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Having completed my previous “cameo” layout and built Polegate and published Issue 5 of the LB&SCR Modellers' Digest, it seems that it is time to do something completely different. Mid-Victorian, down South and to a minority scale/gauge combination, but US, rather than UK.
Roswell Mill is a fictitious spur off the Western and Atlantic Railroad in Georgia. Roswell is a real town, now in the suburbs of Atlanta, but in the 1860s was still only about 30 years old as a settlement. Atlanta itself dates from 1836, was originally named Terminus and only really became of interest because 4 railroad lines converged there. Roswell Mill produced cotton fabric and became a strategic industry during the civil war but, unaccountably, the W&A passed several miles away and so I have had to invent a spur from the main line to support the Mill and the neighbouring township. The layout is therefore set in rural Georgia on the eve of the American Civil War (or the War of Northern Aggression if you are a Southerner), however I make no  promise that the cameo will look in any way like the real Roswell Mill.....
The scale will be HO, since I have no wish to launch out on my own in both scale and gauge. However, track will be to 5' gauge (17.5mm), which was the standard for most lines in the southern states of the US. I particularly wanted to capture the impression of the broad gauge, with very lightweight rail and long sleepers (ties) with virtually no ballast, so the scale/gauge combination will be HOb5 (or HOw60 if you are an American, for whom “broad” has other connotations). There has been a tentative discussion of this aspect in an earlier thread. Standards will be about P87 in order to allow the use of code 40 rail. If I run out, I may even lay a bit of siding using strap rail (metal strip nailed to timber baulks). Turnouts will, of course, be stub points.
The size is likely to be about 4' x 2', possibly with an outrigger to hold a fiddle yard. Mastering Templot is one of the early challenges.
The layout is essentially a proof of concept to demonstrate that modelling 5' gauge lines is possible; I was informed in the US that it was impossible, which is, of course, a challenge that cannot be ignored.  It will require not only handbuilt track, but also modification of locos and rolling stock. Some work has already taken place on a Mantua General, which began as a quickie project: I never seem to learn. Having once started to disembowel the loco, I found myself on a slippery slope, which may still end up with the smokebox/boiler/firebox being hit violently with a large hammer and starting again with a nice bit of brass tube.
The project is also likely to encounter some interesting cultural and linguistic challenges along the way (see above).  Presenting some aspects of the Confederacy will touch sensitivities in a similar way to portraying Nazi Germany in the 1930s/40s. Although Roswell was not “plantation country”, slavery is still an unavoidable feature (railroads themselves employed slave labour) and it would look odd if there were no black people in the scene. Equally, the absence of Native Americans touches on sensitivities.  
My initial thought is to reuse a 4' by 2' module, complete with built in legs, that has been maturing in the garage for some years. The drawbacks are that the rail height is 42” above ground level which seems to be considered rather petite for a cameo format. It would also need some form of outrigger to provide a fiddle yard. One option is  to remove the legs and use the trestle on which Vintner's Yard stands, which would leave space for the fiddle yard. Another is to start with a clean sheet of plywood.  
The aim is to be able to shuffle a loco and two freight cars around – which, being American, means a tender loco and bogie vehicles. A Mantua General measures about 7” over tender and a civil war vintage freight wagon measures about 4”, so the target train length is about 15”. This is therefore the minimum dimension for the fiddle yard and drives the length of the loop. Vintner's Yard used a casette format for the fiddle yard and this is an option again, but I have not discounted a traverser or something based on a 15” lazy susan that would allow the whole train to be rotated.    
Given my track record on building layouts, early 2019 seems a bit sporty, particularly as I can see a number of aspects of the real world getting in the way between now and then. However, to quote the old chinese proverb, “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”.

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This photo shows the approaches to Atlanta station, illustrating the spidery impression of lightweight rail and broad gauge trackwork. Note in particular the "double slip" in the foreground, consisting of two stub points, laid end to end.

