Monday, September 7, 2020

C&O 1013 Covered Hopper Upgrade

I received a RTR Chesapeake & Ohio (C&O) covered hopper, C&O 1013, a Kato 70 Ton 2 bay, painted black with white lettering from Ron Christensen along with a pill bottle filled with foundry sand from Michigan.   Ron was aware I used a mix of unused white and used black foundry sand for my ballast.  The large pill bottle had enough sand to make a sand load or ballast a siding on the railroad.   The upgraded hopper will be used to deliver sand to Randolph Anchor Glass Plant, a new customer in Randolph, Minn. serviced by the Minneapolis & Northland Railroad Company.

When I asked for information regarding C&O 1013, class LO, on website  Ed Hawkins provided this comprehensive response:

"All C&O LO’s of the 1958 cu. ft. design built from 1937 thru 1953 were painted entirely black with white stencils. Builders included ACF, GATC, Ralston Steel Car Co., and Pullman-Standard. Data & selected builder & in-service photos were published in RP CYC Volumes 27 (ACF), 28 (GATC) and 30 (RSC, P-S). 

The model of C&O 1013 is intended to represent a prototype car from series 800-1299, 500 cars built ca. 12-48 to 2-49 by Ralston Steel Car Co. (lot 2575). A Ralston builder photo of C&O 1143 was published on p. 239 of the 1949-51 Car Builders’ Cyclopedia. It shows the car painted “builder gray” that was done by some car builders to better illustrate the car’s details, rather than the production scheme painted black that tended to make the details more difficult to discern. In-service photos of C&O 823 (original paint, 3-54 reweigh) & 1211 (6-57 repaint) were published on p. 91 of RP CYC, Volume 30.

Regarding the decoration of the model, the final three orders of C&O’s 1958 cu. ft. LO covered hopper cars built in 1948, 1952, and 1953 (the last two series from Pullman-Standard as shown on pages 36-38 of RP CYC Volume 30) came with the C and O for Progress monogram with steam trail. Whereas the model has the later straight-line version of the monogram, which would represent a repainted car circa 1955 or later. Missing on the model to the right of the Lt. Wt. line are stencils to identify the reweigh station symbol & date stencils that could reflect where & when the car was repainted - perhaps something like RA 9-55 to represent the repainted car weighed at C&O’s Raceland, Kentucky car shops. This is easily lettered with decals as well as some journal box repack stencils that the model also lacks. 

While I don’t have an exact date when the “For Progress” monogram change occurred, photos of new cars denote it was between 2-54 & 9-55. Hope this helps."

Mont Switzer Collection, Bob's Photo
(click on this or any photo to enlarge)

I began the upgrade by disassembling the hopper and adding 1/4 oz. tire weights to the interior to bring the hopper weight to 3.6 ounces.  While trucks were removed for disassembly, the bolsters were tapped for 2-56 screws.  When I assembled the car to continue upgrade I used Fastenal 1/4 inch screws to attach trucks.

I continued with two easy upgrade items.  After removing the Kato running boards, I installed Kadee hopper Apex Tri-Lok running boards after cutting off the mounting pins on the running boards and on the end support brackets.  Next the Kato Ajax brake wheel was replaced with a Kadee Ajax brake wheel.

Kadee running boards.

Kadee running boards and Adjax brake wheel installed.

C&O 1013 hopper upgrade continued with the more difficult items.  I carved off all the grab irons with a custom shaped number 17 Xacto blade in a Xacto Number five handle.  I also like to use the Micro-Mark mini scalpel blades and handles for this task. 

Xacto handle with custom ground #17 blade
and Micro-Mark mini scalpel blades and handles.
(click on this or any other photo to enlarge)

Close up of blades.

I installed straight or drop grab irons I bent from Tichy Train Group (Tichy) #1101, .010” diameter phosphor bronze wire (PBW).  All ladder rungs were removed with a side cutter, single edge razor blade and the custom shaped number 17 Xacto blade.  I replaced the ladder rungs with drop type grab rungs again bent from Tichy #1101 .010” diameter PBW.

