Topics

Sand Loads in HO?


Jim Betz
 

Hi all,

What product do you use for making an HO scale sand load
in a gondola? I don't want to use any kind of food product
(such as flour).
I'm willing to color it with paint and washes.

The only commercial product I'm finding is the one by
Motrak. That one might work - but it is white and would
require color changes. And all of the sources I've been
able to find want as much or more to ship it as the load
costs!

This is to represent "sand being delivered to an engine
facility for RR use such as for locomotives" - the sand
seen at a sand tower. It will go in an Intermountain
ATSF Caswell gondola (if that makes a difference).
- Jim B.


Bruce Smith
 

Jim,

I’ve seen several suggestions:

1) baking soda - a chemical, not a food product
2) decomposed sandstone
3) sifted sand (so you get only the finest particles)
4) fine grit blasting media - AlO2  (this one scares me because this stuff is bad to breathe, so I would consider this only as a last resort, wear protective gear and make sure it was completely glued down
5) diatomaceous earth (this stuff has the same issues as AlO2 grit blasting media)

Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

https://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/

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



On Mar 6, 2017, at 1:12 PM, jimbetz jimbetz@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:

Hi all,

  What product do you use for making an HO scale sand load
in a gondola?  I don't want to use any kind of food product
(such as flour).
  I'm willing to color it with paint and washes.

  The only commercial product I'm finding is the one by
Motrak.  That one might work - but it is white and would
require color changes.  And all of the sources I've been
able to find want as much or more to ship it as the load
costs!

  This is to represent "sand being delivered to an engine
facility for RR use such as for locomotives" - the sand
seen at a sand tower.  It will go in an Intermountain
ATSF Caswell gondola (if that makes a difference).
- Jim B.


------------------------------------
Posted by: jimbetz <jimbetz@...>
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frograbbit602
 

Jim I am using any sand I like after sifting it in screen and then strainers obtained at the local food tools store.  The final size is obtained using a tea strainer.  I have collected sand of various colors from many sites over the years when railfanning.   I believe you want white sand for the sand tower.
Sand, white in color, used for casting at foundries is great if you can get it.   I like it especially for loads  at the railroad yard sand house.  The specific sand I believe you are looking for.   I went to a local foundry and obtained it at no charge.  My new favorite is frac sand which I believe will also work well for your needs.  It white in color and really fine and I have obtained it at various loading facilities.  No strainers needed to obtain useable size, only to get dabree out if needed.

Whatever the sand, it is glued with water diluted white glue to foam formed removable loads fitting the car the load goes into.

Hope this helps.
Lester Breuer



---In STMFC@..., <jimbetz@...> wrote :

Hi all,

What product do you use for making an HO scale sand load
in a gondola? I don't want to use any kind of food product
(such as flour).
I'm willing to color it with paint and washes.

The only commercial product I'm finding is the one by
Motrak. That one might work - but it is white and would
require color changes. And all of the sources I've been
able to find want as much or more to ship it as the load
costs!

This is to represent "sand being delivered to an engine
facility for RR use such as for locomotives" - the sand
seen at a sand tower. It will go in an Intermountain
ATSF Caswell gondola (if that makes a difference).
- Jim B.


Michael Gross
 

Dear Jim,

This is an awfully late reply to our post of March 6, but I have been out of the country and away from my photo stash.

The sand load for my Intermountain Caswell gon was made from a piece of carved balsa sprinkled with fine locomotive sand that I found along the BNSF right-of-way.  Though not true HO "scale," it looked good enough to me.  The raw sand appeared bland so I dry brushed it with off-white acrylic and and sprayed it with a final coat of matte.  I forget if I used an initial wash, but as I usually add both contrasts and highlights, I suspect I did.

I added two photos of the Caswell to my photo file, "Completed Models" so you can see the car for yourself.  If you can't access the file, email me at ActorMichaelGross AT gmail DOT com, and I will send you the pictures directly.

Cheers!

Michael Gross
Pasadena, CA



Jim Betz
 

Michael,

Thanks for the pics. I ended up making mine out of the AZ Rock
"Sand House/Beach Sand". It looks very much like yours. I like
my cars fairly heavy so I just built the entire load out of the AZ
Rock product (no "filler") ... the car is still not "too heavy".

All,

Doing it the way I did it I ended up having to deal with
"gutters" along the sides and ends where the sand met
the walls. They were about the width and depth of the
end of the typical hobby file (approx. 1/8th"). I think
the gutters were the result of the glue+water 'filling'
those areas and then drying and leaving a void.

Doing a final application of the AZ Rock material - and
being careful to hold the car at an angle and tapping
the side so the sand filled the gutter resulted in a very
nice looking load. Michael did a much better job of
making the car itself look 'right' than I have (so far).

I consider these Intermountain composite Caswell
gons to be excellent models.
- Jim


Michael Gross
 

Arizona Rock and Mineral makes a great product, so I’m sure the final load looks great.  Do post a photo when you get time so we can see the final result.

Cheers!