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This photo illustrates a stub point that I found on a narrow gauge line in New Jersey. I have an idea how to build a simple two way point, but cannot, at present, see how you would align the centre track of a three way. If anyone has any bright ideas, I am open to suggestions! 

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Just for comparison, main line motive power from the 1860s!

 

Best wishes

Eric  

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I have an idea how to build a simple two way point, but cannot, at present, see how you would align the centre track of a three way. If anyone has any bright ideas, I am open to suggestions! 

Maybe you could have some gubbins off-scene that puts a detent in the way when you want to align with the centre track - for example use a small servo to lift or lower an alignment pin.

 

...R

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Maybe you could have some gubbins off-scene that puts a detent in the way when you want to align with the centre track - for example use a small servo to lift or lower an alignment pin.

 

...R

Or use a small stepper motor like these. I found some stepper motor drivers for 36p to work them, and you'd need a little Arduino for a few quid to control them. No idea if they work, but some are on the way from China to try.

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Thanks to both Robin2 and BGJohn for the helpful suggestions. I must confess that I had been thinking in more "last millennium" terms! After some thought this afternoon, I can envisage using a DPDT switch with a centre off position to provide the three locations of mechanical movement via wire in tube. For the centre position, where the power is off to both tracks, I would need a second DPDT to provide an electrical feed.

It is not that I am a complete luddite with electronics. It is just that I invested in Hornby Zero 1 in the early 1980s and have never quite recovered from the experience. I tend to prefer a mechanical solution if it would do and, in a layout that is 4' x  2', I doubt that I shall have more than one loco at a time in action.

Best wishes

Eric        

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I effectively had a giant 3 way stub point on the original version of "Small, Broad and Totally Pointless", where the single track fiddle yard sector plate connected to three tracks in the scenic area. I had a microswitch at each end of the sector plate's travel, that acted as stops, and they were wired together so that when it was set to either outside track the power was supplied to that track, and when it wasn't at either end, power was connected to the centre track.

 

The suggestion of servos or stepper motors could help because you can precisely adjust where they stop, to help align the centre track. A 3 way switch could also work, but might be harder to adjust accurately.

 

I was aiming for absolute simplicity on the various layouts I'm building, but always seemed to run into something that complicated things. Then I got hooked on playing with Arduinos!

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Eric,

 

It strikes me that the track is all doable, the main catch would be getting the wheels. Freight car wheels would be fairly easy as long as they were the standard 33" size as those are available from NWSL IIRC but the drivers for the loco could be a bit of a faff unless you turn your own. I shall watch (read?) with interest.

 

Cheers,

 

David

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Disembowelling a General
“The General” (or a loco that may once have been The General, but has been rebuilt at least three times since) is now in a museum at Kennesaw, which was once known as Big Shanty and was famous as the starting point of the Great Locomotive Chase. 

