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This is a continuation of my construction thread started before the new format, which can be found here:

http://archive.mylargescale.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=39319

In a quick summary, I'm taking one of Fletch's Carter Brothers kits and turning it into the EBT's "Orbisonia," a business car which began life as a standard Billmeyer & Smalls 13-window board-and-batten coach. Since the Carter Brothers car is also a 13-window board-and-batten coach, it seemed a natural candidate.

The Prototype:



I'll refer you to the above link for construction of the exterior. What's new with this thread is the construction of the interior--a necessity when the car has such large picture windows.







Because the roof of the original kit is not removable, I decided to build the interior as a separate "shoebox," over which the exterior slides. This allows me to easily work with all the intricate woodwork and wall sections without worrying about what would get in the way when accessing the interior for display, repairs, etc.



The car is essentially two identical parlors joined by a short hallway. The room in the middle is a rather spacious water closet. I believe the small closet is where the main water tank is stored. This may have been heated with steam for hot and cold water. Other than that, there's a toilet and a sink and a small water tank to the right of the door for the water faucet in the hallway.



The faucet (which I have yet to build/acquire) will hang out from the hole drilled in the middle of the aluminum panel. There's also a small catch basin that needs to be built yet. Those details will go in after the wood is stained. The moulding comes from the local dollhouse store, but is also readily available on line. Cool stuff! A bit pricy, at around 90 cents per stick, but--hey--it's a president's car. Those things don't come cheap.



The bathroom interior (sans facilities). I cheated on this one--the door does not open. I thought about it, but since the interior won't be all that accessible anyway, I figured it made just as much sense (and a stronger wall) fake the door. The closet is large enough to hold a 9-volt battery which will power the car's interior lights.



The panels below the windows are built on 1/64" plywood, then glued to the main walls. Had I had my wits about me, I would have done the detailing on each wall first, then assembled the interior box, as that would have allowed me a bit more precision and creative flexibility in the matter. Ah well, next business car.

The mirrored panels are from some old engraving plates or somethign like that I've had lying around for years. Essentially, it's plated .025" brass sheet. Had I not had that handy, I would have headed back to the dollhouse store to see what they had. My other thought was to get a Mylar balloon and cut squares from that.

The next step is to stain the interior. Currently the interior of the prototype is painted brown, but my gut tells me that's not original, as a railroad wouldn't use something as ordinary as brown paint for the interior of a president's car. Once it's stained, I'll build the steam-heat boxes that go along the edges of the floors, and finish adding the brass coat hooks and luggage rack. Then it's--again--off to the dollhouse store for suitable floor coverings and build a day bed for one end. (The other gets wicker chairs. Yeah, not very suiting for a president's car, but it's what was in it...)

Further updates as events warrant.

Later,

K
 

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K, Ya really know how to make a guy feel 2nd rate./DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/sad.gif Great work, as always.
 

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OK Kevin.  Now you've gone and done it.  You're forcing me to get off my duff and finish my "Private Car", which has been boxed away for at least 2 years.  I've always admired your work and look forward to the completion of your car.  I feel the gauntlet has been thrown down.  I hope I'm up to the challenge.

Doc Watson
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Great work, as always. Can't wait to see more.
 

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That highly detailed wood trim inside should be enough to make any brass hat happy.

Llyn
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Progress...

Work continues on #20, with the occasional interruptions for pretty much all the normal things that get in the way...

The Trucks
While the Carter Bros. kit came with Hartland passenger car trucks, I opted instead to use a set of Bachmann trucks. The details on the Bachmann trucks are, well, pretty non-existant or coarse at best. So, after an evening in the shop, they emerged like this:



All the cast-on approximations of details were sanded off of the trucks, and the timber portions of the sideframe roughed with 60-grit sandpaper to give it some wood grain. The strap along the bottom was replaced with some flat steel stock I have (in frightening low supply), and ozark miniatures NBW details added to the side. The frame crossmembers at the ends are 3/16" basswood, held in place by Atlas track nails. The brake shoes are Ozark Miniatures, with 1/8" x 3/16" basswood for the brake beam.



I'm using two lengths of brass wire to hold the brake beams the proper distance apart. This keeps them from wanting to twist. This assembly is held onto the truck by 1/16" brass wire hanging from the crossmembers. I used very small coarse-threaded screws to hold the steel strap onto the bottom of the trucks. I scavenged these screws from videotapes we were throwing out at work. You can probably get similar screws from Micro-Fasteners, but a free supply is a free supply. :)

The Exterior
While I'm still working on the interior of the car, I figured I'd finish the exterior while I was painting some other projects at the same time.


Painting this car proved to be a bit more of an adventure than I had anticipated. The "Folk-Art paint I had used to paint my combine decided it wasn't going to cooperate with my airbrush, and I couldn't get an even color. It varied from the correct shade of green to almost yellow. So, off to Caboose Hobbies went I, in search of some Model Flex paint (pre-thinned for the airbrush) so I wouldn't have to futz with anything. Found a color "BNSF Green" which--according to the paint chip--was virtually spot on for what I needed.

Paint chips lie.

What came out of the bottle was the color of a nice, healthy lawn. So, I added copious amounts of black and brown paint until I got the shade I wanted. So much for simplicity. So, back to the garage and the airbrush. More fighting, cursing and gnashing of teeth as the blippin' airbrush kept getting clogged. Ultimately, I did prevail, and even resisted the temptation to launch said airbrush into the next universe. I know my frustrations are the result of something I'm doing wrong, so I'm loathe to spend money on a new airbrush that may work better until I figure out what it is. Since I only use my airbrush every three or so years, it'll probably be a while...

