Posts by date

[MLC] How I make multiple identical parts

Posted by Gerd on Tuesday, 25 February 2020 with 1 Comment


this week, I like to share some techniques I use to make multiple identical parts for projects on my model trains. Instead of using modern laser cutting, I try the good old way when possible, as long as the number of parts needed is not to high.

Let’s start with a couple of sheet metal parts with special shapes and holes. I used 2mm thick flat bar and cut all parts to length on the metal bandsaw. Next I use double-sided sticker pads for photos and stick the parts together. When clamping them to the mill/drill-press, I use a piece of plywood to even out differences in the width of the parts. It’s important to clamp the parts very well, if possible also downwards, especially when mill cutting. It’s also best to use small and slow feed.

During the milling process, I used some round bars through the holes to keep all parts aligned properly. Once finished, the parts got parted with a knife and cleaned up. Some parts got also bend for the later assembly.

For some other parts, I make profile bars which got parted into the final pieces. Here I make ratches and pawls for disconnect car brake gear. By using the parting-tool/round-table I milled the shape step-by-step in multiple passes. Many years ago, I ordered such parts laser-cut and I used them as template to make additional parts to get the needed total.

Once the profiled bars are finished, I use a thin saw blade in the mill to cut them down into 4mm thick pieces.

You already see what I’m working on here and I’ll show you more about this project in the next post.

Bye, Gerd

[MLC] First operation of Forney #2 after overhaul

Posted by Gerd on Tuesday, 18 February 2020 with 4 Comments

Hello folks,

after finishing the overhaul maintenance on the Forney, the next goal was a test run with some heavy train loads to check if the new-made smoke box door as well as the new seals are improving the performance of the loco.

The best opportunity was given by the nearby “Dampflokfreunde Karlsruhe”. The track gang has rebuild the road bed on a 400′ long section and now it was time to bring in ballast and new track panels.

The little Forney hauled round about 3.5tons of ballast as well as several 8′ long track panels to the working side. Over all, the loco performed great with a good and strong pull. Looks that the loco is back in full working condition.

Cheers, Gerd

[MLC] More overhaul work on Forney #2

Posted by Gerd on Tuesday, 11 February 2020 with 1 Comment

Hello folks,

today I’ve some updates from my large-scale Moody Lumber. I spend some work on my Forney #2, since I had a list of overhaul-tasks for three winters now. Since I build and installed the new axle water pump, the loco is back in service, but I had issues with steam and fire during the last op-sessions.

So I started to investigate the issues and soon found out, that the smoke box door, a simple steel sheet construction, was heavy rosted and didn’t seal the smoke box well. I found a piece of steel in my scrap bin and made a new solid door on the lathe. I later added the hinges from the old door as well as paint.

Another well-known issue were the O-rings in the steam regulator valve. I ordered new rings from red silicon and look forward for the next 20 years of service.

And finally, I was able to rebuild another nightmare I produced back in time, when I rebuild the former Koppel loco into the Forney style engine. The brake rigging. The combination of levers I used was terrible and didn’t work/brake well. After I spend some thoughts, I added a new shaft at the bottom bend of the frame and made new connecting rods and levers. Now the brake is working very strong and I also have better access to the ash-pan.

Well and since I rebuild all my other 5″-gauge trains to 1:7.2-scale, I also did this to the Forney. First in Photoshop, than in real. And what shall I say – I love it. The loco looks more powerful by now and matches so nicely with the Shay. Funny side note, the cab NOW is in correct height for both, 1:7.2-scale as well as 1:6-scale as the original cab was just to high.

Finally, the loco is now back in service and will hopefully perform well during the upcoming steam season, as she’ll take over the main traction on the Moody Lumber this year. While operating the Shay last fall, I spotted some worn parts and other issues on the steam engine so the Shay is temporary out of service and will come to the shop soon of repairs.

Shortly after taking theses photos, I replaced the head light by a smaller version better fitting to 42mm-scale and I painted the white trim black, since I found the trim too toy like.

Next week I’ll share some video footage of the first operation session after the overhaul and how the changes may have improved the power/performance.

Cheers, Gerd

[CFF] Krauss loco part 3

Posted by Gerd on Tuesday, 4 February 2020 with 4 Comments

Welcome back to the last chapter of the Krauss loco for now. First, I uploaded 3 more photos showing the loco under construction in total. Before I glued the plastic sheets together, I sanded each of them on both sides, to get a good surface for the paint. I used spray cans on this project […]