Marty's O Scale Narrow Gauge

Discussion in 'Kits, Kit bashes & Scratch builds' started by hartleymartin, Sep 13, 2022.

  1. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Well, I did a bit of an impulse purchase on eBay of a Bachmann On30 Train set in the Budweiser Livery. The set was a good bargain. I could not purchase a new Bachmann On30 Mogul for what I paid for this whole set, including shipping. I figured this would be a fun one for me where I strip off the paint with isopropyl alcohol and do a quick re-paint. The loop of Bachmann EZ track will let me quickly set it up somewhere for "playing trains" a little.

    01.jpg

    Then I decided to keep looking for some more bargain On30 stuff and scored this set, again quite cheap:
    12.jpg
    16.jpg

    And then I found an 0-4-0 Porter. I've wanted one of these for about 20 years now, so I figured I owed it to myself to obtain one, especially since it seems that Bachmann have discontinued this model.

    On30 Porter.jpg

    But I now find myself with a dilemma. I own three American Narrow Gauge locomotives, but I don't model American prototype or narrow gauge! What have I done?
     

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  2. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    I started looking at a few books and noticed some American-imports to Australia. The South Australian Railways X Class bears more than a passing resemblance to the Bachmann Mogul. In fact, it appears that the X Class is virtually identical in leading dimensions to the Colorado and Southern No.21 and No.22 locomotives which were the basis for the Bachmann model. Wrong gauge, but I reckon I could dress up a mogul to look like an X Class:

    http://www.pacificng.com/ref/locobuilders/blw/style/stylediag/S106-SAR-Xclass-w-Style-4-wheel.png

    I also looked at Mt Lyell No.3 (Tasmanian prototype) and "Sandfly" diagrams. The Mt Lyell locomotive's leading dimensions are close enough I could probably get a near-enough model out of a Bachmann Mogul, and I reckon a new saddle tank and cab could turn the Bachmann porter into "Sandfly."

    http://www.pacificng.com/ref/locobuilders/blw/style/stylediag/Mt-Lyell-colour-STYLE--134-292.png

    A new mansard roof would make the Bachmann passenger car look like an SAR "Short Tom" and I may be able to cut down one of the baggage cars to resemble the Victorian Railways narrow gauge guard's van found on the Puffing Billy Railway...

    You can see I'm now down the rabbit-hole with possibilities. Of course, most Australian narrow gauge is 3'6" (On42) except for the Puffing Billy Railway which is 2'6" gauge (On30) and I could throw in some Queensland Cane Tramway 2'0" gauge stuff. It seems to me that I either convert to On42 using S gauge track, or stick it out with On30 and make a layout that is generic semi-freelanced Australian Narrow Gauge rather than try to adhere to a particular prototype.

    But what to do with my standard gauge? Of course, I will keep on modelling the standard gauge, but what if there were an interchange between the NSWGR, SAR and VR Narrow Gauge in that area where the borders of the three states meet. Of course, the NSWGR had no railway within a hundred miles and the railways in the region were all 5'3" broad gauge... but what if...

    No idea if I will actually do any of these conversions. Just thinking out loud to anyone who might find it interesting!
     
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  3. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    The first item to actually arrive in the post was Bachmann Item No. 29908, 2x On30 Pilots with operating couplers for 2-6-0

    Second item to arrive was "Moonlight Express" which prompted me to install a replacement pilot. I think the black pilot has already reduced the novelty train-set appearance of the mogul. Tried to install the coupler bar, but this is probably best left for a time when I have had a bit more sleep for a steadier hand and have better light with which to see. Why the working front coupler? Well, I do not foresee having a turntable on any On30 layout, so it may be useful for shunting or some tender-first running.

    Starting to think I need to make a photo-plank before much else happens otherwise the backgrounds of all my modelling shots will be the desk clutter.

    306275597_509096277888741_6512461260576761368_n.jpg
     
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  4. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Nothing much to report today. I removed the paw-print barrel and the turbo generator from the top of the boiler and inserted the bell into one of the holes. The westinghouse brake pump on the driver's side was also removed, though I may re-instate it. My thoughts are now turning towards replacing the chimney with a spark-arrest type diamond-shaped one and finding an old-time style oil lamp to replace the one currently on the model. I think I will also cut back the hand-rails at the smokebox end a little. I don't think there is actually a whole lot more to do other than repaint the bodywork.
     
