To paraphrase Vane Jones, "Knowledge is of little value until shared with others."

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sunset NSL Silverliners #11A – 415 Trucks, Underbody, & Interior

For me the reason for purchasing the Sunset Silverliner 3-car train set was to have 415, the tavern-lounge car. I want to make this model the best of the 3-car set.

Working on the tavern-lounge car was less like finishing one part and then starting the next as with the 2 Silverliner coaches. Instead, while waiting for paint to dry or glue to set-up; other work was started on the 415  Often multiple sections of the car were worked on at a time. For this reason, photos may seem out of order. You may see something in a photo which was worked on in another section of a post.

Also, some of the topics in a post may appear as out of order, disconnected vignettes mainly so information on a topic will be in a post and not spread over 2 or more. If something is overlooked ask about it.

While looking for something amongst my pile of train rubble, a plan of "North Shore Line dining car" published in the March 1975 edition of Model Railroader was found. The published plan was for the 409, a motorized NSL dining car. After comparing the plan to the Sunset model of the 415, it looks like Sunset used this plan for their model. Everything was the same on the plan and the model except for trolley poles and motorized trucks. And, of course, the 415 is a Silverliner and the plan was not.

I have absolutely no idea as to why the NSL had some motorized dining cars while other were not.

Underbody and Trucks
To start working on your 415 remove the trucks. Then remove the screws holding the floor in place. Remove both the outer and inner floors. Place the inner floor with the tables, chairs, kitchen, etc. aside for now.

There are a number of items to be removed from the underbody. Check the photos below to see what items have to be remaining. Since 415 is a trailer only the minimal amount of underbody is required. This includes the brake cylinder, air cylinders, the handbrake with mechanism, and a box to look like the propane tank holder. Be careful when you remove the unwanted items. They are all soldered to the floor. Instead of using a soldering iron, a medium-size screwdriver with a flat blade can be used. Placed the blade next to the end of the item you want removed and with a slight twist of the wrist the underbody piece will pop off.

After the parts are removed file the excess solder off. Check the sides of this floor to see if any of the cross pieces protrude out. If they do stick out beyond the brass floor, file them smooth with the sides of the floor.

To be able to mount the Wagner trucks I used the same type of spacer made from styrene used on the coaches.

Paint both the trucks and underbody floor with Floquil’s Grimy Black. When dry, set the underbody and trucks aside.

Frosted Windows
There are 4 frosted windows in the car, 2 are in the lavatory and 2 are in the kitchen. Use your favorite method of frosting windows on these windows.

The bulkhead at the number one end of the car is okay and only has to be painted the same as the coaches.

The bulkhead at the #2 end of the car, the tavern-lounge part, has to have the door moved to the right. For my model using the dimensions of the current window in the bulkhead, a new window was made using the same techniques explained in prior posts regarding the replacement bulkheads for the coaches.

To cover-up the old window, a piece of styrene was inserted into the window. Then pieces of 0.005” thick styrene were used to cover-up the majority of the bulkhead but not where the new doorway is located. To make the bulkhead look better pieces of 0.015” x 0.030” styrene strips were added.

This bulkhead can now be painted the same as the other. Both bulkheads should be stored until later.

Both cabs can be treated the same as the cabs in the coaches. After painting they can be stored until final assembly of the model takes place.

Upper Sash of Windows
Towards the end of completing your interior of 415, the remaining task is to cover up the upper sash windows from the interior. In photos of the interior of 415 you should have noticed each upper sash is covered with individual covers. For my car strips of styrene 0.010” x 0.250” were cut to length and painted with the very light green used for the walls of the kitchen. When the paint was dry the styrene strips were glued in place using “Kwik-Seal”.


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