Re: UTLX tank cars

Larry King <ab8180@...>

At 04:59 PM 3/11/2001 -0500, you wrote:
Dear Larry,

Your idea is great. You could probably guarantee a manufacturer that
each of the 200 or so people on this list would buy ten underframes. But
how could they cover the other 48,000 or so they need to sell to make any
money on it.
Maybe, but I see that Tichy sells his tank car underframe for $4.50 and I
bet even for twice that you'd have a market. Look at all the diesel detail
parts that are available. Are there REALLY that many people who are serious
diesel detailers?
I hate to say it, but this is a subject best left to resin castings.
That's the only venue available to us for the real life quantities that
this type of model represents. Sorry.
The trouble with this, is that the resin cars are going for about $30.00
apiece, and that mounts up too...
Did'ja notice that LifeLike sold out all the built up tank car models
they brought in, while Martin Loftin is still begging people to buy his
kit? I guess that's not a fair comparison to make. How about this. I
built one P2K kit and than went and bought a dozen built ups. How many
others did the same?
I guess I just don't care to have 10cts./hour Chinese labor doing my
modeling for me.
And contrary to your casual remark about using existing tank castings,
'tain't so. It seems every tank car manufacturer used different
combinations of diameter and length to get to those 6, 8, and 10,000
gallon sizes. Using info from 50 years worth of Cycs, I've found only a
handful that could be adapted from the 4 existing riveted tanks, and then
only by diameter, their lengths would have to be changed. That doesn't
even begin to cover the 4, 6, and 12,000 gallon sizes.
I disagree. The IM tanks are close enough that Sunshine is using them as
the basis of their kit, and I never said this would work for EVERY UTLX
car.So you have to kitbash a little...
I've also thought about making a pattern for some of those sizes to be
cast in resin. Making a proper coned rivet is the easy part, punching
them into brass only slightly less easy, rolling said shell and keeping a
curve behind each rivet completely escapes me. You see, each little
round pyramid reinforces the metal around it's base so that when the
shell is rolled, it will appear as though it a series of flat surfaces
joined by bent planes, rather than curved. Remember, those rivets on the
prototype were hammered in after the shell was curved. So far, we don't
have that luxury. The cast tanks available had the rivets cut into the
molds after the roll of the tank was cut.

OTOH, there's the possibility of using the same old NWSL rivets punched
into styrene sheet as usual, but then we'd have a tank that looked just
like all those imported brass models with those cute little dimples,
rather than the big, hefty RIVETS they need. How could we tell them

I'm still trying to get my act into order to make available copies of my
patterns for the corrected ACF tank car underframe which sits 65%
completed in a box on my work(?)bench. A URTX underframe was supposed to
be next. I hope that when Martin Loftin does his it's more accurate than
his ACF underframe.

Byron Rose

On Fri, 09 Mar 2001 09:07:48 -0500 Larry King <> writes:

This is a revision of a note I sent to John Nerich's NYB&W
website. The
discussion by Richard Hendrikson about the need for UTLX tank cars
me to repeat it:
Why couldn't one of the detail parts makers (ie, Detail
Tichy,New England Rail Service,etc)make a separate UTLX X-3 style
underframe in styrene that could be fitted to the several available
from Tichy, Intermountain(especially Intermountain),and Red
with a center sill that would be cut to length to suit the
tank.This could result in accurate UTLX models without the
investment in
die work needed for the whole car, especially the tank. AB or K
options could be provided too.The data needed is available in the
Builder's Cyc and on museum cars.
I would think the "prototype conscious" crowd would provide a
base for such a part, even if not for complete UTLX kits. Remember
UTLX was like PFE- the cars all looked much alike but were around in
numbers and went everywhere. Everybody needs a few!

LR King

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