Full Version: doctorwayne's Get off yer duff Challenge (Part I)
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[Image: Locostoberebuilt002.jpg]

I bought this locomotive, a used Bachmann USRA 2-6-6-2, from a nearby hobbyshop in 2007.  It was DCC-equipped, which I promptly removed when I got it home.  It ran well, but since I had a lot of other projects on the go at that time, I put it back in its box, a project for a later day.
In 2009, I had some idle time available, so dug it out and decided to test its pulling abilities, as I felt that it probably would need some additional weight.
I assemble a test train and sent it east from Elfrida, and the loco and several cars disappeared into the tunnel.  As the track is on a 2.8% grade and also a couple of curves, the cars began disappearing more slowly, until finally they stopped completely.  This was not unexpected, and I could hear the locomotive still running, its drivers slipping on the rails.  When I walked around the peninsula to see how far it had gone, I was surprised to see only the front engine's drivers spinning, while those on the rear were motionless.  
I shut off the power and took the loco into the shop, figuring that the driveshaft to the rear engine had somehow become disengaged.  After removing the boiler casting, both driveshafts were revealed to be properly in place, but further investigation showed that the gears within the rear engine's gearbox were almost totally devoid of teeth.  Eek  It's my guess that the previous owner used a non-plastic-compatible oil in this gearbox, and while it sat in its box for two years, the oil did its damage.
The next day, I contacted Bachmann, only to discover that no parts were available for this locomotive.  My next avenue was NWSL, and after a lengthy back-and-forth discussing gear sizes, tooth counts, and pitch, I was asked by Dave, the tech guy at NWSL, to send the damaged engine in to see if he could come up with suitable replacement gears.
Time passed, and Bachmann released their C&O 2-6-6-2, a loco similar to, but not exactly the same as my earlier version of that wheel arrangement.  I contacted Bachmann and explained the situation, and it was suggested that I send them the loco and $45.00 to see if parts from the newer loco would work in the older one.  I contacted NWSL, and asked them to return the engine and bill me as required.  In due time, the engine arrived (at no charge), and the locomotive was re-assembled and sent off to Bachmann - this was, I think, in March or April of 2012.  
It didn't take too long for Bachmann to contact me with the news that the newer parts were not compatible with my older locomotive, and they offered me a replacement or the return of the wounded loco.  I perhaps should have accepted the replacement offered, but since it was literally half of the original (their recently released 2-6-0), I asked for my crippled 2-6-6-2 to be returned.  I was surprised when it arrived here, complete with my uncashed $45.00 money order.  While I was a bit nonplussed by their offer of a 2-6-0 for a 2-6-6-2, I certainly cannot fault their warranty policies, and wouldn't hesitate to purchase another Bachmann locomotive.
I get regular e-mail updates from Bachmann on their new releases and was shocked this past Spring to receive notice of the availability of parts for my lame loco - among them, complete front and rear engines.  Thumbsup  Thumbsup
I quickly ordered one of each (who knows, perhaps the front engine was now in the same sad shape as the rear one, having spent even more time in the box).  This locomotive has racked up a lot of mileage, but most of it not under its own power.

Anyway, the parts arrived and the new rear engine was installed (the front one appears to still be okay).  So, this long delayed project is once again under way....I had re-started it a couple of months ago, but given the nine year lag since it was acquired, I prefer to call it a stalled project.  

The locomotive as-delivered is back-heavy, but there's very little room to add weight in the front end.  I did find a few spots, though:

In the smokebox and front sand dome...

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...atop the rear of the front gearbox...

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...and the front of it, too...

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I also replaced the plastic steam pipes between the front of the loco and the rear cylinders, using lead-filled brass tubing:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20002.jpg]

The loco and tender, the latter the USRA "long" version, are too long to fit on the 90' turntable at Lowbanks (actually only 89' long because of limited real estate), so I decided to shorten the loco's boiler...

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You'll also notice, above, that I substituted a Delta-type trailing truck for the bulky one which came with the model.  This required modifications to both the truck and the mounting system on the locomotive:

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...which then allowed me to mount, what I believe to be CPR vestibule cab, much further over the boiler than the original USRA cab, thus helping to shorten the overall length.  The long tender will get a trimming, too, but that'll happen later.

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I can't recall the origin of the new cab, but I think that it was in a box of garage sale stuff which my wife picked-up for a couple of bucks.

Much more to come!   Goldth

Nice start Doc. That's a big tea kettle in front of that firebox, I hope that shorting the grate area doesn't mess with the steaming capacity. Thumbsup
e-paw Wrote:Nice start Doc. That's a big tea kettle in front of that firebox, I hope that shorting the grate area doesn't mess with the steaming capacity. Thumbsup

Thanks, Steve. I did think about the shorter grate area having a bearing on a real locomotive like this, and also thought about simpling the loco (which would have made matters worse - I believe that N&W tried that on one of their USRA 2-8-8-2s and found that the boiler couldn't keep up with the demand for steam. Apparently, they simply bushed the low pressure cylinders to the same diameter as the high pressure ones, so it would have been very easy to model...no external changes to the cylinders needed).
My locomotive will be getting a feedwater heater, though, and perhaps a modified tube arrangement and an improved superheater - the latter two requiring no external modifications. Goldth

Some more progress....

