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Getting an F-Unit Windshield

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Getting an F-Unit Windshield
Posted by Great Northern Fan 54 on Thursday, February 18, 2021 9:22 AM

So I like the C&Os BL2s, they don't work for my layout. But I got three of em. Two are painted and one is undecorated. I plan on turning the undecorated one into C&O 1844, which was rebuilt with an F-unit style windshield after a run-in with a snowplow. 

What is the best way to get an F-unit windshield without killing a model that is over $60. I currently am throwing around the idea of getting a busted-up Proto E8, which I can turn into a Crandall cab.

Is there a better way to get a windshield?

Tags: 1844 , BL2 , C&O , F3 , f7 , kitbash , Windshield
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Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, February 18, 2021 9:36 AM

Cut them from clear styrene sheet.

Mike.

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Posted by dknelson on Thursday, February 18, 2021 10:20 AM

Basket case F units are -- well maybe not a dime a dozen, but plentiful at swap meets; problem is swap meets are not plentiful at thtis time.  One little accuracy issue is that the real experts on the EMD bulldog nose seem not to agree on which manufacturer actually came closest to being accurate.  And in point of fact I have seen prototype photos of E and F units lined up next to each other and there are perceptible differences in the profiles.  

In looking at online photos of 1844 (and noting that there are other detail differences from a "stock" BL2 so this could end up being a very interesting project), it struck me that working with the original windshield -- filing or using bits of styrene or even bondo plus filing -- could end up with the look you seek.  In fact the old AHM BL2's windshield looks more F-unit-ee (to coin a word) than BL2-ee (to coin another).  

Do you by chance have an old Walthers diesel dress up kit in your stash?  The F unit windshild casting in clear plastic could perhaps be a guide to the changes you'd need to make to the model.  I do not know if Walthers still offers the diesel dress up kit -- that was the last word in super detailing 50 years ago -- but there are laser cut clear acrylic F unit windshield inserts out there.

Dave Nelson

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Posted by Overmod on Thursday, February 18, 2021 11:32 AM

Does anyone make a model 1936 Chevrolet?Devil  Informed rumor says their windshields are what the early EMD cabs used on each side (cuts down parts cost and replacement sourcing, among other things).

Seriously... since they are flat, they would be easy to cut from cover slips (by nibbling to the line if you have to) and the glass will give you a far better look than any plastic if you can properly file and level the inside of the windshield openings...

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Posted by tin can on Thursday, February 18, 2021 11:46 AM

American Model Builders makes F unit windshields in two versions; scale and semi-scale.  You can order online.  Detail Associates used to make them, as well, but finding them might be difficult.

Remember the tin can; the MKT's central Texas branch...
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Posted by Overmod on Thursday, February 18, 2021 11:50 AM

tin can
American Model Builders makes F unit windshields

http://www.laserkit.com/windowho2.htm

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Thursday, February 18, 2021 1:07 PM

I bought some of those Walthers diesel dress-up kits several years ago.  I think they were on close out, and they are now listed as out-of-stock.

Each kit contained a set of all the windows for an Athearn F7 A/B set, including the round portholes.  It also had all the wire grabs.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

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Posted by hon30critter on Thursday, February 18, 2021 8:58 PM

tin can
American Model Builders makes F unit windshields in two versions;

I was going to suggest AMB (Laser Kit) as well. I haven't used their F series windows but I have used their windows on several Athearn BB caboose kits and the fit and quality are impressive! No glue required.

Dave

I'm just a dude with a bad back having a lot of fun with model trains, and finally building a layout!

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Friday, February 19, 2021 12:10 AM

I cannot find a picture of this C&O locomotive to see what is different about it.

-Kevin

Living the dream and happily modeling my STRATTON AND GILLETTE Railroad in HO scale. The SGRR is a freelanced Class A railroad as it would have appeared on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954, in my personal fantasy world of plausible nonsense.

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Posted by gmpullman on Friday, February 19, 2021 12:54 AM

I believe the OP is looking for the entire windshield assembly, not just the glazing.

 

SeeYou190
I cannot find a picture of this C&O locomotive to see what is different about it.

