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City of Truro to P4

The Fatadder


Well its finally arrived...





At the moment I have the model upside down, and assuming that Bachmann havent gone with some odd axle diameter, it looks like the conversion is going to be very straight forward. The break gear will all have to be removed (and will need to be replaced with brass to get it to fit) but other than that it all looks very easy. Not sure what to do with the cranks (I've never brought outside framed wheels for a kettle before, so I assume they come with cranks in the same way those for an 08 do?)


Will reuse the Bachmann rods, and the Bachmann bogie. For the tender I'm not sure what I will do, I'd prefer to rebuild with some kind of springing, but I suspect that the masokits unit would be visible from the sides...


The spare front bogie is going to be modified to remove the NEM pocket (I really do prefer manufacturers fitting them to be body so they can be removed without damaging detail!)


The buffer beams are going to need to be repainted to the correct (bright) red, rather handy really as I was thing removing the buffer beam number without damaging the lining would be a pain. the post 98 OHLE flashes will be fitted to the sand boxes/cab roof.


I havent decided if I will use Ultrascales or Gibsons for the wheels yet. A couple of years back I had no end of issues with the Gibson wheels in an 09, but the combination of improved standards on my part and on the new owners of Gibson do make me fancy trying again. A lot will depend on whether Gibson can supply the drivers for CoT on a 3mm axle (that I assume that Bachmann have used.) The Ultrascales are significantly more expensive, Nickel Silver (which I really dislike) and have a long wait, and thinking about it will still require the cranks fitting. On the other hand they are much better quality. I just wish that they had done the 20 whatever spoke patten wheel that CoT uses in steel rather than the 16 spokes they have done.......

I suspect at the end of the day I will go with the Gibsons and if I have any problems then buy a set of Ultrascale's drivers.


An area of concern is the tender wheels, both in that they are currently stub axles with a plastic centre (for the tender pickups) and secondly that they appear (at a glance) to have long axles) Looks like its going to need new pickups making here (a job I absolutely cant stand) but pickup on 2 axles just wont be enough so most annoyingly will have to do something about it.

Also on the tender, the break gear is very very odd, appearing to be in line with the axleboxes rather than where the wheels should be. While this is an improvement on having them too narrow (like those on the driving wheels), it does seem a bit odd.


I'm not at all happy with the etched number plate, given that its missing the very prominent orange lining and tbh dosnt look as good as the printed one. will either need a transfer for the lining or to find a better etch!


The gap between body and chassis is much too big, so something will have to be done about that! Rather handy that slider to reduce the gap, now thinking that some sprung buffers between body and tender would be useful.


Finally a question, Would the water scoop on the tender still be there in its current condition? Is there anything else that needs removing or adding to get to current condition on the mainline.



Have finally got round to doing the measurements on the axles. Drivers are 3mm diameter, tender wheels are a bit more tricky. 2mm axles, but on 27mm stub axles, could be interesting for the conversion.......

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1 Have you measured the axles, you're only assuming they're 3mm.

2 I haven't seen it in its current condition, but I would assume that the water scoop would not be fitted.

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  • RMweb Gold

Rich - I suspect that you will have to fit the outside cranks to the axles, whatever wheels you choose. I would imagine that it's a bit early for Ultrascale or Gibbo to think about doing some bespoke drop-in replacement sets, so you'll have to go with whatever is currently in their range.


Have you thought of getting a basic Comet tender chassis and just building it with 3-point compensation?


I'd also recommend that you install some kind of spring onto the bogie itself and some side-control as a minimum - don't just rely on the weight of the bogie to keep it on the track.

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  • RMweb Gold

Not measured the axles yet, all the steam locos I've worked on so far have had 3mm axles, though saying that, this is my first Bachmann steamer.....


Will do some dismantling later and see whats in there.....

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  • RMweb Gold

Bogie has a spring pushing it down onto the track (though will take your advice and fit some kind of springing to the bogie on Clan Line)


Just dismantled the chassis of CoT, they definitely are 3mm axles so all is good. also has gearing on both axles as suspected. If Gibson do the 22? spoke GW wheels on 3mm outside frame axles then I will go with the gibsons and get an order sent after Christmas. Really want to get on and get this one running. Of course the fact that I will have to paint the wheels will slow things a bit I suspect...

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Given the earlier photos elsewhere suggesting not much room for manoeuvre behind the outside frames, this I've got to see!

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  • RMweb Gold
Given the earlier photos elsewhere suggesting not much room for manoeuvre behind the outside frames, this I've got to see!


Its just the break gear getting in the way on the photos. When I start the conversion I will get a photo showing it a bit clearer, but given that I havent been able to completely remove the keeper plate yet (the wires are getting in the way) I dont want to start getting hte loco into lots of bits to properly remove it until I am ready to start. (Been there done that, and then had the fun job of remembering what when where.....)



Either way, the photos are a little misleading.

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CoT uses the 22 spoke driver, so it will be AG's ref: 4880G you'll be wanting. Would be interesting to see if the 3mm axle option is available.

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