On the front end, I changed-out the stock inside-bearing lead truck for an outside-bearing version from a Bachmann Berkshire (available as a separate part). I had to remove most of the portion through which the screw is passed, in order to lengthen the truck's frame sufficiently that it would not strike the cylinders on curves:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20026.jpg]

It was my original intention to equip this locomotive with a Worthington BL type feedwater heater, but the pivotting rear engine left little in the way of options for a good place to put it, as did the relatively high position of the running boards closer to the front of the loco. I had also intended, like many prototype examples, to move the dual airpumps from the front of the smokebox to a position on the engineer's side of the boiler, an attempt to balance the over-two-ton weight of the BL.
Instead, I opted for the more modern (and more compact) Worthington SA feedwater heater.
Even then, finding space to mount the components was a problem. The cold water pump ended up beneath the fireman's side of the cab, partially hidden by the steps and fairing of the vestibule cab, while the heater itself will go atop the smokebox, just ahead of the stack. However, the same conditions which precluded use of the BL unit also left little room for the SA's hot water pump, and I chose to mount it in a rather unorthodoxed position on the side of the front engine. Since it will be in the shadows and mostly hidden by the valve gear of the front engine, I chose to save the nicely-done brass casting which I had purchased for this loco, and instead substituted one scratchbuilt from styrene:

[Image: Worthington%20hot%20water%20pump...%20004_1.jpg]

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20036.jpg]

It's a fairly loose interpretation of the real one, and even then, had to be trimmed fairly radically just to get it to fit. I didn't want to omit such an important detail, though, even though its position on the pivotting engine might, on a real locomotive, at least, make connection to the boiler rather difficult. I'm uncertain as to what type of high pressure swivel joints might have been available when this loco is supposed to have been in service. Eek

The valve gear hangers on this loco are of all-plastic construction, and that on the new rear engine was somewhat distorted, allowing the linkage for reversing the valve gear to rise somewhat, bringing it in contact with the area where new air tanks will be installed. This retainer, cut from brass sheet using a cut-off disc, forces the distorted parts back into position and improves the clearances:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20030_1.jpg]

Also added was a small filler piece atop the extension which accommodates attachment of the trailing truck and tender drawbar...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20031_1.jpg]

...which not only blocks what should be a no-see-through area, but also represents part of an extension of the loco's frame, which I modelled using sheet and strip styrene, and Grandt Line nbw castings:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20033.jpg]

That's the Worthington cold water pump at right, with scratchbuilt ashpan hoppers on the left. The latter are a bit wider than intended, but were a nuisance to build and will not be revised. Goldth Also visible are overfire jets installed on what remains of the firebox. I purchased them back in the '70s for use on a heavily-modified Tyco Mikado...

[Image: GrandValley96-Tyco-Mantua2-8-2.jpg]

...but decided to not use them. They've languished in my "parts department" for all those years and this locomotive seemed like it might be my only opportunity to use them:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20035.jpg]

Still lots more to do, but time for a break to work on some other stuff.

Gidday doctor wayne, does this locomotive have a specific prototype, or is it an addition to the EG&E roster?
BTW, a belated thanks for the latest from GERN Industries. Thumbsup 357
Cheers, the Bear. Smile
This one doesn't have, as far as I'm aware, a prototype, but I am trying to follow prototypical practices.

The frame extensions were an idea by Ray Breyer, over on the MR Forums, about adding a frame extension to the Athearn Mikado. I did all four of mine after they were already in service, and it really takes care of the too-open look under the cab, without affecting the swing of the trailing truck. If the photo below will enlarge when clicked upon, it should be somewhat visible:

[Image: ErieNorthshoreMikado.jpg]

The ash hoppers were inspired by those used on the CNR's secondhand USRA 2-10-2s, as seen on this modified Akane which I built for my good friend cn nutbar:

[Image: Andyetagainevenmorebuilderphotos008.jpg]

There will be some other prototype-inspired details on this locomotive, but I'll reveal those as the build continues. Wink
The loco will be part of the EG&E family, but I'll be lettering it for the Grand River Southern, a terminal road supposedly connecting the modelled Grand Valley with the unmodelled EG&E. I did have a GRS locomotive in the past, this Athearn SW7 rebuilt as an NW2...

[Image: Foe-toesfromTrainPhotos2007thirdcd1.jpg]

...but it's gone to my good buddy Deano's (UP SD40-2) layout.

I picked up a Trueline Trains CPR caboose some time ago, used and at a good price, and it's lettered for the GRS (their only piece of rolling stock)...

[Image: NewYearsChallengePhotos219.jpg]

...and the intention is to use it with the 2-6-6-2 in pusher service on the big hill between South Cayuga and Park Head.

