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…that count, as they say. At first glance, this may appear to be a stock-version of the new Bachmann narrow-frame tanker â€" albeit somewhat weathered. And that’s just what it is… except I’ve changed a few “little thingsâ€� that make it a bit different from everybody else’s. As most of you know about me by now, that’s always been my motivation for taking “the ordinary and making it extraordinary,â€� as Dean Whipple says.


I picked up this model last month at ECLSTS and I am much impressed by B’mann’s effort to provide an additional source for 1:20.3 vintage rolling stock. In fact, the reason I didn’t do much to this model, other than weather it, is that I didn’t need to. It's a really nice model! After the obligatory “builder’s photos� and some overall shots, I’ll point out the few changes and additions I did make.


First, the builder’s photos:








… and a couple of quarter views:








Now, for the aforementioned changes:




The most obvious change is the replacement of the Bachmann-style couplers for ones from Accucraft.






I also replaced the breaker bars with ones a bit more realistic and robust. Notice the chalk markings (upper left) â€" I got that idea from the “masterâ€� â€" Bobby Hunter. As you can see, I also replaced the wheel sets with 26" ones from Sierra Valley.






I added a few more links to the brake chain (fortunately, B’mann provides extra chain and other detail stuff that might break/fall off) and wrapped it around the brake staff a few times in order to make it look like it would really work.







The model comes with a working filler hatch which may be fun to play with, but, IMHO, anything that’s movable is breakable, so I glued it shut and filled in the gaps in the dogging straps with Squadron "green stuff." BTW, I also glued shut the hinged journal box covers on the trucks, which fall off or get knocked off rather too easily.






If you look closely, you’ll notice wood grain on the sides and ends of the upper and lower foot boards. This was done by dragging a fine-toothed razor saw along the plain edges in a wavy motion. The upper foot board supports and the ladder bottoms were attached with tiny, but unrealistic looking, Phillips-head screws, so I added a toothpick tip-sized drop of JB Weld (a two-part epoxy compound) to the center of each screw to make them look like rivets.


That's about all I did, but, as I said, the little things add up. I’ll be running this guy at Roger Cutter’s annual “Spring Run� on his wonderful RGS East this weekend up in North Central Maryland. I’ll be sure to post some pix of that in the Large Scale Events forum next week. Stay tuned.
 

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Great looking tank car! Nice tip on making a Phillips screw into a rivet :)

- For the hand writing did you just use a fine pen or is that a decal pasted on?
- Why did you replace the wheels?
- What are dogging straps?

I really enjoy your work, I hope you keep 'em coming!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Posted By jimtyp on 04/18/2008 3:21 PM
Great looking tank car! Nice tip on making a Phillips screw into a rivet :)
- For the hand writing did you just use a fine pen or is that a decal pasted on?
- Why did you replace the wheels?
- What are dogging straps?
I really enjoy your work, I hope you keep 'em coming!



Jim,


Good questions. I'll take them in order:


"For the hand writing did you just use a fine pen or is that a decal pasted on?"
That's a trick I learned from Bobby Hunter. I used a white artist's pencil (available from many art supply places - I got mine from Michaels - less than a buck apiece. They come in many other useful colors, too. I used a rust-colored one along the seams of the tank and other places.


"Why did you replace the wheels?"


I think the cast B'mann ones are a bit undersized, with very deep flanges and unrealistic-looking backs. I replaced them with Sierra Valley 26” wheel sets, which are turned and have a more prototypical profile with a proper fillet between flange and rim. (We've had this discussion before, see: http://archive.mylargescale.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=45598)


"What are dogging straps?"



They are the five horizontal metal straps with bolts at the end used to "dog down" the hatch. (A good naval term.)
Hope that helps.

:)
 

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I have been debating to buy one of these cars, they look very nice. This post has really convinced me! Great work Jack! As always.
 

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Well Jack, since you like to make your models different-- then you need to renumber the car, as Bachmann only offers a single number.....The wheels and coupler changes are very good ones and are near mandatory. Besides the wheel issues you noted, Bach wheels are also sort of all over the place on gauge too, and usually err toward a bit too wide . I currently have 14 (not all mine ) of those things in house for various weathering and other projects. Mine got Dean Lowe wheels and Accu couplers too of course. Renumbering was fun....
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Posted By K27_463 on 04/18/2008 5:22 PM
Well Jack, since you like to make your models different-- then you need to renumber the car, as Bachmann only offers a single number.....The wheels and coupler changes are very good ones and are near mandatory. Besides the wheel issues you noted, Bach wheels are also sort of all over the place on gauge too, and usually err toward a bit too wide . I currently have 14 (not all mine ) of those things in house for various weathering and other projects. Mine got Dean Lowe wheels and Accu couplers too of course. Renumbering was fun....



Renumbering? Well, I did think of that, but since there's only one of these puppies on the Dulles & Reston Garden Weeds R.R. now, I figure I won't have to worry about that until the next one shows up (if ever.)
/DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/tongue.gif
 

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Jack, great work as always. I enjoyed seeing your work up close at the ECLSTS. I really liked those coaches!
Thanks for sharing.
Terry
 

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Wow, great work!!! If dry-brushing was used, i.e., on the couplers, how did you go about it?

Simple changes made a world of difference. Nice.
 

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How exactly did you replicate the petro stains on the side of the tank? What is the reason for the chalk writing, was it used by train crews to label contents? I must say though, the job you did to it takes a exellent model into the real of extraordinary. Thanks

BTW: You work on the Accucraft cars at ECLSTS simply amazing.
 

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Yep. The details make the model.

Beautious!
 

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Posted By kfrankl3 on 04/19/2008 9:38 AM
How exactly did you replicate the petro stains on the side of the tank? What is the reason for the chalk writing, was it used by train crews to label contents? I must say though, the job you did to it takes a exellent model into the real of extraordinary. Thanks
BTW: You work on the Accucraft cars at ECLSTS simply amazing.




Chalk was used by the RR clerks and switchman to label which cars went to each track. As I've heard it, the RR clerks would walk up and down the tracks marking each car with the correct track number. Now we just get printed switch lists. Way before portable radios everything was done by hand signs. :D
 
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