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A photo of the remains of a loco, alleged to be the General, after General Sherman's visit to Atlanta in 1864.
My original intention was to buy a cheap General on e-bay and backdate it a bit, but the more I researched, the less the model seemed to resemble a civil war loco. With the 5’ gauge  and with the very lightweight track of the period, simply plonking the loco onto standard HO track seemed like a poor representation. My normal modelling is to EM gauge and the idea of building track to non standard gauges is not too scary, so I began to think about building track to 17.5mm gauge (i.e. 5 x 3.5mm).  An early experiment in track building is at
http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/89233-southern-broad-gauge-track-or-ho-scale-on-175mm-gauge/&do=findComment&comment=1555920
complete with a debate about what to call the resulting gauge.
Returning to the General, I rapidly came to the conclusion that something drastic had to happen to the chassis. The motor sits in the tender and drives the loco through a thing like a telegraph pole that runs through the cab. The motor itself is massive and looks as though it has been recycled from a B52 aircraft; I am sure that it is very powerful, but it does cause the tender to assume a very bulky outline just to hide it. Finally, close inspection showed up some small cracks in the loco chassis, which suggest that it is suffering from something like mazak rot and might not stand up to much rebuilding. A new chassis was therefore a no brainer.
I have tried to reverse engineer a chassis that follows the profile of the original, but made of thin brass strip which will increase the space available between the frames – particularly with the extra millimetre on the gauge. I started by soldering four thicknesses of strip together, to provide both coupling rods and the rocking beams which will hold the driving axles. Pilot holes were drilled for each axle and the two pairs were then separated, to be fretted out with a piercing saw to achieve roughly the right outline. The rocking beams were then attached to two more pieces of strip and a further hole was drilled for the cross bar that would provide the bearing for the rocking beams. The holes were opened out as appropriate, in the case of the rocking beams, to provide for axle bearings. Frame spacers came from spares provided in a recently completed kit.  
The most promising motor/gearbox combination appears to be a small Mashima motor with  HighLevel  Road Runner Compact +. I tried it a number of different ways, but have ended up  driving the rear driving wheels, with the motor sitting over the leading drivers. The space inside the General body is really quite limited – both because it is a relatively small loco in HO scale but also because Mantua cast it out of a pretty solid lump of mazak to provide weight over the drivers. There was therefore some fairly brutal surgery to remove a little bit of the lump in order to provide the necessary space.
The need to remove metal from the body was not only to create space for the motor and gearbox, but also to make room at the sides for the new broader frames. This required much of the support for the splashers to be removed. And since the footplate also needed to be removed, the whole section up to the casting line ended up having to come out, splashers and all. In short, a classic case of getting onto a slippery slope. Since the final photos in this series, I have been fabricating a section to fill in the gap and some splashers to attach in a more realistic relationship to the wheels.

post-9472-0-88143900-1497962954.jpg 

The original body and chassis compared to the replacement chassis, motor and gearbox.

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The new chassis, showing the approximate position of the motor.

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The rocking beams that will take the driving axles.

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Keep on grinding! Removing enough metal in the boiler to get the motor and gearbox to fit.

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There will need to be some backhead details.

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What is left by the time that you have removed half the firebox and coned section of the boiler.

To answer David's question above, the carrying wheels have come from NWSL (superb service) but no steam driving wheels appear to be available in P87 profile, so I have used Alan Gibson P4 profile  - hence my comment that standards would be "about P87". I appreciate that this concept might be theologically unsound and, if I were modelling to P4, I might be excommunicated at least or expect a visit from the inquisition.  The acid test will be to construct 3 or 4 turnouts that 2 locos and 5 freight cars can negotiate - I am not worrying about interoperability with all those other HOb5 modellers!  I have also looked at 3mm and 2mm scale wheels as possible options to run on code 40 track. 

Before anyone gets too impressed by all this activity following on so rapidly from the original post, I have to confess that this is a catch-up posting, describing work that has been going on on the back burner for a couple of years. 
Best wishes
Eric

[Edited to ramble on about wheels]

Edited by burgundy
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I really like the concept that you are pursuing. On searching the net I  found a very large US Gauge O layout that inspires me, based on the Federal lines around Aquia Creek. The owner is a manufacturer as well as having a group of friends who work on the large layout. I personally find the layout and his construction accounts inspiring. Might be worth a look. The link is:http://usmrr.blogspot.co.uk/

 

The whole site is very large but the menu on the left of the page will take you to the Civil War parts.

 

Hope this is useful.

Best wishes

Rich

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Rich

Thank you for the link. I subscribe to a list that discusses the railroad aspects of the American Civil War and Bernard Kempinski is an active contributor; I have enjoyed his work very  much. You will also find some of it on this site.

Best wishes

Eric    

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I have been trying to figure out how I shall build the coffin cameo box and fiddle yard. The box, I think, is easy enough and probably a direct crib of the way that I built Vintners' Yard. However, I am keen to try a different approach to the fiddle yard, as the multiple casettes that I built for Vintners' Yard are not particularly user friendly. Since the locos of the period in the US will all be tender locos, with cowcatchers on the front, I assume that they would have been turned before a return journey, probably on a turning Y. This will be offstage, but the need to turn locos suggests that the easiest solution for the cameo fiddle yard would be a manual turntable. To hold a complete train (loco and two bogie vehicles) it would need to be 15" diameter and suitably sized swivel bearings for a lazy susan seem to be readily available on e bay.

