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Discussion Starter #241
Thank you Pete! The stock Lionel NW2 doesn’t match as the frame is shorter than the MTH NW2 frame the slug is built upon. I am doing a MTH NW2 in PB&NE colors next...

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #244
Thanks, guys. This is only the second time I have done a major kitbash in o scale...

I may try a larger hump yard slug next...

Tom
 

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Put another kit together. This by Intermountain. Intermountain kits come with both 2 rail and 3 rail wheelsets. Their assembled cars came one way or the other so if you see one for sale be aware. Still have to add some weight to these. They navigate Gargraves OK but if I ever put them in a train I would put some Weaver 3 rail trucks on them.

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Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #246
Great looking cars. I like the basic boxcar red, really nice steam era look.

do you operate 2 rail O scale too? Look at those skinny wheels!

Tom
 

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I just run on 3 rail track. I did put two rail wheelsets on the kit cars as they are mostly for display. With 3 rail wheelsets some of the brake and air lines would have to trimmed.
Intermountain made a few scale reefers for K-Line but had to eliminate most all of the underbody detail except the tank and cylinders. These would run on large diameter 3 rail curves though as is. The yellow Santa Fe reefer is a K-Line car made by Intermountain.

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Pete
 

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I have a number of the MTH Premiere Strasburg Woodside passenger cars with the new LED lighting. I was immediately disappointed on the first trip around the tracks that they flickered more than the old incandescent cars, that's something I certainly didn't expect to see! I popped the top off of one of the cars, very easy as there are only five or six screws (depending on the exact car configuration). With the spring contacts, there is no wiring between the shell and the frame, just lift the chassis off and place it out of the way. Once inside, it was apparent why the excessive flicker, there is NO bulk capacitance to stop the flicker! There are four diodes forming a bridge rectifier, and individual LED's with an associated resistor for each LED, nothing else. I also note that only half of the LED positions are filled, the PCB actually allows for nine LED's, four of the positions are not populated. It would have been nice to have all the positions populated and simply increase each of the resistors to more evenly distribute the same amount of light. I guess the extra ten or fifteen cents was too much to bear for a car that sells for $99.95!

How is that possible Lionel comes out with passenger cars that stay lighted a couple minutes after you kill the power, MTH comes out with passenger cars that have no flicker resistance at all!

Here's what you see when you open them up. Looking closely, I see at the end opposite the some holes that have nothing in them, and they're directly across the rectified power coming into the car...

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How convenient, I popped the strip out (four screws), and turned it over. There is just room enough between the top of the shell and the board on it's supports to stick two 220uf 35V capacitors. The fit just right, just make sure to get the polarity right. 440uf should be plenty of capacitance to tame the flicker.

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Since I want to be able to run DCS, I needed to insert a 22uh choke in the power feed to the lighting. Note the heatshrink that is placed over the choke and shrunk after soldering. The choke can be inserted in either of the power wires, this one happened to be more convenient.

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After replacing the strip in the top of the shell, note that the capacitors are totally hidden, they're on the other side next to the roof under the strip.

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Drop the chassis on and secure it with the removed screws and enjoy flicker-free LED lighting for about 10-15 cents more a car.
 

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A local friend has a conventional K-Line Illinois Central Berkshire he really wanted to run under DCS. Being that I've got more free time than usual lately I was able to install a steam PS3 kit in it for him with all LED lights. Came out pretty good, although it would be nice if the motor was a little smoother. It cogs a little below 10 scale mph.
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I also note that only half of the LED positions are filled, the PCB actually allows for nine LED's, four of the positions are not populated. It would have been nice to have all the positions populated and simply increase each of the resistors to more evenly distribute the same amount of light.
John, I know your thoughts on the more evenly distributed light and I can't say I disagree but looking back on photos from my trip to Strasburg, the car I rode in only had about 5 light fixtures spaced down the length of the car. They were electrified (probably replica?) gas lamp type fixtures. They may have only used that many in the model on purpose to replicate the prototypical lighting locations? Not a great excuse, but perhaps an idea that went into the design while utilizing a general purpose PCB board? Although thinking back on it, I think my older PRR streamlined cars had a lot of open light socket spaces throughout as well before I converted them to LED's...
 

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Hard to say Jake, I just think that the passenger cars look better with more even lighting. However, since it at least is LED lighting and doesn't flicker anymore, I thought that was sufficient. I'm now looking at double-heading two of the Strasburg 4-4-0 locomotives to pull the twelve woodside coaches. One of those little guys was having a bit of trouble with the whole load. :) I think I may have to try to buy a spare pilot for one of them so I can hack it to add a lobster claw to connect them.
 

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I have a conventional Mogul that I'm going to upgrade and get painted for Strasburg, but that's still waiting in the wings. I did an upgrade of one of those for a customer, so I know the drill now.
 

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On the weekend, I did a little scenery enhancement on the Wrong Way RR shelf layout. I added some carpentry figures to do some repair work on one of the wood trestles my son and I built which was made to be in dire need of repairs. Burned support post from a hot box fire, and lots of rotted floor boards on the catwalks. I picked up a CP TOFC from Weaver just before the closure, and have decided to modify it into a work car for the bridge repair scene. I am thinking about fabricating a jib crane, I'm undecided if it will be fixed, or on track to move along the bed. I spent about an hour yesterday cutting some scale beams and floor planking to use as a load on the flatcar. I'll post progress and photos as the project continues.
 

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Started working on posts, planks, cribbing, and a set of saw horses for the Wrong Way RR bridge repair project. I grabbed a chunk of white oak from the wood pile to make everything. I glued the posts together, and two planks at a time until they dry and can more can be added. The horses are partially done; the legs need to be evened, and gussets attached to the legs.
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