Favorite steam locomotive

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Posted by Firelock76 on Thursday, March 02, 2017 7:13 PM

Even though I'm an O-gauger I can understand your enthusiasm for HO brass steamers, some of the ones I've seen are works of art.

I'm curious, do you paint them (does anyone?) or do you leave them as is? 

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Posted by TrainMan5632 on Tuesday, March 07, 2017 3:33 PM
NYC 4-6-2's are very wonderful engine. I also thoroughly appreciate the L&N Big Emmas.

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Posted by PRR8259 on Tuesday, March 07, 2017 8:48 PM

Hi Firelock 76--

With brass there are 2 schools of thought:  some enjoy the models plain brass and clearcoated.  They are beautiful that way and BLI even offers the hybrids that way too.  Some like all their guests to know it is a brass model.

Others of us go for the realistic painted look because we want them to look as real as possible.  Unless weathering is amazing and professionally done it will lower value.  There's room for all.  Most new ones today are factory painted.

Best regards

John

RME
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Posted by RME on Tuesday, March 14, 2017 3:03 PM

Firelock76
I can understand your enthusiasm for HO brass steamers, some of the ones I've seen are works of art. I'm curious, do you paint them (does anyone?) or do you leave them as is?

Quite a few of them ARE painted ... in brass-colored paint.  Sometimes to hide solder marks or the tendency of uncoated brass to tarnish unevenly.  There's at least one good discussion in the O gauge modelers' forum on this general subject

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Posted by Firelock76 on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 5:42 PM

Well thanks for the response PRR, I'd forgotten just where I'd asked the "brass" question and lost track of time!

On weathering, I leave my O gauge stuff as is.  Certainly well-done weathering gives the equipment that "lived in" look but I like my trains pristine.  Hey, they're my toys and I take good care of my toys!

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Posted by Trinity River Bottoms Boomer on Thursday, March 16, 2017 7:03 PM

Firelock76: I love the NYC Dreyfuss Hudsons too.  The Santa Fe Blue Goose was simular in appearance but the bullet nose ruined it's looks in my opinion.  Too bad AT&SF didn't construct a clone of this beautiful steam locomotive!

Any Russian railfans here?  I have been an admirer of Soviet Railways 4-14-4 ever since I first saw a photo of this magnificent machine in a long ago Trains artical.  A pity she wasn't successful and was scrapped. 

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Posted by Penny Trains on Friday, March 17, 2017 7:22 PM

Interesting looking monster.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4-14-4  Not surprised though that boiler capacity was one of the biggest reasons she wasn't successful.  She probably would have done fairly well on flat straight track just as the UP giants did, but I doubt her assigned districts would have met those ideals.  Climate alone would have been a serious issue I should think.

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, March 17, 2017 8:36 PM

Hook a Baldwin Centipede up to that thing. The lame leading the inept.

Wonder if the Ruskies tried copying something like the Centipede, like they did with everything from toilets to the Concord. 

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Saturday, March 18, 2017 10:12 AM

Miningman

Hook a Baldwin Centipede up to that thing. The lame leading the inept.

Wonder if the Ruskies tried copying something like the Centipede, like they did with everything from toilets to the Concord. 

 
Let's be fair, the Tu-144 had a similar appearance to the Concorde because they were designed for the same performance envelope.  The laws of physics and aerodynamics do not change for each design team.
The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Firelock76 on Saturday, March 18, 2017 10:28 AM

Thar Russian 4-14-4 sounds a lot like the Pennsy's S1, except the S1 worked and the Russian job didn't. 

Still, you have to admit the Russian don't seem to waste time trying to make something work that just can't. A very pragmatic people, the Russkies.  The Tu-144 didn't last too long when Aeroflot realized it just didn't pay.  The Concorde never did pay for itself either but was kept alive by heavy subsidies,  a "prestige" thing, you know.

I knew a French businessman years back who told me he flew on the Concorde once, just to say he had.  He didn't like it and never flew on one again.

