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Posted: Mon Mar 02, 2009 9:47 pm
by Prof Klyzlr
Dear Gerald,

Proto2000 do very "cost effective" Alco S-series switches, via Walthers. They can also be found new on eBay for under US$50.

Alco S-series switchers are slightly shorter than most end cab US switchers, but the ubiquitous EMD "SW" series locos,
(SW7, SW9, SW1000, SW1200, or the more modern/brawny-looking SW1500 and MP15 derivatives),
are other options which are available fron Athearn, Atlas, Proto2000, and other "plastic diesel" manufacturers.

If you are looking at doing "short 4 axle" locos, you could do a lot worse than the current centre-motor versionsof the Bachmann 44, 70, and newest siderod-driven 45 tonner mechs. However, in comparison to Dallas's conversion, the wheels on these mechs may be a touch small for those who put a premium on "engineeringly plausible" diesel-hydraulic or diesel-electric Gn15 mechs and wheel dia. (That's not to say that you can't easily replace the wheels on a 44tonner with something larger from the OO Bachmann Branchline range :idea: :!: :idea: :!: )

All of these can be expcted to do 18" easily, most will look at 15",
and with some tweaking the shorter ones will run on 12" radii.
(I know, it's not the 9" and 6" that Gn15's are used to, but they are also over twice the length and axle-count of most Gn15 locos shown here on-list... :wink: )

For the $$$, you recieve an oily-smooth low-speed crawler mech that should make even the most hardcore "mech tech" happy... :-)

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 12:25 am
by Dallas_M
Rowley wrote:Hi Dallas
Great piece of modelling. I've followed the build from the start and enjoyed seeing it come to the completed model
All the best

Thanks all -- encouragement is a great thing on these slow-moving projects! :!: And, after many weeks of occasional work on this one, I'm also very pleased to see it take shape ... and, perhaps most importantly, to know that it's really down to a few simple things before paint. Hooray! :wink:

David -- Leaning heavily toward an oxide red paint scheme ... but a couple other colors are still in the running ... I'll have a better look at it once the primer coat is on and see what happens.

Gerald -- I'll bounce some ideas in your thread ... Prof provided some great notes here.

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:42 am
by Prof Klyzlr
Dear Dallas, Gerald,

Atlas have also recently announced their version of the Alco HH660 switcher, which is short, with larger wheels,
and can turn reportedly <very> tight corners.

It also has a relatively tall hood in HO scale, which translates into a "plausible" hood height in Gn15.

(A "normal height" HO switcher hood runs the risk of translating into a "excessively LOW" hood in Gn15.
That said, there are "Green Goat" switchers on SG now with <really low> hoods, maybe an option for the "Modern era, US Outline, Environmentally Friendly" Gn15 operator??? :twisted: :twisted:

Indeed, I could see these locos being used with a conversion GnXX sized cab from one of our fave Resin Kit manufacturers, to make a "quick Gn15 conversion" 4 axle Gn15 switcher loco...
(Think like a Davenport Conversion on steroids... :wink: )

For those who simply cannot abide a Gn15 loco that cannot run around 4" radii curves, but hanker for the 4-axle brawn offered by such US-style conversions,
there is always the option of building a loco on a <pair> of 27:1 "Black Beetle" trucks...
(Centre bolster point, no rotational restrictions,
and easily "parallel wired" together to give 8-wheel-pickup... :idea: :!: :idea: :!: :idea: :!: :twisted: :twisted: )

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:57 am
by Dallas_M
I haven't picked up the H600 type loco yet, but that does look like an excellent candidate for tight curves ... compact yet somehow chunky.

:arrow: And, add to the list ... the Underground Ernie series TUBE trains ... one truck is powered and one is dummy ... suspect they have a DCC socket like the 4-wheel Ernie ... so you can "adjust" the length of the chassis as desired and fiddle with things to allow the desired radius ... and, as an added bonus, they come with a funny face molded on! :lol:

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 2:03 am
by Prof Klyzlr
Dear Dallas,

... one truck is powered and one is dummy ...

Yes, this might make "convertible length chassis" work easier,

but when the resulting Gn15 loco <looks like> a brawny 4 axle "heavy hauler", I'd hate to see the lack of tractive effort with only 1 truck powered...

... and, as an added bonus, they come with a funny face molded on!

I've been accused of having a "Funny face molded on" before,
never quite worked out what the person meant by it... :wink:

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 3:13 am
by Dallas_M
Prof Klyzlr wrote:Dear Dallas,

... one truck is powered and one is dummy ...

