Let's talk about ladders.


Pierre <pierre.oliver@...>
 

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com


jerryglow2
 

The PE stiles w/ wire rungs approach would allow for wider ladders used by some but individual artwork (easy enough) would have to be done for different rung spacing.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@..., "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...> wrote:

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com


Robert kirkham
 

I've printed off a set of ladders using rapid prototyping. They have scale stiles, .2 mm rungs and (as they are for Canadian boxcars) built in place stirrup steps which at .3 mm thickness are noticeably closer to scale than anything I have used - molded or etched. They are flexible, rugged to a degree - and take paint well. I'll try to post a photo this evening when I get home from work. The price isn't cheap, but they allow one to design any style of ladder imaginable.

Rob Kirkham

--------------------------------------------------
From: <jerryglow@...>
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 7:21 AM
To: <STMFC@...>
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Let's talk about ladders.

The PE stiles w/ wire rungs approach would allow for wider ladders used by some but individual artwork (easy enough) would have to be done for different rung spacing.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@..., "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...> wrote:

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com


Tim O'Connor
 

Pierre

Ladders have different widths (sometimes variable width), and different heights, and different numbers
of rungs. Some cars can be found with different ladders (e.g. MILW ribsides, B&O M-53's) And sometimes
the sill steps are attached at the bottom. An etched stile looks good. The best solution is high precision
injected molded ladders (e.g. the Detail Associates 7 and 8 rung ladders for 10'6" box cars), but that's
probably not practical for many cases.

Tim O'Connor

----- Original Message -----
From: "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Wednesday, May 9, 2012 9:59:15 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Let's talk about ladders.

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com


Andy Harman
 

At 01:59 PM 5/9/2012 +0000, you wrote:
I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!
I couldn't have said it better... the things were extremely tedious to put together but well worth the effort in the end.

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.
This can still be quite effective as Rail Yard Models has done on their kits. You have to get pretty close to see that the rungs are flat. A lot sturdier too.

Of course Kadee's ladders are just exquisite but only a few variations available, and so far I haven't been able to use them to completely re-equip any non-Kadee car. They also make those lovely bracket grabs, but with a different mounting system so you have to plug and re-drill the holes on those IM/RC/Branchline box cars. A drilling template for those would be super handy. Then again, all of those cool Kadee parts are delrin.... but for some reason they take paint better than a lot of other stuff. Maybe just less handling and flexing than other items (like off-topic era locomotive handrails).

Andy


Andy Harman
 

At 03:12 PM 5/9/2012 +0000, you wrote:
solution is high precision
injected molded ladders (e.g. the Detail Associates 7 and 8 rung ladders for 10'6" box cars), but that's
probably not practical for many cases.
Are these still available? How do they compare to the ladders that come with Branchline and RC kits?

Andy


Pierre <pierre.oliver@...>
 

Andy,
There is a drilling jig available for the Kadee bracket grabs.
A member on this list, Peter Aue, had made one available. I've used it and it's spectacular. All future bracket grabs for me will be the Kadee one.
Pierre Oliver

--- In STMFC@..., Andy Harman <gsgondola@...> wrote:

At 01:59 PM 5/9/2012 +0000, you wrote:
I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner
ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of
photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler
had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs
from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!
I couldn't have said it better... the things were extremely tedious to put
together but well worth the effort in the end.

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the
stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the
rungs are flat in profile.
This can still be quite effective as Rail Yard Models has done on their
kits. You have to get pretty close to see that the rungs are flat. A lot
sturdier too.

Of course Kadee's ladders are just exquisite but only a few variations
available, and so far I haven't been able to use them to completely
re-equip any non-Kadee car. They also make those lovely bracket grabs, but
with a different mounting system so you have to plug and re-drill the holes
on those IM/RC/Branchline box cars. A drilling template for those would be
super handy. Then again, all of those cool Kadee parts are delrin.... but
for some reason they take paint better than a lot of other stuff. Maybe
just less handling and flexing than other items (like off-topic era
locomotive handrails).

Andy


Armand Premo
 

I have had good luck with Kadee ladders and grab irons.Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
From: timboconnor@...
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 11:12 AM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Let's talk about ladders.



Pierre

Ladders have different widths (sometimes variable width), and different heights, and different numbers
of rungs. Some cars can be found with different ladders (e.g. MILW ribsides, B&O M-53's) And sometimes
the sill steps are attached at the bottom. An etched stile looks good. The best solution is high precision
injected molded ladders (e.g. the Detail Associates 7 and 8 rung ladders for 10'6" box cars), but that's
probably not practical for many cases.

Tim O'Connor

----- Original Message -----
From: "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Wednesday, May 9, 2012 9:59:15 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Let's talk about ladders.

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com


WILLIAM PARDIE
 

I'm always interested in better ladders (at any price). Please keep me in the loop on this.

