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Warbonnet

Further work has been done on the GP40X from a previous blog Mainly detail wise.

 

 

 

 

 

Next up was adding wipers to the cab. Athearn RTR locos (and some Genesis locos too) don't with wipers. I added some very fine Cannon ones here, which are put beside a hair so you can see how fine they are!

 

 

 

Comparison with an Atlas loco. It's wipers seem very chunky in comparison. Maybe these Cannon ones could be nice fine replacements for 141s and 071s?

 

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That's all for now, more detail and repowering to come!

Warbonnet

After a prolonged period without a computer I cracked on with a couple of projects to keep me amused. One was the building of some Accurail covered hoppers. I bought a pack of three CNW hoppers in differing colours a few weeks back and nailed a couple together.

 

What you get

 

 

 

Added detail

 

 

 

 

 

So some Kadee replacement trucks were acquired and fitted, weights that had sheered loose glued back in, end detail bent out and roof walkway fixed. I had to remove some of the ladder detail but it doesn't look too bad.I may look into getting a replacement part or get out the plastic strip at a later date. Some weathering will help give it an in service battered look too.

 

 

 

 

 

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Warbonnet

After previewing the two locomotives I'm working on in my last blog, I thought it would be a good idea to take you on the journey on one of the rebuilds from start to finish. I have been into trains for a long time, but it's only recently I have looked at detailing and rebuilds. It's also coincided in me developing an interest in American railroads, and thankfully it's a match made in heaven.

 

I've sung enough about the detail and quality of American models in the past, but another area in which they excell is the after-market detail parts business. Companies like Details West, Detail Associates, BLMA and Cannon and Co. (to name but a few) offer great products to improve older and less detailed locos, as well as making the newest stuff even better. Another advantage is the brilliant spares department offered by the likes of Athearn and Kato, making getting parts for locos so easy.

 

As I stated in my previous entry (giggidy) I bought three relatively modern but badly treated locos from Dave who took them as part ex at a show. He stuck up pics on the 1st yuku site (seems so long ago now) and how we all laughed at them. However, I fancied my chances as doing them up, or at least acquiring them for spares. They were nice and cheap and I decided that once the horrific paint came off them there was plenty of potential. On top of that if I made a mess of them in my novice ways I wont be down too much money, far cheaper than trying similar detailing on a brand new model!

 

The third loco I ended up with was an Athearn RTR GP40X high-hood. Out of the three I bought this was in the worst condition. It was orignally an 'undecorated' loco, which is basically a kit form which comes with lots of additional parts for you to fit. All additional parts were missing, the paint was dreadful, it was missing a bogie sideframe and the additional bogie parts, and it was a bit of a lumpy runner.

 

 

 

I then got to work researching parts and listing out what I need before ordering from online retailers and Athearn's parts department. One nice and easy job was to install the grab irons front and rear as none were ever attached. I got a big back from BLMA and got to work.

 

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Also added were brass horns, MU hoses and couplier cut bars (which I'm not sure about being correct, despite someone telling me they were the right ones to use. I may well replace them.)

 

Next to go on will be the ploughs and other small detail parts.

Warbonnet

'You can never polish a poo', was the sage advice given to me one night by a mate as we discussed the important topic 'Does make-up on women really make much of a difference?' Anyway, I shoud've listened as now I have got myself caught up with some Athearn basket cases.

 

These came from a consignment of horrors liberated Bracken's castle in Raheny. Some clown decided to paint up some US locos in CIE colours with a yard brush and some white tape. A right state they were. I have already given a Kato SD40-2 the kiss of life and brought it back as a Conrail unit as you will have seen on the old site. However, these other two needed a bit more work.

 

 

 

The GP40X was a real dog; it was an undercorated kit which basically had none of its additional parts added. Has had a good bit of detailing done to it. I'm currently working the chassis where I have ripped out the old Athearn motor and replaced it with a much smoother and quieter Kato unit. I have taken plenty of pics along the way so I might do a blow-by-blow account on what I did to try to improve it. Although American stuff is not of interest to most on here it might give you ideas and tips to try out. You could give me pointers too as it's all about learning! On top of that, these EMD locos have a lot of similar detail features to our own locos, so you may want to have a closer look at some of that.

 

Before

 

 

 

Still a long way to go, updates as soon as I have them. I also have about 7 or 8 locos ready to hit the bench too to be dismemebered and rebuilt, so those long winter nights should be filled pretty easy!

Warbonnet

Another day, another pretty straightforward American boxcar kit! I was keen to give the new range of Atlas Trainman kits a go to see what the quality is like. Atlas make some of the nicest stuff on the market, American or otherwise and I certainly wouldn't hesitate in buying any of their products.

 

The 'Trainman' line is their budget range, a bit like Hornby Railroad, only erm, better! Locos get proper all wheel drive, rolling stock is as free running as anything this side of an 1980s Lima Mark 1 coach. The only real difference is that compared to their premium range the additional detail is a bit limited.

 

The kits are a very recent development, with Atlas taking over the Branchline range and re-releasing them under their own banner. I was keen to pick one up and see what they were like, so plumped for a late 1930s Santa Fe 40ft AAR Boxcar from model junction. Nice and cheap at £8.99.

 

Here's what you get.

 

 

 

I started off by attaching the nicely detailed underframe to the floor of the car. Must say the detail was very nice, but took a bit of fettling to get it to all fit right.

 

 

 

Unlike the Accurail kit (and nearly all the others I've nailed together over the past couple of years) the Trainman kit comes with metal wheels, and they are lovely free runners too. Happy days!

 

 

 

I attached the bogies (or trucks as they're known in Yankee Doodle land) to the car as it began to take shape

 

 

 

Then the ends went on, to stop you getting them the wrong way around, one end has four lugs, the other has five. Fitted lovely, then glued into place to make sure they stay there.

 

 

 

After that the doors were put in place, there was a mechanism that allows you to have opening sliding doors if you wish

 

 

 

 

Warbonnet

Dun Laoghaire Show

What a wonderful day for a exhibition! A scorcher of a day saw the crowds come out in force for the MRSI show in Dun Laoghaire. The town centre is a great venue for such a thing, with easy access via car, DART and bus. The amount of people there was very encouraging which is great to see, especially with a lot of youngsters there too. There's some life in this hobby yet!

 

I was keen to finally have a look at the forthcoming Murphys 071s, and man I was not disappointed! Pretty much all of the planned locos were there, so I was able to fight the crowds and swim through their drool to have a look.

 

 

 

Since the pictures came out I was excited but a bit apprehensive at the same time. The overall shape of the loco is bang on, it certainly looks like an 071. I was bothered by that bodyside radiator grill though, it looked a bit coarse and protruding. I looked at some of my American GM locos with a similair pattern grill and they looked much better when moulded in plastic.

 

However, when I looked at them today they didn't bother me nearly as much as I thought they would. They most certainly are not a deal-breaker.

 

I have a feeling that 082 would be on my shopping list, the real one is a real screamer and I love the look of the nameplate on the model, it's a superb bit of printing. It was pointed out to me though that 082's cabside numbers should be white with a black shade, not the other way around. I have since looked this up and it appears that the info is correct. The IE logo also looks a little big on the side, but I'm no expert. I hope it's not too late to correct them!

 

 

 

It is a good solid base but needs a lot of work to bring it up to the standards of the latest releases.

 

Was also great to meet some guys from the board, catching up with fellow mods Anthony and Dave, meeting new faces like Glenderg (and seeing him at work!) and ttc0169 and others. Also ended up manning a MRSI table for a while, Dave saying I'd be fine and not too busy. Ended up selling some of the 50th wagons, helping countless vote for their favourite layout and reuniting a lost child with his parents!

