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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Scratchbuilt BNSF SD40-2’s – Latest Developments.

The progress thus far on one of the two BNSF SD40-2's that I'm scratchbuilding.

I’ve been slowly but steadily plugging away on the two scratch-built locomotives I posted about back in May.  I’m at the point now where most of the major challenges, such as gear tower clearance, coupler mounting, etc. have been solved and I can begin to focus more on the aesthetic side of the model.  The last major hurdle will involve the nano LED’s for the ditch and step lights that I need to wire up and attach to the model so that the leads will be sandwiched under the treadplate.  That process will likely begin after the holidays.  Select images and info are past the cut.  A full gallery is available on my Pbase site. Continue reading

Scratchbuilt SD40-2’s

bnsd40-2_assembled-1.jpg
Progress so far on one of two SD40-2’s I’m scratchbuilding.

I’ve been waiting all my life (and very patiently I might add) for a high quality HO SD40-2 with the correct bolster spacing. The Kato models come close, but it’s hard to find undecs and I’ve come to discover that they aren’t terribly easy to modify. Railflyer is another option, but their models are at least another year away and I need something to keep my busy now… So, I’ve started scratchbuilding my own. Continue reading

An Evening in Palmer

NECR @ Palmer, MA - 10.17.07
NECR power at Palmer, MA.

Well, I’m finally getting around to posting here. It’s about time. I took the photo above on Oct. 17th, when what little fall color we had this year was at its peak. GATX SD40-2’s 7362 and 7369 are parked while NECR GP38 3855 moves back onto the yard lead after holding for some MOW equipment that was returning from the north. That was an especially lucrative evening at Palmer. I met my friend Tom there around 5:00 and the action was fairly consistent all evening with NECR making up it’s evening northbound and a number of CSX through trains. The evening was capped off by the Boston section of Amtrak’s Lake Shore coming through on its way to Boston 2.5 hours behind schedule.

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