Grab irons and ladder rungs installed on left side.

Grab irons and ladder rungs on right side and "A" end.

The Kato non-see through brake step was replaced next.   The Kato brake step was pulled off.  The brackets were cut off from the back and glued to a new see through brake step cut from a Kadee Apex running board.  The new Kadee brake step with Kato brackets was installed.

New Kadee brake step
with Kato brackets.

Another view of new brake step.

Every hopper upgrade needs to have the very visible train line on the right side added.  I installed the eye bolts brackets bent from Tichy #1101 .010” PBW to hold the train line.  A train line using .017” green flora wire for the train line was installed.  In addition, the tow loops, bent from Tichy #1101 .010” diameter PBW were installed.  

Train line and tow loops installed.

The final upgrade item on the hopper was the uncoupling levers. Uncoupling lever brackets, eye bolts bent from Tichy #1101, were installed.   The install of uncoupling levers bent from Tichy #1106, .0125” PBW followed.

Uncoupling levers have been installed.

With upgrade items completed, C&O 1013 was ready to have upgrade items painted.  All upgrade items were hand painted Vallejo Black, 70.950.  I was not happy with the way the running boards looked.  Therefore, running boards and roof as the ends were sprayed Vallejo Black, 70.950, after the sides were covered with 3M Scotch blue Painter’s Tape.  The Vallejo Black was thinned 50% with a custom mix of distilled water, Vallejo air brush thinner,71.161 and Vallejo Airbrush Flow Improver,71.562.  When the Black was dry C&O 1013 was sprayed with Vallejo Matt Varnish, 70.520 since I did not apply additional decals with reweigh data or journal box repack stencils that the model lacks.  I may go back later and add them.

Roof spayed and weathered.

And, when the Matt varnish coat was dry, weathering using Pan Pastels was applied.  Pan Pastels used were as follows:  Black, 800.5 and Payne’s Extra Dark Grey, 840.1. The weathering may be too heavy for some modelers.

Side view of weathered hopper.

3/4 view of weathered C&O 1013.

After weathering with Pan Pastels  C&O 1013  was ready for service on the Minneapolis & Northland Railroad Company, “Serving today, Shaping tomorrow.”  A car card was made for C&O 1013,  the final step to put it in service on the Minneapolis & Northland Railroad Company Railroad.

C&O 1013 sitting on Randolph Anchor Glass Plant
unloading track.

Another view of C&O 1013 waiting to be spotted
on unloading grate at Randolph Anchor Glass Plant.

I want say, “Thank You” to several people for their help with this build.  A “Thank You” to Ron Christensen for the hopper.   A “Thank You” to Ed Hawkins for help with the prototype and model information provided  in this blog post to help with the build of this car .  And, a “Thank You” to Mont Switzer for his photo help and information regarding this build.

Thank You for taking time to read my blog.  You can share a comment in the section below if you choose to do so.  Please sign your comment with your name if you choose to leave one.  Please share the blog link with other model railroaders.

Lester Breuer

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Expansion - Randolph Industries Part II

With three of the industries in Randolph finished except for a few minor details, I began to build General Tire And Rubber, the final industry.  I decided to use a Timberline II  kit, a two story brick warehouse, kit 1004-2495, that arrived as a surprise package from my good friend George Toman.   When I asked George about the surprise package he explained the kit was left to him by a friend that had recently passed.  He now had two warehouse kits since he already had the kit.  When he read my blog post on changes to Tunnel City in which I said I was going to add the Randolph expansion, he sent the Timberline II warehouse kit guessing I might be able to use it in Randolph.  He guessed right.

