Just for fun I thought I try my hand at building an auto rack kit. Not knowing much about them, or trains in general, I emailed an eBay seller who assured me this was an open rack. To my disappointment... It is not. None the less, for $15 I figured what the heck.
Now I guess I was expecting something a little closer to the model car kits I used to build. This was lacking decent instructions, mounting tabs are mostly not existent and it comes without trucks or couplers. Kind of annoying in my mind, but I'm new here, so maybe that's normal?
Now that it's mostly together, this thing is LONG AND TALL! Surprisingly it goes around an r15 180 pretty well, although the coupler didn't line up right and will need a shim as it decoupled a few times. But it never derailed.
So here's the questions... I'm using some 4 wheel trucks a got in a bulk buy with some other supplies. No idea on the brand, but they seem fairly cheap, but effective. Would this large of a car had a 6 wheel truck? I'm sure I mounted these wrong, they feel a little tight. If 6 wheel is better, what's a good source?
Paint, yes I should have painted before assembly, but we didn't. It's a $15 model. Paint I can handle, but maybe some decals would help, registration numbers or something? Like I said I don't know much about trains, but there has to be registration numbers of some sort?
Finally, couplers. I have plenty of couplers, but they are slightly high and only making about half contact. Is there a safer made for this, it just shim it up best I can?
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Not "each" - the combined capacity of the car would be ~70-100 tons, not 200.... but 100 ton trucks have 36" wheels and some modern autoracks actually have 28" wheels since their loads are comparatively lightweight and bulky and to help lower the car to max out the loading space while staying within height restrictions and the capacity is actually less than 100 tons for these cars.
Six wheel/three axle trucks are found on heavy weight cars designed for large, heavy loads like depressed center flatcars.