Alco IR GE 60T Boxcab Project

rray Mar 10, 2023

  1. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    First let me say enlighten you with this Post Retirement Revelation. Nobody respects or even cares what you did for a living except those who were in the same career field as you. So if you want recognition for achievements post retirement, the new Masters Degree to seek is, the Master Model Railroader certificate! :D

    As some of you know, I need to master 2 more of the 7 needed, out of 11 possible NMRA certificates, before I can earn my Master Model Railroader. I must have at least one from each of the four areas below, and I currently have the ones in green:
    The easiest for me to do is the Master Builder Motive Power, and I also need one under the Service to the Hobby & NMRA Member category, of which the easiest there would be the Model Railroad Author. So, on with the thread...


    As I said yesterday I have one of Walter's 60 ton Boxcab shells, and a Rokuhan Shorty mechanism. In order to get the AP Points required however, I need to rebuild some things. So I had to decide which prototype I will model and this morning I selected the Alco - GE - Ingersoll Rand built demonstrator prototype, otherwise known as an AGEIR boxcab. Produced by a collaboration of 3 companies, of which American Locomotive Company built the chassis and running gear, General Electric the generator, motors and controls, and Ingersoll Rand built the diesel engine. These Boxcabs were the first production diesel-electric locomotives.

    So this is my prototype, the IR demonstrator built in 1925:
    Demonstrator Locomotive 9681.jpg


    This is the shell Walter offers on his Shapeways site, along with the Rokuhan Shorty chassis I will be using as my starting point:

    Boxcab Shorty MTL905.jpg



    First order of business is to make it difficult enough that I can score enough AP points to get a motive power certificate, so I started by sanding off the car sides from the shell. This will allow me to better match the rivet pattern, door panels, and grab irons used on the car sides:

    02 Shell Sides Sanded.jpg



    Because I will need to earn conformance to prototype points, the trucks will need to be spaced closer to the ends of the car. Here you can see how close they are to the center of the model and as they sit, ARE NOT very convincing:

    01 Boxcab on Shorty.jpg


    So this will make it difficult for sure. I cut the shorty up into a pile of pieces. WOW! Are you kidding me!

    03 Shorty Cut Up.jpg

    Now I sit here pondering my plight! :D
     
  2. Zscaleplanet

    Zscaleplanet TrainBoard Supporter

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    I’m having visions of the first Lew Screw Hardware prototype or was that some other structure. I don’t recall that one ending well….:ROFLMAO:

    Now is this “cutting up” process all part of the NMRA challenge of your modeling skills? If so, does running over it with your truck yield more points scored assuming you turn in a viable final specimen.
     
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  3. Curn

    Curn TrainBoard Member

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    I'm just imagining a NMRA official questioning the legendary Rob Ray's prestige and saying "I don't think you qualify as a Model Railroad Author". Then just handing over the reams of paper that would be every modeling post you have made over the last 20+ years. I think you qualify as an author, even though much of it is on non-traditional media. Plus some articles in Z-Track Mag of course.
     
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  4. husafreak

    husafreak TrainBoard Member

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    Holy Moly! FWIW I think you are a great "non traditional" author. Your posts and threads are very well written and complete. But if you do write a book I promise to buy a copy. As for the boxcab you know for a minute there I was thinking wow, cool, Rob and I are building the same loco! LOL I think that is not true anymore ;)
     
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  5. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    What ever it takes to make the model conform to prototype measurements, or at least attempt to.

    I think they are thinking I need magazine articles or a book, but I think they will let me score some points from electronic media in this day and age.

    We are actually building the same loco, but I have to try to follow stuff the NMRA cares about, and one of them is this sheet:
    60 Ton AGEIR Dimensions.jpg
     
  6. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    A killer project for sure! As we all know, it will be a stunner when done.
     
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  7. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Spliced the motor chassis back together with polystyrene strips. Very forgiving material to work with:

    04 Spliced Mechanism.jpg


    Sanded the sides down to get a easy fit in the shell:

    05 Test Fit Shell.jpg

    And the last work for today was to add tabs to mount MTL couplers, since I want this loco to be a functional switcher:

    06 Forming MTL Coupler Mounts.jpg
     
  8. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    One more today, I want the coupler mounts to be stiff tomorrow when I grind notches in the shell to fit the couplers, so I decided to mount the couplers today, and let the cement harden. I had to cut the backside end off the coupler housing to fit it, which was .040" or 1mm shorter than the standard MTL 905 coupler housing:

    07 Couplers Mounted.jpg
     
  9. Chris333

    Chris333 TrainBoard Supporter

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    If you need any parts I did a boxcab in N scale on a 44T chassis. Never really finished it, but it would be easy to scale down to Z and hit print. Some pics mixed in with another shorter boxcab here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/3JsJkBthb7BQJ8wMA

    Or if you just want the CAD dxf file.
     