Bill Pardie

On May 9, 2012, at 4:35 AM, Rob Kirkham wrote:

I've printed off a set of ladders using rapid prototyping. They have scale
stiles, .2 mm rungs and (as they are for Canadian boxcars) built in place
stirrup steps which at .3 mm thickness are noticeably closer to scale than
anything I have used - molded or etched. They are flexible, rugged to a
degree - and take paint well. I'll try to post a photo this evening when I
get home from work. The price isn't cheap, but they allow one to design any
style of ladder imaginable.

Rob Kirkham

--------------------------------------------------
From: <jerryglow@...>
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 7:21 AM
To: <STMFC@...>
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Let's talk about ladders.

The PE stiles w/ wire rungs approach would allow for wider ladders used by
some but individual artwork (easy enough) would have to be done for
different rung spacing.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@..., "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...> wrote:

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the
commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if
there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner
ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of
photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the
modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual
rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the
stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the
rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of
rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Andy Sperandeo
 

Too long ago to think about I had some stamped brass freight car ladders from Kemtron, and still have a couple pair on old cabooses. They're not as bulky as you might expect, but obviously etching would be the way to go if a new product were to be made in brass.Etched brass ladders could be soldered to mounting pins, or have handrails and other details soldered to them. These would be big plusses as far as I'm concerned, and of course we'd want an assortment of common stile and rung spacings. 
So long,
Andy


Tom Madden
 

Or just roll your own:

http://www.pullmanproject.com/Ladders.pdf

Tom Madden


Robert kirkham
 

I've posted two photos of my most recent effort at printed ladders in a folder titled "rp ladders", which is waiting approval from the moderators. Hopefully this link will work: <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/STMFC/photos/album/219763914/pic/list>.

The ladder shown is simply laid on the side of the TLT model. I modelled both end and side ladders and included two of each in a set. I've also printed a drilling jig to assist precisely drilling mounting holes to fit the mounting pins built into the design. The ladders only arrived in yesterday's mail, so I haven't installed them yet.

The ladders are drawn with Google Sketchup's free software. I had them printed in the US by ADC (thanks to advice from list member Brian Bussey) as I was not happy with the service at Shapeways.

This process allows one to design and model any style of ladder in HO or larger - with different rungs spacing, width or stile designs, etc. I expect that the longer the rungs have to be, the more risk there is that they won't turn out. In a box of 80 ladders I found two rejects. One has a rung that isn't attached at one end - easily repaired with CA. The other was missing a whole chunk - it will go onto a gon . . . .

But as I say - they are not cheap. I've not been careful counting the pennies as this is a personal project (a fleet of about 25 cars), but I think they are coming in at about $11 for a set of 4.

Rob

On May 9, 2012, at 4:35 AM, Rob Kirkham wrote:

I've printed off a set of ladders using rapid prototyping. They have scale
stiles, .2 mm rungs and (as they are for Canadian boxcars) built in place
stirrup steps which at .3 mm thickness are noticeably closer to scale than
anything I have used - molded or etched. They are flexible, rugged to a
degree - and take paint well. I'll try to post a photo this evening when I
get home from work. The price isn't cheap, but they allow one to design any
style of ladder imaginable.

Rob Kirkham

--------------------------------------------------
From: <jerryglow@...>
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 7:21 AM
To: <STMFC@...>
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Let's talk about ladders.

The PE stiles w/ wire rungs approach would allow for wider ladders used by
some but individual artwork (easy enough) would have to be done for
different rung spacing.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@..., "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...> wrote:

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the
commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if
there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner
ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of
photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the
modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual
rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the
stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the
rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of
rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com






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

Yahoo! Groups Links




Jim Hayes
 

Rob, what TLT model is it for?

Jim Hayes

On Wed, May 9, 2012 at 7:31 PM, Rob Kirkham <rdkirkham@...> wrote:

I've posted two photos of my most recent effort at printed ladders in a
folder titled "rp ladders", which is waiting approval from the moderators.
Hopefully this link will work:
<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/STMFC/photos/album/219763914/pic/list>.

The ladder shown is simply laid on the side of the TLT model. I modelled
both end and side ladders and included two of each in a set. I've also
printed a drilling jig to assist precisely drilling mounting holes to fit
the mounting pins built into the design. The ladders only arrived in
yesterday's mail, so I haven't installed them yet.

The ladders are drawn with Google Sketchup's free software. I had them
printed in the US by ADC (thanks to advice from list member Brian Bussey)
as
I was not happy with the service at Shapeways.

This process allows one to design and model any style of ladder in HO or
larger - with different rungs spacing, width or stile designs, etc. I
expect that the longer the rungs have to be, the more risk there is that
they won't turn out. In a box of 80 ladders I found two rejects. One has
a
rung that isn't attached at one end - easily repaired with CA. The other
was missing a whole chunk - it will go onto a gon . . . .

