Freight car files


#1

A&D 90 ton depressed center flat.

This little guy started out as an old Lionel “spot light” car! I found a pair of cast metal bodies minus everything on the “Bay” for less than $10. A few minutes in a bead blaster removed what little paint remained, followed by a trip across my mill. Using the mill, I removed any casting marks or mounting pins from the underside as well as the spot light base from the top deck. I selected a pair of Weaver cast metal rolling bearing trucks (they are equalizing, heavy, and I had them on hand!) as well as the old reliable Kadee 805s. I scatchbuilt a set of bolsters and coupler mounting pads from styrene. Function was the priority as none of this would normally be visible from trackside. The center section of the body forms a hollow box between the side sills and the ends of the deck. I filled this area with lead buck shot encapsulated in Elmers white glue. After the glue dried, I seal off this area with sheet styrene. This car is only 9 inches long, but weights nearly 14 ounces… without a load! The body casting has some decent wood decking cast into it, but removing the spot light base left a giant hole over on truck as well as a hole in the drop deck where the original generator load snapped in place. To fix this, I chose to “plate” the entire deck by super gluing .010 styrene sheet to it. The brake stands are salvaged from old Roco/Atlas caboose platform railings, and enhanced with various styrene shapes. The stirrups/ladders were made from boxcar ladders I found in my scrap box. I bent cut levers from brass wire and mounted them with HO scale eye bolts. I also scratchbuilt the pulling pocket/lifting holes found above each truck sideframe. Next…painted and weathered, and loaded!





#2

Sweet work there, my friend. It is great to see you putting your mill to good use. You have a talent for finding bargains to adapt/scratch/modify.

For those “tuning in” on the A&O forums, Rick gave us a preview of his nearly-completed model at last weekend’s A&O work session, along with a very tall, complex, well detailed and “presumed heavy” Honeywell load he scratch built. The combination looked great. Stay tuned for his photos of the finished model.


#3

UPDATE!

Painting amounted to a coat of primer from a rattle can followed by a shoot of gloss black. The decals are pieced together from a custom set I made and had printed by Rail Graphics. The gloss paint allowed the decals to lie down nicely. A thin coat of Testors Dull Coat sealed the decals and killed the shine. It also added a “tooth” to the finish that worked great to grip the chalk powder I used to weather the car. The trucks and wheels were given a shot of Krylon camouflage brown as a base color followed by a dusting of chalk.

I have done some work on a load for this car, but haven’t figured out the tie downs yet. I would like to eventually come up with a couple different loads that could be swapped out between operating sessions. Final weight is 15oz so running empty is still an option, but a lot of cool loads would be a plus!



#4

Nice build! Amazing what can be done with so called tinplate cars. A friend put me onto the Lionel post war gons being scale width for a mill gon. It takes 3 Lionel cars to make 65’. The underframe is scratchbuilt with the intent to reproduce in 2 part resin using an RTV master.

Ken


#5

Ken,
Awesome idea! I’m now looking for some old Lionel 12 panel gons! I have got to try this!


#6

Here is another cheap (and old) toy train conversion. I start with an ancient AHM o scale gondola and turn it into a scale pulpwood gondola. AHM, POLA, and Lionel have made these over the last 60 years. I watch for them at swap meets and junk tables, and pick them up for a couple bucks. I cut away the ends, build up the bolsters, and add new bulkheads. Since I use these for my own freelanced railroad, they do not have to be prototype accurate. I add grab irons, stirrups, Intermountain trucks, brake gear, and custom decals. I have never measured this model, but it looks right.


#7

Great conversion to a pulpwood car! How ironic you posted an old AHM gondola. Here’s a shot of what I’m working on while watching some college football.

Another master being made to cast 11 rib sides to essentially create an N&W G5. I don’t have any drawings for this car so working from some pictures. The ribs came from bad casts of the WM 9 rib hoppers. I cut them off, sanded the backsides down and repurposed them onto this car. I’ll have to create new ends and don’t plan on doing anything with the underframe.


#8

Two AHM gondola cars cut and stretched into a 50’ car. I saw in a video of a very similar car being scrapped.
Master for the fish belly underframe I built for these cars.


#9

First resin sides for the kitbashed AHM gondolas are fixed on the car.