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  10. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Thanks Chris, if you have a drawing of the truck sideframes, That would save me some time. I don't have time to wait for Shapeways to print a set of tryck sideframes, so I am going to laser cut thin layers and stack up to make them.
     
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  11. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    Didn't the Great Northern have one of these?
     
  12. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    I think the GN one was electric?
     
  13. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    The GN unit was an "oil electric", similar to the OP model engine.
    Wood, Great Northern Lines West, image credit.
    20230310_203149.jpg
     
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  14. CNE1899

    CNE1899 TrainBoard Member

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    Rob,
    This is the drawing I gave to Rudy to create truck sides for Walt's boxcar.
    I did it in Illustrator, if you want the file.

    Scott
    Screen shot 2020-12-01 at 4.53.17 PM.png
     
  15. Bruce Block

    Bruce Block TrainBoard Member

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    I have extra truck sides from the FR boxcab version if you want them.
     
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  16. Chris333

    Chris333 TrainBoard Supporter

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  17. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    This morning Chris sent me a .DXF of the truck sideframes (Thanks so much!), and I used them to laser cut sideframes out of 3 layers of .006" mylar. I had to make a slight compression of length to match the journal boxes over the Rokuhan trucks, but other than that, they were a perfect fit:

    08 Truck Sideframes.jpg


    Next I sanded down the coupler mounts till I got the correct ride height of the shell. That's all for my Saturday afternoon, time to think about what's for dinner tonight:

    09 Shell Height.jpg
     
  18. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Thanks so much for your offer of help.

    Thanks so much for your offer of parts Bruce. I choose to build my own truck sideframes because of how the NMRA AP game is played. I need to score 87.5 points in judging on a model for it to count towards an AP Certificate.

    If I made the truck sideframes, I can get some points for Construction, because I built the mechanism from a pile of basic shapes.

    I can also get points from the truck sideframes under the Detail category, because it's an added detail.

    I also get points for Conformity because I built the sideframes that the prototype had. I also get some conformity points for stretching out the wheelbase to match the prototype.

    If I assembled the truck sideframes and applied to the trucks cleanly, and painted them nice, I can get points for Finish & Lettering.

    Finally, when I make the truck sideframes myself, I can get points for Scratchbuilt too.

    So in order for this model to be considered Scratchbuilt, I have to build the body, frame, cab, and power truck side frames. I am allowed to use basic shapes, and if I sand the detail off the shell, it becomes a basic shape. I want to make this a Scratchbuilt model, because I am not sure if my Mikado will fully meet the criteria, so I will try to meet this criteria.

    The term "scratch built" implies that the modeler has done all of the necessary layout and fabrication that produces the final dimensions, appearance, and operating qualities of the model. "Completely Scratch built" means that 90% or more of the model by parts count was scratch built.

    The following parts are specifically excluded from the scratch built requirement.
    • Motor
    • Gears
    • Drivers and wheels
    • Couplers
    • Light bulbs and electronics
    • Trucks
    • Paint, decals,etc.
    • Bell
    • Marker and classification lights
    • Brake fittings
    • Basic shapes of wood, plastic, metal, etc.

      ("Basic shapes are things that builders of the prototype would have used as raw materials. For example an "I" beam would be a basic shape; a commercial door or window casting would not.) (In the case of the shell that Walt made, if I sand the sides smooth, and make the carsides myself, the shell becomes a basic metal shape, and if I leave the roof parts on, then those can be considered commercial detail parts, of which the bell is exempt, but the radiators and smokestacks I have to figure out how to deal with still)



    Scorecard.jpg
     
  19. CNE1899

    CNE1899 TrainBoard Member

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    Rob,
    Those trucks came out great! How did you stack and line up all those tiny layers?
    Nice work on the truck spacing as well.


    Scott
     
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  20. wvgca

    wvgca TrainBoard Member

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    nice work on the trucks ... should get some points there
     
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