Jump to content

Recommended Posts

I’m thinking of converting the Bachmann 64xx to a 54xx. Other than wheel, splasher and brake spacing, are there any other differences to consider? Cheers, Dai

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

As the new wheels will raise the axles by about a mm (5'2" minus 4'7" = 5", divide by 2 as the height difference is radius and not diameter = 2.5", ball park 1mm), you'll need to devise a means of moving the axle channels upward in the chassis block by the same amount to restore the original, correct, ride height.  If I were doing it, which I'm not, I'd be looking at taking metal out from the chassis block to about 2mm and inserting a shim or tube to carry the axle at the correct height.

 

I believe there was some comment at the time the Bachmann 64xx was introduced that the splashers looked a bit large, so you might 'get away with' them.  AFAIK the extra height did not make any difference to the chimney or the cab roof (and it's interface with the side sheets), but it might be as well to check this detail

 

Is there a chassis kit available? or can a 2251 chassis be modified?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No need for moving the axles up in the chassis. The 54xx was a 64xx raised by the difference of the respective wheel radii*. Lowering the buffers by about 1mm restores the correct buffer height.

 

* 64xx cab 11'8.5" high, 54xx cab 11'11.75" high.

   64xx chimney 12'3" high, 54xx chimney 12'6,25" high.

 

  • Informative/Useful 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your input, chaps. Johnster, I am hoping I’ll get away with the splashers. When I get round to it, I shall let everybody know the outcome. Be warned though, I have a few other projects before it! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 19/10/2019 at 16:24, The Johnster said:

As the new wheels will raise the axles by about a mm (5'2" minus 4'7" = 5", divide by 2 as the height difference is radius and not diameter = 2.5", ball park 1mm), you'll need to devise a means of moving the axle channels upward in the chassis block by the same amount to restore the original, correct, ride height.  If I were doing it, which I'm not, I'd be looking at taking metal out from the chassis block to about 2mm and inserting a shim or tube to carry the axle at the correct height.

 

I believe there was some comment at the time the Bachmann 64xx was introduced that the splashers looked a bit large, so you might 'get away with' them.  AFAIK the extra height did not make any difference to the chimney or the cab roof (and it's interface with the side sheets), but it might be as well to check this detail

 

Is there a chassis kit available? or can a 2251 chassis be modified?

The wheel size might cause issues,  The 2251 chassis is the 57XX one with 7'3 + 8'3" spacing rather than the 45/64/74/16XX/2021  7'4 + 7'4" ,  The Bachmann 2251 wheels always look too small too me.   Hornby 14XX might be better. Oxford Dean Goods better still.

The 54XX as Miss Prism said is a 64XX with smaller wheels and the buffers moved to the bottom of the bufferbeam,  (actually its the other way round 54XX came first)  The 54XX running plate is the same height as the 14XX and prototype 2251 so 3" or so higher than a  64/74/94 or 57XX .  Its the buffer centres which are a constant on GW Locos, very little else is height wise. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good info about the height issue from Ms P and David.  Just matched the 64xx and 57xx chassis against. each other and they are well off; a 2251 ain't gonna cut the mustard.  A cheap alternative for donor wheels might be Airfix/Mainline/Hornby Dean goods, but there is little else on this worth recycling!  This has explained why my ancient Mainline 57xx doesn't look quite right; it's sitting on a 64xx chassis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can I ask that if the wheel diameter is less than 2mm difference and the splashers are already over sized would anyone from normal viewing distance be able to tell if the wheels had been changed or not?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, terry.ecmr said:

Can I ask that if the wheel diameter is less than 2mm difference and the splashers are already over sized would anyone from normal viewing distance be able to tell if the wheels had been changed or not?

 

Its well over 10% difference - a loose rule of thumb for what the eye notices - so yes, I think would show.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, terry.ecmr said:

Can I ask that if the wheel diameter is less than 2mm difference and the splashers are already over sized would anyone from normal viewing distance be able to tell if the wheels had been changed or not?

I'd say that if you have any other panniers or a 14xx on the layout, the 54xx wheels should be clearly visibly bigger than the other panniers' or any loco with 4'7" wheels, and visibly the same as on the 14xx or 2251.  A 54xx should be taller than a 64/74xx.

