I received the plastic parts for the Canadian cab I ordered from Railflyer awhile ago, and just today sat down to take a really close look at them. There’s still a lot of photo-etch that is in production, which I haven’t yet received, but there’s enough here to get an idea of hwo this kit goes together.
Essentially, what you get is a one piece thinwall cab (the plastic is close to the same thickness as that on Cannon cabs). with battery box detail, and some other bits molded in place. Other details are provided as seperate parts, al lof which are included in each kit. I’ve photographed and labeled the individual plastic bits below, and will go into detail about them in a bit. There’s also a lot of photo etch for the doors, bell and window shade brackets, number boards, class lights, window frames, etc. Overall, the quality of the tooling is quite good and on par with Cannon.
The rear of the cab has the correct overhang above each door. The angle of the roof line mates perfectly with the Railflyer snow shields as well. A seperate wide cab electrical box is available from Railflyer for behind the conductors side door.
The top of the cab has a slight ridge running down the center, as does the prototype.
The nose is drilled to accept .008” wire grab irons, which are also provided in the kit, and are formed to an exact scale 17”. Ladder grabs are also included.
The injection molded detail parts that come in the kit are also as nicely tooled as the cab itself. Included are door handles, 2 styles of sand filler hatch (square and round), a number of knuckle busters for the PE doors on the nose, brackets and a gong for the bell (which is also included, but is brass, not plastic), and a Pyle headlamp housing.
The next two photo’s are just examples of how the cab looks on a frame. The frame I used is for a BN unit, so the steps and pilot are totally incorrect. However, you get the idea. There are also some photo’s by Ric Hamilton on the Railflyer homepage that show the cab mounted on what appears to be an Athearn frame. You can also see that I’ve now added the headlamp and sanding hatches. My prototype will be CN 5257, which uses the round style hatches.
I’m really quite pleased with how well the cab turned out. It’s much better looking than what is currently on the market and will easily be able to stand with it’s Cannon forebears. At $46.49, it’s priced about right too. If you add up the cost to assemble a full cannon fron end (nose, sub-base, cab and all the misc. detail bits) the cost is just about the same. As an added bonus, there’s no chance of assembling the walls out of square. I’m not sure how many of these will be in the first production run, so if you want one, I’d order it now. All in all, it’s good to see new products like this coming to market. Hopefully we’ll soon see a one piece spartan cab from someone as well.
In other news, I’ve finished a project! I’ll post it sometime within the next couple of weeks. I also just recieved a bunch of nano LED’s and solder supplies fron Ngineering, which I will be using to light my Railflyer locomotives. More on all that later.