairing superficial damage for those on the model end of the spectrum or examine the art of the possible at the toy end of the spectrum.  Like I said, really, really nascent ideas right now, with no intention of putting plans to action just yet, and threads like this help scope the planning efforts.  


      I also really enjoyed the challenge of figuring out how to get my old LGB fleet back into action after its long hibernation.  Some worked out of the box.  Some needed some investigation and repair.  That m2071D defies every effort to get it rolling.  Success or failure, by and large, these repair efforts had a positive bleed over effect into other areas in the 1:1 scale word.  It is more tinkering, I suppose, than restoration, but it is satisfying.





    • April 17, 2020 6:06 PM EDT
    • While I am not sure what a Missile Sponge is, I have been into restoration of models for decades. It allows me to have more then I can afford new, and it also allows me to have what I want, that may not be commercially available.