Gunderson Twin-Stack – Part 2

slemp_a-line_twin-stacks_trucks_1Over the last few months I’ve finished detailing the Gunderson Twin-Stacks.  This last bit of work focused primarily on the trucks, couplers and end walkways though I made a few modifications elsewhere as well. Continue reading

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Gunderson Twin-Stack – Part 1

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Three of five cars have been completed on the A-Line Gunderson Twin-Stack set I’m building. Clearly I need a bigger photo backdrop…

I was looking back through my old posts and realized that I’d never written about the intermodal cars I’ve been building off-and-on for the last few years.  I recently started working on them again and though I’ve posted a lot of grab shots to Facebook, I figured it was about time I wrote a little something as well. Continue reading

Seattle North Coast F7A #101 – Completed

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SNCT F7A #101 is finally done!

On November 19, 2007 I wrote this post about the model of SNCT #101 that I was just starting to build.  Almost seven(!) years later it’s finally done.  Granted, most of that time I wasn’t working on it.  I got distracted by other projects and life in general, but still, there’s probably at least a good year or two worth of regular work sessions in this model and for the most part I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.
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Practice makes Perfect: Building a Diorama – Part 1.

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The foam diorama I created to test my ideas. It matches the profile of the layout bases. The square hole is where the switch machine will be mounted.

In order to better visualize how my layout plan will work, I built a small diorama to test my ideas.  It’s the same thickness as the layout baseboards (a 1″ piece of foam with a 2″ piece of foam on top where the track is and a 3/4″ piece of foam for the water, so the maximum thickness is 3″, minimum thickness is 1 3/4″).  This will allow me to test my switch machine mounting system, turnout construction and placement, sub-roadbed, and scenery techniques.  Read on to see what I’ve done so far.

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Working Ditch and Step lights for BNSF 7070 and 7072

Step and Ditch Lights

The front pilot of #7070 with the right ditch light and and step light lit via a 9v battery.

One thing that I’ve wanted to do with the BNSF SD40-2’s from the very beginning was to light them as completely as possible.  To me, that means more than just the usual ditch light, head light and reverse light.  My goal is to have working step lights; truck lights; front, rear and side walkway lights; number board lights and cab interior lighting.  This has slowed construction considerably and is going to create a mess of wiring inside the shell, but judging by this latest progress photo, I think it will be worth the effort.

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Light & Sound for SNCT F7A No. 101

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The use of small diameter magnet wire, surface mount LED’s and tiny resistors makes it easy to cram all sorts of lighting features into just about any shell.

After much hesitation, many false starts and a good deal of experimentation, I finally completed the wiring in my model of Seattle & North Coast F7A No. 101. Continue reading