Railflyer Model Prototypes Construction Update, Part II

A DP6053 pilot installed on the rear of my SD40-2 walkway module.

A new shipment of Railflyer parts arrived the other day. And with what little time I had over the weekend I managed to make a bit of progress on my SD walkway Module.

The underside of the pilot, with the coupler pocket cover removed.

Next thing I did was to assemble and attach one of DP6184 Coupler plates I’ve had for awhile now That assembly is pretty straightforward, though a little bit of filing is necessaryto get the bottom plate to fit squarely. The entire coupler plate assembly is attached to the pilot face using diluted barge. There are two notches on the back of the plate that fit into the coupler opening on the pilot. At this time I also attached the recessed train line panel on the back of the pilot, for this brass-brass joint I used AC as solder didn’t seem necessary.

The underside of the pilot, with the coupler plate attached.

The coupler plate sticks through the pilot slightly and serves to perfectly align the pilot with the end of the frame. this also creates avery strong plastic to plastic joint. The pilot itself is attached to the frame with diluted barge, while Plastruct Plastic Weld is used to attach the coupler plate to the draft gear box.

Two sets of DP6200 EMD/GMDD Standard air tanks.

In this shipment I also received my two underframe detail bundle sets, which include these absolutely fantastic turned brass air tanks. They’re perfectly round and have the realistic weld bead along each end.

An air tank with the fittings and drain attached.

Each tank has a fitting for each end, and a drain for the rear. These are incredibly tiny and unfortunately my camera doesn’t do them justice, but they are very detailed, and need very little cleaning.  A tiny bit of sanding and they’re set. I used diluted barge to attach them.


7 Replies to “Railflyer Model Prototypes Construction Update, Part II”

  1. Chris,

    How did you attach the steps to the pilot/frame? I don’t see any discussion of this in blog #2 or #3.

  2. Hmm, looking at the closeups it appears that there’s a lip in the frame to take the steps. Looks bargeable.

    How about the step/pilot join, soldered?

  3. Oh!

    Just looked at the pictures in blog #3, it looks like the steps were soldered to the pilot. How easy was that to do? Was lining up the kick plates easy? Any tweaking/bending of steps required?

  4. Hi chuck,

    I guess I kind of glossed over the steps a bit. I’ll have to remember to go into detail when I assemble the one’s for my SD frames.

    Essentially, the step well top, side panel and steps all get bent and soldered first. Then, there is an indentation on the plastic frame that the step well top plate fits into. I found that I needed to enlarge the indentation slightly with a chisel, though not a lot.

    Attach the pilot first, making sure it is centered, then use thinned barge to attach the step well to the frame. Once that’s dry, you can solder or CA the steps to the pilot. Finally, install the side sill by barging it to the frame, and soldering the ends to the step wells.

    The step wells are not difficult to assemble if you have a good “third hand” soldering jig to hold each piece in place, I found that I did need to tweak the steps slightly before I soldered them to the pilot so that they would be level. This is not difficult to do, and if the steps were soldered correctly, won’t affect any of the joints. I had the most trouble soldering the steps to the pilot. As some of the photo’s show, the joints aren’t very clean. With a bit of persistence everything goes together pretty well.


  5. Hello,

    I have a question, once the frame is built, what motor and drive system can be used with the frame? What about trucks? Can either Athearn or Kato drives and trucks work? Looking at the frame, its basically flat. Now, wouldn’t the driveshafts have a steep angle??


  6. The GP frames are supposed to be able to take Atlas trucks mounted backwards. If you drill through the frame and into the tank, you could mount the motor, but the drive shafts would have pretty steep angles.

    There currently aren’t any trucks that will work on the SD frames without extensive modifications.

    Railflyer is developing their own drive system, which will involve one motor per truck mounted vertically above the truck. For more info, go here: https://sites.google.com/a/railflyermodelprototypes.com/building-resources/

    Sorry it took me so long to reply, been working a lot, and what free time I have has been devoted to modeling in some form or another, which is good :-).

    – Chris

  7. I’m really looking forward to the Railflyer drive system. It will lend itself to some extremely detailed trucks. Hopefully he starts making some for GEs soon.

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