This project seems to be one which invites delays, but I've finally had a chance to get back into it, and the locomotive is coming along quite nicely, although isn't yet done. I've either neglected to take photos during the early part of the latest round of construction or have misplaced them...still looking. 35

In the meantime, I've started work on the tender. This locomotive came with the USRA Long Tender, but since the locomotive was shortened to fit on a particular turntable, its tender will get a somewhat similar treatment.

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With the cistern shortened, it was time to lengthen the coal bunker:

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Still more work to do on the coal bunker, and some detail work for the cistern deck, too.

With the tender body shortened, the frame needed to be altered, too. Unlike my other Bachmann locos, this one has a cast metal floor and frame, so I used a regular hacksaw to make the cuts, then spliced the remaining sections together using part of the steel weight from a freight car:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20074.jpg]

The tender trucks will be modified to allow all-wheel pick-up, and wiring inside the tender will be re-done to accommodate that. I'm not too pleased with the joint in the re-joined sections of the tender, and will be sanding all of the rivets off it in order to allow use of body filler, something I don't particularly like using:

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...075.jpg]

More to come...if I can find the photos. Crazy

i grin from ear to ear when i read your last post Wink

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Cheers Lutz
Looks like a nice neat job, Lutz.

While long tenders were a practical necessity on many roads and for many larger locomotives, my line is pretty short (really, really short by prototypical standards Misngth ) so most of my locos have shortened tenders.

[Image: ViewsatElfrida006.jpg]

One of my hometown's real railroads had a fairly short run, too, and used short tenders on most of their road locomotives, like the one on this Consolidation (which also shows the inspiration for my paint and lettering scheme):

[Image: img33.jpg]

That locomotive has been moved to a heritage site and cosmetically restored, removing both of those little punks. Goldth

The same road also owned the only two Canadian Berkshires...

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...and I always felt that the shorter tenders added to their powerful appearance.

Well, it looks like I've either lost the in-progress photos of recent work on this loco, or I never took them...I'd guess the latter to be the case, as I finally really got into this project, and probably didn't stop to take photos. The ones below appear to have been done at a point when I finally took a break, although there's some more details to be added to the locomotive and, of course, lots to do on the tender, too.
Other than the sand lines, I re-piped most of this locomotive, especially for the feedwater system and heater, but I also thought the air pump piping to be incorrect, and I did re-do the air tanks, too.

An over-all view...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20043.jpg]

...fireman's side view...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20044.jpg]

...engineer's side view...

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...and some overhead views...

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The air tanks mounted beneath the running boards are lead-filled brass tubing, while those atop the boiler are lead-filled stainless steel. The brackets for the boiler-top tanks were cut from a sheet of .030" brass using a cut-off disc in my motor tool, and once the proper level for the tanks was determined, I used a punch to create the cradle-like depressions in the brackets.

To hold the tanks in place, I soldered .010"x.030" brass bar (from Detail Associates) onto the outer edges of the brackets...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20056.jpg]

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20057.jpg]

With the tanks in place, the straps were stretched over the tanks and soldered to the other edge of the brackets...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20058.jpg]

Here are a couple of views showing where the build is currently at:

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The air tank cradles were based on those, seen in a photo, of similar design used on a DM&IR 2-8-0.

More work on this locomotive yet to come...

That looks very good!
Just a question, what are the eight little "cans" hanging on both sides in front of the cab? Never saw it or did not pay attention to. Are that the "overfire jets"? What is their purpose?
Thanks for your kind words, Reinhard. Goldth

Yes, those are overfire jets, which use steam to introduce additional air into the firebox, which helped to burn gases released by incomplete combustion of the coal. This improved boiler efficiency and helped to cut down smoke at the stack.

Thanks for the quick response. I remember to read about similar apparatus at German steam engines but did never notice them at such a prominent location.
Finally, some more progress on this locomotive.

Since the handrails on many steam locomotives did double-duty as both safety appliance and conduit for electrical wires, I added a junction box (from PSC), then ran the HO scale version of Bx armoured cable to it from the generator...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20087.jpg]

...another junction box and cable connected the numberboards (a line runs from this one, across the top of the boiler, to the one on the other side...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20088.jpg]

...and the class lights got the same attention...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20089.jpg]

I also drilled a couple of holes in the window area of the cab doors, then used a file to finish the openings. Many Canadian steam locomotives with vestibule cabs had a window in only the door on the fireman's side of the cab, but my road uses windows in both doors...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2....jpg]

The loco is now finished, except for paint and lettering (preceded by a good bath to remove all of the construction dust and filings that's so evident in many of the photos Misngth ).

I also added all-wheel pick-up on the shortened tender, thanks to a good example posted HERE by Lutz (Schraddel). Drilling holes in the plastic trucks is a more secure fastening for the wiper wires than mounting them with glue or even a screw.

Here's my version...

[Image: GRS%202-6-6-2...%20085.jpg]

Work continues on the tender, with only the back-up light and a toolbox to be added to the deck of the cistern. More photos when that's done.

Nice details which gives a very individual look to each model!
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