So far, so good. However, I would like the turntable to have two tracks to allow space for different trains. The tracks therefore need to be curved to ensure that the ends are perpendicular to the edge of the turntable. How do I calculate the radius of the curved track on the turntable or draw it out to establish the radius by trial and error, please? The other critical dimension is that the track width (which will provide clearance for a train standing on it) is 1.5", so at the centre of the turntable the two tracks will cover 1.5" either side of the centre line.

I should be grateful for any ideas please!  

Best wishes

Eric           

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How do I calculate the radius of the curved track on the turntable or draw it out to establish the radius by trial and error, please?

I just did it by eye with a length of flexi-track (or two). Something stiff (piece of aluminium, perhaps) that fits between the rails and spans the gap between the turntable and the mainland can help with alignment. I actually used pieces of settrack to bridge the gap because of their rigidity. Then I was able to cut a piece of flexitrack for the turntable to fit between the end pieces. I don't think I could lay a single length of curved flexitrack on the turntable and get the ends aligned and the correct curve all at the same time. But others are probably more proficient.

 

...R

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Progress has been a bit more limited than I had intended (no change there) but the excuse is that we have been on standby for the arrival of grandchild number 5. The call duly came very late one evening and we hosted the new arrival's two big brothers (aged 3 and 2) for a couple of nights: there is a very good reason that you have children while you are young. Both are an absolute joy and are completely addicted to Thomas the tank engine. Oldest grandson is allowed to inspect Grandad's trains (as a condition of good behaviour) and, having duly considered the latest project, Polegate, pronounced “that looks a bit like Emily”. I take that as a huge compliment and a most encouraging sign for the future!
Back to Roswell Mill. A trip to B&Q on wrinkly day (when your Diamond card gets you a discount) resulted in the purchase of ply, insulation batt and timber for the baseboard. Typically, the size of a small piece of  Celotex has slightly reduced, so, if the real estate is to remain at 4' x 2', there will have to be some improvisation. The key question, however, is the trackplan.
My efforts with Templot are improving but, let's be honest, trying to design an HOb5  finescale, 3 way, stub turnout is probably trying to run before you can walk. My ambition is limited to the construction of a loop with a couple of sidings off a hidden fiddle yard. The issue is that, with stub turnouts, there seems to be no reason to build two simple turnouts in rapid succession, when you can build a single three way. The three way requires only the one set of moving parts – its just that they have to stop in 3 different positions.  I am still wrestling with that one, but a useful discovery (from a member of the ACW list) was that you can buy ready made actuators from Grizzly Mountain Engineering for about £50 (unless Brexit has sent the £ further down the pan since I last looked). (Have a look at the “double slip” at the throat of Atlanta station in the OP. There is only one switch stand, suggesting that one end of the switch had to be aligned to three possible locations. Presumably, it required a very large switchman who could, in effect, bend four lengths of rail at the same time).
The other strand of activity is the rebuild of the Mantua General. The first point is that it will never look remotely like the General so it will be rechristened the Roswell (American locomotives seem to like arriving with a definite article). The best image of the General is shown below.

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This is the work of John Ott who produces some lovely models of early American railroads. Before you dive into his website (which I thoroughly recommend) I suggest that you make yourself a cup of tea (or some similar relaxant) and settle down comfortably. His website is the sort of place that you can disappear into and, when you next check the time, you may discover that an hour or so has gone by. If you have made your cuppa and are sitting comfortably, please feel free to dive in.
Compare John's image above, to my progress below.

