Re: Bruce Smith's boiler - was Prototype Rails 2009 -- my opinions

Bruce Smith

On Jan 11, 2009, at 5:17 PM, Frank Greene wrote:

Ed Walters wrote:
That's a fascinating freight car load. And, the car proves that an ECW
kit does make a fine model, with all the necessary care and fiddling to
make it fit together. Congratulations, Bruce.
Frank Greene

Thanks for the compliment! The car and load were based on a photo that Richard Hendrickson kindly provided to me. I am told that the boiler is a marine boiler destined for a Victory Ship and that typically, they would have used 3 per ship. I would definitely say that the car is classic ECW, with mismatched moldings and all the other problems, but that with a bit of care, it does make into a unique and nice car. Wire grabs, A-line steps, scale couplers and air-hoses all help <G>.

I built the flat probably about 6 years ago, but struggled for a way to built the load (and keep my sanity) until recently. Then, Chooch released their large boiler resin casting. Those of you familiar with that casting know that it comes complete with cribbing (*YUCK!) and is certainly wider than an HO scale flat car. The boiler has 3 sections. Using a band saw, I cut out the middle section and cut the cribbing off the boiler. After gluing the ends of the boiler back together and sanding the circumference smooth, I added a wrapper of 0.010" styrene, with an appropriate splice plate. I added the tie down points and the support straps and brackets from scrap styrene. I sprayed the plastic with clear gloss to give the decals something to stick to, and I believe I used the "large" rivets on Archer's sheet with 3 sizes (you can now buy whole sheets of one size). As I told Jeff, visions of putting long strips of 50 rivets on at a time were quickly dashed as around 8-10 rivet strips were really the maximum that can be handled. Once the rivets were on, I painted the circumference aluminum and the ends flat black. The AMERICAN LOCOMOTIVE CO. SCHENECTADY N.Y. decal was created on my computer using ink jet decal paper. I made the cribbing out of various sizes of scale lumber to match the appearance of the cribbing in the photo and likewise the tie-downs were made from brass wire to match the photo.


Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
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