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· Registered
119 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Background: I recently converted to N scale due to size constraints for a layout, gotta love apartment living. Anyway, it has been difficult to find any BNSF mow pieces. MTL has made several for other road names such as CSX, UP, Conrail etc... but I haven't come across any BNSF. So, I decided to see if I could make my own.

This project is "beginner" level and is my first kitbashing. I had purchased a couple of N scale Cat excavators along with a Railways Express Minatures M.O.W gondola crane #2081.

My initial intention was to put the Railways Express metal kit together and paint it accordingly. I decided that the kit was going to be a little bit more than what I wanted to assemble and paint when the idea came to me from a picture I saw of a CSX gondola with a CAT excavator inside of it with a tie gripper attachment. Realizing I had parts to make this I decided to try this project.

In the following pictures you will see the items I used. I first clipped the bucket attachment with a pair of spruce cutters and then filed the excavator's arm to make an even surface. Next, I used Scenic Accent glue to attach the cast metal tie gripper to the plastic CAT arm. After drying I painted the attachment with the yellow paint in the picture.

Note: Probably better idea to paint the attachment first since it is very sensitive when attached to the CAT arm.

Lastly, I used Chooch Enterprises N scale tie loads for the crane car and a set of MTL tie loads for the other gondola. Below are pictures of the CAT excavator I purchased and the new version next it.

Total cost of project $25.00 , about 12 bucks for each crane. I think the results are pretty good and this is definitely a great beginners project that won't break the bank !

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· Railroad Tycoon
26,390 Posts
Looks good, you going to weather up the Cat a little?
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