Horizontal Brake Wheels highlighting Tichy parts


Bill Welch
 

A recent discussion about prototype Vertical Wheels provoked me to wonder what accurate models exist for Horizontal Brake wheels. Earlier this week I was making brake wheel assemblies for two models, one a Tichy PMcK&Y/P&LE USRA steel rebuild and the other a Sunshine M&StL Pratt trussed SS car from their 2400 series. As it happens I have prototype photos that helped me ID that Tichy "AB" brake part #33 is exactly correct for the PMcK&Y/P&LE  model while #34 is exactly correct for the M&StL model. Slightly different versions of the brake wheels are on Tichy's "K" brake sprue are part #14—the rim is a different shape on these parts. I know that the Horizontal Brake wheel in the Red Caboose X29 kit is a very accurate representation of the prototype wheel. Now my questions.

—Are the manufacturers of the Tichy representations known?
—Are the two Tichy rim variations prototypical or a tooling error?
—Are there other accurate Horizontal brake wheels available in 1/87th scale? I know Precision Scale offers some variations—are they Prototypical and if so what do they represent?
—Are there significant Horizontal Brake wheels that need to be done?

Bill Welch


Gene Green <genegreen1942@...>
 

Bill,
First, your photos are always excellent.  Kudos!

The horizontal wheel hand brakes are mostly non-existent in HO scale so far as I know.  Good hand brakes for flat and tank cars are sorely needed.  There is more to those hand brakes than merely stabbing a shaft into the deck (flats) or running board (tanks) and putting a 16 inch hand wheel on top.

—Are the manufacturers of the Tichy representations known?  In your photo with "14" visible the spoke pattern of the one on the left resembles early Equipco hand wheels when viewed from above as in your photo.  The Equipco hand wheels were dished, however, and the Tichy hand wheel is not.  Universal had a 5-spoke hand wheel which the right hand wheel 'sort of' represents but . . .   The Universal hand wheel was also dished but not very much.

—Are the two Tichy rim variations prototypical or a tooling error?  Don't know.  Both are plausible but the rim of malleable (cast) hand wheels was typically a 'U' cross-section.

—Are there other accurate Horizontal brake wheels available in 1/87th scale? I know Precision Scale offers some variations—are they Prototypical and if so what do they represent?   I am not at all familiar with what the brass importers might have or have had available so I won't answer.

—Are there significant Horizontal Brake wheels that need to be done?  Oh, my goodness, YES!!!!  Your question only asks about hand wheels but I always think in terms of the entire hand brake of which the hand wheel is only one part.  I have made drawings of twenty 15-inch and 16-inch (yes, there were both) hand wheels I either have in my collection or to which I had safe, legal access long enough to take the necessary measurements, make the CAD drawing on site and then check drawing against actual hand wheel.  I've only scratched the surface.  I have a number of hand wheels upon which I find no manufacturer identification, at least none that I recognize as such.  Railroads may have also made their own hand wheels, especially malleable hand wheels.  At least Equipco had a forged hand wheel (stamped) in later years.  I tend to ignore anything built after 1950 so there may well be others. 

Addressing hand wheels only we need:
1 Ellcon-National
4 Equipco
2 Superior (there was a 15- & 16-inch.  One could serve for both, I suppose)
1 Universal
2 URECO (one of which is identical to an Equipco except for the markings)

So far as I have determined, Superior and URECO never offered a forged hand wheel.

Horizontal wheel hand brake mechanisms needed include:
3 ACF for tank cars (all are quite similar to one another so maybe we could change that to one)
2 Ellcon-National (malleable & forged versions of the same brake)
1 Equipco
3 Superior (one of which is THE GATX tank car hand brake)
2 Universal
2 URECO

I think many modelers tend to assume that all horizontal wheel hand brakes were Plate A, that is, chain wound around shaft.  Not the case at all from the late 1930s to the present.  Horizontal wheel hand brakes, just like vertical wheel hand brakes, were GEARED hand brakes.

Dan Smith, please chime in here.  If you, or anyone else, can add to or correct what I have written, please do so.


Garth Groff <sarahsan@...>
 

Gene and  Bill,

Nobody has mentioned the Bowser/Cal-Scale brass and plastic brake wheels: http://www.bowser-trains.com/history/hocalscalefreightcar.html . The catalog drawings are crude, and I suspect that the plastic wheels are the same as the brass (Cal-Scale offered many plastic knock-offs of their brass parts). If so, there are also two designs among the plastic wheels. There are also a lot of other brake parts listed on this page that are of use to us, especially levers (which I love) and hoses.

In my brake parts drawer, I have an out-of-package gray plastic sprue of eight wheels similar to the Bowser plastic drawing. Although they are similar to Tichy's, with eight wheels they don't match anything in their catalog and are definitely not Bowser either. An obvious treasure, but I don't know who made them.