But as I say - they are not cheap. I've not been careful counting the
pennies as this is a personal project (a fleet of about 25 cars), but I
think they are coming in at about $11 for a set of 4.

Rob

On May 9, 2012, at 4:35 AM, Rob Kirkham wrote:

I've printed off a set of ladders using rapid prototyping. They have
scale
stiles, .2 mm rungs and (as they are for Canadian boxcars) built in
place
stirrup steps which at .3 mm thickness are noticeably closer to scale
than
anything I have used - molded or etched. They are flexible, rugged to a
degree - and take paint well. I'll try to post a photo this evening when
I
get home from work. The price isn't cheap, but they allow one to design
any
style of ladder imaginable.

Rob Kirkham

--------------------------------------------------
From: <jerryglow@...>
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 7:21 AM
To: <STMFC@...>
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Let's talk about ladders.

The PE stiles w/ wire rungs approach would allow for wider ladders
used
by
some but individual artwork (easy enough) would have to be done for
different rung spacing.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@..., "Pierre" <pierre.oliver@...> wrote:

Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the
commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish
if
there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the
Miner
ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of
photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the
modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert
individual
rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring
the
stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is
the
rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety
of
rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?

Pierre Oliver
www.elgincarshops.com







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

Yahoo! Groups Links




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

Yahoo! Groups Links




Steve SANDIFER
 

Clever!
______________
J. Stephen (Steve) Sandifer
mailto:steve.sandifer@...
Home: 12027 Mulholland Drive, Meadows Place, TX 77477, 281-568-9918
Office: Southwest Central Church of Christ, 4011 W. Bellfort, Houston, TX 77025, 713-667-9417

----- Original Message -----
From: pullmanboss
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 7:53 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Let's talk about ladders.



Or just roll your own:

http://www.pullmanproject.com/Ladders.pdf

Tom Madden


Robert kirkham
 

the CP 1937 boxcars.

Rob

--------------------------------------------------
From: "Jim Hayes" <jimhayes97225@...>
Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2012 8:03 PM
To: <STMFC@...>
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Let's talk about ladders.

Rob, what TLT model is it for?
Jim Hayes


Robert kirkham
 

photos have been approved and can be found at <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/STMFC/photos/album/219763914/pic/list>.

Rob


Monk Alan <Alan.Monk@...>
 

Pierre/all,

One of the specialist UK manufacturers (Model Signal Engineering http://www.modelsignals.com/4mm_scale_frame.htm) makes such etched ladders (long ones, for fitting to signal posts) with etched stiles, wire rungs and the all-important assembly jig. I've built a couple of his 30' ladders for signals on my UK layout and they really do look the part. Not that fiddly either, once you get into the swing of making them.

I hadn't thought to check the rung spacing to see if they were also applicable to HO freight cars (the width, of course, is set by the rung length). I'll have another look at them over the weekend at Derby show, where MSE have their usual stand.

To do a ladder as a single etch, I think it would have to be a double-sided etch to avoid the flat rung look, which adds to cost and difficulty. I know a chap over here who produces such double-sided etched parts for loco detailing (his roof fan grilles have to be seen to be believed, he's captured the 'woven' wire look brilliantly!) and ask him some basic questions (likely cost/difficulty/etc)

I have tried the DA moulded ones - personally, I found them too fragile, with a high proportion of split ladders just taking them off the sprue (using either my fine sprue-nippers or carefully with a brand new scalpel blade)

Regards,
Alan Monk
London, UK





Posted by: "Pierre" pierre.oliver@... <mailto:pierre.oliver@...?Subject=%20Re%3A%20Let%27s%20talk%20about%20ladders%2E> pierreoliver2003 <http://profiles.yahoo.com/pierreoliver2003>
Wed May 9, 2012 6:59 am (PDT)


Lately I've been thinking about available car ladders.
Generally, I'm not pleased with the overall quality of most of the commercial offerings. Badly rendered rungs, oversized stiles, etc.
So I'd like to generate an informal poll here, to try and establish if there's a desire for better ladders and what form that might take.

I'm particularly fond of the approach Ted Cullotta took with the Miner ladders in the Wabash AAR kitbash in a box. He supplied a set of photo-etched stiles that had the holes for grabs etched in and the modeler had to bend the stile into the angle shape and insert individual rungs from wire. Tedious but very effective. Looks great as well!

Another approach is to etch the entire ladder, while still requiring the stiles to be folded to create the correct angle look. The downside is the rungs are flat in profile.

The first etched approach would also create an option for a variety of rung spacings.

What's your thoughts?




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Andy Sperandeo
 

Very cool, Tom. Thanks! - Andy