Yes, this might make "convertible length chassis" work easier,

but when the resulting Gn15 loco <looks like> a brawny 4 axle "heavy hauler", I'd hate to see the lack of tractive effort with only 1 truck powered...

... and, as an added bonus, they come with a funny face molded on!

I've been accused of having a "Funny face molded on" before,
never quite worked out what the person meant by it... :wink:

Regarding tractive effort, I've built a number of locos using only a single power truck from the old 44-tonners ... and I've easily hauled 6-8 double bogie wagons behind those around tight turns ... if anything, my S-1 loco will be a bit over-powered, as I doubt I'll run more than a 4-5 car train.

The "appearance" of power should be nice though ... seeing that loco move a couple of loaded twin-bogie coal wagons should "seem right."

I'm not sure if I have a funny face molded-on ... but my nose and mustache did come with the glasses. Based on your emails ... well, um ... I suspect you might fit in at the same club. 8) :wink:

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 3:24 am
by Prof Klyzlr
Dear Dallas,

"...I'd never want to join any club that would want me as a member..."

That said, I'm eternally glad that

1 - There's no minimum standard to the term "Model Railroader"
(otherwise I'd be out on my ear post haste...)


2 - There's room on this here (Gn15) train for allcomers... :wink:

RE "OverPowered" Alco S1 > Gn15 conversion

I didn't think there was any such thing as "overpowered",
unless of course the factor of adhesion doesn't match the torque available... :wink:

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 12:08 pm
by mad gerald
Hi Prof Klyzlr,

thank you for your additional input - it is always a pleasure to read your comments ... and I guess that's where your nickname origins from ... 8)

I thought about the Bachmann 44/45 ton locos too, which cost over here about EUR 50,00 - 70,00. The H600 ist totally new to me and I like it very much, especially because it seems able to go through the tight radii ... but it's fairly expencive (EUR 115,00) :cry: compared to the Bachmann locos ...

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2009 10:33 pm
by Prof Klyzlr
Dear Team,

Was just poking around doing some research for another project, and found these pics of Bush Terminal (NYCH) early General Electric - Ingersol Rand "offset centercab" SG locos. (These appear to be chronological and developmental predecessors to the wildly popular SG GE "44 tonner"). ... to%20Index

Now, they may need some whacking with the "dimensional mallet" to get them to Gn15 proportions and gauge, but I thought they might inspire someone... :wink:

No "Thread Hi-Jack" intended,
returning you to your regularly scheduled programming...

Posted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 9:11 am
by mad gerald
Hi Prof,

great link, great photos - lots of inspiration ... :shock:

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 1:14 am
by Dallas_M
Well, the folks in the town of Shoehorn have grown weary of living in a cork meadow ... and they've set about terraforming their little world ...


First step, some surveying work ... with evidence of very crude paper rollingstock in the foreground 8)


The terraforming commenced with peculiar pink and blue slabs of "earth" cut and stacked like a badly formed wedding cake ... then the eager citizens began "constructing" a town using a variety of boxes and wrong-scale mock-ups and facades ... oh the horror! :shock:


A cardboard road was laid in to facilitate travel ... then the citizens all wandered off to the meeting house for an evening meal ...


And headed to bed envisioning their town looking a little more like this ... as time allows, they'll fashion some proper structures and put in a nice dirt road for their fancy horseless carriages ...

More to come ... eventually! :!: :roll: :wink:

PS -- Oh yeah, some may notice that this is a radical departure from the original sketch! 8) I've gotten hooked on the lovely diecast vehicles and the wonderful figures that are available in 1/24 scale and couldn't resist the urge to build a town that will have more opportunities for little vignettes ... coal trains from the towns of Limit and Pick will roll thru Shoehorn on their way to Shoehorn Junction ... at least that's the story for now! :wink:

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 1:20 am
by Willow Creek Traction
Dallas_M wrote:...that's the story for now!
Hey Dallas, there's quite a lot of that what goes on with the denziens of hereabouts.

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 1:48 am
by foswaldy13
I think the step hill angling away from the viewer will give a nice sense of depth to the scene. I like it!

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 5:31 am
by Glen A
wow, cars everywhere. They do look good.
It is shaping up nicely.

