[LVLC] Accucraft Shay and ideas for log cars

Posted by Gerd on Sunday, 23 April 2017 with No Comments

Beside the big Bachmann Shay, the Accucraft one got Kadees installed as well. They look somewhat odd on the old T-boiler-type Shay, but it’s okay for me.

I also spend some thoughts about the log cars. The old and short 18′ skeleton log cars are hard to equip with Kadee’s due to the construction. I would also like to have some longer log cars, say 20-24′ long. So I decided to build 4 new cars and sell the old ones. For the new cars, I bought some Kadee archbar trucks, which are all-metal with detailed wheelsets and break rigging. Only the high flanges are a minus point on this trucks.

The next days, I’ll go to figure out how long the new cars can be to negotiate regular tracks in the garden. I also ordered some log bunks and other Ozark castings for the new cars.

[LVLC] Installing Kadees on the freight cars

Posted by Gerd on Sunday, 16 April 2017 with No Comments

In the past days, I rebuild the freight cars to Kadee couplers. I started with the flat ar and soon ran into the first problem. Once the correct coupler height was measured, I realized that the car bodies are two low above rail-head to install the couplers at the correct height. I had a closer look to the truck mounts and simply added a 4mm plywood layer to the  bolsters and raised the car body on top of the trucks. The car not only get’s the perfect height for the couplers, it even look much better in proportion at all, especially together with the locos. The following photos shows the rebuild of the other freight cars, since I did only a few photos on the flat car.

I glued in some more plywood block for the correct coupler height. Once the coupler pads were in place, I made the  cut out to the end sills with a fine razor saw files. The first version I tested was the coupler in full size, which leads to an outside overhang of 4mm which I covered with a crown-piece of wood.

It worked okay, but didn’t match my feeling well. So I cut off 4mm from the rear of the draft box and installed the couplers flush with end sills. The second version was exactly what I was looking for and I’ll use them on all cars. The right photo above shows the rebuild flatcar beside the not-yet-touched workcar, which has the same frame. It clearly shows the different height and the changed couplers.

20170406_224043The next day, I finished  the other cars as well to the same pattern. So I’ve the first three cars done. But the most important part was still missing – how’s the performance on track? I did some test runs on my temporary garden railroad which features very rough track. the couplers work perfect and keeps the train connected in all situations. I even made a test run with 3′ radii curves in a direct S-curve. Kadee recommends 4′ radii curves with body mounted couplers on the Shay, but in my test, they also worked down on 3′.

Next project will be the waycar. Due to ta different frame pattern, the rebuild might be a bit different. And I’ll use the rebuild as well to add some brake detail to the waycar.

BTW: I’m going to weather the couplers and rebuild-sections later when all cars are done to avoid multiple airbrush-cleaning…

See you next time, Gerd

[LVLC] Switching from Link&Pin to Kadee

Posted by Gerd on Sunday, 9 April 2017 with No Comments

Hi folks,

since my 5″-gauge railroad is ready for the upcoming season, I decided to overhaul my smaller garden railroad trains next. I look forward to build a garden railroad for my US log trains one day. While running my trains in the past, the stylish Link&Pin couplers are a mess on garden railroading. They look very good, but are not handy while crawling on the knees beside your train trying to couple them up. So I decided to switch to Kadees instead.

Many garden railroaders recommend to use #1-scale Kadees for G-scale, while they were looking much better in size. Since my log trains are 1:20.3 scale, I’ll go with the G-scale couplers. Another reason is additional performance when running trains on very rough, temporary tracks.

First model I upgraded to Kadees was my Bachmann Shay. There are several instructions and guides on the web. I used my own version by replacing the lower pocket with a Kadee #835. I added new runboards from 3D-printed replacements which features a full kick boards.

I really like the new pilots with the Kadees in place. As you can see, I decided to go with body-mount couplers, since the Accucraft Shay needs 3-4′ radius curves, which will work with body mount couplers.

Will be continued soon with the first upgraded cars…

[WBE] A new loco for the Hon30 layout

Posted by Gerd on Monday, 3 April 2017 with 2 Comments

Hi folks,

last week, I got the latest release of Minitrains, the LKm Ns2f diesel loco. It’s a modern type engine (built 1953), but I couldn’t resist.

Since the loco is late built, I’ll keep her un-weathered

Cheers, Gerd

[MLC] Logging Forney #2

Posted by Gerd on Saturday, 25 March 2017 with No Comments

20170305_190013Hello loggers,

since the car roster is mostly done, it’s time to spend some attention to my Forney loco. Last year, I spend a rebuild to make her look “Maine style”, which doesn’t match the new logging approach anymore. The new logging Forney at the Moody Lumber Co. should be more solid ans sturdy and should match the Shay in paint-scheme as well.

First steps were the end beams which got changed to massive wood beams with run boards, which were ideals when shunting log cars. As on many Porter locos, I added single pocket Link & Pin coupler heads on std. coupler height.

To change the pilot, I had to remove the boiler, which is no big issue for me due to regular training. The new pilot makes the loco shorter and more compact looking, just perfect for a logging engine.

After re-assembling the loco, I overhauled the cab. The roof was painted oxidred as on the Shay and I added boards to the sides which got stained in brown just as the pilot and end beam. Once all the paint was dry, I added road number #2, which will be all the lettering on this engine.

Now the Moody Lumber Co has both locos in service for the upcoming season.

Bye, Gerd

[WBE] 3 years Hon30-layout “Waldbahn Eusserthal”

Posted by Gerd on Monday, 20 March 2017 with 1 Comment

Hello loggers,

three years ago, I started my Hon30 adventure which became later the “Waldbahn Eusserthal”. Time for a small review, starting with some photos from the beginning.

But my review will not focus on my own layout. Instead, I’ll show you two copies of my idea/layout build by other model railroaders. Since I started with my layout, I got dozens of mails from other model railroaders, asking for details, sources and so on. Not each of them was going to build a logging railroad. Many adapted the modular plug&play system for N-scale, TT-scale and even H0n2. Most of them were just happy to have a solution for model railroading in limited space. Ans sometimes, I got response from the other projects and I like to show two of them today.

If you’ve build your own layout based on my idea, feel free to send me a mail and some photos. If you like, I can show your layout here as well.

The layout by Bernd

In march 2016, I showed my layout at an exhibition in Germany, where I first met Bernd. He was mostly working on locomotive kits, but was so fascinated by my layout and design, that he made the step forward into layout building. In just 12 month, he copied my layout incl. some additional modules. We are in close contact and maybe we’ll have a layout meet some day, bringing both together. Here are some photos of the layout, more were hosted on an own page, since it was too hard to sort them out.

The layout by Michael

When I was for a visit at another exhibition in march 2017, I spotted this layout, which has clear parallels to my design. I talked to the owner/builder and as expected, his layout way inspired by my blog as well. He told me, that there are plans to extend the layout in the future.

[MLC] Water Car #3 (Riding car)

Posted by Gerd on Wednesday, 8 March 2017 with No Comments

Today I’ve a “fast project”. Last year, I build a new riding car to go with my Maine-style Forney, based on a typical tender. This car doesn’t fit well into the new logging railroad style, so I decided to repaint it into some kind of old tender, reused as water car on the logging railroad.

I removed the tank and floor, repainted the frame and tank and added a wooden board decking to the frame. The lettering shows what’s inside.

Since I can transport and operate only one steam loco at a time, I decided to scrap the old riding car and keep only the new #3 in service.

Cheers, Gerd

[MLC] Crew & Camp Car #5

Posted by Gerd on Monday, 6 March 2017 with No Comments

Hello loggers,

it took me some time to make further progress on my Moody Lumber since I prepared my trolley layout for a show next weekend. Anyhow – here’s the next car for my new logging railroad.

I rebuild my old boxcar into a Crew & Camp Car for my logging crew. First I updated the frame underside with new cross members and trussrods. The threats were cut on the lathe and I used functional turn buckles.

Since the couplers are mounted on the disconnects, the king pins will take all the pulling force instead of the end beams as usually. Therefore I rigged the truss rods at the king pin cross member. Once the underside was done, the car was ready to ride on a pair of disconnects again.

Next I did some changes to the car body, which was made from plywood with nailed on planks. It was simple to remove some planks and to install windows afterwards. BTW the window glazing and trim comes from my old crew car, which got retired and scrapped.

At least I added some handrails and stir ups at the doors. After painting, I added the road number and the car is now ready for first service on the MLC.

I spend some thoughts about an interior, but I decided to go without, since the car is great to store material and equipment on operation sessions.

Finally, the open-task-list of my Moody Lumber remake get’s close to the end… Next project will be quick one, maybe until end of this week.

Cheers, Gerd

[MLC] Logging Caboose #7

Posted by Gerd on Saturday, 18 February 2017 with No Comments

The next piece of Moody Lumber Co. roster has left the shops this week. It’s the logging caboose #7, which was rebuilt from the old BCRR-caboose. I removed the cupola and painted the car in brown.

Since I had some 3D-printed handrails left, I spend them as well to finish the platforms.

The interior was rearranged, since the high seat was not longer useful. I cut down a workbench, which I made for the engine shed scenery and placed it into the car. It fits in very nice and I could recycle another old piece. The car also features full lighting incl. tail lamps.

The next car project will be a bigger one, to ride on disconnects. I guess the car will be ready for service next week.


[MLC] Tool & Work Car #4

Posted by Gerd on Tuesday, 14 February 2017 with No Comments

Hello again,

my new Moody Lumber Co. was a bit boring with the Shay and disconnect log cars only. So I finished the Tool & Work Car #4 to go along with them. The car was already rebuilt last year, to sit on top of one disconnect log car pair. So I removed the old BCRR lettering and applied the new one for the MLC which is the road# only for the cars. So the Tool & Work Car got #4.

I spend some effort to add truss roads to the flat car body. this was not easy on this car, since I couldn’t add them in full function due to glued construction. So I added them for show only. The other car bodies will get full truss-rods installed. The queen-posts were 3D-printed as well as the hand rails.

So this is the first car (beside the disconnect log cars) in service for the MLC, but will not be alone for a long time. I already started work on the old caboose which will become a logging caboose. More on this project will come the next week.

Fun fact : the shed on the work caboose was built in 2008, when I started my BCRR, as well as some of the “workshop detail stuff”.

Cheers, Gerd