Monday, June 27, 2011

New Electroliner

Per the post over the weekend, I was quite happy to see the UPS package arrive at the office earlier today. Inside, the "new" Sunset/3rd Rail Models Electroliner. I'm really glad I grabbed this thing, it's much better than my original idea of converting one of the MTH 3-rail trains to 2-rail. Which, for the record, is still a very viable, and comparatively inexpensive alternative.

I'm guesstimating, but based on the purchase price of the MTH 'Liner, the new Q-Car trucks (2-power, 3 trail), versus this one, I'm guessing the difference is about $200 +/-, with the MTH option being the cheaper of the two. That of course does not take into any consideration the effort needed to make the conversion (which would have to include making bolsters which would be a bit problematic, although I still have a pair of old Locomotive Workshop bolsters which could conceivably have been molded and cast up..) Another lowering of the cost would have been the "potential" for resale of the MTH 'Liner trucks, but that's an unknown.

Anyways, I'm pretty pleased, all things being equal, a couple hundred bucks is a savings to me in not having another project on the "to-do list". About 1/2 the windows are "popped", but since I was planning on opening the car bodies to add lots more passengers and a train crew, that's not much of an issue. (Anyone know where to find O Scale sailors ??) Couple of minor detailing changes, but otherwise, I'm pretty happy. And contrary to some reports I've seen, this one ran just fine, right out of the box.

 Now of course,, to find another one numbered 803-804 !

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Update - June 2011

So, finally got a chance to post a new update (Chicago PCC's) and finally fix the format of this thing. Still not sure how the original format and template disappeared, nor how to restore it, but after screwing around with this thing for about an hour, the new look is acceptable
 I suppose. Certainly better than it was !

Looking at the posting log, I see that my efforts here have been woeful at best in the last 18 months.Part of that has been a notable decline in modeling time and activity (mostly due to work), part of that has been "expanded" posts, covering multiple weeks of activity.
In any event, clearly I need to get back in the saddle here !

Hard to beleive the East Penn meet was almost 2 months ago already...

The new version of the Chicago O Scale Traction modular group idea is very slowly but surely starting to get up and running. Besides my two original modules left over from the first try at setting up a group, there are two new modules, one each from two new members. That gives us a straight-line run of 16 feet of double track mainline for the moment. I have someone working on benchwork for two 90 degree corners and two 40 inch square return loops. We have a generalized plan to put together enough of a layout for Trainfest in Milwaukee this year. We'll be getting together next weekend at IRM for an informal gathering as part of the Large Scale Trolley Meet and the annual Trolley Pageant, and then we're likely going to meet here in Elgin the following Sunday to match up the four modules for the first time ever.

Been buying more cars and trying to define/refine the collection. Had a shot at a Sunset Models Electroliner that was too good to pass up (yes, even with the problems it's known to have). Sold off the MTH 'Liner so that conversion project won't be happening (at least by me), unless I get the bright idea that I have to have both 'Liners. Grabbed three Russ Briggs South Shore cars, the original Combine, Coach, and the Parlor/Obs cars. Be able to expand the Interubans of the Fox Valley display a bit further to it's eventual ideal, which is Interurbans of Illinois, for the time being I'll be able to expand to Interurbans of the Fox Valley presents, The Insull Interurbans. Add all the good IT and southern Illinois stuff as we go to reach our full potential.

And with that, less typing and more modeling, time to get back to work so there's something actually interesting to report on.

Chicago PCC cars - From near and far

I can not seem to do anything the easy way.

While I have far more projects than time or common sense would ever allow, I of course, succumb to my inner demons and continue to add to the chaos. Maybe if I spent more time modeling and less time buying more kits and projects, nahhh, that's just crazy talk.

So, I had started the Aristocraft Chicago PCC car bash in large scale several months ago.My ADD kicked in, and of course as the tale of this blog will clearly show, other projects shoved it to the side as more "interesting" things leapfrogged it's position.

I had, in actual point of truth, been considering completion of the Chicago PCC for the Large Scale Trolley Meet at IRM on July 4th. Some additional progress was made, more fill in and adjustments, then finally some primer paint to get a sense of what else was needed to complete the body shell.

No means ready for final paint and finish, but getting closer.

So, based on that progress, what's the most logical thing to do ?
Of course, buy another one !
In the same vein as nothing can ever be done simply,
please note the following example :
(And pay very close attention, there will be a test to follow)

This is an O scale model of a Chicago PCC car (US),
One of the fine models, in kit from, produced by St Petersburg Tram Co, (Russia),
Purchased by myself, from Greg King, in Australia.

Sorta makes your head hurt, don't it ?

I have another St Petersburg car, a CA&E Cincinnati Car. These are such fine scale and relatively delicate models, I've been a bit scared to mess with it too much. Seeing one of their cars in kit form, you can get a better idea of how things go together, and the potential effects of disassembly, etc.

I'll likely power this one, I think I might actually have a pair of PCC trucks somewhere in this mess already. Have to consider possible paint schemes of course, I had already decided the large scale one will be in the final green and creme scheme, partly because it will irritate people that it's in CTA colors and lettering, partly because I'll have to make the lettering myself and a simple CTA herald is a lot easier than the CSL logo, and the tiger striping that will likely go on this O scale model. (It does have decals supplied) So this one is likely to get the blue and creme with red belt rail, ala the car at IRM, just backdated a tad with the tiger stripes on the front end. We'll see, always possible some new project may pop up any second and move this one to the back burners.