 

Hope the show is on again next year. Well done MRSI and the council, roll on October.

Warbonnet

I thought that a blog might be in order. It will mainly contain small bits and pieces that I'm working on to fill time before I finally get some sort of layout sorted. I have the stock, now I just need some track and some space to run it all on! Someday soon hopefully.

 

Anyway, I'll be mainly working on American stuff, with some British and maybe even some Irish stuff thrown in along the way. My first port of call is centring around two box car kits. One is a Accurail 50ft Conrail boxcar and the other is an Atlas Trainman 40ft Santa Fe boxcar to fit in with some of my older motive power. I'm not really one for sticking to one era or railroad, but the right stock will have to run together at the same time. I couldn't have steam running past some SD70s and GEVOs!

 

 

 

The body of the boxcar was bowing inwards so although I knew the chassis would help reshape it, I added some plastic-card bracing too.

 

 

 

Underframe detail is quite sparse, with the bare minimum added. It could be further enhanced with brass wire to replicate tubing etc at a later date, but there's also day to day handling, and as I want to build up rakes of cars for longer trains I can live without it for now. This can also be said for removing moulded detail like grab irons and installing wire replacements. Maybe I'll eventually get around to that as a fully fettled car can look fantastic when kitted out and weathered.

 

I did do some upgrades, replacing the godawful plastic couplers and wheels with Kadee products.

 

 

 

 

 

This was my first Accurail kit and I would defo buy some more. I'll be keen to try the Atlas one too to see how good it is. If it is anything like their RTR line of stuff it should be lovely. More on that another time.

Warbonnet

I thought that a blog might be in order. It will mainly contain small bits and pieces that I'm working on to fill time before I finally get some sort of layout sorted. I have the stock, now I just need some track and some space to run it all on! Someday soon hopefully.

 

Anyway, I'll be mainly working on American stuff, with some British and maybe even some Irish stuff thrown in along the way. My first port of call is centring around two box car kits. One is a Accurail 50ft Conrail boxcar and the other is an Atlas Trainman 40ft Santa Fe boxcar to fit in with some of my older motive power. I'm not really one for sticking to one era or railroad, but the right stock will have to run together at the same time. I couldn't have steam running past some SD70s and GEVOs!

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2204[/ATTACH]

 

Anyway, first up, the fairly simple Accurail box car, based on a car from the 1970s.

 

Here is the kit as it comes, American kits are nice simple affairs, easy to sling together when you're watching telly. Here's the kit, you get a choice of doors to suit your modelling period.I went with the later ones.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2205[/ATTACH]

 

The body of the boxcar was bowing inwards so although I knew the chassis would help reshape it, I added some plastic-card bracing too.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2198[/ATTACH]

 

Then the steel weight was glued to the chassis, and the doors were added to the body.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2199[/ATTACH]

 

Underframe detail is quite sparse, with the bare minimum added. It could be further enhanced with brass wire to replicate tubing etc at a later date, but there's also day to day handling, and as I want to build up rakes of cars for longer trains I can live without it for now. This can also be said for removing moulded detail like grab irons and installing wire replacements. Maybe I'll eventually get around to that as a fully fettled car can look fantastic when kitted out and weathered.

 

I did do some upgrades, replacing the godawful plastic couplers and wheels with Kadee products.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2200[/ATTACH]

 

And the finished product, went together nice and easy, very good quality parts. Okay, so it's very basic kit building, but for a novice who is looking to gain some confidence they are perfect to start with, and I find them therapeutic. I have a 30 litre storage box full of such kits from Athearn, Roundhouse etc. to keep me going!

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2201[/ATTACH]

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2202[/ATTACH]

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]2203[/ATTACH]

 

This was my first Accurail kit and I would defo buy some more. I'll be keen to try the Atlas one too to see how good it is. If it is anything like their RTR line of stuff it should be lovely. More on that another time.

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