 

33 minutes ago, Steamport Southport said:

 

Yes. 

 

http://www.highlevelkits.co.uk/64xxpage.html

 

Just a pity there isn't a supply of bodies. Thankfully I've already got a Sutherland 54XX kit in the pile.

 

 

 

Jason

I think the thread's hive mind has established that the difference in height at the top of the loco is prototypical, and the Bachmann body is fine for a 54xx once you've lowered the position of the buffers and drawhook.  If a top feed boiler is needed, it might be better than the Sutherland;  I built the Westward 64xx years ago and this could be finished as 54xx or 74xx.  Might be worth looking for one as they had the larger 54xx splashers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Could one simply fit bigger wheels to the Bachmann chassis, if they fit in the splashers? Then some styrene to deepen buffer beam and then remove buffers etc and fit new ones at lower height? That might be a project even I could accomplish (though not necessarily well!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is no need to deepen the buffer beam. Simply lower the existing buffer axis on the existing buffer beam.

 

  • Like 1
  • Agree 1
  • Informative/Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does Colin at Alan Gibson do a conversion wheel set for the Bachmann 64XX, in other words, to make an EM or P4 64XX, using the existing Bachmann chassis, but a change of wheels?

 

If so, perhaps you could ask him if he could supply the correct axles, together with the correct size wheels for the 54XX?

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
49 minutes ago, Miss Prism said:

There is no need to deepen the buffer beam. Simply lower the existing buffer axis on the existing buffer beam.

 

I think you may need to drop the drawhook by the same amount as well.  The GW simply put the 54xx buffer beam on the 64/74xx 'upside down'.  If you have other panniers on your layout, I think the point needs to be made with the splashers just as it does with the wheels; they need to look bigger than those on 4'7" wheel panniers.  If you find that the tension lock couplers on your '64 with bigger wheels' 54 are too high, I'd suggest packing the base of the dovetail mount and re-inserting the couplers, holding them in with glue as they will not now be able to be pushed fully home.  The bar should be the same height as the bar on the adjoining vehicle otherwise it will override and cause derailments or buffer locking.

 

Lowering the buffers in easy.  They can be pulled out of the 64xx buffer beam with a pair of pliers gripping the buffer housing, like pulling teeth; a little twist may help.  The buffer comes out complete with the housing leaving a hole.  You need to drill a new hole on the new centre and ream it out to the correct size; then you just glue the buffers with their housings into the new holes, ensuring that they are square to the buffer beam in both the vertical and horizontal planes.

 

Pull the drawhooks out in the same way, and ream the slot out at the bottom by about 1mm or until it looks right.  If the gap at the top bothers you, fill with whatever you use as filler; I use Milliput and jobs like this usually wait until I have to make up a batch, by which time I've forgotten most of 'em and they have to wait until next time...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Informative/Useful 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gosh, I didn’t expect such a lively discussion. Many thanks.  I have already converted a 64xx to EM with Markit axles and wheels. This has worked. I am happy to go with these or Alan Gibson’s for the 54xx and I shall try 5’1”” wheels if poss, pretending that the tyres are worn down a bit. This will give me a bit more leeway than the proper size wheels. If that doesn’t work, the loco will be converted to 6433 instead. If it does work, then I shall do the remedial work on the buffers. I warn you: it will be a while yet! Thanks again. Dai

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, The Johnster said:

 

I think the thread's hive mind has established that the difference in height at the top of the loco is prototypical, and the Bachmann body is fine for a 54xx once you've lowered the position of the buffers and drawhook.  If a top feed boiler is needed, it might be better than the Sutherland;  I built the Westward 64xx years ago and this could be finished as 54xx or 74xx.  Might be worth looking for one as they had the larger 54xx splashers.

 

It's alright, I dug it out last night and it's not a Sutherland kit, it's Stephen Poole. I was mixing it up with the Flower I got at the same time which is Sutherland.

 

I think both of them ended up in the Nu Cast range.

 

It has the parts to make the variants including providing for difference in the buffer height.

 

 

 

Jason

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Steamport Southport said:

 

It's alright, I dug it out last night and it's not a Sutherland kit, it's Stephen Poole. I was mixing it up with the Flower I got at the same time which is Sutherland.

 

I think both of them ended up in the Nu Cast range.