The paint has a flat finish, so once everything was dry, I hit it with Krylon's clear gloss.


The lettering came from my Alps printer, the striping is Chart-Pak 1/32" gold mylar striping. It's a little bit off-color from the lettering, but not enough that I'm going to worry about it. I stretched it end-to-end, pressed it down between the battens, then used a sharp x-acto knife to cut each segment at the battens. (Did I mention "sharp?") With the lettering and striping in place, I sprayed the car with Krylon's UV matte finish to seal everything. This matte finish did a good job of dulling the reflective surface of the striping. Once that was dry, I sprayed the car with another layer of gloss coat.

While this is a business car, the prototype did spend its time outdoors on a busy coal-hauling railroad, and as such got dirty. I used the "wash and wipe" technique I describe in the current (June '08) issue of GR to weather the sides. This replicates a layer of dirt and grime in the creases, but still lets the glossy finish of the paint on the side panels themselves show through.



The end platforms were washed with a dilute mixture of brown/black paint. The treads and platform were lightly scuffed with 60-grit sandpaper before washing, to simulate worn-away paint. The end railings were brushed with Future gloss acrylic. This helps them stand out a bit, and an unintended benefit--the gloss coating reflect the light in such a way that--to my eyes--the railing looks thinner than it really is. Ultimately, this railing will be replaced with a casting of the prototype's railing, but the timeline on that being done is unknown. This will work for now. I will wait to get the final railings before installing the trap doors that cover the steps on the end platform.



Here are the completed trucks. They were washed with the same black/brown wash as the end platforms, then highlighted with Bragdon's weathering powders.



The windows were the final things to go in. They're made from .015" clear plastic, with .030" x 3/16" styrene and wood used for the frame. (Styrene on the outside, wood on the inside--only because I happened to run out of styrene.) This assembly is JUST thin enough to fit in the 1mm opening of the kit, and once painted, holds in position by itself. The open windows are simply full windows cut in half.

You can see some of the interior woodwork through the windows. That's where my energies are now going to be focused. Things to do include:
Steam heat boxes along floor;
carpet or tile, once I figure out what the prototype had;
install bathroom fixtures (purchased from dollhouse store);
Furniture--wicker chairs and table bought from dollhouse store, day bed that will need to be built.
coat hooks and luggage racks;
ceiling and lighting.

Considering I started this project now nearly 2 years ago, I figure I should have it done by the time Suzi's in Kindergarten. :)

Later,

K
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Hi Kevin,


Looking good, I like the layer of 'road dirt'.


Thanks for the nice and informative photo's
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Another high quality "K" model! Looks extremely real, like it's been in service for years. The details are top notch! The window panes have some scratches on them, perfectly not perfect :) Your weathering is also just right. Thanks for sharing and the info on how to.
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

OOOH! That's lovely Kevin. A car that your management will be proud to go traveling in. And it will look prety good in any train you run too!
By the way, thank you for the Garden railway mag articles, I have always liked the look of bachmanns 4-4-0, but not enough to buy one. Last month I found a used one for $100 and inspired by your article, I am now ready to have a go at making it look a bit more like yours.
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Beautiful work. I wish I had bought the Bronson-Tate cars instead of the Rick Raivley ones. I did get a combine but I'm still waiting for the coach to be sent and can't even get him to answer my E-mails.
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Really sweet, Kevin.I can't wait to see that train - it's going to be a beauty!
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Kevin,

Looks great. Wish mine was ready for paint.

flat steel stock I have (in frightening low supply)


That stuff looks remarkably like the big staples they use to fasten big corrugated boxes for TVs, etc. I use them for brake platform supprts, etc.
 

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Kevin

A beautiful piece of work

Congrats on one of the finest exaples of passenger cars in large scale.

Regards ... Doug
 

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RE: EBT #20 - "Orbisonia"

Man, your work is incredible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Considering I started this project now nearly 2 years ago, I figure I should have it done by the time Suzi's in Kindergarten. :)
Fast forward 12 years. Suzi is now in 8th grade. At least I finished it before she started high school! :eek:






The "end" of the project. The railings were cut by GAL Lines. The flag is tissue paper soaked in white glue then wrapped around a jewelry pin and painted yellow. The EBT used yellow flags during the day to mark the ends of their trains.



People and furnishings complete the project.



The chairs and table are half-inch scale dollhouse furniture I bought years ago. The prototype car was furnished with wicker furniture, so this was as close as I could get. Cushions are made from Sculpey.



The daybed is a bit more basic than that which is in the prototype, but I really didn't feel like turning toothpicks into spindles on my lathe. The rug is just printed on paper and glued in place.



The loo, which is a "best guess" as to how things are really arranged. Somehow in the 12 years since my last post, I lost the photos I took of the interior of the car. (Go figure!) Things are only lightly tacked in place, so once I have a better sense of how things are laid out, changing it to match will be easy.



The wicker table came with the chairs. The prototype had wood tables, so I may replace the wicker table once I have better photos of the prototype. (Kinda difficult at the moment with the railroad not running.)



The daybed cushion and pillows are also made from Sculpey. One day if I stumble on some dollhouse furniture that looks close, I may swap it out, but this will do for now.



The water spigot in the hallway. The water tank hangs from the wall inside the bathroom.

Once the weather warms up, I'll get photos of the car out on the line and update my blog with this and the 6 other passenger car projects I (finally!) finished. Should make for a great looking train behind my EBT mikado.

Later,

K
 

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