Large Scale Central

Bettendorf truck

About a year. I have a huge thank you to Dan H for all of his help walking me through it. And he said once it clicks it clicks and it becomes fairly easy. I think I have a good grasp of it now. Every so often I can’t make it so something I want it to do but for the most part I can pretty well rip through a design.

[Quote]what is the proper term for this part?)
Steve, it’s called the bolster.

I am referring to the part on the car that attaches to the bolster…

Steve you have the body bolster which the heavy cross member that the truck mounts to. And then you have the truck bolster which is the cross piece on the truck. They are both bolsters. At least thats what I call it.

Removed duplicate post

I’ve moved this info to:

Logging railroads/short lines were not all Narrow Gauge.
For example, on Vancouver Island, and here in West Quebec, there were railroads using log cars much like the ones Devon is building…even the Canadian Pacific had log cars like his, running on friction bearing Bettendorf trucks…up until the late 1960’s.
Friction bearings were still allowed, but NOT in INTERCHANGE service. Research will give you information such as that, if you take the time to look for it.
Fred Mills

Steve that’s the main reason I started doing the process I mentioned on my scratch built cars. By drilling out all the various manufacturers truck bolster to accept the threaded nylon bushing/spacer that look like these

that is slightly larger than the stock holes then I can insert them into my body bolster with epoxy. Then with the drilled out trucks they become universal. The bushing things I get are threaded for a #4 cap screw. Then with a cap screw and a flat washer and all the same size holes and posts all my stuff becomes universal.

I was under the impression that aftermarket bolsters varied by more than just the hole size.

Fred maybe you are the one who should go back and look at the thread before commenting. Gary asked his question before he had any idea of the type of car I was building. He was assuming I was talking about an older narrow gauge skeleton car from the 1800’s where they used arch bars. It was only after he made the comment that I showed the picture. How was he supposed to know what I was building so that he could research the trucks being used. Since this is my thread and my conversation I welcomed the question. It was a good question. Considering I usually do model steam era NG I think it was a good assumption to assume that is what I was building until I clarified the type of car. In another thread two other people automatically assumed I was referring to the older NG cars that would have arch bars.


To politely answer your question and to elaborate on Fred’s knowledge, this line was a section of the former Milwaukee Road thus its all standard gauge. Certainly this line was run in the day and age of arch bars but it persisted into the 1980’s. The logs were on the St Maries to Bovil, ID branch line. Now I have no idea when these particular cars were actually made. But they ran them well into the 1990’s. By this time, as Fred mentions, they were no longer allowed for interchange use. But they could use them all they wanted on their line.

As a side note, I asked one time why they still used a caboose long after most mainlines had abandon them. One of several reasons they still used a caboose up until they were done hauling these long strings of log cars was fire watch. Since they were still using friction bearing trucks and lots of them, far more than they really could adequately maintain, it was not uncommon for them to go dry (no grease) and start spitting sparks.

Maybe i need to back up. I, up to this point, have 100% scratch built all my own car frames including the body bolsters. i have never used an aftermarket part for this. If that is what you are doing then yes you will have the added problem of not only the trucks having different size holes but the body bolster will have (I assume) different sized posts and take differing size screws.

So my apologies if I missed that part. I had it stuck in my head that you were going to make your own and not buy an after market part. I see your point. And for that I am afraid i can offer no advice.

Now if you are talking about the various truck bolsters varying more than just hole size, so far i have had no problem drilling them to my needs and having them work. Any other differences have not given me any problems. I have used Bachmann, Aristo, USA, and LGB in their various forms just fine by just increasing the hole size to fit my post.

How many Aristo Bettendorf trucks do you think you will need? I have a few or more ? I do know that you can spread them apart (aristo side frames) and insert wheel sets . “They are”, “their”, “they’re”, 3 piece but I was not taking them apart. However I do not know the flexibility of 3D prints with all this different talk of filament so good luck with the venture.

I don’t use filament, i use resin and it tends to be brittle. At least the stuff I use. I have spread commercial trucks a lot and rarely take them apart to remove and replace wheels. I just don’t know if resin prints will do that. The filament stuff I have seen is plenty durable enough to do it.

With that said I would have to count. But I want between 10 and 15 of these log cars to even begin to do justice to the prototype which hauled 30+ cars. I think I have enough trucks for 3. So I would need quite a few. Let me test print these and if they work then I will just print what I need when I need it. But I do sincerely appreciate the offer. I was/am making this from the Aristo flat car. But in another thread Craig T suggested I make one and then cast the frame/body in resin. Then I can print the rest of the parts. I may do this as it would be by far the cheapest way to get a fleet of these cars. So lets hold off and see how the printing goes.

Well the truck is already for the printer when I get home. I added the files to my post in the “catalog” forum. Of course these are untested and may likely change but if someone wants to try printing them its there.

Following the post from Rooster, I am slowly changing all my LGB (3) and AristoCraft ( a lot ) to modern KaDee Trucks, so I will be able to sell (very cheaply) old trucks . Let me know how many besides Rooster’s and I can help you out

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I got curious so I went looking. Perhaps these would solve the “nylon hold” problem:

Not sure epoxy will hold ABS either. You mentioned in another thread using brass. I think aluminum or brass would hold great.

But I have had no issue with a little gouging getting nylon to hold

I print this type of part with ABS, so for me its an ABS to ABS bond - and super glue holds ABS very well.

Sorry for being a little late to this discussion, Devon, I’ve been on a hunting trip for the last several weeks. Looks like you have a great design for your trucks. I like your plan of using real springs. Let me know how that works out. And, as you know, you are more than welcome to any of the 3D designs I have. Looking forward to seeing the final prints.

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