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

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Start of Year 2013

Thus far Year 2013 has not started off too well. However, two CA&E models have been completed. One of them is a model I've had for a number of years. The other was commissioned as a body and completed by me as an adjunct to the other.

Before going further, as work was being done with AEFRE #49, I had some problems. To resolve these a professional model maker is being consulted. More on this later in future posts.

Many years ago, perhaps in the 1970's, All Nation Hobby Shop had a small number of scratch built brass O scale traction models for sale. Due to the length of time between when the models were available and my ability to find out more about them, "stories" changed with the dimming of memories. 

Unfortunately All Nation Hobby Shop never disclosed who scratch built the 4 models.

The story goes, there were 4 models, in no particular order - Model #1, obtained by me, a completed CA&E #312 Kuhlman powered with 4 Multi-Units painted in the "coffee and cream" color scheme of the 1930's. The side passenger doors opened as well as the traps. The paint was "marred" with what looked like oil stains.
This is the model before striping of the paint started. Some of the discoloration can be seen on the letterboard.

Model #2 Now owned by a modeler on the West Coast, a completed CA&E # 315 Kuhlman powered with 4 Multi-Units painted in the "coffee and cream" color scheme of the 1930's. The side passenger doors opened as well as the traps.

Model #3 Now owned by a modeler who lives in Chicago, a completed CA&E unknown car number Cincinnati Car Co.  unpowered painted in the "coffee and cream" color scheme of the 1930's. The side passenger doors opened as well as the traps.

Model #4 Now owned by a modeler in Wisconsin, a completed painted TMER&L car the Mendota which was originally powered  with Multi-Units. The side passenger doors opened as well as the traps.

Back to my model, besides the spoiled paint scheme, the lettering was wrong, and the Multi-Units, while still running were starting to show their age. Whoever scratch built the model did a fantastic job down to a complete underbody and clips to hold the glazing in place. The roof is of a true clerestory design with large frosted white "pea" bulbs.

Those of you who have scratch-built a model know there is a point where having everything down to scale is impossible. You can have parts the exact scale size but they break or break off at the slightest touch.  The builder of this model had just reached this point. To prevent solder joints from coming apart, some items were made into sub-assemblies and attached with screws.
As you can see the underbody includes all the air and brake piping found under an interurban. The mounting for the coupler can be seen. Unfortunately the pilots were mounted using brass of prototype cross section and were too fragile. The pilots will be replaced with lost was castings. The 2 large holes in the floor were for the wiring to the Multi-Units. Other detail can be seen. Much of the underbody detail is mounted using small screws.

The other "problem", if it could be called that, were the use of soft metal cast seats. This made for an extremely heavy model. The seats were glued to the floor.

 It was obvious a complete rebuilding was in order. The model was taken apart with the parts stored in various labeled containers. As a hint, no longer used, empty plastic prescription containers are great.

The model came with Kemtron, now Precision Scale Co., Baldwin 7830 sideframes. I know these series of cars used 8440 sideframes, but few individuals will be able to pick out the difference. The Multi-Units were take out and the sideframes sent off to Q-Car Co. to have new power units installed.
These are the power trucks as rebuilt by Q-Car. The model is to be double powered due to the weight of the brass model with interior plus the potential weight of the trailer. The star burst journal lids were available in the past.

Once the model was dissembled, the body was placed in a container of paint remover for a few days. Follow the instructions to the "letter of the law" to get best results. Wear chemical resistant gloves during the paint removal and clean-up process. Use small brass brushes to scrape the paint-paint remover "yuck" off of the body. Completely clean out the interior of the model also.

As the paint removal process was underway I discovered the partition between the smoking and non-smoking sections and the lavatory while made from brass were glued in place.

When done removing the paint-paint remover "yuck" from the body clean up the body with hot soapy water and allowed to dry.  Strain the used paint remover and/or dilute it with enough water so you can see any small parts!

One giant word of CAUTION - During the paint removal process and the following cleaning of the model plus the disposal of the used paint remover - be aware of any parts which may have fallen off the model.  

The small pieces of milled brass used for the anticlimbers on the ends of the model were found in the "washings" from the container of  paint remover. The 2 anticlimbers had been glued on to the ends of the car.

More to come! Cheers,

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