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Accucraft Ruby, Accucraft 1:20.3
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All,
Back in March of this year, independent of Covid, I decided to take up a hobby since I never really had one. I have a Wilesco Steam roller that my 2 year old son started asking me to run with increasing interest. I always enjoyed live steam. I first thought I should get a shop set-up (Mill, Lathe) and build something for 7.5" gauge that I could ride. My wife knowing me told me to start small so I don't lose sight of the goal. I saw plenty of half started kits for sale while researching what I wanted to build.
Following her advice, I looked for a smaller, ready to assemble kit. I ended up with a Ruby Kit. (She didn't realize she was going to end up loosing half the garage to an indoor layout... And I have plans for a sizable outdoor layout too.)
I assembled the kit the night I got it, tuned it that weekend on air, set up for reverse admission, and ordered an RC kit from RCS.
Then the Lock downs hit harder. Took 6 weeks from when I ordered the Radios for them to clear customs and arrive.
during that time I figured out how to fit all radios, servos, and batteries in the cab.

The first mod I did was actually something I did to "fix" something I thought Accucraft had done wrong with the layout of parts.
Pulling the Ore cars around a 4 foot circle which is all I had, I could only go around clockwise since the Fuel valve would hit the following car the other way.
I mirrored the lubricator to the other side of the cab, in front of the j-bar. This did two things, It helped balance the weight of the loco left to right, and made space to move the fuel tank forward.
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I only had to drill one hole for the lubricator mount, the fuel tank fit into the old lubricator hole without any clearance issues.

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As the pictures show, the fuel valve is now within the outline of the loco.

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Moving the Fuel tank made space for a AAA 4pack. I originally planned on putting Radios and battery in the side tanks, but this move allows me to keep everything in the cab, easy to access while getting ready to steam.

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The radio pictured is a temporary while I waited for the RCS ones to clear customs.

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I secured the radio and battery pack with picture hanging "click velcro" as I call it.

The servo mounts are the one from RC-steamers.

That is all I've done to the engine so far. Future plans include a Chuffer and a goodall valve.
I have yet to run out of gas before I run out of water. One of the reasons I'm glad I didn't hide radios in the side tanks, I think I need to make them functional tanks.
Has anyone added an Axle pump to a Ruby?

Thanks
Tyler
 

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and made space to move the fuel tank forward.
Tyler,
You seem to be doing a very competent job - maybe there's a 7.5" gauge loco in your future. (Half-built kits are always popping up.) Now you've done a Ruby, the next step is an Aster/Accucraft kit?

One small point about moving the fuel tank. When it is so close to the boiler, the heat will affect the fuel, to the point where you have gas in the tank, not liquid. It then becomes impossible to refill the tank until the heat goes away and it can re-liquefy. (This is probably why it is mounted so far back by the manufacturer.) We have been known to pour cold water on the tank after a run so it can be refilled.
One option to help the heat stay away would be a baffle or shield - maybe a piece of ceramic insulation material down the side of the tank?
 

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Accucraft Ruby, Accucraft 1:20.3
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128 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Tyler,
You seem to be doing a very competent job - maybe there's a 7.5" gauge loco in your future. (Half-built kits are always popping up.) Now you've done a Ruby, the next step is an Aster/Accucraft kit?

One small point about moving the fuel tank. When it is so close to the boiler, the heat will affect the fuel, to the point where you have gas in the tank, not liquid. It then becomes impossible to refill the tank until the heat goes away and it can re-liquefy. (This is probably why it is mounted so far back by the manufacturer.) We have been known to pour cold water on the tank after a run so it can be refilled.
One option to help the heat stay away would be a baffle or shield - maybe a piece of ceramic insulation material down the side of the tank?
I think I'll leave the 7.5 inch gauge stuff to others. Although I have the space for a loop, that is a very large project for a solo crew. And the commute to take my engine to a club would consume the free hours I have.
A garden railroad will be at home waiting for me.

The heat when refilling is something I never considered. I haven't seen any issues so far but my usual free time is in the colder months in Wisconsin anyway. My Career in Agriculture keeps me too busy for multi-run sessions from June through September. I did notice that my Ruby fired up better once temps got closer to mid 30*F. Once hot and running I didn't notice any difference.

As for next engines, I've decided I'll get to the biggest physical engine I can for this gauge. My eventual goal is a 1:20.3 K-37.
"My" collection will center around D&RG.
I say my with " " because my son can have a different railroad, he currently has a Lionel large scale PRR. (Plastic, simple, can take his attempts at retailing as a 2 year old.) My daughter (1 year) can have a LNER express. And maybe I should be the selfless husband to an understanding wife and manage a logging railroad for her..... Maybe the dog needs a railroad?
My focus now is the layout. In the garage I have a 4 foot radius oval with a dog bone inside. The leg of the oval not against the wall is being turned into a lift bridge so that I can fit my vehicle if needed.
 

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Accucraft Ruby, Accucraft 1:20.3
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have some cork laying around. I'll look into that next time I'm steaming.
 
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