When I saw the the photo of the built warehouse on the box cover with the unique exterior trusses and dock hoist, I knew I wanted to build the warehouse kit to house a customer in Randolph.  My excitement to build the warehouse kit took a hit when I opened  the kit to exam the contents.  The Timberline II warehouse kit contents are building sides and ends printed on ten ply card,  thin cardboard ( named RR board in the kit) for roof and floors, scale lumber, embossed brick paper, white metal castings of windows, doors and other detail parts, drawings of each side and an isometric drawing 1/2 HO scale with letters on the drawing to indicate the part involved and numbers to indicate the step in the instructions.

Photo of warehouse on Timberline II box cover.
( click on this on any photo to enlarge )

Drawings in kit.

Some kit contents and cardboard template to assemble warehouse.

After looking at the kit drawings of the warehouse I knew the sides were the length I needed and one end was the correct width; however, the other was not as I needed it to be shorter.  The kit drawings were for a building with a rectangle footprint and my allotted space footprint  for General Tire And Rubber was for a convex quadrilateral referred to as a trapezoid building footprint.  I would need to make a cardboard footprint of the building to assemble the warehouse in the modified shape I wanted after I positioned the dock.

Before I started the General Tire And Rubber building I started with the trackside dock.  I found the kit dock scribed decking; however, I did not want to cut all the wood posts and framing from the scale lumber to build the sub structure.  Therefore, I looked through my saved building parts from prior kits and found plastic molded dock framing with posts attached.  The plastic framing was for a longer dock then the kit dock drawing which had the dock only the length of the building.   I liked the longer length as I wanted to connect the hoist dock on end of the building with the one on trackside.  I glued the wood dock decking to the plastic framing with Testors tube cement.  Of all the glues I use, I still find Testors tube cement is the best for attaching wood to plastic.   To locate the dock, I determined the dock distance from the track with a National Model Railroad Association (NMRA) track gauge and set it in place.

Plastic dock posts and framing with kit wood decking.

With dock in place, I used cardboard to make a footprint template for General Tire And Rubber building to help with assembly.  The  square attached to the trapezoid footprint is for space to be occupied by the hoist dock on the end of the building. 

Cardboard footprint template I made to help warehouse assembly.

I began the build of the warehouse by cutting out the sides, ends and roof elevator shaft enclosure from the printed cards with a Xacto knife with a #11 blade followed by cutting out the windows and doors from the cut out sides and end.  Embossed brick paper was glued to the card sides and ends with rubber cement.   Openings for the windows and doors were made by making a vertical cut from the interior in the middle of the brick paper covering the opening and a cut across the top and bottom of the each opening with Xacto knife with #11 blade. The brick paper was now folded and glued to the inside ( interior side) of the card openings.  I changed from rubber cement to Elmers white glue for this task.   Three buildings sides, the long side blank wall, trackside wall and short hoist wall had the kit scale lumber foundation glued to them and then they were glued together with  Elmer’s white glue. 

Three walls glued together after window and
 door openings made and walls glued to foundation.

The brick paper covered sides were colored with Primsacolor pencils:  tuscan red, PC937 and dark umber, PC947.  Pan Pastel neutral grey, # 820.5, was applied over the colored brick walls with a cotton swab.   Again, the brick paper was colored with the Prismacolor pencils.  Pilasters on the building, kit lumber with brick paper covering three sides, were installed and colored as other brick described above.  

Bricks colored with Prismacolor pencils and
Pan Pastel Neutral Grey.

Interior bracing provided in the kit was cut to fit with a Northwest Shortline chopper and installed.  Floors and roof cut from heavy cardboard to replace the thin RR card provided in the kit were installed.   Since floors were tightly fitted to the building walls, a cut was made in their length to allow removal after doors and windows installed.

Interior bracing and removable bottom floor installed.

Cardboard floors installed in the interior.
Front wall with windows and doors not yet cut out sits in front.

