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More thoughts on Z-scale Hood Units

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  • Dan MacKellar
    Hey guys, been offline for awhile, but will be back in full force shortly. I was thinking about how to go about building body shells for hood units. A friend
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 9, 2000
      Hey guys, been offline for awhile, but will be back in full force
      shortly.


      I was thinking about how to go about building body shells for
      hood units. A friend of mine produces kits for HO and N scale in
      Resin and he said that if I can get a pattern, he can do up shells.
      I was told that etched brass would be the way to go for a resin
      pattern, but I have no idea about how to go about it. I'm planning
      on talking to him further about doing this and looking into costs.

      I worked out a basic drive for an EMD switcher that will work in
      theory. I have yet to get the parts to test it out though, but it
      will likely pull about as much as a Marklin 8805 (0-6-0T). I am also
      designing a mechanism for an H24-66. The good thing about a
      Trainmaster is that the carbody scales out to 10mm, which would allow
      for a 10mm motor without much problem. The worst part about doing
      this will be the Commonwealth style trucks. I've been wondering
      whether modified Microtrains Z-scale passenger trucks couldn't be
      modified (sideframes only) for this purpose. The offset wheel
      spacing (8mm and 10mm respectively) truck spacing would require a
      scratchbuilt or modified truck. The Drive train is going to be built
      from Microtrains parts and only 4 out of the 6 axles will be
      powered. I'm finalizing the materials needed now.

      I'll talk to my friend and see what can be arranged, as well as what
      he needs in the form of plans. What I need to know from the list
      members is what type of locomotive would be most needed. Personally,
      I'd vote for both a GP7/9 shell (nondynamic for simplicity) and an SW
      of some type, either a 7 or 1200. I'd also like to see Alco style
      sideframes that could be adapted to a MT truck mounting (cut off the
      EMD frames and mount the AAR frames) and possibly an Alco FA and FB
      shell to fit the MT chassis.

      I'll get back to the group on what we'd be looking at cost wise.

      On another, layout related note, I've got my primary layout plan
      finalized. It's a double track oval on a 4'X8.5' sectional layout (2
      48"X15" end sections and 6 12"X24" centre sections. There is a
      branchline running up to a coal mine as well. The layout is built
      for easy expansion and is set in Central Pennsylvania circa 1957.
      The existing design used the 10 turnouts I have on hand and allows
      for a handlaid staging yard with handlaid turnouts (when I feel
      adventurous enough). Given the price of Z-Scale flextrack (nearly $7
      per section in Canada) and given the amount of track I'd need (well
      over 40'), it's more cost efficient to drop $50 Cdn on a bundle of
      Code 55 rail and handlay the main by myself. Code 55 was chosen
      because the code 40 I ordered was backordered, and since Marklin
      track is code 55...well, you get the idea. Hopefully, construction
      will begin within the next couple of weeks. The layout will be
      powered with a permanant version of the throttles Model Railroader
      used on their Z-Scale WP.

      2 towns are represented, a small branchline coal town (Carbon
      Springs) and a large county seat (Henderson). The latter will be
      serviced by a Kibri Dreichen station. I also plan on scratchbuilding
      a 3-stall roundhouse and a 5" diameter turntable. The yard (2
      tracks) will be expanded in the future, and it can also be extended.
      The Henderson area is stretched along 6' of table, which works out to
      a nice city scene in Z (mostly flats).

      I'm going to draw the plan up in the next week or so and post it to
      the group.

      I should be back in the loop within a couple days if all goes well.
      Let me know which of the above mentioned locos I should pursue, the
      GP7, SW1200 or the FA (or all of the above). I'll be looking at
      getting Trainmaster shells done up as well if anyone's interested
      (What's Coal Country without H24's?)

      Best Regards,
      Dan MacKellar
      DMackellar@...

      President and CEO - Lakeshore, Pennsylvania and Western Railroad,
      Lackawanna Division
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