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

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

North Shore Line 409 - Part 16 Final Assembly

The conductor or trainman was left out of the last post. I get conductor looking figures already painted. Some have their arms extended like they are holding onto a seat while others are looking at a watch or items in their hands. If the arms are extended like holding onto a seat place "glue" on the feet and hands. Use the hands to stabilize the figure.

Other trainmen can be "glued" in place standing against a wall, seat, or free standing in the aisle or vestibule. Seeing a conductor standing in the vestibule is interesting. Yes, sometimes train personnel can be found standing in the vestibule! One more reason for having a light in the vestibule!

The balance of the work needed to finish the model are a patch quilt of items. Before anything else is done the underbody, steps, and coupler area may need painting and/or touch up.

On my model older Wagner trailer trucks are to be used. Some of the brass making up the steps had to be cut back. In doing this small holes appeared in the steps, If the hole was small, Squadron body putty was used to fill the hole.

For larger holes a piece of index card was ACC'ed in place. After the ACC cured, cuticle scissors were used to cut off the excess index card. The card was made from paper and it quickly absorbed the ACC. After the ACC cured the paper was stiff and hard.
Originally Squadron Green body putty was used to try to fill the hole. The hole was too large. A small piece of index card was ACC'ed over the hole and them trimmed in place.
Both the body putty and index card materials were sanded with a finger nail emery board. All the areas of the steps were painted the same as the underbody. 

The installation of the trucks is next. Two wires stick out from the underbody near the trucks. This floor has a number of holes already drilled into it by the manufacturer. These 2 wires are the ground wires to be attached to the trucks. I prefer to make my own connectors out of 0.005" brass. Two brass tabs with a larger hole for the truck screw plus a small hole for the ground wire were made.

Install the tabs on the model without the trucks. Place the ground wire into the small hole. Solder the wires to the tabs. If required cut off any the excess wire.
Keep the 0.005" brass flat. Bends and wrinkles will artificially increase the thickness of the connector.

The trucks can now be installed on the model. The drawing below shows how a spring is included over the 3-48 screw. Using the spring usually prevents the model from wobbling as it goes down the track. If installed properly the trucks should continue to rotate as they would without the spring. The tucks should have been painted prior to installation.

If there is a problem with electrical conductivity or truck swing due to friction, apply Neolub to the truck and body bolsters, electrical ground tab/washer/connector, and truck spring.

The re-installation of the couplers is next. A prior post, dated December 12, 2013, "NSL 409 Part 2 Couplers and Trucks", covered the installation of the couplers. Again, if any touch-up is required now is the time.

After the couplers are installed, the pilots need to be installed. Be careful not the strip the small metric screws. If you do apply a drop of canopy glue on the top and bottom of the screw as it is held in place. Paint or re-paint the pilots.

Penultimate, the marker lamp brass exteriors can be installed. The red lens is facing back with the 2 green lens facing to the side. The DAP bath tub caulk or canopy glue can be used.
Lenses with canopy glue and the marker lamp housings. The canopy glue was applied to the marker housings with a tooth pick.

The lenses for the markers were made from 0.005" styrene using a leather punch. A leather punch with a revolving punch wheel is handy for making various size lenses. Lenses are applied to the marker housings before attaching the marker housings to the model. The lenses were colored red and green after the "glue" used to attach the marker housings to the model has cured. Red and green permanent dry markers were used to color the lenses.

Last, the trolley poles are attached. The model can be placed on a test track and the power turned on. The interior and vestibule lights should be on plus any exterior lights.

As with any model work I do there are other individuals who have helped ma along the way. Terrell Colson and Eric Bronsky provided photos of the 409. Bernie Rossbach provided the MR O scale plan of the 409. John Giove in an off-the-wall manner provided the vents for the roof. Charlie Pitts provided a method to attach the couplers. There may be more who contributed. To all of you, thank you!


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