And the Baldwin Centipede?  From what I've read Baldwin was their own worst enemy on that one, sloppy engineering and construction, poor quality control, you name it.  Which is hard to understand because some of Baldwin's diesels were very good indeed. 

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Posted by Miningman on Saturday, March 18, 2017 3:04 PM

But!...did the Russians try and copy the Centipede? 

How about this for a novel way to get a new S1, Centipede and the Russian 4-14-4 built...a Vegas Casino show in front of the Casino where you place your bet on which one derails first..3 or 4 different courses, mix it up, every 2 hours the show goes on. 

One heck of an attraction. Crazy? Of course, but hey, it's Vegas..where money is no object.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Saturday, March 18, 2017 3:50 PM

Good way to attract the railfan gamblers!

No, the Russsians never tried to do a Centipede, they're a hard-headed and practical people.  Build it simple, rugged, and reliable, and don't worry if it looks good, just so long as it WORKS.  Think of the AK-47 and the T-34 tank.

Although I have to admit the MiG-15 was a good-lookin' machine, and some of the ships the Russian navy had were real show-stoppers.

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Posted by Penny Trains on Saturday, March 18, 2017 6:22 PM

Don't forget the R-7.  Sergei Pavlovich Koralev's design is still the only rocket cosmonauts are allowed to ride on.  Terrible ICBM, but great booster for space exploration.  Or exploitation if we're talking about Soviet era missions.

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Posted by Trinity River Bottoms Boomer on Saturday, March 18, 2017 6:37 PM

Don't sell the Soviet Union short.  Look at the thousands of Alco diesel road- switchers they cloned, some which still operate a stones throw from the USA in Cuba today!  Alco-haulics have never had it so good, so get a passport, apply for a visa, and go see for yourself!

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Posted by Firelock76 on Sunday, March 19, 2017 12:19 PM

I checked out some pictures of those R-7 rockets you mentioned Becky, and they are cool-lookin', no doubt about it.  Like something out of science fiction.

A failure as ICBM's?  Maybe Sergei Pavlovich never really wanted to hurt anyone, like a lot of rocket pioneers he just wanted to get into space.  It wouldn't surprise me.

Wayne

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Posted by Penny Trains on Sunday, March 19, 2017 7:35 PM

Rocket on a flatcar...to keep it railroad related!  Smile, Wink & Grin

I've always loved the R-7's.  Way back when I was a youngin' in the 80's, I checked the same book out of the library again and again simply because it had one grainy image of Yuri Gagarin's R-7/Vostok in it.  About 10 years later in the mid 90's, Nova did a series called "The Russian Right Stuff" that showed the launch of an R-7/Soyuz mission to the Mir space station and discussed, but couldn't show the N-1 moon rocket that was competing with the Apollo Saturn V.  Much of those facts including a few drawings done live for the TV crew came from Alexei Leonov, the first man to walk in space and head of Star City in the 90's.  (He also could have been the first man to walk on the moon.)  Ten years after that, I downloaded and built a paper model of the once super-secret and "didn't exist" N-1.  Amazing how much and how fast things have changed!

The R-7 is a superb heavy lift booster mostly because Andrei Sakharov and the other Soviet physicists failed to lighten their deliverable nuclear warhead.  (Which was an almost exact copy of the Fat Man device except it had a red nose!)  This meant it took several days to ready the booster for flight, which is not what you want for a defensive weapon.  So, yes.  I'd say it's not a stretch to believe that Sergei Pavlovich (who didn't officially exist until he died) didn't care too much about wether or not the Red Army had a working missile or not.  He just wanted the funding and made whatever strange bedfellows he had to in order to get things done.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Monday, March 20, 2017 6:09 PM

Wow, that is one super-lookin' model Becky!  My compliments!

The closest I've ever come to building model rockets was packing Garcia y Vega cigar tubes (plastic) with black powder, then gluing fins on 'em and shoving an Estes model rocket motor in the open end.  They didn't fly too straight but "Oh, they made a lovely light!"   BOOM!