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 7:03 pm
by michael
Looks like your next year is gnicely all sorted out then :wink:

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 7:20 pm
by mad gerald

Nice to see that you found some time to play around with your layout ... I just wonder what will happen, if "input overdose" strikes again during building a layout ... will it be possible to integrate the several changes caused by "input overdose" on a layout too (as good as integrating these influences during working on a loco)? :?

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 11:30 pm
by Dallas_M
Thanks all for the comments ... it's rough-looking progress at best, but helps me visualize and go on ...

Gerald -- Michael's right ... this means there's at least a year's work laid out ... so there will be plenty of time to go crazy and make changes.

At this point, all of the foam/cardboard pieces shown are just pinned together ... so those can be altered before they are glued in place.

I plan to make paper mock-ups of all the buildings to check sizes, designs, etc ... so I'll "make designs" at that point ... then probably make subtle or even radical changes when the actual buildings are constructed ...

Plenty of opportunities of LUgNACY and MADgNESS all along the way ... so it goes! :lol:

Paul's right too ... cars everywhere ... I might have to add an extension and create a car factory ... or at least a used car dealership! :roll:

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2009 12:27 pm
by mad gerald
Dallas_M wrote:... I might have to add an extension and create a car factory ... or at least a used car dealership! :roll:

Funny ... I thought I could eventually add a kind of junkyard to my future industrial layout and use some wagons for transportation purposes: big block V8s, frames, fenders (no, not my guitar) ...

Posted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 7:32 am
by Dallas_M

Hooray! A little hint of progress on the layout ... I replaced one of the "random shapes" (boxes, cardboard, etc) representing a structure with an actual mock-up with 1/24 scale siding & windows, etc.

Still have to make a mock-up for the addition to the General Store, which houses the auto repair shop and owner's apartment ... but a little progress is a nice thing on a rainy Sunday night. :D

PS -- Don't worry about those guys milling about the place, they're 'armless! :lol: :lol: :lol:

Posted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 8:15 am
by dieselwater
Looking gnood 8) Nice to see some 'armless fun Gnoing on :lol: :lol:

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 3:56 am
by Dallas_M
Made a little more progress on one of the many Gn15 projects ...


Made two new mock-up structures ... the larger one is a factory or warehouse ... haven't quite decided which just yet!


And the smaller one is a nice place for the railroad crew and townsfolk to go and have some lunch and catch some rays ... 8)

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 6:56 pm
by mad gerald
Hi Dallas,

nice to see you found some time to work a little on your layout ... :lol:

I especially like your factory/warehouse ... and if I may make a suggestion (and you don't beat me because of my proposal :P ) ... to me it appears a little bit like the places in small american villages where joiners/carpenters do their work, would you mind placing i. e. a small casket "factory" on your layout? And I won't change that greyish colour ...


Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 10:29 pm
by Dallas_M
Hi Gerald --

All ideas are welcome ... and if I do make it a casket factory, then perhaps I can add some ZOMBIES to the railroad crew! (Cheap labor) :lol: :lol: :lol:

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 8:45 am
by KEG

Some Gn15 zombies always attract interest to any layout:


Some of my hamsters best friends are zombies. they love to work the nightshift.

Have Fun


Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2009 5:21 am
by Dallas_M
Run for the hills, Juergen has predicted the dreaded truth:

This THREAD has returned from the DEAD! (cue scary music)


From a shed on the thread that seemed to be dead,
Creep the brain-munching zombies who want to be fed!


They gathered and huddled and mumbled and chanted:
"Get off your keysters and start running trains ...
bring us some passengers with fresh juicy brains!"


The crew, realizing that they were seriously out-numbered by the zombies ... and admitting that they had been slacking a bit lately, quickly finished construction of the proposed engine service facility at Shoehorn Junction.

(Of course, these are just mock-ups to aid in layout planning ... but please don't tell the crew ... they think they've made some real progress!) :wink:


The yardmaster, Armless McGee, fancied himself a bit of a novelist ... he imagined writing a terrifying tale of zombies taking over a hillbilly railroad ... but writing posed more than a little challenge for Armless. :lol:

Hope to resume work on the critter soon ... now that there's a place to fuel up! 8) The "Jitterbug" tank is one of the first Gn15 cars I built "way back" ... it's one of Steve's kits ... so, when the time comes, I think I'll order the tank and A-frame bits so I can make a new little oil platform that doesn't have wheels. Meanwhile, having fun with the "mock" layout ... mmm, brains! :twisted:

PS -- The coal and sand facilities for steam locos are just to the left of the water tank ... and slightly "off-layout" ... :wink: