Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

CN steam detailing project help

2137 views
10 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    October, 2010
  • From: outside of London, Ontario
  • 337 posts
CN steam detailing project help
Posted by lone geep on Saturday, January 02, 2016 4:45 PM

Since I posted my previous thread of scratchbuilding with brass, I have come back down to earth and decided to try detailing some on-hand steam locomotives and and looking for some help and advice. The two engines are a Bachmann Canadian Overland Northern and an IHC mogul. The northern was part of a trainset that my dad and I got at a liquidation place a few years ago. The mogul was also part of a train set at a second-hand store that I picked up for $5 a few years ago. 

Here is what I have so far 

  On the northern, I wanted to raise the coupler so I wouldn't have to use a high shank coupler. I also replaced the cab with a Precision Scale Co all weather cab. On the mogul, I shortened the tender and added white rims to the drivers.

This is what I would like the northern to look similar to this one  https://mayorofguelph.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/cnr6167.jpg 

For the mogul, this is the engine I want it to look similar to.    My great grandfather parked the engine on this spot when it was retired from service before all the tracks were ripped up. It has always been my dream since I was a kid to bring it back to life and let it stretch its legs and let it's whistle wail throughout the farmland of southern Ontario once again but for now, a model must do. Here is a side shot. 

For the detail parts I've seen that Minitures by Eric makes the right number boards and a superheater for the Northern. I've also seen that Precision Scale catalogues a brass CNR pilot kit and air reservoirs. Additionally, the trailing bogie on the Northern is wrong so I am thinking of using this one from Bachmann. http://estore.bachmanntrains.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=66_68_198&products_id=1436

My questions are

1) is the tank on the front of the Northern an air reservoir?

2) Are there different lengths of air reserviors?

3) Does anyone know anything about the PSC pilot kits?

4) What are some other details I woud need?

5) Am I on the right track?

Any helpful comments and advice are appreciated.

Thank you

Lone Geep 

 \

  • Member since
    January, 2004
  • From: Canada, eh?
  • 7,587 posts
Posted by doctorwayne on Saturday, January 02, 2016 11:03 PM

To answer your questions, yes, the tank on the pilot deck of the Northern is an air tank.

The PSC air reservoirs (formerly Kemtron) consist of brass tubing which you cut to length, and cast brass ends (various styles available) which are soldered or glued into the tubing's ends

None of the PSC pilots shown in my PSC catalogue are the same style as those used by the CNR, but the one closest, which you may be able to modify, is PSHO-32533, a B&M pilot with steps.  The PSC pilots are mostly one-piece castings (as are those from Cal-Scale (Bowser), although many include a cast brass dummy coupler which the modeller may install.  If you want a working front coupler, it will take a bit of work to modify the pilot, but it's certainly do-able.

Here's a brass version of the CNR pilot on a loco which I built for a friend, using an Akane 2-10-2.  He supplied the pilot, one of a bunch which he bought from a source which supplied them to an unknown manufacturer of brass locomotives.  I've used-up all of them but one on various of his locos.  The one left is destined to go on an Athearn Mike when I get time, and that one will be for me. 
Here's a photo which shows the CNR-style pilot:

...and on the finished locomotive:

...and on his modified Athearn Mikado:

Your Northern would need that large sand dome removed and replaced with one similar to that in the photo of the prototype, and it would also need a more suitable steam dome - PSC has various ones available.  Your model has a Worthington feedwater heater (the square box ahead of the stack and the pipe and pump above and slightly behind the cylinder of the fireman's side of the loco.  I can't tell from the photo, but there may also be a cold water pump mounted low on the firebox on the same side or even on the trailing truck, which is part of the Worthington system.  All of those parts need to be removed.
You'll need an Elesco feedwater heater system, which consists (in the prototype photo) of the heater bundle ahead of the stack, along with the water pump and a few other details (the parts of the Elesco fwh system are shown in the labelled photos below, and the set-up would be similar for your Northern).  The parts needed are available from PSC and Cal-Scale.

Fireman's side:

Engineer's side:

You'll also need an air pump (to the left of the water pump in the labelled photo) and the raised brass cab numerals and CNR-style number board as seen on the Northern - the latter two are available from the CNR sig, and also in some hobby shops - the cab numbers come on a fret and you simply select the numerals needed.  The number boards also come on a fret.  There are many available (supposedly covering all CNR steam locos) and you should be able to get one for the specific loco you wish to model - it will have 60 different number boards, likely all for Northerns or Mountains.  These need to be painted red and, when the paint has dried, the fret is carefully rubbed with very fine sandpaper to remove the paint from the raised lettering.  Once that has been done, the entire fret should be clear-coated to prevent tarnishing.  The triangular number boards are available, as you note, but they're also very easy to make using styrene, as I did on the 2-10-2.

