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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 29178 times)
moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #620 on: Jan 16th, 2008, 9:13pm »
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hi all,
 
bruce:  the thanks are entirely mine.   it takes alot to stick with a friend through thick and thin, you've done that.  as much fun as our 'hobby' is, there's a few people who can only see to the point of their nose, their chequebooks, or their own ego's at times.  if you remember, when i initially brought the running chassis of the blue welder to the track for testing and evaluation, there was a group of guys of which you were a part that said that "it (the chassis) would never stay on the track!"  you were the only one in that group to re-evaluate the chassis before it had moved 10 ft and said, " this thing may never come off the track!"  it was at that point, that you asked me where the design had come from and i mentioned mr. yoder.   by the end of the day, i'd changed a few minds.  your only criticism (quite valid), given truthfully and without malice, was that the front pilot beam was too low.  to this day, the blue welder very seldom ever stubs it's toe...except for that time at the north track during the cancer run (remember the pilot beam and side-rod catching on 'snake-head' at an auto crossing?).   yes, i remember that one!  the impact loosened the center axle that let go on the 'back 40'.  it was the only time that i had to put it in the 'dead cockroach' position and re-square the drive system in the woods without the benefit of a shop.  btw, the prior year cancer run would make another great ben s. story.  bruce, you'll have to go back to page 25, i think to see the caboose as you knew it (oops!  maybe that's where all the demolition is?!).  funny thing, i've had it sooo long, that i've started to think it would look better in orange paint!  lol!  ...oh well, maybe not.
 
to all:  as many of you already know, bruce and i go back a lot of years.  we'd been running around same fls circles since the early seventies without 'impacting' each other until the early nineties.   you just never know where or when your live steam friendships  will be made.  
 
on to the work at hand!  as i posted earlier, the windows for the erie legacy caboose are in.  so, over the last few days, i've been modifying how they fit into the caboose.  after having looked at how the window units looked (they were shortened), i decided that the individual window frames and glass panes should be modified as well.  why am i doing this?  well, if you look at how the older house windows function, you'll notice that when the window is fully closed, the top of one frame blends with the bottom of the opposite frame.  when i shortened the window unit as a whole, they no longer met in the middle.  each frame is made from 5 individual pieces of wood.  if you've ever created your own window pieces from scratch in the smaller scales, you'll understand what i'm talking about.  haha!  yes, pockets, it is a little easier than that, but not by much!  
 
speaking of windows, one of the common caboose designs has the windows dropping into a cavity below the window sill plate.  haven't mastered that yet, but who knows?
 
four more windows to modify!  the work continues, i'll post some photos soon.
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose
 
on Jan 16th, 2008, 7:54pm, ErieAtlantic7597 wrote:       (Click here for original message)

 
   George,
 
   I am humbled by the tremendous improvements you've made to my poor old wooden caboose. Never did I ever expect such wonderful changes. I almost can't remember what it used to look like. Maybe thats a good thing!!
 
   Thankyou my friend, thankyou.
 
   Bruce



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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
  erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_002.jpg - 32338 Bytes
« Reply #621 on: Jan 20th, 2008, 6:13pm »
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hi all,
 
modification of the windows continues, but in recent days, i've had a couple of you ask how, specifically, how i do it.  since this is a teaching thread, here goes.
 
tip no. 1: is to learn how to listen to some of the real live steam gentlemen and craftsmen.  five or six years ago, a fellow live steamer (foster b.) from a visiting live steam group in central florida was commenting about how well i'd done building the ej&e caboose.  he was impressed by the extra detail (windows, roofing, etc) i'd added compared to most everybody else.  not only did my roof look like tar paper, but was textured like it too.  while the roof was a hit with him, he mentioned all the work i'd put into building the windows from scratch.   in our exchange, as good live steam friends do, he asked me if i'd ever visited a store specializing in dollhouse items.  i replied that no, i hadn't.  as conversations go, the topic changed rapidly enough that i didn't take the opportunity to ask him the reason for his question.  one of my favorite mentors (ben s) taught me that you can create interest in your equipment by detailing so that everytime someone sees it, there's always something they hadn't caught before.  using my background scenic construction, i knew this to be true.  want an example?  check out any of the classic b/w movies, those guys knew how to tell a story with just scenery alone.  well, a nicely detailed train is it's own story...a tableau is the fancy word for it.  bruce's goose is another perfect example, go back and view some the threads dedicated to it and you'll see what i mean.  you have to stop looking a things in a monolithic way.  usually, when i visit tracks in my area, i see equipment made up to look like lionel.  nothing wrong with that, but lionel doesn't portray life very well.  if you build your equipment just like everybody else, it will look like everbody else's.  in my case, i like building cabooses, so if there was a yard full of cabooses, i'd like to think that someone else could pick mine out of the crowd for what's different about it.  
 
tip no 2: look at things for not what they are, but what they can become.  several months later, our group was the invited guest at the other track.  foster b. had his work-caboose on display.  wow!  for someone i'd never thought of as a super-detailer, foster had the sharpest cab i'd ever seen.  the windows were gorgeous, as were all the little details like a laundry tub, shovels, a water barrel, a fuel can, and hanging laundry on one of the platforms.  you know i had to ask!  his answer?   1" scale dollhouse items!  now i knew why he asked.
 
when i got into the hobby, money was tight.  i had to look at things for what i wanted them to be, not what they were.  i made all my own details because i had to.  i couldn't afford do it any other way.  since my visit to see foster and group, i've found the use of dollhouse windows was not only a labor-saver, but a money-saver as well.  i quickly found out that buying finished window units was cheaper than the cost of the fine grade lumber that i needed to do it myself.
 
for those of you who wanted to see my starting point, here it is, a standard dollhouse window unit.
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_002.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
  erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_008.jpg - 30518 Bytes
« Reply #622 on: Jan 20th, 2008, 7:00pm »
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hi all,
 
the next step is to decide to modify it.  why did i choose to do it?  scale-wise, it was too tall to look right on the erie caboose.  here's a look at the beginning of the process.  the angle marks on the upper end of the window casement are where the cuts will be made.  the old adage applies, measure twice, cut once!
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_008.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
  erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_009.jpg - 61960 Bytes
« Reply #623 on: Jan 20th, 2008, 7:47pm »
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hi all,
 
here's a look at the window unit after the cuts have been made.  in my case, i used a fine toothed blade in my scroll saw.  you can do the same or use to use a razor saw, fret saw, or coping saw.  if you aren't a wizard with a dremel, STAY AWAY from your window units and your fingers!  use of coarse toothed saw blades will quickly turn your project into fine fire wood for really small fires.
 
more about the window units, tomorrow!
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_009.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
  erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_010.jpg - 66220 Bytes
« Reply #624 on: Jan 21st, 2008, 6:26pm »
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hi all,
 
to continue from last night, the top fascia board has been carefully removed from its former supports and is about to be glued back in the new position.
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_010.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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« Reply #625 on: Jan 21st, 2008, 6:36pm »
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hi all,
 
the picture below shows the end result of our 'chopping' the window units.  there's still some filling and sanding to do, but this is the wanted result.  while the units now look a little better, they show the next set of problems to be solved.  plainly seen, the sliding window frames no longer align at the mid-point in the window unit.
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_006.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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« Reply #626 on: Jan 21st, 2008, 6:50pm »
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hi all,
 
to solve the problem, i had to completely disassemble two of the window frames, shorten them, then re-assemble everything.  for each of these window frames, there are six pieces of wood and the individual pane of 'glass'.  if you try this for yourself, tread easy, be patient, take your time, and measure...a lot!  this has to be done right the first time, doing it a second time means buying a complete new window unit.  the photo below shows my first effort.  just think, i have eight more frames to do!  
 
there's a little more to show, but that will have to wait until everything's been painted and ready for installation.
 
enjoy!


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-20-08_007.jpg
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ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #627 on: Jan 21st, 2008, 9:12pm »
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Holy mackeral, George, what a neat way to create caboose windows. I would have never thought of doll house windows.
Thanks again for your handiwork on my caboose.
 
   Bruce


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pockets
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #628 on: Jan 21st, 2008, 10:20pm »
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Nice piece of wood butchery, there, Moosey.
 
Greg B.


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B+MNW21201
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #629 on: Jan 22nd, 2008, 7:20am »
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Wow George,......what can I say but wow!

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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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« Reply #630 on: Jan 24th, 2008, 7:05pm »
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hi all,
 
it may seem that i've been quiet for a few days, but it takes work in the shop to show you the progress.  when getting close to being able to do detail work, most of the fitting and paint work must be complete or nearly so.  in my past experience, drilling all the holes for grab-irons and railings seemed a good idea until time to finally install all the pieces.  that's when you find that paint is a force to be must be dealt with.  in short, i had to re-drill the holes again.  due to the fact that i use a drill bit in a pin-vise, i usually don't wind up with any paint touch-up issues from that.   so, here's how the erie legacy caboose looks tonight!
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-24-08_009.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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« Reply #631 on: Jan 24th, 2008, 7:59pm »
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hi all,
 
there was something else going on in the shop other than windows and painting the body.  it's a surprize for bruce...remember how a couple of us kept prodding him to get a pair of caboose marker lights?  well, having spoken to him on the twisted pair, they're here and almost done!  the lanterns shown in the photo below come as bronze castings that have to be filed, painted, and assembled.  while they do come with lenses, they don't come with a lighting system.   the manufacturer leaves that for you to figure out.  in most of the installations that i've seen, changing the grain-o-rice bulbs or one of the new white l.e.d.s is no easy task.  in bruce's case, i've designed a wooden plug that can be either a friction fit or glued into place.  this wooden plug has been bored out to accept a piece of aluminum tubing (which has been glued into position).  the aluminum tubing acts as a guide for a smaller diameter tube to slide within it.  this smaller tube is the key for removing the lamp or l.e.d. when the need arises.  in the case of the grain-o-rice bulb, it needed the additional support a smaller diameter piece of brass tubing to act like a socket to hold it upright.  a small brass strip with three holes bored in it will be all that's needed to hold the lamp assembly in the lantern.  the wiring will be brought out, carefully soldered to an r/c servo connector, and then pre-installed heat shrink tubing  will be heated to make a uniform wire-form.  the servo connector slips into a receiver socket mounted permanently in the carbody.   with this system, each lantern can be removed and stored to prevent damage.  yes, when permanently mounted, most caboose lanterns get knocked off, pulled off, or otherwise come up missing.
 
here's a look at what's done so far.
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-24-08_005.jpg
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ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #632 on: Jan 25th, 2008, 8:25pm »
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   H-O-L-Y   C-O-W
 
   George, I don't know if an old man like me can stand too many more surprises!!! The caboose is looking GREAT, and I"ll never tell you another thing about an item that I'm going to add to that caboose. The lamps are super.
 
   Thanks so much,
 
   Bruce


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
  erie_legacy_caboose_1-29-08_014.jpg - 43097 Bytes
« Reply #633 on: Jan 29th, 2008, 7:03pm »
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hi all,
 
bruce: here's how one of the lanterns look now!  just a little touch-up and it's ready to go.
 
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-29-08_014.jpg
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
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« Reply #634 on: Jan 29th, 2008, 7:09pm »
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hi all,
 
here's one of bruce's lanterns being tested, deep in the 'dark' project laboratory!
 
bruce:  i think they are going to see you!
 
enjoy,
 
moose the caboose


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/LiveSteam/erie_legacy_caboose_1-29-08_023.jpg
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ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #635 on: Jan 29th, 2008, 7:26pm »
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   George,
 
   As I've seen many times through the years, the pics don't really show your craftsmanship. Haveing seen the other cabees that you have built, I'm sure this restoration/rebuild will be right up there with the other cars built with your hands. Those lamps are awesome!
 
   Oh, I'll never say another damn thing to you about what I'm going to purchase in this hobby, heh,heh,heh.
 
   Thanks so much,
 
   Bruce


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B+MNW21201
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #636 on: Jan 31st, 2008, 7:57am »
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George,
 
That is so cool. Every new project you do, you manage to raise the detail bar ever higher. All one has to do is to look at all of your projects in order and see how each one is better than the one before. Just when we think you have reached a plateau of detail, you manage to push it further. Truly you are an old school craftsman. The youngsters would do well to learn from your posts...........I know I have. Thanks for taking the time to share and teach.
 
I am anticipating what you come up with next. Maybe a real pot belly stove that burns real coal? Hmmmmm, Bruce does have some really small coal that would work.......... Now see what you did, you got me thinking outside the box LOL


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Anthony_SRR
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #637 on: Jan 31st, 2008, 4:19pm »
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WWWWWWWOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! that is so cool George. I like it. Words can not describe now nice that looks.
 
Anthony


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ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #638 on: Jan 31st, 2008, 6:39pm »
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   Guys,
 
   Referring directly to my old wooden caboose, a conversation ensued on sat over at the BCRR. I don't know if George has ever mentioned the age of this particular car, but it came up in conversation.  
 
   I am the third owner that I am aware of. I purchased it in 1993 from a live steamer that has since passed away.He had purchased it from one of the original members of the Largo Central RR. I'm just guessing here, but I would say that this old caboose is about thrity five to forty years old.
 
   I'm very sure that George's handywork with give it many more years of use. Thankyou George.
 
   Bruce


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B+MNW21201
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Re: Building Live Steam Railcars with Moose the Caboose
 
« Reply #639 on: Feb 5th, 2008, 9:31am »
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George Help!!!!!!
 
I am going through a severe case of Moose Caboose update withdrawls.  
 
Where ya hiding amigo?
Bobby


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