NS&T freight motors: tanks and trucks…

The fleet now sports cut levers, draft gear, and trainline air hoses.
Among the projects still to tackle, I will replace the wind deflectors on #8 (at left) with photoetched parts I’ve ordered.

I’ve been working on a variety of small projects related to my construction of freight motors 8, 15, and 19 for the Niagara St. Catharines & Toronto Railway. Since my last update, I’ve added some details to the ends of the models – including cut levers, air hoses, and draft gear. Couplers will wait until after painting.


Elsewhere, I’ve made good progress on the deck-mounted air tanks that sit to the left of the end hoods (in front of the pipes that drop down the left edge of the cab faces). These have a mix of convex and concave ends, depending on the locomotive, and all have recessed ends riveted to the body of the tank.

To create these, I started trimmed some brass tube to the correct length on my lathe. Then I formed tank ends from a rod built up from concentric tubes of styrene, using a radius tool on my lathe. (If I were to do this again, I would find a piece of solid rod and turn it down to the right diameter – but styrene tube was what I had on hand.) I’ll formed a tank end on each end of the styrene rods: I will cut off each end and insert it into the appropriate tube.

Tank bodies and ends waiting for assembly. Two concave tank ends are at right, while the other four ends are convex.

To complete these, I’m waiting on an order of rivets from Archer Transfers. This will be my first opportunity to use Archer’s rivets, which are 3D Printed onto decal paper, and I’m looking forward to trying them. I expect those to arrive by the end of this week.

Once the rivets are in place, I can mount the tanks to the deck. They’ll sit on white metal tank saddles, secured with wire loops.


I’ve also painted the truck side frames:

Number 19’s frame, with power trucks mounted. Now that I’ve painted the side frames, I can actually proceed with installing DCC and Sound for these models, since everything but the headlight wiring will ride on the frame.

I mounted the side frames to the power trucks before painting, so to protect the trucks I taped the bottom (which has exposed gears and wire traces), then created a reusable mask from a sheet of thin styrene.

A side frame in primer, with a mask to protect the power truck.

I designed the mask to slide between the side frame and the wheel faces, and made it deep enough to cover the wheels. A slot in the mask allowed me to slip it over the side frame mounting post.


As I get closer to finishing these, I’m getting more excited about the possibility of modelling this interesting prototype.

Published by Trevor

Lifelong model railway enthusiast and retired amateur shepherd who trained a border collie to work sheep. Professional writer and editor, with some podcasting and Internet TV presenting work thrown in for good measure.

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