ATSF 4-8-4 Northern kitbash.

rome91 May 12, 2019

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  1. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    I am working on kitbashing these two ATSF 4-8-4s from some old Bachmann mechs I managed to dig up. Contrary to what most say, these two are very smooth and heavy, powerful pullers. I am looking forward to getting these done soon. Anyways, here are some progress pictures.

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  2. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

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    The only problem the Bmann 4-8-4s really had was the split white plastic gears that developed late in life.
     
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  3. MK

    MK TrainBoard Member

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    Whoa! Where did you get the sheels? Shapeways? (Though they look like cast resin and not 3D printed.)
     
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  4. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    the shells are cast resin, from another member on these forums, "superturbine". i'm certain that he stopped making this particular one years ago, but you can always check.
     
  5. JMaurer1

    JMaurer1 TrainBoard Member

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    Superturbine is (was) a GOD when it came to casting. I wish he would get his priorities straight and come back to trains. I have several of his castings (AC-9, GS-2 and others). Not entirely sure how he does it (I've done my fair share of casting myself)...I think he casts HO brass and then uses 'shrinking' resin that cures 1/2 the original size, but still can't figure out how he gets some of the detail (like the smoke lifter mech in this shell). He's been lost for the last four years...
     
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  6. Carl Sowell

    Carl Sowell TrainBoard Supporter

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    Jeff - I echo your thoughts about Jason, I miss his posts and help. As you know, I completed an AC9/EM1 project and I have another AC9 casting and EM1 to complete as well as a GS1 casting and J class mechanism to do. Some day I keep telling myself.

    rome91 - I am an SP man all the way and don't know much about Santa Fe. Will you do this up as 3751 or the Albuquerque rebuild of 2926 ? Looking forward to following along, so please post progress posts.

    Carl
     
  7. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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    Carl, it is not a 3751 class
     
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  8. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

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    I have one of Superturbine's AC-9 conversions in one of my 120 boxes of train stuff. I am not sure I have the skills to do anything with it but dream.....
     
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  9. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    bremner - this is a 2900 class model. this will be painted up for 2926. I have another Bachmann 4-8-4 mech (as shown in the pictures) which will be numbered 2910 once finished.

    also, I didn't know Jason made a GS1/GS2 casting. I have a GS2 that I am kitbashing from another Bmann mech in storage right now, using styrene to modify it into an acceptable GS2. That resin casting would probably accelerate the job much more quickly.
     
  10. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

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    I fixed mine by putting thin-walled brass sleeves around the axles to hold them together. Mine runs fine now.

    Doug
     
  11. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

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    Not that I really want to be the wet blanket here. Everyone of my Bachmann 4-8-4 mechanisms failed me one way or the other. I purchased more then I wish to admit to. Each time under the guise of new and improved. Yeah right! Not! I gave them away, blew one of them up with some fire crackers. Never had so much fun. Found out they aren't bullet proof. Hung onto four shells in hopes Kato would come out with a mechanism. Of course, if they did, then I'd probably deep six the shells and go with Kato's version.

    You are off to a good start and the shell looks amazing. Closer to a Santa Fe 2000 class then anything. Now if we could get you a respectable mechanism. Tender is the right tender for the 2000's and 5000's class. The 3000's had a shorter tender.

    Best of luck with your project and if it works you'll be the envy of some of us.
     
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  12. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

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    I tried that fix also but ended up with issues still. I still for the life of me can not figure out why the Bmann has not completely upgraded that loco as they have done others. I they would they would have a good seller on their hands. Their other 4-8-4 has a completely different mechanism which is very reliable. They may have finally got away from the two piece axle in these but somehow I doubt it.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2019 at 8:45 PM
  13. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    BarstowRick - you’re certainly not being a wet blanket in saying that the Bachmann 4-8-4 mechs are, plain and simple, garbage. I think I may have gotten lucky on this one...

    The only things currently needing to be done for this bash are the painting and the fabrication of some lead weights to fit in the resin boiler casting. Already tried sanding out most of the interior, but nothing notable came of that. I might get some lead sheet and use that to make a reasonable weight.
     
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  14. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

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    Gosh, I love what you are doing and encourage you on ward and forward. Get'r done.

    Yes, my units were indeed Garbage. Even after sending them in to be fixed on Warranty. Ask MTNtrainman. George, will tell you what he thinks.

    I recently (had myself wondering why) bought one that has been renumbered to the 2000 class. Looks good but will it run? I haven't even tried it yet. Sigh! Can you guess why?

    This is an after thought or edited add on. I do have a B-mann ATSF 4-8-4 where I gutted out the mechanism but left the headlight in. There is an ABBA set of ATSF, FT's that shove it around the layout. If you didn't know better, you'd think it was pulling. Am I bad or what?
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2019 at 9:32 PM
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  15. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

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    If I still was running steam and had my big fleet of steamers I probably would have tried adapting the shell to the J mechanism.
     
  16. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    The class J wheels are smaller, and the rods are a huge diversion from the ones seen on the 2900 or 3700 classes.
     
  17. BarstowRick

    BarstowRick TrainBoard Supporter

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    Looks like Rome beat me to this but I can confirm.

    I thought the same thing. Then I checked the height of the drivers and found they were a tad short. I mean you need a microscope to see that but comparing my J Series to the Northern you can see an obvious difference.

    I'm still considering such but would rather wait for Kato to come out with an ATSF Northern.
    I know, they would do it right.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2019 at 10:07 PM
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  18. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    Kato would do an incredible job, if their Mikado and FEF are anything to go by. even their ventures with con-cor yielded some of the best, if not THE best models in N scale of their time. another thread from a few years ago mentions Kato possibly making a ATSF northern, but it's sadly not very likely. brass or the Bachmann turd are the only commercially available options.
     
  19. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

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    Yes, the metal-axles-stuffed-into-hollow-plastic-axles is very poor. I don't know how they ever thought those plastic axles wouldn't crack.

    Anyway, in addition to the sleeves, I also enlarged the holes in the plastic frame, inside the two metal sides, a bit so the metal axles still ride on the metal frame sides so they still contribute to electrical pick up. Otherwise it would not run reliably, if at all.

    I have the latest version, too, and it is redesigned and fine.

    Doug
     
  20. rome91

    rome91 TrainBoard Member

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    I think there may be a conversion for the gears with brass ones, or maybe I’m thinking of an HO product...
     

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