And the as built windshield:

Regards, Ed

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, February 19, 2021 2:48 AM

Is it possible that only the starboard window on 1844 was replaced?  Because the port one looks visibly larger, and more BL2-shaped, at its outer end if you enlarge the picture, and its inner corner and edge behind the angled numberboards may be too.

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Posted by dstarr on Friday, February 19, 2021 3:51 AM

I cut windshields for a pair of Athearn F units out of clear plastic sheet.  Not too hard to do.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Friday, February 19, 2021 1:56 PM

gmpullman
And the as built windshield:

Thanks Ed.

I had to examine the pictures to see the slight profile differences. I never would have noticed it on my own.

-Kevin

Living the dream and happily modeling my STRATTON AND GILLETTE Railroad in HO scale. The SGRR is a freelanced Class A railroad as it would have appeared on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954, in my personal fantasy world of plausible nonsense.

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Posted by gmpullman on Friday, February 19, 2021 3:19 PM

Great Northern Fan 54
Is there a better way to get a windshield?

Much of this conversation seems to be geared toward the F-unit glazing.

I believe the OP is looking for the entire cab-area of an F unit to do the surgery needed to fit it into place where the original BL-2 cab is located. This seems to be what C&O did to repair the damage to the 1844.

Apparently the roof outline and nose outline are close enough that a few razor-saw cuts can result in a swap of the cabs.

There's the Highliner shell, of course but these run about $60 on the open market. I have a few Alco PA and FA shells on hand but I'm not sure of an EMD. I'll have to take a look. I might have a BLI F7 shell around.

Wreck repair can cause some unique opportunities for the modeler. In the '50s there was a pair of NYC E7s wrecked and EMD repaired them with E8 parts.

There are other examples of course.

Regards, Ed

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Posted by mbinsewi on Friday, February 19, 2021 3:30 PM

gmpullman
I believe the OP is looking for the entire cab-area of an F unit to do the surgery needed to fit it into place where the original BL-2 cab is located. This seems to be what C&O did to repair the damage to the 1844.

I don't think anything can help the looks of a BL-2   Laugh

Seriously, there are F7 shells on Ebay, some going for $3.  I'm sure I have a few shells in the parts box as well.

Mike.

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Posted by Great Northern Fan 54 on Friday, February 19, 2021 3:32 PM
well I'm looking for really accurate windshields,meaning no BB, Tyco, or Bachmann. I can't really think of a way to get a cheap donor
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Posted by gmpullman on Friday, February 19, 2021 3:40 PM

Great Northern Fan 54
well I'm looking for really accurate

Then Highliner/Genesis is your choice in HO.

Regards, Ed

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Posted by mbinsewi on Friday, February 19, 2021 3:47 PM

I have a set of these:

https://highlinersonline.com/

Good luck.

Mike.

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Posted by John-NYBW on Friday, February 19, 2021 4:17 PM

MisterBeasley

I bought some of those Walthers diesel dress-up kits several years ago.  I think they were on close out, and they are now listed as out-of-stock.

Each kit contained a set of all the windows for an Athearn F7 A/B set, including the round portholes.  It also had all the wire grabs.

 

 Vintage Walthers U822 HO Athearn F7/9 Diesel Loco Dress-Up Kit BLACK GRABS 822 | eBay

I just bought one on ebay.

He has one left. 

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Posted by mvlandsw on Friday, February 19, 2021 4:49 PM

American Model Builders has a kit that corrects the Athearn blue box windshields. Maybe that would work.

The roof profile of any donor may differ from the LL BL2 but there is probably enough shell thickness to file to a match.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Saturday, February 20, 2021 7:51 AM

mvlandsw
American Model Builders has a kit that corrects the Athearn blue box windshields

Yep, I bought some a while back, haven't installed yet.

http://www.laserkit.com/windowho2.htm

Mike.

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Posted by Peter T on Sunday, June 26, 2022 8:04 AM

How did you get on with your F unit windscreen?

Goodness knows if this will find you; or if any reply will find me.????????

Pete

 

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