I continued the build of the building by completing the front wall of the building even if it would face the backdrop when in place.  Wood kit parts were cut and fitted for the stone trim.  The roof was covered with 320 black wet/dry sandpaper attached with rubber cement.  The elevator shaft enclosure walls were covered with the brick paper and the roof with the same sandpaper as the main roof.   Roof trusses, a unique feature of building, were glued up from the kit wood parts modified to the new roof footprint size. 

The dock and dock hoist, a second unique feature of the kit, were built next.   I cut the scale kit lumber per drawings for the dock posts, framing and attached the scribed wood decking.  In my scale lumber supply I used matching scribed wood to complete the trackside dock decking and the connection I wanted from the hoist dock to it.  On the front of the trackside dock I installed the post bracing in a different pattern then used on the Food Producers building next door.  The kit white metal castings for the hoist frame were installed and painted with Model Master steel, # 1780.

Front wall, roof with trusses, end dock and hoist and installed.

Back wall, roof with trusses, end dock and hoist view. 

Dock bracing on the two building docks is a different pattern.

Now I sprayed the windows and doors using a Color-Place rattle can with a fast dry paint color called fire red.  While  the windows were drying I installed steps from the parts box on the end of the trackside dock and stained the docks with FloquiI Oak (S123) Flo-Stain and dirty Dio-Sol thinner.  The brick wall portions showing above the roof were covered with brick paper and colored to match the exterior brick walls.  I finished the exterior roof trusses by adding the wire to represent the truss rods and installed the kit white metal castings for the rod plate and blots.  A roof access hatch was cut from kit lumber, painted to match windows and doors and installed.

Once the windows and doors were dry I installed them in the opening from the interior with the exception of the office doors installed from the outside.  The wood lintels for windows and doors and the window sills were cut from the scale lumber with NWSL chopper and installed with Elmers white glue and painted PollyScale Depot Buff.  The diamonds at the top of the pilasters are white metal castings provided in the kit.

Docks are stained. Windows with lintels and stiles
 and doors with lintels installed in front wall. Wood
trusses have details added.

The trackside dock roof  was next.  I installed the kit provided roof brackets, white metal castings , on the building and attached the wood roof.  I decided to cover the wood roof with Campbell Scale Models corrugated aluminum roofing, #801.  I attached the Campbell corrugated roofing with barge cement.  The corrugated roofing was painted with Model Master steel #1780.

Trackside dock wood roof installed.  

After the wood trackside  roof  was installed I stained the roof trusses with Floquil Oak stain and dirty Dio-Sol paint thinner while the glue set.  It was the same method I used to stain the decks except I also used some of sediment "gunk" from the bottom of the Dio-Sol bottle to make the trusses darker than the docks.

Trackside dock roof with corrugated roofing installed.

I assembled the block and tackle for the dock hoist.  I replaced the kit piano wire to be used for the chain with 50 links of brass chain gifted me by Bill Welch. I also added the metal chimney and vent details to the roof.

Block and Tackle with chain added to pulleys installed on hoist.

Final roof details added and block and tackle painted.

With. General Tire And Rubber building now complete I wanted to get the backdrop installed.  The backdrop is 1/8 inch masonite finished on one side.  I cut masonite backdrop sections 18 1/2 inches wide from 2 x 4  feet pieces purchased at the local home improvement store.  The finished railroad side is painted sky blue and the back side to match the layout room area.  The backdrop is installed with fourteen inches above the benchwork and four and one-half inches under the benchwork fascia.  The four and one-half inches of backdrop under the benchwork fascia rest on the bottom screws attaching the fascia and are secured with the top fascia screws which also pass through it.

Backdrop painted sky blue installed behind Randolph
as viewed from the Randolph Glass Plant end.

Backdrop painted sky blue installed behind Randolph
as viewed from the Wildung Team Track end.

Backdrop is inserted resting on bottom fascia screws.  Top
fascia screws also pass through backdrop to hold it in place.

While the painted backdrop was drying I built and installed the end of road guard  on the end of the road next to the track for the road serving the Food Producers and Randolph Anchor Glass.  I  built the end of road guard using dimensions provided on drawing in NMRA data sheet, Streets And Roads, D2g, issued April 1957.

End of road guard installed at track.

My Randolph expansion is ready for the Minneapolis & Northland Railroad Company to begin serving the new customers gained.  And, it is ready to exchange cars with the  Chicago Great Western connection there.  With a card box, phone and drink holder installed on the Randolph fascia, all that remains is to makeup the necessary waybills to create the customer traffic for operating sessions.

Not a lot of freight cars yet as waybills
 for the Randolph industries need to be made.

Phone, card box and fold up drink up holder
 installed on Randolph fascia.

Work table and throttle holder added to fascia. 
And,  a few new cars coming to the railroad.

Another, “Thank You” to George Toman for providing the Timberline II warehouse kit to build the General Tire And Rubber building and Bill Welch for the 50 links per inch brass chain used for the block and tackle on the Timberline II hoist.  

Thank You for taking time to read my blog.  You can share a comment in the section below if you choose to do so.  Please sign your comment with your name if you choose to leave one.  Please share the blog link with other model railroaders.
Lester Breuer

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Expansion - Randolph Industries, Part I

With the Randolph expansion benchwork, track work and basic scenery done, I began working on replacing cardboard rectangles representing industries with the final industries.  I began with the easy one first - the Wildung Team Track.  The remaining industries are kit bashed or modified kit structures.
I said the Wildung team track is easy as in Randolph no dock required so only fine shifted sand from a local road in my area and some sifted grey black dirt ( shifted black dirt from a local park baseball field home plate area) both applied with wet water ( Elmers white glue 25%,  tap water 75% and a few drops of liquid dish washing soap).  I put down the wet water from the Elmer’s glue bottle and use a throw away brush to to spread it in the area I will cover with the sand and dirt.  I first apply the sand with a coffee strainer and tea strainer and then a little dirt here and there with the only tea strainer.  I added Woodland Scenics blended grass and a few bushes at end of track to complete the scene for now.  I will put down static grass such as on the left side of the photo below at a later time.

Wildung Team Track
( click on this or any photo to enlarge)

Tools for adding basic scenery

The next industry, Food Producers, a little more difficult as a structure was needed for customer to occupy.  I chose the Walthers Cornerstone Trackside Post Office, kit 933-4063, for the structure.   I first assembled the dock.  I removed the boards that enclosed the bottom and added strip wood bracing to the posts.  The dock being plastic was hand painted with PollyScale Depot Buff.  Once dry the dock was brushed with Floquil Oak (S123) Flo-Stain.  Again once dry, a coat of dirty thinner gunk, the residue that collects on the bottom of the bottle filled with Dio-Sol ( I mix my own as Dio-Sol is out of production) used to clean brushes after using Floquil or other solvent based paint, was applied.  The basic building was assembled per instructions with the exception of exchanging the front and rear wall for the orientation I wanted on the railroad.

Walthers kit used for Food Producers.

Food Producers basic building and dock

At this point, I moved on to getting the basic structure in place for Randolph Anchor Glass Plant.   I chose the Walthers Cornerstone Kraft Mill, kit 933-3902, for the materials to kit bash the Anchor Glass Plant.   The  prototype for the kit bash was the Shakopee Anchor Glass Plant just outside of Shakopee in the industrial park where I grew up.  Of course, my Randolph space required using selective compression and using only the key features of the prototype.

Aerial view of Anchor Glass Plant in Shakopee
Industrial Park

Walthers kit used for Anchor Glass Plant kit bash.

 I cut, fitted and glued together the kit walls or parts of kit walls to get the basic structure.  Evergreen strip styrene was used where roof support was needed.  I did add a freight car loading entrance not on the prototype.  Just a feature I added as I wanted to have one building on the railroad that allowed spotting of freight cars inside.

Anchor Glass Plant kit bashed basic building.

Basic building  of Randolph Anchor Glass Plant.