I did put a percussion cap impact fuse on one and shot it at a watersphere in my misspent youth.  The blast mark lasted for ten years!

That book you checked out of the library repeatedly, did it happen to be Martin Caidin's "Red Star In Space"?  Caidin was one of my favorite aviation historians, my God, could that man write!   Occasionally it shows up on the used book dealers tables at gun and militaria shows, to say nothing of used book dealers in other venues.

Wayne

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Posted by Penny Trains on Monday, March 20, 2017 7:21 PM

Couldn't tell you.  The library I used to take it out of isn't even there anymore.

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Posted by RME on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 8:54 AM

Penny Trains
The R-7 is a superb heavy lift booster mostly because Andrei Sakharov and the other Soviet physicists failed to lighten their deliverable nuclear warhead. (Which was an almost exact copy of the Fat Man device except it had a red nose!) This meant it took several days to ready the booster for flight, which is not what you want for a defensive weapon.

Now hold on there: Sakharov was involved with the THERMOnuclear warhead design, which is not a Joe 1/First Lightning clone of a plutonium implosion bomb.  Yes, the "sugar-cake" early quasi-thermonuclear designs (the nickname is a pun on Sakharov's name, by the way) were comparatively heavy, but the real reason for the heavy lift was the third great taste in the candy bar, the depleted/natural uranium tamper that represented most of the actual yield in any of the early multimegaton 'hydrogen bombs'.  The advent of MIRVs using smaller and lighter unenriched-lithium deuteride warheads wouldn't come for years.

Korolev was particularly interesting in light of his relationship to Bartini, who was a real character.  I never found it terribly surprising that the early Soviet space program pointed up the systematic failures in the early United States efforts at an aerospace program so neatly.  The R-7 was so low-tech it almost hurt (an effective system of strap-on engine clusters using that exotic high-Isp fuel/oxidizer mixture of kerosene and LOX) and there was relatively little difficulty involved in getting it ready for flight ... at least as far as liquid-fueling concerns for ICBMs are concerned; I thought most of the 'prep time' involved the handling care necessary because the launch stack is suspended from the arms and can't 'stand' on its strap-ons without coming apart like something cobbled up in KSP.  The Semyorka (and follow-ons like Vostok) seem more than a bit like the B-52 of orbital delivery systems; you can improve the components, the structural materials, the guidance, etc. incrementally but the fundamental technology and envelope remain good.

Scaling up to the Proton or Energiya ... that was another matter entirely.  Blowing up Marshal Nedelin and the others in testing ... that was another matter, too.  Perhaps all fortunately for our priority getting to the moon, and some other locations too -- not that the importance of colonizing or developing assets in space ought to have hinged on propaganda value.

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Posted by BigJim on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 10:55 AM

Don't forget that Bugs Bunny saved us all from being up to our armpits in Martians when he destroyed the Illudium PU36 Explosive Space Modulator that was the brainchild of Marvin The Martian!
Whew! That was close!\

Just to keep things safe:

.

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Posted by RME on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 11:14 AM

BigJim
Don't forget that Bugs Bunny saved us all from being up to our armpits in Martians when he destroyed the Illudium PU36 Explosive Space Modulator that was the brainchild of Marvin The Martian!

Well, no, he saved us (temporarily) from being removed to improve the view of Venus.  Until the Vogon Constructors came a couple of decades later...

Let's hope that missile doesn't have the usual feature set of an Acme defense product!

Missile action starts around 3:20.

Personally I think Mr. Golightly of 'The Flight of Intellect' is the character who represents Acme Arms...

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Posted by Firelock76 on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 7:00 PM

Penny Trains

Couldn't tell you.  The library I used to take it out of isn't even there anymore.

 

That's too bad, but I can imagine.  The elementary school I went to disappeared for McMansions years ago.  Not that I'm particularly nostalgic about the place.

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