Looking at the very bottom of my parts drawer, I see a whole bunch of what are probably 14" horizontal brake wheels. They are likely from Grandt for narrow gauge cars. (Sigh!) I don't know how I came to have them, as all my HO narrow gauge parts and stuff were sold off when I went into On2 (real 2-foot) after college.

Yours Aye,


Garth Groff  🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

On 7/14/18 11:17 AM, Gene Green via Groups.Io wrote:
Bill,
First, your photos are always excellent.  Kudos!

The horizontal wheel hand brakes are mostly non-existent in HO scale so far as I know.  Good hand brakes for flat and tank cars are sorely needed.  There is more to those hand brakes than merely stabbing a shaft into the deck (flats) or running board (tanks) and putting a 16 inch hand wheel on top.

—Are the manufacturers of the Tichy representations known?  In your photo with "14" visible the spoke pattern of the one on the left resembles early Equipco hand wheels when viewed from above as in your photo.  The Equipco hand wheels were dished, however, and the Tichy hand wheel is not.  Universal had a 5-spoke hand wheel which the right hand wheel 'sort of' represents but . . .   The Universal hand wheel was also dished but not very much.

—Are the two Tichy rim variations prototypical or a tooling error?  Don't know.  Both are plausible but the rim of malleable (cast) hand wheels was typically a 'U' cross-section.

—Are there other accurate Horizontal brake wheels available in 1/87th scale? I know Precision Scale offers some variations—are they Prototypical and if so what do they represent?   I am not at all familiar with what the brass importers might have or have had available so I won't answer.

—Are there significant Horizontal Brake wheels that need to be done?  Oh, my goodness, YES!!!!  Your question only asks about hand wheels but I always think in terms of the entire hand brake of which the hand wheel is only one part.  I have made drawings of twenty 15-inch and 16-inch (yes, there were both) hand wheels I either have in my collection or to which I had safe, legal access long enough to take the necessary measurements, make the CAD drawing on site and then check drawing against actual hand wheel.  I've only scratched the surface.  I have a number of hand wheels upon which I find no manufacturer identification, at least none that I recognize as such.  Railroads may have also made their own hand wheels, especially malleable hand wheels.  At least Equipco had a forged hand wheel (stamped) in later years.  I tend to ignore anything built after 1950 so there may well be others. 

Addressing hand wheels only we need:
1 Ellcon-National
4 Equipco
2 Superior (there was a 15- & 16-inch.  One could serve for both, I suppose)
1 Universal
2 URECO (one of which is identical to an Equipco except for the markings)

So far as I have determined, Superior and URECO never offered a forged hand wheel.

Horizontal wheel hand brake mechanisms needed include:
3 ACF for tank cars (all are quite similar to one another so maybe we could change that to one)
2 Ellcon-National (malleable & forged versions of the same brake)
1 Equipco
3 Superior (one of which is THE GATX tank car hand brake)
2 Universal
2 URECO

I think many modelers tend to assume that all horizontal wheel hand brakes were Plate A, that is, chain wound around shaft.  Not the case at all from the late 1930s to the present.  Horizontal wheel hand brakes, just like vertical wheel hand brakes, were GEARED hand brakes.

Dan Smith, please chime in here.  If you, or anyone else, can add to or correct what I have written, please do so.




Andy Cich
 

Kadee makes this one:

 

https://kadee.com/htmbord/page440.htm

 

 

Andy Cich

 


Dennis Storzek
 

Nobody has mentioned Grandt Line, which made two or three excellent brake wheels. Don't know what their prototypes were, but I'm sure they had prototypes, as Cliff likely acquired samples when he developed the parts.

Accurail just recently tooled a NYC 15" brake wheel directly from the NYC drawing. Back when a hand brake was nothing more than a wheel, ratchet, shaft, and chain. The wheel could be a railroad specific design, supplied by the car builder.

Dennis Storzek


Bill Welch
 

I have seen the Kadee part and to me is is very clunky, not fine at all.

Bill Welch


Bill Welch
 

This is very helpful Gene. I think I may have some of the Precision Scale parts and I will photograph them and post here. I did forget Grandt Line and Cal-Scale. Dennis, will the NYC brake wheel be available as a separate part?

Also I forgot about the Brake Wheel that InterMountain includes with their Type 27 ACF tank car. Gene, Dan, anyone, were the actual brake wheels used with flat cars and tank cars different than those used on reefers and boxcars.

Seems like there is a lot to be explored here.

Bill Welch


Tom Madden
 

Weren't the Kadee metal brake wheels done for their disconnect log cars? They've been around a LONG time.

Tom Madden


Bill Keene
 

Hello group,

Yup! Those Kadee disconnect log case have been around a really loooooong time. I remember building these kits on my dormitory study desk back in the mid-1960s when I was a freshman at Rutgers. And, YES, that was a very long time ago.

