NP Lester WA T-Trak Z Module Set Project

rray Feb 11, 2020

  1. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Well, I burned through a whole summer just getting the track, turnouts, and electrical connections on the Coal Dock module done, and with today's 75 degree weather, I call it the Grand Opening of "Model Railroad Season" Yes, it's cooled down to the kind of weather that get me into model railroading again. And for the Season Opener, I'm starting on the Coal Dock, it's high time I start building...

    This is the coal dock I am after, but this is the coal dock as built in 1905:
    [​IMG]

    Later on, it was modified to move the center chute so coal could be loaded to an Eastbound locomotive, as the original has 3 chutes for the Westbound track but none for the Eastbound. This early Diesel Era photo shows the coal bin extension extending to service the Eastbound track:
    1.jpg

    So here is my current progress on rev1 of the Lester Coal Dock as it existed in it's final days, where there were both Diesel and Steam locos used over the Stampede Pass:
    2.jpg
     
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  2. JoeS

    JoeS TrainBoard Member

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    That coal dock is fantastic! I don’t think I’ve ever seen one like that on a model railroad. Great stuff!
     
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  3. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    Dang, that's gonna' be awesome!!
     
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  4. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Most excellent. Will it be possible to run a coal car to the bin?
     
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  5. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    A pully and cable system was used to pull a drop side coal gondola up. I will probably just make mine a static model with a coal gondola being pulled up.

    As always, I got to looking at the model today, and decided some revisions needed to be made to make it look closer to the prototype, so I tweeked it and started building another one. I originally made the main support beams a scale 8", and decided to go with a scale 12", and go for a little better fit on some of the frame parts. New frame next to the old one:
    1.jpg

    In this photo from When Coal Was King, you can see this drop side gondola being pulled up a hill, on the most rickety and steep of track by a cable. This was the method of getting rocks, ore, coal, etc. up and down steep coal docks, hills, mines, etc., back in the day. Imagine a steam locomotive trying to push a 50 ton gondola up a 30% grade. No traction. Nope, cables pulling the gondolas up was the cheapest method.
    Side Dump Coal Car.JPG
     
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  6. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    I am in the middle of drawing up the 3rd revision of the coal dock, and came to the conclusion I needed to verify that a Z Scale 42' drop bottom coal gondola will even fit in this coal dock. And, nobody makes a Z Scale drop bottom goal gondola, so I had do draw one up. Fortunately I have both plans from the NPRHA and, even better plans from my 1940 Car Builders Cyclopedia. I chose the NP 42' Pressed Steel Car Company prototype:
    [​IMG]

    And here is where I am with the car so far. I still need to get the brake gear drawn up, and installed as well as the grab irons:
    Image1.jpg
     
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  7. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    Like everything it seems, I need a few revs before I start liking it. I'm on rev 3 of my 42' Pressed Steel Drop Bottom Coal Gondola, I bet you can tell which is which rev. I first needed more pronounced rivets, then I decided I can raster the Dreadnaught ends, then decided to raster the Drop Doors too:
    Image1.jpg
    I managed to squeeze an extra .25" of lead weight in on rev 2. I had to leave room for the swing of MTL 954 Bettendorf Trucks w/ Couplers to swing, so I had to skip the end drop doors. I still have to do all the wire parts, brakewheels, door chain rods, and the grab irons, but I think I will leave it at rev 3 and call it good enough:
    Image 2.jpg
     
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  8. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Considering this is Z, I think you've done well!
     
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  9. Steffen B

    Steffen B TrainBoard Member

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    Great work, Robert. (y)(y)(y)
     
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  10. JoeS

    JoeS TrainBoard Member

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    So inquiring minds want to know...how are you gonna manage the cable pulls to lug the cars up? Are you gonna go static or try to mechanically rig something up? If anyone could I know you would. :)
     
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  11. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    That's the beauty of drawing something up in Corel. I can start with a static model to fill the space, and later on modify it and Arduinoize it tp have Lights, Action, and Sound!
     
  12. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    OK, so I had to finish by applying the grab irons, drop door rods, and brakewheel. Then I primed and painted the car.Next I drew up decals and printed those. And finally I applied and sealed the decals, dullcoted and powdered the model.

    Here is the Corel drawing of the laser parts:
    01.jpg


    Here is the Corel drawing of the Decals for Alps printing:
    00.jpg

    Finished model underside detail:
    2.jpg

    And finished model side and end detail:
    1.jpg

    And the good news is the car fits the coal dock. Now back to drawing up rev 3 of the coal dock.
     
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  13. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Phenomenal results! You make it look so easy...
     
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  14. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    That gon looks fantastic RRay!!! I'm curious what the reason is for the offset coupler on one end? Or is that just me not seeing it correctly?
     
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  15. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    That is beautiful Robert, the details are awesome!!

    (y)(y)(y)
     
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  16. Kez

    Kez TrainBoard Member

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    It's a truck mount coupler that is slightly turned. I had to look again myself.
     
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  17. JoeS

    JoeS TrainBoard Member

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    Those look great Robert. I remember when you first made those grain hoppers way back in day before MT made them. You had the coolest rolling stock before anyone. And years later you still do!
     
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  18. ztrack

    ztrack TrainBoard Supporter Advertiser

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    Man those are impressive...
     
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