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2 domes rather than 3, but I am afraid that it is going to stay that way. The scale wheels emphasise the exaggerated height of the cab and, again, I am afraid that there is not much that I can do about that – although I keep experiencing the temptation to use a large hammer. I have checked and my new chassis stands exactly the same height under the cab as the original cast version. The removal of the footplate has resulted in a couple of brass fillets to fill in the gap between firebox and frames. I have given up on my efforts to solder to mazak and opted simply to use araldite, however, I am still hoping to use the brass fillets as a foundation to which I can solder some new splashers.
The really interesting bit is the absence of a proper footplate. What you see on the drawing above are ankle rails, which have roughly the same structural worth as the hoops in a crinoline dress. On a UK loco, there is generally a footplate, often flat, from which you can erect the firebox, boiler and smokebox. Ankle rails are literally a footboard, linking the cab and pilot (cowcatcher), which appear to hang off the boiler and cab. Before building these, I shall need to have all the main elements of the chassis in place to establish clearance and so my next effort will be to complete the running gear and drive train. Outside cylinders, with the need for connecting rods, will be a first for me, as Brighton locos of the period of my interest keep all such equipment discretely hidden.  Unless anyone has any better ideas, I think I shall build the ankle rails as an add on to the superstructure but hanging down over the running gear – which all sounds a bit flimsy.
Best wishes
Eric

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I had wondered whether a replacement real wood cab might be in order, Eric. Sadly Bill Banta only does these in quarter-inch scale for converting Bachmann On30 stuff. But there may be others.

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I had wondered whether a replacement real wood cab might be in order, Eric. Sadly Bill Banta only does these in quarter-inch scale for converting Bachmann On30 stuff. But there may be others.

That sounds like something can only be used if it can be bought? Why not just make a "real wood cab"?

 

The concept is "railway modelling", not "railway buying" :)

 

...R

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Ian, Robin

Thank you for pricking my conscience. :no: 

I keep telling myself that this is a "quickie" based on the simple modification of a Mantua loco - and then I find yet another bit that needs to be thrown away and replaced. The problem is not just with the cab, but with the rear part of the boiler, which has a coned section that even the GWR would consider odd. I think it was made like this to provide space for the gearbox, which linked the telegraph pole through the cab to the gear on the driving axle. With a bit of grinding out, I have got a mashima motor in there. There were plenty of very ungainly attempts at the "Standard American" before the design settled down and I am afraid that this one will just have to stay how it is. However, if you look at John Ott's website (having first made your cup of tea), you will find a link entitled "Old Generals never die". Click the link..............   

Best wishes

Eric

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Going back the 3-way point, I did one a very long time ago using a simple 3-position electric slide switch. I built a linkage from the switch to the point with an omega loop in it. Only the centre position had to be precisely positioned in relation to the switch position. I put stops in for the two other positions formed of short sections of wire soldered to the outside of the web of the outer non-moving rails. The omega wire absorbed any excess movement in the switch.

 

I put a very slight vertical taper on the ends of the rails to help stock cross the point gap smoothly. Normal HO track and wheel tolerances are pretty loose, so I never had problems with derailments.

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Going back the 3-way point, I did one a very long time ago using a simple 3-position electric slide switch. I built a linkage from the switch to the point with an omega loop in it. Only the centre position had to be precisely positioned in relation to the switch position. I put stops in for the two other positions formed of short sections of wire soldered to the outside of the web of the outer non-moving rails. The omega wire absorbed any excess movement in the switch.

 

I put a very slight vertical taper on the ends of the rails to help stock cross the point gap smoothly. Normal HO track and wheel tolerances are pretty loose, so I never had problems with derailments.

 

Thanks for that suggestion. It is the sort of technology that has worked well on Vintners Yard and, with end stops for either direction and omega or Z links to absorb any excessive throw, in theory it should work. However, with code 40 rail and something like P87 standards, I may have to be rather more precise in my work than I was for EM.