Next I installed removable roofs on Randolph Anchor Glass Plant.  I now could proceed to complete work on the two buildings.  In this case, it was nice to have the two buildings to work on at the same time as when I tired of work on one or I was waiting for glue, etc. to set I could work on the other.  I went back to the Food Producers building and added removable interior floors and walls that I made using heavy cardboard.  The middle floors are cut/split in the middle to allow removal after doors and windows were installed.

Randolph Anchor Glass Plant roofs installed.

Food Producers interior floors

I painted the doors and windows attached to cardboard with masking tape with a rattle can using Rust-Oleum Gloss Protective Enamel.   Once dry the windows were installed and the kit window glazing was installed using Formula 560 Canopy glue.  On the exterior the window lintels were hand painted Polly Scale Depot Buff.  

Food Producers windows spray painted 

With windows installed, the roof was covered with black #320 wet/dry sandpaper, fitted and installed.    I did not like the roof sky lights on this building so I added roof details I liked and thought were more appropriate.   I scratchbuilt the “dog house” from Pikestuff wall parts  left over from another project to allow access to other roof mechanical items.  The other roof items came from Walthers Cornerstone Roof Details kit, #933-3733.

Food Producers roof with kit sky lites.

Food Producers with changes made to roof.

Now the building was ready for its exterior finish.  I applied a coat of hydrocal tinted with dry tempera paint pigment.  When dry, I added the kit roof dock which was hand painted Model Master #1780 steel.  A color I am going to miss with Testors removing Model Master paints from the market.

Food Producers with colored hydrocal finish applied.

Time to get back to the Anchor Glass Plant details.  A nice prototype feature was that many of the details were on individual concrete slabs sitting on a concrete slab the length of the building allowing me to build the side details as modules.

Shakopee Anchor Glass Plant with various details
on individual bases. 

First, a unloading grate for unloading sand in hoppers was installed in the track and the canopy was built from some trusses from the parts box, Evergreen #274 I-Beam and sheet styrene, and kit sprues for posts and base posts are attached to.  The furnace stacks were made using marker portion for the bottom and the lower barrel from a ball point pen turned upside down for the exhaust stack with an Evergreen styrene tube connecting the two pieces. Next, the air exhaust blower module next to it was built with styrene tubes and the blade hub from an helicopter model for the blower.

Unloading canopy and furnace stack started.

Basic furnace stacks and exhaust pipes with blower and
AHM door and concrete dock added under canopy.

I installed the small windows in the tower next.  The small windows came from my left over windows and doors parts box.  Following window install, I built the gable roof portion behind the furnace stacks of the glass plant to add character to the model.  I added the maintenance platforms to the furnace stacks.  The remaining details on scratch built styrene stands were made from parts in the Walthers Cornerstone Roof Details kit, Walthers Styrene Steps & Ladders kit, #1602 and below on concrete slab AHM detail parts.  Finally I added the section of the Randolph Anchor Glass Plant to the left of this building.

Small windows installed on tower of  Anchor Glass Plant.

All details including platform railings, ladders and unit next to dock
door under canopy for the side of Anchor Glass Plant completed.

Randolph Anchor Glass Plant windows
 and  additional section added.

The Anchor Glass Plant still has details that I want to add such as the leg on the roof, weathering and the maybe the unit on the gable roof section if there before 1955.  I will add these when I need another break from building freight cars.  And, I need to add the photo backdrop behind the plant and other structures.  That, will happen when I will go back next spring to photograph and use the photos to create.

The last structure for Randolph will be General Tire And Rubber I will cover in Part II.  And, I will also cover adding  a backdrop for the new Randolph expansion in Part II.

General Tire And Rubber building  will replace the
last cardboard rectangle on the siding beyond
Food Producers.  

Thank You for taking time to read my blog.  You can share a comment in the section below if you choose to do so.  Please sign your comment with your name if you choose to leave one.  Please share the blog link with other model railroaders.
Lester Breuer