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  5. Chris Doroszenko

    Chris Doroszenko Lost in the spare room Full Member

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    These are really interesting models...Keen to see how you treat them!
     
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  6. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    The Budweiser set turned up in the post. Being a Friday, I set up the whole train set in the traditional manner and ran everything as one big consist. "Moonlight Express" having a functional front coupler ran as the second locomotive.

    The whole lot was set up like this ostensibly for the initial running run and testing. One coupling on the passenger carriage was broken in shipping, but that is easy enough to replace. What caught my notice was the small boxcar has internal lighting. A bit of investigation found that it has the same bogies as the locomotive tender, so a bit of time with screwdrivers and a micro-drill, the bogies with pickups were fitted to "Budweiser" in the tender. The 2-6-0 seems to have pretty good pick-ups as-is, but having additional pickups from the tender can hardly hurt things. Once I have figured out the disassembly of the locomotive I can run some wiring between the tender and locomotive and start to think about repainting.

    I took a closer look at the little boxcar. I am almost certain that this is a HO scale 40ft Wooden Reefer on On30 bogies. I might scratch-build a new body for it. The chassis is basically a scale 22ft in 1:48 scale or 20ft for 1:43 scale

    307131843_10159944683806251_4607428736938886745_n.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2022
  7. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Sooo... I went looking for the proper On30 Boxcars on eBay. Didn't find any that were at a good price point. Was hoping to get two or three in a job lot. But I did spot a job lot listing which included 1x loco, 1x combine and 6x passenger cars, all with some minor cosmetic damage or missing parts. At the price being offered, it was too good to pass up. At least now I have plenty of fodder to start practicing my re-painting skills! I have more passenger cars now than I know what to do with. Anyone in Sydney, Australia want a couple of passenger carriages? I am after boxcars and gondolas.

    So that now makes:
    3x Moguls
    2x Combines
    2x Baggagage Cars
    7x Passenger Cars
    1x Tank Car
    1x Flat Car

    I think I need some more goods stock.

    Yet another set.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2022
  8. Chris Doroszenko

    Chris Doroszenko Lost in the spare room Full Member

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    Hey that's great...plenty of parts is never a problem. Wondering what kind of sceme you will go with now...

    Kind regards
    Chris
     
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  9. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Well, I am still hoping to obtain more of the little Porter Locos. I am thinking of converting a couple of the extra passenger cars to the short Sierra Railway No.5 and No.6 type. Partly because they appeared in Petticoat Junction, and Little House on the Prairie.

    https://railtown1897.wordpress.com/2014/02/13/a-photographic-history-of-car-no-6/
     
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  10. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    I reckon the mogul looks much nicer without that air tank between the domes.

    305627555_10159946223601251_6776725997781240652_n.jpg
     
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  11. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    These photos give a rough idea of what inspires my work on the mogul. It shows the SAR X Class as it changed over time. I am deliberately choosing to make my locomotive a composite of these moguls and include a few other elements. So, it is freelance, but inspired by real Australian examples of the type.

    Some of the later SAR Changes and shown here on X45 included an extended smokebox with a british style smokebox door, and a straight chimney, though the big headlamp has been retained.
    SAR X45 Later Years.jpg

    X49 had been sole in the 1890s to a timber tramway in Western Australia where it became known as "Grafter."
    EYfHhiCUYAE4BoC.png

    And ex-SAR X49 "Grafter" in later years with a British-style cab.
    P05962.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2022
  12. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Here are the modified bogies installed in the tender. Not sure how I am going to wire it up to the locomotive just yet, but it is there for when it is going to happen.

    305014456_10159948481101251_1304919041966259000_n.jpg

    "Moonlight" has had a few cosmetic changes. The air tank between the domes is gone, the fancy headlamp bracket is gone as are the American style marker lamps - the SAR X Class didn't have them. I remounted the electric headlamp onto the extended smokebox and removed the piping for the sand dome. There will be a different arrangement of that piping in due course. I still want to change the chimney.


