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Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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   Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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   Author  Topic: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose  (Read 29246 times)
ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
 
« Reply #20 on: Apr 9th, 2006, 11:28pm »
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  Thanks George, But the credit has to go the WMSR_734 (Colin). He made the change for me. You know, us OLD geesers can't quite figure out all this new fangled computer stuff. Heck, Mike K. had to teach me how to use the scaner. And have I ever been useing it.  
 
   Thanks again George,
 
   Bruce


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #21 on: Apr 10th, 2006, 7:15pm »
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hi bruce and all,
 
thanks to my signman and pockets, i'm closer to a steam engine than ever before...i actually have a miniature stationary steam engine with which to teach youngsters with.  and it works!  pockets has been working with me to get the cli-shay closer to the building bench (thanks for the wheels and the kick in da boot).  alot has been happening.
 
tonight, what i wanted to share with those who are thinking about building a railcar is what the foundation of the railcar that i'm currently working is.   by and large, the railcars we build in the live steam hobby fall in two catagories:
 
1. working/operational - such as gondolas, hoppers, flatcars, rider cars, ect.
 
2.  display/non-operational  - such as passenger cars, some tank cars, cabooses, ect.
 
my current and past efforts have been the display/non-operational railcars.  both types of railcars are economically achievable, so it's just a matter of deciding what you want.  form follows function, the foundation of a display car may be much lighter in construction than a working railcar.  for my railcars, i've chosen to use a combination of stable furniture-grade plywood and steel centersill to form the platform on which to build.  remember, a warped foundation means an out of kilter car body.  
 
in the photo below, you can see that the 1x2x? rectangular steel tube centersill runs the entire length of the car.  accidents do happen now and again, the centersill helps the railcar from becoming 're-kitified' when you least expect it.  don't laugh, it can happen to you!  in the live steam hobby, there is an unwritten rule that if you damage it, you either repair it or replace it or buy it.  having a well engineered railcar can reduce a possibly expensive accident to a minor 'oops!'  replacing a couple of stratigically placed parts is both cheaper in time spent and pocketbook crunch.  
 
the centersill pictured is set up for a specific set of trucks.  live steam gauge trucks are not created equal.  each supplier builds in features that cause changes to be made to the railcar's foundation in order to function properly.  the caboose trucks in the pictures are from mountain car company.  there are several other suppliers producing trucks for the hobby that are the equal in every way to mcc's offerings.  it is just a matter of purchasing what you want and building up from there.  the trucks shown, have a longer wheel-base than the regular freight car trucks, so the truck bolster pin had to be moved back about 1/2 inch from what would normally called for in order to miss the step-units.  something else to remember!  do a fit-up before making permanent welds!  save yourself from an 'oops!'  the wings of the centersill truck bolster should match the rocker bearing surfaces towards the topsides of the trucks.  they are there to limit side-sway.  if you can limit side-way to no more-than 1/4 inch but no-less than 1/8 inch, everything else being right, your railcar should track the rails,stay off the ground, and not bobble like a child's toy.  a railcar that can travel to many different tracks and remain on the rails without a fuss is an accomplishment to be proud of.  
 
thanks bruce for preaching the joy that well built equipment brings!
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_001.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #22 on: Apr 10th, 2006, 8:11pm »
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hi all,
 
pictured is the centersill truck bolster setup commonly used for mcc trucks.  a simple affair and easily done with homeowner-type welding equipment.  with a little bit of practice, you, the mig welder, and the steel tubing will become fast friends.  a couple hours work with a hacksaw and mig welder will see your railcar beginning to take shape.  the average freight car truck (avg freight truck wheel base axle to axle - 8 1/2 inches more or less) bolster pin is about 9 1/2 inches from the end of the centersill.  dividing the axle-wheel base (given a wheel diameter between 4 3/8 and 4 1/8 inches) by half will tell you where the trucks you have will go in relationship to the figure given above (just make it miss the step-units).  if you use 3 inch wide step-units, the lead wheel-set should be ticklishly close but not contacting the step-unit.  it really depends on the type and placement of the step-units you want to use.  most of my step-units are inset, requiring a little more care to setup properly.  for those that want to 'apply' tender-style step-units to the 'outside' framework of the railcar, the placement of the truck bolster is less critical but equally important that the wheelset misses the step-unit.  
 
on most of my cabooses, the plywood foundation is the total length of the centersill minus 1 1/2 inches (Length - 1 1/2 inches).  why 1 1/2 inches?  i use 3/4 inch endsills (2 x 3/4 inch).  you can use what ever thickness (or not) that you want, just adjust the plywood foundation to make up the difference.  with the exception of bolting the plywood foundation to the centersill, i use very few metal fastners for the rest of the construction.  a square and plumb foundation is a must for everything to fit properly.  building is the most enjoyable part of the hobby for me.  don't rush it!  enjoy the time in the shop!  take time to travel to other tracks, there's a wealth of information out there to lift your imagination and create a railcar you'll be proud to own.  more...tomorrow night!
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_002.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #23 on: Apr 11th, 2006, 7:43pm »
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hi all,
 
time at work is growing longer and time for fun is short tonight.  i said that i would post pictures of the progress of the commissary car so that's what i'll do.  in this picture, you can see the type and placement of the train brake air line.  i'll partial to legris quick change fittings and piping, others may use other vendors.  it's really a matter of personal choice.  to keep the piping from being damaged by the steel, i'll be shooting a small amount of door and window sealing foam to isolate it.
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_004.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #24 on: Apr 11th, 2006, 7:48pm »
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here's another view of how the train brake air line goes together.  this shows the connection to the trucks.
 
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_007.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #25 on: Apr 11th, 2006, 8:03pm »
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commissary cars required lots of storage.  on the previous drover's caboose, i used a straight square box approach to below-the-deck storage.  why a box?  because these cars will travel in the company of an mow heavy crane and will need a certain amount of mass in order to avoid string-lining.  the box does a nice job of hiding the lead weights.  on this one, i found reference material that suggested a tapered box.  so, here's view of how it looks without the lid.
 
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #26 on: Apr 11th, 2006, 8:09pm »
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okay, i've added the lid and the rough fixtures of the tanks for water, fuel, ect.  here's view of how it looks so far.
 
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_009.jpg
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ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
 
« Reply #27 on: Apr 11th, 2006, 9:06pm »
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  LOOKING GOOD. as useual. BTW, George, those trucks appear to have a different type of PRESSURE system than the ones I use. From the OTHER company.
The guy you got your trucks from used to use only VACUUM type brakes. Maybe the light went on, ya think.
 
   Nice work again.
 
   Bruce


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pockets
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
 
« Reply #28 on: Apr 11th, 2006, 10:02pm »
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Lookin' good, George. About those tank ends......
 
Greg B.


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Mechanical engineers build weapons, whereas civil engineers build targets.

When the man at the door said," Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms", I, naturally assumed it was a delivery!
moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #29 on: Apr 16th, 2006, 8:56pm »
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hi bruce, pockets, and listers,
 
the mcc people went to regular air cylinders so time back (got cheaper than the others?!).  they are also rated for higher pressures.  "about those tanks"....you metal guys...you have a gift.   me?  i work with what i can imagine from a junk pile i can work with.  you've seen how i'm currently doing it.  this list is for sharing knowledge, not necessarily about me and my models.  the tanks shown above aren't strictly the way that most car-builders of the early eras would do it.  even i admit that the workmanship was superb for what was being built from the 1870's on through the early 1940's.
 
the tanks for the commissary car were inspired by the mom-&-pop shortlines like the Hartwell Railroad in north georgia.  since the commissary car is a "re-hab'ed" car, it made sense that under-carriage tanks might not be 'original'.  they might be 'scavenged' from any number of other sources.  the important point?  they fit, they worked, and they were cheap.  again, form follows function.  the purists' may point out that the class 1's never did that...they would be right.   a lot of this hobby is satisfied with what is turned out by a handful of suppliers.  that's okay on the face up it, their equipment looks great on first glance, but a closer look at three like cars reveals not appreciable changes.  why not do something to each that makes them unique?
 
that is what i hope you get from watching what i'm doing with each of the railcars that i'm building.  i'd like to know that each of you could be like the rancher that knows every single cow-critter on his spread...they are all unique.  it doesn't matter what type of railcar you build...make something about it unique and memorable.  i like railcars that have character.  building the body of a car is great, but making unique details is much more satisfying.  i'm not a rivot counter, nor will i be a super-scale master modeler, but i hope that my work stands up to both the 'first' and 'second' looks.
 
anyway, i've some more photos for you tonight, enjoy!
 
most of the models i build need a little more weight in order to track nicely and not sound the whole world is crashing about as so many do.  the problem of weight is usually not thought of until it's rolling down the track doing the 'bump and grind'.  it needs to be tackled as soon as the centersill and foundation is laid.  in the photo below, you can see my current answer to the problem, in the future, i'm going to try to pour directly into the centersill.  bruce, thank you for the inspiration for how and where to obtain the necessary metal(lead).  it really does work!  
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_036.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #30 on: Apr 16th, 2006, 9:00pm »
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here's another photo of how the under-carriage storage boxes are turning out'
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_037.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #31 on: Apr 16th, 2006, 9:13pm »
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it seems that the smallest details take the most time, here's a photo of what i've been working on for the last few days.  this is an 'after' photo.  tomorrow night, i'll show how i did it.  (oops!  it's blurry!  sorry!)
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/HPIM1437.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #32 on: Apr 16th, 2006, 9:18pm »
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here's a photo of several types of windows that will be on the model when completed.
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


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moose_the_caboose
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« Reply #33 on: Apr 16th, 2006, 9:23pm »
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in an earlier photo, you can see the raw opening in the body in what is the kitchen area.  this photo is showing how i framed in the opening, getting it ready to be fitted for an access door.
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #34 on: Apr 16th, 2006, 9:28pm »
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one last photo for tonight...and a question.  what is it and how was it used on a kitchen car?  want a hint?  be careful where you're walking while manually braking the train?!
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_031.jpg
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pockets
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
 
« Reply #35 on: Apr 17th, 2006, 12:31pm »
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If I twist my head, just so, the line in my bi-focals cancels out the fuzziness in the picture and makes that one fine window, George. You're doin an excellent job on that car.
 
Waving hand frantically, in the third row, "I know, I know, I know!" I'll let someone else provide the answer, 'cause I have insider information.
 
Greg B.


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Mechanical engineers build weapons, whereas civil engineers build targets.

When the man at the door said," Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms", I, naturally assumed it was a delivery!
ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
 
« Reply #36 on: Apr 17th, 2006, 1:23pm »
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   George,
 
   Your really out-doing yourself. Those windows are beautiful. BTW, are you filling the center sill with lead weights ? If you are, thats one hell of a good idea.  
   Nice, nice work. Beautiful cars. Man, I wish I was a wood worker.
 
   Take care,
 
   Bruce


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #37 on: Apr 17th, 2006, 10:06pm »
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hi bruce, pockets, and listers,
 
thanks for the compliments guys...with time and patience, most people could do what i'm doing.  many of you guys can work metal to put me to shame.  i look at the project and look backwards to see the steps.  i know metal work is the same, i'm just blind to it.  wood is easy for me to understand.  and the one thing i came to understand about making model windows was that it cost me more in materials than i could buy it completed.  building small or miniature parts in wood requires the right type of wood with a small grain.  that's why most carver's work in bass wood or white pine.  white pine for blocky larger objects and bass wood for fine work.  i've also learned not to re-invent the wheel if someone else does it cheaper and of good quality.
 
having said all that, the photo below shows my starting point for most of the windows that appear on my models.  some have said that i ought not to tell, but live steamers share with one another.  this tip was shared with me by one of my friends in central florida...i'm sharing it with you so that you know that there are ways of creating a great looking model using good materials and modest skills.
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_045.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
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« Reply #38 on: Apr 18th, 2006, 9:02pm »
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here's another view of the detail in question (sans glue clamps).  got any ideas?!
there are additional details to be added, but the gist (or jest) of it is there.   will be out of 'pocket' (sorry for the pun, pockets, i just couldn't resist) until this weekend.  going to watch over the skytrain model as it performs in tallahassee.  til then.
 
enjoy,
 
moose-the-caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/commisary_car_047.jpg
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pockets
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Cabaoose
 
« Reply #39 on: Apr 19th, 2006, 10:06pm »
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C'mon, gang. It's a commisary car and look where it's sitting.....
 
Greg B.


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Mechanical engineers build weapons, whereas civil engineers build targets.

When the man at the door said," Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms", I, naturally assumed it was a delivery!
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