 

It has the parts to make the variants including providing for difference in the buffer height.

 

 

 

Jason

Some years back I converted a Sutherland 2021 into the prototype 54xx. Sadly I sold it, along with many other models for personal reasons.  This thread reminded me of it, so I'm ordering another 2021 kit from Dave at SE Finecast to build one again. I've also got 2 sutherland/Cotswold 54/64/74 kits stashed away along with a Stephen Poole 54 I built in my teens. That poor old thing desperately needs a restoration and detailing job, plus a new chassis. Ks mk2 motor and SP wheels. Yuck.

Edited by Denbridge

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Steamport Southport said:

 

It's alright, I dug it out last night and it's not a Sutherland kit, it's Stephen Poole. I was mixing it up with the Flower I got at the same time which is Sutherland.

 

I think both of them ended up in the Nu Cast range.

 

It has the parts to make the variants including providing for difference in the buffer height.

 

 

 

Jason

Win win then, Jason.  The Westward had the cab variants as well (all the 54xx had the 'early' type cab with the 'lip' and radius join to the bunker side), and a fold up nickel silver chassis that was very easy to build and ran very well.  The kit made up into a very good representation and my only criticism was the visibility of the worm.  I painted it matt black to camouflage it, but it still drew attention to itself when the loco was running very slowly.  It's chimney, dome, and safety valve cover survive on my Hornby 2721

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Denbridge said:

Some years back I converted a Sutherland 2021 into the prototype 54xx. Sadly I sold it, along with many other models for personal reasons.  This thread reminded me of it, so I'm ordering another 2021 kit from Dave at SE Finecast to build one again. I've also got 2 sutherland/Cotswold 54/64/74 kits stashed away along with a Stephen Poole 54 I built in my teens. That poor old thing desperately needs a restoration and detailing job, plus a new chassis. Ks mk2 motor and SO wheels. Yuck.

The prototype 54xx, with it's low roof cab and 5'2" wheels, was a unique loco that sadly saw a very short period of service.  I'd be interested to see a photo when you've completed the kit and conversion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2080-small.jpg.414e8c6e4879351fd44aeb43ae624ff1.jpg

2080 with the larger wheels (and new splashers) and a No 11 boiler. The 900g tanks are retained, as are the bufferbeams in their original position. The reverser rod has been jiggled a bit. The toolbox has been shifted towards the front.

 

Edited by Miss Prism
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, The Johnster said:

The prototype 54xx, with it's low roof cab and 5'2" wheels, was a unique loco that sadly saw a very short period of service.  I'd be interested to see a photo when you've completed the kit and conversion.

From memory, it was pretty straightforward. For Mk2 I'll use spare splashers from another kit. The buffer beams require lowering, I think that was about it, structurally,  though it was about 30 years ago when I built it. Will certainly post some pics. I've got wheels frames , etc in stock,  so unusually for me, could be a pretty quick build.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 19/10/2019 at 16:24, The Johnster said:

As the new wheels will raise the axles by about a mm (5'2" minus 4'7" = 5", divide by 2 as the height difference is radius and not diameter = 2.5", ball park 1mm), ............

 

No - 5'2" minus 4'7"  = 7" (not 5)

 

On 20/10/2019 at 20:21, DavidCBroad said:

 

The 54XX as Miss Prism said is a 64XX with smaller wheels and the buffers moved to the bottom of the bufferbeam,  (actually its the other way round 54XX came first)  The 54XX running plate is the same height as the 14XX and prototype 2251 so 3" or so higher than a  64/74/94 or 57XX .  Its the buffer centres which are a constant on GW Locos, very little else is height wise. 

 

No - the 64xx is a 54xx with smaller wheels........

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Correct of course on both counts, OFFTHE RAILS.  If the starting point is a Bachmann 64xx, then a 54xx is a 64xx with larger wheels.  Chronological order of prototype construction at Swindon goes; 54xx prototype, 54xx production, 64xx early variant (all up to this point with Bachmann style cab; lip on leading edge of roof and radius between cab rear and side of bunker) later variant 64xx, then 74xx (later style cab: squared off join between spectacle plate and roof and square between cab rear and bunker side).

 

So the Bachmann cab is suitable for any production 54xx and early 64xx.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.