Best wishes

Eric    

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Progress – August 
The timber and insulation batt, bought from B&Q, have been assembled into the basics of the baseboard. Beading strips have been used along the edges of the sheets of ply to allow the basic  box to be glued and screwed together. This was assembled around the insulation batt, which was secured with an adhesive like “No More Nails”. At the moment, one of the lighting battens is holding the front together, although the intention is to make the front piece out of a single sheet of ply so that it completes the fourth side of the box. A jig saw will be used to cut out the “window” in the centre – very much like Vintners’ Yard.

post-9472-0-78026200-1501961615_thumb.jpg
I still have to work out how I intend to build a turntable fiddle yard, although I keep looking at 15” lazy susans, or even just the ball bearing race from these.
The Mantua “General” is beginning to come back together, with the chassis being fiddled to fit into the rearranged body. The fillets of nickel silver that were glued in place to form the lower part of the firebox and boiler have proved to be robust enough to take solder. The splashers were therefore cut from tube, annealed and bent to roughly the right diameter. Soldering was rather a “hit and hope” process, trying to attach the arc of splasher to the 3 dimensional surface of the firebox/lower boiler cone. From John Ott’s drawing (see above), the splashers seem to have had little more substance than thin mudguards and to have been fitted pretty close to the rim of the wheels. Mine are substantially thinner than the Mantua castings but still leave rather a significant clearance, since, when I attached them, I was still unsure how the driving wheel subframe would line up with the body. After several attempts and for better or worse, it is done. This largely covers the rather messy line between the body and chassis, leaving only the gap between the splashers. Happily, US loco builders used this space to attach their builder’s plates, so I will have to fashion something of this kind to fill the gap.
The slide bars have been reinstated by creating what, in UK parlance, would be called a motion plate, to hold them to the frames. I suspect that, in US practice, the tail end of the slide bars would have been held in place by some sort of assembly of metal bar – like the frames themselves.  In the UK, as I understand it, both frames and motion plate at this period would have been metal plate, which is more or less what I have modelled. I am quite happy to let someone else be the trailblazer in building an HO model with proper frames made up out of bar! In any event, the Mantua slide bars soldered quite happily to a piece of nickel silver and the other end was attached to the cylinders with superglue. The Mantua solution is to leave the connecting rod with a crosshead on the end, but with the piston rod left to the imagination. I am afraid that I have let it stay that way. By comparison with John’s drawing, my whole arrangement is rather clunky, as the running gear on The General (and most contemporary American locos) seems surprisingly lightly constructed.

post-9472-0-87083300-1501961650_thumb.jpg
Fitting body to chassis involved one of those inevitable phases of trying to work out what was interfering with the free movement of the driving wheel/motor subframe inside the body. After scraping away at all the parts that I could think of, I finally discovered, by peering into the works with a torch, that the screw head that is used to secure the aft dome was fouling the top edge of the gearbox. Once identified, that was rapidly resolved.  The balance weights on the wheels still need to be smoothed off and painted red.
The chimney is currently plonked in place and the domes are screwed back into position.  The front dome is, in fact, a sandbox , so will need pipes, running down in front of the driving wheels. The rear one is a steam dome and will therefore need a whistle and safety valve.

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​Broadside on, it is apparent that the loco sits slightly down by the bows. Since the bogie pin is one of the three points of suspension (the other is the pivot between the driving wheels), it will need a spring or simply some additional washering to get the balance right.
The next trick will be to assemble the cowcatcher and ankle rails. I have not yet come up with any better idea than to hang these off the boiler, although they will hang down almost to rail level.There is also a crosshead(?) driven pump to add behind the valve gear, which should be linked to the boiler feeds. At the moment, I am struggling to figure out whether this is part of the body, the chassis or somehow split between the two.

Best wishes

Eric

Edited by burgundy
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That sounds like something can only be used if it can be bought? Why not just make a "real wood cab"?

 

The concept is "railway modelling", not "railway buying" :)

 

...R

If you have looked at Eric's Vintner's Yard, you will recognise that he is already more than capable of exquisite scratchbuilding. Nevertheless, if suitable products exist that help shorten construction timescales, considering them seems sensible. By all means think otherwise.

