No, this is not a week-late April Fool's joke. The EBT shops just turned out a D&RGW loco. Before you go checking your medication (or worrying that I should be checking mine), everything's okay. This was part of a trade which brought EBT #1 and¬* Tuscarora Valley #5
to the Tuscarora Railroad, and sent Woodland Railway #14
to its rightful place in Maryland. (And will ultimatela bring EBT #3 to the TRR in exchange for another loco, more weathering work and a 1st round draft pick.)
Getting back to the topic at hand, D&RGW #350. The challenge--"Coloradoize" a B'mann 2-8-0. I was given the 2-8-0 and some detail parts with the simple instructions "make it look like it ran on the D&RGW." It didn't have to look like a C-21 or C-25, so I set out to give it details consistent with the D&RGW's fleet of locos without worrying about matching a specific prototype. Fortunately, the D&RGW roster skipped over #350, so it gave me the ideal way to "invent" a class of locomotive between the C-19 and C-21.¬*
Here is the loco prior to paint. Changes include:
Install Accucraft couplers
Toolbox and proper airhose fitting on front pilot
Shorten sand dome
Add sand dome lid
Install second air pump
Re-wrap boiler to hide slot left from moving cab
Move cab back to rear of floor
Thicken tender frame
Add taller coal bunker
Add air tanks to tender
Narrow trucks to eliminate week screw hold and bring frames in closer to where they should be
I also installed DCC. That's another story for another time... suffice to say "I love batteries."
Here she is out of the paint shop (and a few miles on the road).¬*"Miss July" on this year's Colorado Narrow Gauge
calendar is C-21 #360, so for the past few months, it's been July in the workshop. (Did I miss the convention???) I used that photo as a guide for detailing and weathering.¬*
The classification lamps from Ozark. The lenses are the very tips of the LED Christmas light plastic bulbs (not the LEDs themselves) which I use for the headlights. I had dutifully sanded the silver off of the jewels that came with the Ozark lamps, but in the process of building, they evidently got tired of the mess, and struk out in search of more organized spaces. I wish them well. Besides, these are nicely rounded and look better. The numberboard is Ozark. The headlight was raised, as seems to be step 1 on most every 2-8-0 bash I've ever seen. The bracket is glued with solvent cement, then pinned from behind for more strength. (Peco track nails are great!)
The toolbox is from Trackside Details. The Accucraft coupler pocket bolts nicely onto the Bachmann pilot once the original one is removed. The air hose connection is from Accucraft, left over from another project. I didn't change the cowcatcher.¬*
The domes were rearranged to a more K-27is pattern, after I experimented with various placements. I made a proper sand dome lid from the lid of some dollhouse pots and pans I had in my parts box. The spark arrestor is from a K-27. The running boards were sanded with 60-grit sandpaper to make them look wood instead of the original metal. The smokebox was extended using a PVC plumbing coupling. I've only extended three smokeboxes in this manner, and one would think that I'd take a photo of the darned coupling. Perhpahs next time...
One thing that jumped out at me from that (and other) photos was that D&RGW locos tended to get a good deal dirtier than their eastern cousins with which I am more familiar. As such, my weathering was going to have to be a bit heavier than what I typically do. All the weathering was done with acrylic washes and powders. The neat thing about the washes is that you can use them to simulate streaking simply by letting gravity work for you. A little dish detergent in the water helps with the surface tension so you can get finer streaks. On the stack, I used a mixture of washes and drybrushng to get the appropriate amount of black up at the top of the stack. (Sometimes gravity can be too effective.)¬*
The running gear got the same treatment of washes, though I mixed some browns and dirt tones in as well. I followed up with some "dirt" weathering powder from Bragdon Enterprises. The running gear was painted dark silver, with brass highlights on the oil cups.¬*
I tried to go a bit lighter on the cab so that some of the semi-gloss surface would still shine through in the right light. The lettering is CDS dry transfers that Caboose Hobbies happened to still have in their drawers. I can't tell you how happy I am that I was able to do this with dry transfers.¬*
The tender is pretty much unchanged in terms of major details. I did add an extra strip of styrene to the bottom of the frame to give it some much-needed visual thickness. This has the effect of lowering the body onto the trucks, which--as delivered--look like they're on stilts. I also added the coal bunker and air tanks onto the rear deck, as seems common on the smaller D&RGW locos. Weathering, again, was acrylics and powders. I need to dust the trucks a bit more, as they're a bit too dark still.¬*
The subtle irony--that's East Broad Top coal in the bunker. Under the water hatch is a magnetic reed switch that can be used to increase or decrease the volume on the sound system. The tender's got a 4" speaker inside. It's LOUD!¬*
I moved the cab back, but kept the rear wall as was. It just kindof looked neat with the round opening framing the firebox.¬*
All those air tanks need a second air pump. Now I know why I'm not a plumber. Bell and whisle cords are uninsulated copper stranded wire twisted and painted. Jack, I'm lovin' that technique!
I can't say I want to make a habit of this, but this was a nice departure from eastern narrow gauge railroading. Ever since I "easternized" my 2-8-0, I've always pondered what I'd do if I had to "westernize" one. Now, that itch has been scratched.¬*
And one last view, since I uploaded it to the server...