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

Sunday, April 29, 2012

AEFRE 49 - #2A Which Came 1st, the Chicken or the Egg?

Modeling Notes: All soldering was done with a 60 watt hot iron and not a soldering gun.

A hot 60 watt soldering iron beats a cool; soon to be warm, soldering gun any day just like 4 aces beats a full house.
When the soldering part of making a model comes up, always keep a small bowl of cool water handy. You can never tell if you will need it for the model or your fingers!

CAUTION: Needless to say wear safety glasses at all times when constructing a model. If you do not have a pair obtain a set. Become accustom to wearing  safety glasses.

I wear eye glasses for various corrections needed for my vision. The frames are oversize and the "corrective lenses" are made from the same material CD's and DVD's are made from - polycarbonate.  They are average safety glasses.

There are a number of construction steps where something is being done which can be hazardous to your eyes. You may not always be aware of the hazard.

Which did come 1st, the chicken or the egg?
The answer is simple, the power and trail trucks were obtain before the model was started. #49 had trucks with Peckham 30 side frames which have a 6’ wheel base.

The only available Peckham side frame is made by Current Line Models. It is a Peckham 40 having a 6’8” wheelbase.
Current Line Models Photo

The additional 8” will cause problems on the model with the coupler draft gear, the foot boards on the end of the model, and the locations of the underbody equipment. Seeing the prototype is short, 30’, trying to “jockey” the truck centers would only lead to other problems.

I chose to use Precision Scale Models (PSC) Baldwin MCB 7830 side frames. I know the PSC frames are 78", only 3" shorter than the Peckham 40. However there are some things I plan on doing to "take care of that."
PSC Catalogue Photo

These are lost wax castings which come in a kit and must be assembled. They are more expensive but will give a better looking set of trucks.

There are 3 reasons for picking the PSC side frames. 1st, working with brass is easier for me than soft metal. It is far easier to solder small pieces to alter the side frame members. The 2nd reason is to have a power truck which will fit completely under the decking of the flat car portion of the model. The 3rd reason will come up shortly.

If you decide to use the PSC trucks, purchase #9105 the kit without wheels. Also, try to obtain a newer (made after 2005 or so) kit. The reason is how good the castings are plus their condition.

I’ve used many PSC Baldwin trucks under my models over the past 10-15 years. When 1st starting to use them, the castings were sometimes bent-up and had a big sprue attached. Getting the base side frame straight took some work. The inner and outer equalizer pieces required a lot of cleaning. Recently the PSC truck kit appeared better looking. The base side frame was straight with little or no sprue to cut off. Less time was required to file and clean up the parts.

Once the parts are cleaned, straightened, and tested for fit; the holes for the axles have to be drilled with a twist drill of about a 0.100” diameter. How far in to drill is up to you. Since new journal lids were to be used, my hole went all the way through the journal. If you are not using new journal lids, the hole needs to be only about 0.100” deep.

I found making a jig to hold the outer equalizer with the journals level made the hole drilling process easier. Pieces of bass wood of the correct dimensions were glued to a block of wood. The side frame member with the journals was held in my hand on the jig while the journals were drilled out.

If you have dull twist drills, the brass will become hot. My recommendation is to buy a new twist drill and use a small amount of oil.

Assemble the 3 pieces for each side. Attach a dab of silver solder (6% silver) to the back equalizer where the front journal casting goes through this equalizer. After soldering, both equalizer parts should still move over the inner base side frame.

Instead of the PSC provided springs, Des Plains Hobbies O Scale America OSA957 – Truck Springs were used. This completes the side frames unless you have decided to add new journal lids.

Here are the 3 pieces which make up each side frame plus a package of the Des Plains Hobbies springs.

PSC has old style journal lids which look far better looking available separately. Order #5340. Eight come in a package - enough for a pair of trucks. They are small parts which you will probably have to hold in your fingers to clean up the castings. Therefore, order 2 packages just in case one of them is lost during cleaning.

The prototype 49 had "star" journal lids.  Unfortunately the correct lost wax star journal lids are no longer available. I had some and used them on this model.

If you are adding new journal lids, remove the truck springs and file off the old journal lid. Clean up the new journal lids and sweat solder a coating of solder onto their back. Place flux on the journals where the new lids are to be soldered. Place the journal lids in place one at a time, then place a drop of solder next to where the new journal lids touches the journal. The solder will flow into place. Remove the soldiering iron and allow the side frame to cool. Replace the springs.

The side frames are ready to be sent off to make the power and trail trucks. Include the truck bolsters and end cross pieces with the side frames. Whether you chose to use Current Line Models or Q-Car Company power and trail trucks, be sure to talk with the vendors about your needs.


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