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If you look carefully at John Ott's lovely drawing of the General  (and don't forget to have a look at the rest of his fascinating website while you are there), you will realise that the issue with the Mantua model is not just the height of the cab, but the height of the firebox and the cone on the boiler. I am sure that this was done for reasons of the space inside, but it does leave the whole loco body rather seriously mis-shapen.  I have thought very hard about taking a couple of mm out of the height of the cab - but that simply transfers the visual problem to the firebox - and so it goes on. Having already binned the chassis and much of the tender (and we will get to that in a subsequent installment), the boiler, cab and cylinders are the only surviving bits from the front end (and yes, I should chuck out the boiler because it has only 2, not 3, domes). There is a point at which you simply draw the line.

There is a solution to all this which you will find on another page of John's website

http://www.ottgalleries.com/OSLocoKits.html

and I have in stock a set of 3-D prints for the Yonah, which is another Western and Atlantic loco. Even here, however, I am in for scratch building the chassis, as the models are designed for standard Yankee track, while my original objective was to model Dixie 5' gauge. Talk about digging a hole for yourself!

Best wishes

Eric     

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Eric,

 

You've probably already been there but Rene Gourley's P87 blog https://proto87.org/about/ is well worth a read. He scratch built a Canada Atlantic 4-4-0 in P87 a few years back that was truly amazing to see.

 

Cheers,

 

David

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Wonderful project. Ante Bellum railroads are a great subject, and subtly different from the 'Old Time' equipment of the 1870s. Good luck!

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I toyed with an 1850s era layout a few years back- did plenty of research, but never really managed to do much in the way of an actual layout. My big idea was to build a representation of the Long Island Railroad terminus on Atlantic Avenue in New York.  I managed to build an experimental stub switch. If anything I was a bit too accurate with it- the switch always locked solid whenever the railway room got too hot!

 

I remember the early rail Yahoo group was very helpful. My only real achievement was to 'cut and shut' two Bachmann 4-2-0 "Lafayette/ Pegasus" trainset locos into a passable 1850s 'haystack' boiler Baldwin 4-4-0. Not all that difficult actually. I used White, John H., Jr. (1968). A history of the American locomotive; its development: 1830-1880  as a reference. I gave up trying to use the ubiquitous Bachmann 'old time' 4-4-0 loco- representative of the 1870s, they were just too big to represent the rather delicate, predominantly outside-frame locos of the 1850s.

 

Good luck with the project!

 

Will

Edited by Forward!

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I toyed with an 1850s era layout a few years back- did plenty of research, but never really managed to do much in the way of an actual layout. My big idea was to build a representation of the Long Island Railroad terminus on Atlantic Avenue in New York.  I managed to build an experimental stub switch. If anything I was a bit too accurate with it- the switch always locked solid whenever the railway room got too hot!

 

I remember the early rail Yahoo group was very helpful. My only real achievement was to 'cut and shut' two Bachmann 4-2-0 "Lafayette/ Pegasus" trainset locos into a passable 1850s 'haystack' boiler Baldwin 4-4-0. Not all that difficult actually. I used White, John H., Jr. (1968). A history of the American locomotive; its development: 1830-1880  as a reference. I gave up trying to use the ubiquitous Bachmann 'old time' 4-4-0 loco- representative of the 1870s, they were just too big to represent the rather delicate, predominantly outside-frame locos of the 1850s.

 

Good luck with the project!

 

Will

 

I looked into a similar project.  I came across a site that argued fairly convincingly that 1850s-1860s locomotives, though superficially similar to the 'Old Time' 1870s outline stuff on the market were smaller.  The author's solution was to model in 4mm scale, using HO RTR as the basis!  Whereas I suppose you could re-gauge to EM (or wider if a wider gauge line), I would have been content to reproduce the 4mm scale/OO Gauge compromise that I'm used to on an American outline layout.

 

But then, I'm a bit perverse at times. 

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