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Discussion Starter #1
I have a few NYC wood cabooses in my fleet. I try to buy ones that are close to scale and realistic in their basic appearance.

I always wondered why some NYC cabooses, both MTH and Lionel, have the trucks placed to far out from the center of the caboose. On a real NYC caboose, the trucks are not behind the steps as seen in the first picture.

I took a MTH Railking caboose and tried doing a “truck move” on the under frame. I basically stripped the body and trucks from the metal floor plate. The floor plate has two protruding “humps” where the truck mounted. I took the plate and ground off the outer half of the humps with a bench grinder. That gave me room to relocate the trucks further inboard.

The original trucks would not be reused as the couplers were too short. I picked up some Atlas friction bearing caboose trucks. They have a longer coupler shank, so they fit perfectly.

I had to shim the truck bolsters with some small washers and they are bolted to the floor plate using a couple fine thread screws.

I reassembled the caboose to the point where I decided I need to attach some underside details. So far I have the tool boxes. I may also include a center sill, brake valve and a MR tank.

The next step will be painting. The roof will be black and the handrails will most likely be yellow.

More to follow...

Tom
 

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I like it! The new trucks look much better than the originals.
 

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Much better Tom. This all started with the Lionel semi scale pre war caboose which had its tinplate trucks mounted outboard. Then Lionel released its 1990 versions of the pre war scale cars but used the semi scale caboose truck location. MTH and Williams followed suit with their own versions.
Lionel's plastic caboose actually has the correct trucks in the correct location as well as the prototypes truss rods. The superstructure is pretty crude though.
I have used the plastic caboose trucks on more scale Lionel and MTH NYC cabeese.
BTW these plastic NYC 19000 type cabeese show up on the auction sites many times at under 15 bucks. I picked up three at Trainz for 12 bucks each. Much less than a pair of new trucks.

image.jpeg

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks Volphin. I never noticed that the MTH trucks appear to be roller bearing trucks. