I have just finished my three month long project of modifying a Bachmann Big Hauler for my Fremont, Humboldt & Southern Railway. What started off as a simple smokebox modification quickly turned into a much bigger project.
Modifications included; moving the valve chests closer to the cylinder saddle (they were much too far away for the Stephenson’s valve gear equipped locomotive), shortening the smokebox, new running boards, air pump to the engineer side, full cab piping (to the best of my ability) and a new pilot. The pilot was made from 1/8x3/8 basswood, the running boards are plywood with brass brackets to the boiler. Paint is mostly Model Masters airbrushed on, Tamiya Gun Metal for the boiler jacket, and graphite powder and linseed oil on the smokebox.
This is only my second locomotive to receive this much work since I made a model of CB&Q 537 in 2009. Overall I am pretty happy with the results, I think it captures elements of both the D&RGW T-12 class (most notably the front frame extension) and the RGS T-19 locomotives quite well.
Next up will be decals, weathering, and a tender. I’ll have some video of it plowing snow soon enough.