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

Monday, December 9, 2013

North Shore Line 409 - Part 3 Plans for Transformation & Trolley Poles

The installation of couplers and trucks in the prior post was done to see how well the 415 would operate with the other 2 models. Now some thought has to be given as to exactly how the 3 models will operate (run).

The prior post disclosed the model of NSL 256, a combination baggage-coach, is powered. This model has to be in any train containing the 3 cars. BTW - NSL trains having a combination baggage-coach car always had this car at the north end of a train.

My model of the 772 is an All Nation brass body of 1930 Standard Car Co. NSL coach. It is not powered and has operated behind the 256. A problem with the All Nation brass bodies is the end post of the models. They are too wide and are noticeable to most NSL modelers. Other than altering the brass body, the easiest thing to do is to run the model in mid-train between other cars.

To run the 772 mid-train, the 409 has to be the rear car of the train. If this is done then the 409 can be run with the 256 alone to give a 2-car train. Or, the 772 can be operated in-between the 256 and 409 to give a 3-car train.

If you are a "dyed-in-the-wool" North Shore fan, you'll remember seeing the NSL passenger trains running north of the Edison Court station in Waukegan, Illinois in route to Milwaukee. Unless there were unusual reasons, the trains were either 1, 2, or sometimes 3 cars long.

If the 409 is to be operated as the last car of the train, rear-end marker lights have to be installed on it. The markers on the 772 can be removed and the holes patched. This not a major problem seeing the markers are not lighted.

The other item to be considered is the coupler at the end of the train. I like to have the last car of a train with air hoses along with a more scale looking brass coupler. Since the couplers currently installed on the 409 are for mid-train running, one of the couplers will have to be traded with the rear-end coupler on the 772. Both the marker lights and rear-end coupler will be taken care of as construction on the car goes on.

The floor of the 409 has to be removed and something done to protect the sides and ends of the model as work progresses. If you recall the 3-car Silverliner train came from Sunset with a pair of cotton gloves. Taking a clue from this, the toes and ankle sections of some old, used white cotton socks were cut off and will be positioned over the car body. Don't toss out the cut off sections, they will be used to "stuff" the interior at appropriate times.

The prototype 415 was a trailer all of its life. The 409 was a powered all of its life. Now is the time to drill holes in the roof for the trolley pole screws. For measurements I used photos of the prototype 409 to locate where to drill the holes. Before any drilling starts remove the lighting strip from the interior of the model. The reason photos were used to locate the location of the poles was, I was unable to locate my Model Railroader (MR) plans of the 409.

An email was sent out to some friends and Bernie Rossbach responded with the plans. Unfortunately the issue of MR in which the plans were printed is unknown. Bernie, thank you for the plans.

If you compare the location of the trolley pole bases by counting the number of roof cleats as shown in the drawing and where I drilled the holes, it appears I drilled the holes one roof board cleat over. However, if the locations are compared to the windows, my locations are correct. The confusion is caused by the length of the roof boards on the Sunset models being too short!

This brings up a good modeling note - always compare both photos and plans if you have them. Do measurements of both to see if there are any differences. If the prototype car is available, do measurements.  

In drilling the 2 holes in the roof, 1 problem arose. The drill went through one of the 2 posts holding the lighting strip in place. This post was removed on the inside of the roof with a Dremel Tool cut-off wheel. The missing post will be replaced when the lighting is re-installed. Note the brass "filings" inside the model on the interior of the roof. Always try to remove all brass filings with each step.
Note the piece of white sock to the left of the picture. The small piece of post can be seen between the sock and the hole drilled into the roof.
Take a look at the interior of the model. The way the model is constructed can be seen. Note the clear material used for the glazing. It is attached (glued) to a piece of bass which makes up the sashes of the windows. This brass is about 0.020" thick. The way the sides are constructed will come up in a future post when the sides are cut out for the 2 windows.

As work progresses on the model normally a white sock will be seen over the model. In other photos no sock is seen. When this happens the exterior sides of the model will be protected by having the model placed in a foam cradle.


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