I encourage you to search out photos of the locos you wish to model.  There are many dealers on-line and at train shows, and it should be possible to get good shots of both sides of most CNR locos.

Your IHC Mogul is probably a better starting point than the Northern, but the pilot is still the same problem.  A spoked wheel for the lead truck is available from PSC, and you'll need a 9 1/2" single phase air pump (PSC #HO-32584 for brass or PSC #HO-32584-1 for plastic).  The cab as it comes looks pretty good, but would be improved if you could add the red sash to the windows - even if you model them open or partially open.
Here's my friend's brass CNR Mogul:

While it looks pretty much stock, I recently rebuilt it with a new can motor, NWSL gearbox, and all-new drivers from Greenway - the originals were rotting away with zincpest.

And yes, I think that you're on the right track, but it leads down a very slippery slope.  You need to acquire books and photos to increase your understanding of steam, and you need to start with simple projects in order to gain the skills needed for the kind of work you wish to do.  I urge you to start with the Mogul - it's a less involved project and you will learn some basics by doing it.  Take the time to do your best, and the results, when done well, will bolster your confidence to tackle the bigger project.

Wayne

  • Member since
    October, 2010
  • From: outside of London, Ontario
  • 337 posts
Posted by lone geep on Sunday, January 03, 2016 7:37 AM

Thank you Doctorwayne, that is a real trainload of help and some tremendous modelling. One thing I forgot to mention is that I am not going for a spitting image model, I just want to detail it enough so it isn't initially recognizable as a cheap bachmann engine and that screams canadian steam. When I am finished, I will be lettering it for my freelanced road. Here is where I found the CNR pilot kit, http://www.precisionscaleco.com/ Click on the detail parts icon on the right hand side, PIA brass parts, top of page 12 under P. Judging from the photo in the cataloge and the pilot on the mogul, they are pretty much the same.

Lone Geep 

 \

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Lancaster, PA
  • 273 posts
Posted by RDG Casey on Sunday, January 03, 2016 7:55 AM

These are good projects to start on the road to more intricate scratch building. Keep at it and push yourself to try new and more difficult things! I try to do something new and more challenging on each project. Doing 90-95% scratch construction at this point took 8 years I have been seriously doing builds and am no where near done learning, don't think I ever will be.

Again keep at it, we will all be looking forward to seeing your progress.

  • Member since
    January, 2004
  • From: Canada, eh?
  • 7,587 posts
Posted by doctorwayne on Sunday, January 03, 2016 1:21 PM

lone geep
...Judging from the photo in the cataloge and the pilot on the mogul, they are pretty much the same.

You're right, that pilot looks the same.  Thanks for that link; no doubt my friend will pick up a few of them. Smile, Wink & Grin

Wayne

  • Member since
    October, 2010
  • From: outside of London, Ontario
  • 337 posts
Posted by lone geep on Sunday, January 03, 2016 4:58 PM

doctorwayne

 

 
lone geep
...Judging from the photo in the cataloge and the pilot on the mogul, they are pretty much the same.

 

You're right, that pilot looks the same.  Thanks for that link; no doubt my friend will pick up a few of them. Smile, Wink & Grin

Wayne

 

No problem, thank you for your help! 

Lone Geep 

 \

  • Member since
    May, 2014
  • From: Berwyn, PA
  • 365 posts
Posted by Trainman440 on Sunday, January 03, 2016 6:32 PM

The IHC 2-6-0 mugol is a GREAT starting engine for what you want to build! I think that it will turn out great!

On the other hand, I think the Santa fe 4-8-4 is not the best starting engine to build the CNR 4-8-4. I mean unless you are going to scratch build the entire shell(like RDG casey), its gonna be a rough ride. You are going to have to rebuild the walk ways, domes, cab, tender, rear trailing truck etc and not to mention cut off/fill in some parts...

Not trying to stop you from doing the 4-8-4, but I think you should start off with the 2-6-0 mugol, which is easier Big Smile, then work on the 4-8-4. 

Oh and I would suggest to work on one at a time, because trust me, I got like 8 unfinished projects on my workbench where I forgot what my goal was for that engine in the first place Stick out tongue

Good luck and best wishes!

Charles

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Charles L.

Modeling the Santa Fe & Pennsylvania in HO!

Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLb3FRqukolAtnD1khrb6lQ

  • Member since
    October, 2010
  • From: outside of London, Ontario
  • 337 posts
Posted by lone geep on Monday, January 04, 2016 11:49 AM

Like I said before, the goal for the northern is to make it look like a Canadian engine and not model it after a specific one so the sand dome will stay but I will try to move the walkways on both sides. The main details I want to add are a pilot, air reservoirs and appropriate pumps as well as to replace the molded on piping with brass wire. I think it is better to mess up on a $50 model than a $500 one. As for two projects at once, it isn't a problem for me since the goals are simple and I am a fiddler by nature so I usually need a few things to work on. Thank you for the encouragement! Smile, Wink & Grin

Lone Geep 

 \

  • Member since
    October, 2010
  • From: outside of London, Ontario
  • 337 posts
Posted by lone geep on Thursday, October 26, 2017 1:40 PM

I know this thread has been dead for awhile but I've finally been able to makes some progess. After many months of confusion and delay, most of the parts I ordered came, though the air pump was out of production. Even then, life got busy with college and my work placement so the point I didn't really have the time or energy though I did get the paint off with Easyoff oven cleaner. Lately, the colleges in Ontario went on strike so it has given me the time and the energy to get back at it. 

For the pilot I wanted a working coupler but also with the draft gear from the kit. To accomplish this, I drilled a hole in the draft gear box all the way through. I then drilled into the shank of a Kadee #58 coupler and then cut off the excess and filed the shank so the holes lined up. My plan is to stick a piece of brass wire through the holes and secure it with a small drop of CA. I had 0.031"on hand so I drilled the hole 0.032" . 

 

 

 

[url=https://flic.kr/p/ZLDAAS] 20171026_114430_Richtone(HDR)[1] 

 After taking the shot I realized the valve gear is wonky but I think I just reassembled it wrong. 

Here is the prototype again

 PC262471 

 

I did have to lower the "front porch" on the model so the pilot and coupler would sit at the right height. 

I also replicated the larger piping with brass wire I had onhand as well as the PSC air reserviors mounted underneath the running board. As for the air pump, I looked at Cal-Scale and they also produce a 9 1/2 single air pump so I ordered it from my LHS. The next steps are to get the front number board and model the air piping. Can anyone give me an idea of what wire diameter I should use? Additionally, do I have to make the air cooling piping myself or are those components made by other manufacturs and if so, what is the proper name for that pipework?

 

 

I would also like to replace the headlight with a CN one and put one on the tender just like the prototype but I would also like them to work as well. Can I have both or one or the other?

Thank you

Lone Geep 

 \

  • Member since
    January, 2004
  • From: Canada, eh?
  • 7,587 posts
Posted by doctorwayne on Thursday, October 26, 2017 4:05 PM

The friend whom I mentioned in my earlier post gave me a brass model of a CNR Mogul similar to the one in the photo I posted of his.  However, I want to model a very specific CNR Mogul, #88, which I saw laying on its side, in a street near my home when I was a child.  The model will need to be almost completely re-piped, and the tender either rebuilt or replaced with a scratchbuilt one.  The prototype loco was rebuilt and put back into service.

Your method for adding a useable front coupler is similar to what I do, as very few steam locos allow room for including the draught gear box.

You can purchase the triangular number board, but it can be easily made from styrene:  a thick piece, cut to the proper size and shape, for the main body, with a thinner, slightly overhanging (only on both sides) piece cemented to the top and bottom.  Use bits of styrene equal in thickness to the amount of the overhang to box-in the front and rear of the area which will represent the recessed glass of the number board.  Add a punched-out disc of .005" styrene to the top to represent a cover over the access hole.
Drill the back of the numberboard and the front of the smokebox to accept a piece of wire that will act as a mounting pin for the new part.

As for piping, you should be aware that prototype piping sizes refer to the pipe's inside diameter.  When Proto's Heritage Series of steam locomotives was released, it was very apparent that the person cutting the dies for the piping was unaware of this, as the piping on the ones I've seen in-person is all undersize.  That includes, at least, the 0-6-0, 0-8-0, and 2-8-4.

Here's my re-piped Proto 0-8-0, modified to represent a specific locomotive...

As for HO scale piping, most water lines on small, older locos are about 2" in diameter...that's about .022" in HO and soft brass wire is available in that size from Detail Associates - Part # WR2507.

Bigger, more modern locos used water pipe with an o.d. of about 3.5", which translates roughly to .040" in HO...D.A. Part #2510. 

For air piping, a single cylinder pump would use 1.75"o.d. pipe, about .020" for HO.  This is available in phosphor bronze wire from Tichy, Part #1103.  
For the cooling coils, PSC offers various styles and sizes, but you can make you own, too.  I first drag the wire through some fine sandpaper a few times...this is to remove the oxidation so that it will be easier to solder.  I made a little jig, using sheet styrene, to keep the wire equidistant from itself as the coil is formed, then place the formed coil over some D.A. .010"x.030" flat brass bar (Part #2524).  The brass bar (pre-cleaned as was the wire) is then folded over the coil and, using small blunt-tipped pliers, forced to conform over the individual pipes which make-up the coil.  The whole shebang is then soldered together, and the finished coil cut from the bar material with enough left with the coil so that it can be bent and act as mounting pegs for the coil.  It's easier to show than explain, but I can't find the photos.

Steam piping is all over the place as far as sizes go, as it depends on for what the steam is being used and whether it's live steam or exhaust steam.  Many live steam pipes are also lagged (insulated) to help preserve the heat.

For your Mogul, the steam to run the air pump (pipe from under the boiler cladding to the upper, right portion of the pump) should be 1.75" (.020"HO), while the exhaust steam line (from the upper left portion of the pump) would be .022" (2"HO).  That pipe appears to turn down and run below the running board, and while it's difficult to make out, it should enter the smokebox, to be exhausted through the stack.
For the airlines, the intake from the strainer (the little can-like shape just below the running board the the right of the pump) can be either 1.75" or 2" pipe, while the compressed  air pipe, (lower left portion of the pump) is 1.75", and should be the nearby free end of the cooling coil.
The overflow pipe for the injectors (one each side on your loco, coming from below the cab and to the rear of the last driver) is about 1" (.0125"HO - Tichy Part #1106)
The sander pipes are about 1.5" (.015"HO - Tichy Part #1102)

The sizes of other pipes on your locomotive can be determined by comparing them to pipes of known sizes in the prototype photo.

While I believe that it's out-of-print, Kalmbach's STEAM LOCOMOTIVE CYCLOPEDIA - VOL 1, by Linn H. Westcott, can still be found, used, at train shows.  I got mine at the Ancaster show several years ago, and while it wasn't cheap, it's worth every penny if you want to detail or build steam locomotives.  Most of the info I've provided is from that book.

As for the Bachmann Santa Fe Northern, it's really quite a bit larger than any of the Northerns owned by the CNR or CPR. 
I did buy one, though (the first HO scale Northern I had seen at an affordable price) and did Canadian-ise it to some extent....

 

It's based on various prototypes (not all of them Northerns, either). The front end (bell, lights, radiator, and pilot, along with the saturated steam whistle on the smokebox, are all from Cal-Scale.  The boiler is little-changed, but I built a vestibule cab over the original using sheet styrene.  Anything of the original which showed through the cab windows was simply carved away.

The tender is the original, shortened and with the oil bunker converted to an open coal bunker (I used "live" coal loads).  The real change was converting the four axle trucks into a pedestal type bed for the tender.  It's the original trucks, cut-down and then joined, and with all detail except the journal boxes filed off.  I then traced the shape of the side casting from a pretty-much full size HO scale photo for a United brass steamer ad in MR.  This was then transfered to sheet styrene, cut out, and applied to the modified trucks.  The front truck is an Athearn or MDC truck from a passenger car, and the tender's rolled bottom edge is part of the top of a Tyco ACF covered hopper - Old Dutch, I think.  It was free from a local hobby shop, as it had been part of a window display and been deformed by the sun.  I added some spring details using wire and parts cut from the lids of Kadee #5 draught gear boxes...

It's now owned by a friend in Wisconsin.

You can also, perhaps, glean some detailing info from this thread, this one and this one.  

There are also several more there from modellers more competent than am I.

Wayne

  • Member since
    October, 2010
  • From: outside of London, Ontario
  • 337 posts
Posted by lone geep on Friday, November 10, 2017 11:45 AM

Thank you very much for your detailed explanation! Your post seems to have more useful information than my textbooks! Stick out tongue. Do you also make the air cooling coils out of phosphor bronze wire too? I found some .020" brass wire at my LHS for the air lines and I tried to make the cooling coil but it was too easily shaped so it turned out wonky instead. 

For the headlight, the closest thing I could find was this.  http://www.bowserorders.com/.sc/ms/dd/HO%20Cal%20Scale/13054297/Cal%20Scale%20HO%20Headlight%20SF%20w%5E2FBracket

The light housing appears to be similar but the bracket isn't. Do you know any other CN style headlights or brackets?

As for the Northern, I kinda realized that biting into two projects at once was a bit of a bad idea. It is currently sitting in the deadline stripped of most of the moulded on details. 

[url=https://flic.kr/p/21hM1db]

 

Lone Geep 

 \

Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!
Popular on ModelRailroader.com
Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Search the Community

ADVERTISEMENT
Find us on Facebook