    305930780_10159948480866251_8144574602124676757_n.jpg
     
  13. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Staff Member Moderator

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    I have a green one, and started “Angisising” it a few years ago. The cow catcher has gone and it’s awaiting a new buffer beam, along with a modified cab. The tender has been modded too, with a new front board to hold the coal in as the van is now open at the back as well as deeper.
    It’s a project that has not progressed in 6 years, so probably need to return to it. The idea was it was going to be an extra loco on a fictional extension of the Leek and Manifold, but so far, it’s not happened.
     
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  14. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    And it is not without a prototype precedent. The GCR, GNR and MR collectively purchased about 70 Mogul types (standard gauge) to cover an engine shortage at the time.

    I came across this image of X45 which received the extended smokebox. This is when it still had the spark-arrestor chimney. Note the large head lamp mounted on top of the extended smokebox. This is the approximate vision of the model I am working on.

    img372.jpg

    I have also thought that to make it more Australian, I should have some of the typical four-wheel goods vehicles that were commonplace in the era. Somewhat conveniently, OO gauge 14.1mm wheelsets work out as 26.7" diameter (a slightly worn 2'3" wheel!) and the Airfix 20t brake van chassis is 16ft in 4mm scale, working out at about 10ft in 1:48. I also have stashed away a number of other items which will in due course prove useful in On30 I am sure.
     
  15. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    I now wonder if that is really X45 in the picture above. In a previous post there is X45 clear as day with an extended smokebox, but the records seem to indicate that X48 had the extended smokebox:

    https://www.comrails.com/sar_locos/r_c_x.html

    In any case, a salient point for a fictional history was that 5 of the class were all condemned on December 12th, 1904. Perhaps this could be converted to they were sold to a private operated in January 1905? I am not sure why I would bother writing a fictional history. I should just build the trains and play with them, citing rule #1 of model railways.
     
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  16. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Staff Member Moderator

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    Rule 1. My railway… therefore the fictional history stands! :thumbs:
     
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  17. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    I am still umming and aahing over whether to go the whole hog, lower the running boards, move the steam dome forward and make a whole new cab to match the X class diagram... Or I could just add to the fictional history and say that they were rebuilt that way in 1905.
     
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  18. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Nabbed this on eBay. Probably paid too much, but 6x underframes and couplings? Only have one or two spare sets of On30 bogies at the moment.

    Should make scratchbuilding some new wagons a bit easier.

    s-l400.jpg

    *EDIT*

    Now, coming to think of it, I have two wagons of this size already, so now I potentially have eight wagons - enough for an inglenook!
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2022
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  19. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Digging through my garage over the weekend I came across two big box kits for the 1872 Vulcan Saddleback Locomotive from Minicraft Model Kits. The kits report to be 1:45 scale of the Vulcan 2-4-0 locomotive, first in Japan. I am not so interested in the locomotive for now, but for the collection of four-wheel carriages that result from this kit. The carriage bodies measure up to be 105mm long and 45mm wide. Wheelbase on the supplied chassis is about 57mm. Depending which scale ruler you wish to use, this is 15'0" long and 6'6" wide with an 8'0"-ish wheelbase in 1:43 or 16'0" long and 7'0" wide with a 9'0" wheelbase in 1:48.

    The West Australian Government Railways AI Class carriage from the 1870s (3'6" gauge) bears a remarkable resemblance to the 3-compartment carriage in the kit. I think I'm going to have to call any On30 Layout I put together "lFreelanced Australian Narrow Gauge Circa 1900" It will certainly contrast in size to the Bachmann bogie carriages.
    WAGR+Carriage.jpg

    Other bit of inspiration from Western Australia is the Z9 Brake Van, which whilst a little later in era, is inspiration to convert one of my Bachmann Baggage Cars into a Brake Van, apparently through the simple task of adding side lookouts (duckets) to one end. I might just leave the clerestory roof, or I might change it:

    http://www.hothamvalleyrailway.com.au/Z9.htm

    *EDIT*

    Decided to make a start on project "Brake Van No.9" disassembled one of my Bachmann baggage cars and put the body and doors into the bath of simple green.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2022
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  20. hartleymartin

    hartleymartin Full Member

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    Weblink posted as a note for my benefit:

    http://westralia.uk/index.htm

    Western Australian Narrow Gauge stuff. I reckon I can probably scratch built a few of those on top of some dapol OO scale chassis kits.
     
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