Cheers,
Bill Keene
Irvine, CA


On Jul 14, 2018, at 12:33 PM, Tom Madden via Groups.Io <pullmanboss@...> wrote:

Weren't the Kadee metal brake wheels done for their disconnect log cars? They've been around a LONG time.

Tom Madden


Bill Welch
 

Here are screen grabs of Cal-Scale parts, if anyone has these and a camera, can you please post them here?

Bill Welch


Eric Hansmann
 

And there were a few others. Below is a lost of HO scale plastic models that feature a horizontal brake wheel on one or more version of the model. In at least one case, I don't think the parts are available. The Accurail part has been noted so it was not included on this list. My apologies for repeated info.


Proto2000 Mather box car and stock car - powered gearbox, but the wheel was horizontal

Proto2000 AC&F tank cars

Intermountain Caswell gondolas

Intermountain Santa Fe Stock car

Intermountain/Red Caboose ARA 1923 Proposed Standard steel-sheathed boxcar/X29

Intermountain/Red Caboose Mather reefer (tooling gone?)

Intermountain/Red Caboose USRA flat car

Intermountain/Red Caboose SP stock car

Several Bowser models (GS, GLa, H21)

MDC/Roundhouse old time kits

Atlas/Branchline AC&F reefers

Atlas meat reefers

MTH USRA hopper and reefer

Owl Mountain SP flat

Rapido NP boxcar (coming soon)

Tangent GATX tank cars

Walthers/Mainline USRA mill gon


Modeling 1926 offers regular insight to the models with horizontal brake wheels.

http://designbuildop.hansmanns.org/a-guide-to-1920s-era-ho-scale-plastic-freight-cars/



Eric Hansmann
Murfreesboro, TN


On July 14, 2018 at 1:28 PM Bill Welch <fgexbill@...> wrote:

This is very helpful Gene. I think I may have some of the Precision Scale parts and I will photograph them and post here. I did forget Grandt Line and Cal-Scale. Dennis, will the NYC brake wheel be available as a separate part?

Also I forgot about the Brake Wheel that InterMountain includes with their Type 27 ACF tank car. Gene, Dan, anyone, were the actual brake wheels used with flat cars and tank cars different than those used on reefers and boxcars.

Seems like there is a lot to be explored here.

Bill Welch




Gene Green <genegreen1942@...>
 

I do not have access to Bowser/Cal-Scale parts.  Hence, can not comment.  If someone posts photos . . .
Gene Green


Gene Green <genegreen1942@...>
 

The Kadee hand wheel might be a stand-in for Superior/GATX tank cars.  It is klunky.  It goes way back.
Gene Green


Gene Green <genegreen1942@...>
 

It is quite likely, if we go back far enough, that railroads made their own hand brake parts.  I have no evidence one way or the other but we all know most railroads had the ability to make malleable castings.  By the way, curved spokes and 'dished' wheels were less an attempt to be aesthetically pleasing and much  more concerned with solving some of the problems involved in making such castings.
Gene Green


Dave Parker
 

If you go back to the good old (stemwinder) days, there is some evidence to be had in the CBCs, and all of the pre-1920 editions are available for free on-line (and the 1922 edition is/was available from Taplines).  Interestingly, there are if anything more examples of lever-type handbrakes:  Miner, Blackall, and at least four others.  You can also see examples of the tilt-down hand brakes that were used on some drop-end gondolas.

As for horizontal brake wheels, there are a few examples from National Malleable and Dayton Malleable.  Just guessing, but I would bet there were other manufactures as well, but advertising in the CBCs was after all optional, and not all products of the day can be found there.  

My 1931 CBC contains even more diversity, as there is now even more emphasis on power hand brakes, including the horizontal wheel type that Gene mentions.

And throughout, there are several examples of wheels attached to square shafts, although sometimes the squareness does not extend beyond the point of the wheel attachment.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


 


 

Damn that new feebay system




Dan Smith


Lester Breuer
 

Bill, one of the Cal-Scale brake wheeel sets, 190-289, in photo attached.  Other sets are Kadee and Grandt Line.
Lester Breuer


Dennis Storzek
 

On Sat, Jul 14, 2018 at 12:28 PM, Bill Welch wrote:
Dennis, will the NYC brake wheel be available as a separate part?
No, unfortunately not, its part of the 36' floor, underframe and detail parts group.

Dennis Storzek


Dennis Storzek
 

On Sat, Jul 14, 2018 at 02:33 PM, Dan Smith wrote:
Is this the wheel you have tooled?
https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/uDcAAOSw0d9bQ38Y/s-l1600.jpg

Certainly looks like it, although we couldn't do the drain holes in the rim.

Dennis Storzek