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  • Topic: D&RGW idler flat build

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    • February 21, 2021 4:04 PM EST
      • Salida, CO
         
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      D&RGW idler flat build

      Hi all,

      Here's my next project. The Rio Grande had a bunch of these and they weren't used to haul anything; rather, they were used to allow standard gauge locomotives to switch narrow gauge cars and vice versa. The Grande had several yards with three rail track and those yards are where these cars lived.

       

      Here's a pic of a narrow gauge locomotive hauling a standard gauge car with an idler in between:

       

      I have decided to build one in 1:29 scale. Here's an end view of the car I am modeling, taken at the Colorado Railroad Museum back in October. This pic shows the three-way coupler pocket used on these cars:

       

      My son modeled the coupler pocket for me in 3D and I had a pair 3D printed at Shapeways. Since I don't intend to actually operate this car I had it printed in plastic - sorry for the fuzzy pic:

       

      I bought a pair of couplers from Burl Rice and fitted them to the pockets:

       

      I wanted this car to have a bit of weight so I bought some Kadee trucks for the project. Here's one of the #971 A.S.F. Bettendorf metal truck:

       

      I bought some brass C-channel from PM Research for the sides and this morning began to solder the frame together:

       

      I'm done for today and the car now looks like this. The Westinghouse brake cylinder is from Precision Scale:

       

      Until next week.

       

      Cheers,

      Matt

      This post was edited by Matt Hutson at March 8, 2021 4:49 PM EST
    • February 21, 2021 4:35 PM EST
      • Fort Wayne, Indiana
         
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      Very cool build! I’ll be watching 

       

      Jason

    • February 21, 2021 6:26 PM EST
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      Cool idea for a build!

    • February 22, 2021 10:11 AM EST
      • Spokane Valley, Washington St.
         
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      Great build!

      I built one years ago. Not an exact model, (but none of my builds are )

      I rebuild it later with only one coupler, because with the two, it wouldn't couple easily.

       

    • February 22, 2021 12:49 PM EST
      • F'n Fresno, California
         
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      Great project Matt!  

      I am pleased to follow your ongoing progress with 1:29 dual gauge.

      John R.

       

    • February 22, 2021 7:29 PM EST
      • Salida, CO
         
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      Wow John, too cool! I had no idea anybody else was as crazy as me. ;) Yours looks great.

       

      Cheers,

      Matt

    • February 28, 2021 7:24 PM EST
      • Salida, CO
         
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      Hi guys,

      Here's a quick update for the weekend. I didn't make much progress as I was out of town yesterday.

      I made stirrup steps from K&S 1/32" x 1/16" flat bar. The were cut and bent to match the dimensions of the prototype and then resistance soldered onto the bottom of the C-channel. I bought a resistance soldering outfit from a friend of my son's last year and still am having a love/hate relationship with it. Some things work great and other not at all. I think mostly I just need more experience.


      I also built one of the corner ladders. These were made from K&S 1/32" x 1/8" flat bar. Holes were drilled and grab irons from Trackside Detail (TD-205 for those keeping score at home) soldered in place.

       

      End grab irons were also added, along with a brake wheel from Precision Scale on the other end. One of the three-way coupler pockets was tacked in place for this pic.

       

      Cheers,

      Matt

      This post was edited by Matt Hutson at March 8, 2021 6:15 PM EST
    • February 28, 2021 8:09 PM EST
      • Post Falls, Idaho
         
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      neat build. I love the dual gauge idler flats.

      ____________________________________
    • March 6, 2021 5:35 PM EST

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      Nice craftsmanship, Devon.  I like the car.

    • March 6, 2021 5:35 PM EST

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      Nice craftsmanship, Devon.  I like the car.

    • March 6, 2021 10:25 PM EST
      • Candlewood Valley, Connecticut
         
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      I hear you on the resistance soldering.  I bought a well loved one from Bruce maybe 5 years ago. Played with it a bit when I first got it with moderate success. I think I was trying to use too much power since the one thing I had good success with was capping off a heavy brass garden hose fitting!  I still have it, but it doesn't get much use.  I think it could use a new wand.

       

      Your soldering work looks great.  Are you going to put down some dual gauge track too?

       

      This post was edited by Jon Radder at March 7, 2021 4:32 PM EST
      ____________________________________

      www.cvsry.com www.cvsry.com

    • March 7, 2021 2:21 PM EST
      • Salida, CO
         
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      Thank you all, and Jon you are too kind about my soldering work. Thank God for paint!

       

      Today I finished making the other three ladders, then set about making the deck. For the deck I used 1/8" basswood from Midwest Products. Here's one piece set in place:

       

      I scribed the deck with a black uni-ball micro pen just like I used on my caboose walls last year. I used a spacing of 10" scale inches for the boards, and then notched the ends as well:

       

      Below the rest of the ladders are in place. I have also added the coupler lift bars and brackets:

       

      The deck was stained with 70% isopropyl alcohol which has a few squirts of black india ink added. Here's a shot with the deck in place and one of the three-way coupler pockets installed:

       

      Due to poor planning on my part I ran out of parts. Lacking a few coupler lift bar brackets and a retainer valve from Precision Scale, I had to stop for today. Once those arrive and are installed I will prime and paint. Lettering is also on hand.

       

      This project has given me lots of practice with the resistance soldering iron. I used up a lot of desoldering braid too!

       

      Cheers,
      Matt

      This post was edited by Matt Hutson at March 8, 2021 6:16 PM EST
    • March 7, 2021 3:52 PM EST
      • West Grove, Pennsylvania
         
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      ____________________________________

      "Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --Martin Luther King Jr

    • March 7, 2021 3:54 PM EST

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      Beautiful work here!  Wow.  Thanks for great photos.

    • March 7, 2021 4:25 PM EST
      • Landers ca., high desert California
         
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      Very, Very NICE indeed. . . . 

    • March 7, 2021 7:44 PM EST
      • Fort Wayne, Indiana
         
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      Very nice!

      I’ll take two of them

    • March 8, 2021 1:22 PM EST
      • F'n Fresno, California
         
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      Matt, your idler flat project was a difficult challenge with amazing results!!!

      I have posted photos from this article over my workbench as a someday project (like someday when I get a WHOLE lot more skillful).

      Thanks for the inspiration.

      John

    • March 8, 2021 1:38 PM EST
      • Port Orchard, Washington
         
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      Nice clean resistance soldering on that build. I'm slowly getting better with my resistance soldering unit as well. I feel like I've had to relearn soldering all over again using resistance soldering. But boy I love how fast the parts cool. I've only got a small tweezer set, so I need to invest in some of the other attachments like the probe.

    • March 8, 2021 4:08 PM EST
      • Santa Ana, CA
         
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      Nice pic and you've just changed my build before I was about to cut it on the laser.  For the track cleaner (a stake-bed car), the lower section is acrylic and I was just going to leave the sides flat.  (Top is wood.)  But I have Plastruct that is the same width raised on just one side and will look like your "I-beam" frame when glued to the perimeter of the acrylic.

       

      I was all ready to cut this but after seeing your pic, I redid the sides/front/back 2MM wider in CAD to account for the Plastruct.  Plus, I can just paint the Plastruct to look like metal, more so than tha acrylic.

       

      Thanks again!

    • March 8, 2021 9:23 PM EST
      • Santa Ana, CA
         
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      Actually..., I decided to change it back.  Mine has stake pockets to hold the battery for the cleaning motor and I would have had to cut the Plastruct to go around these.  There would be several small pieces to deal with.

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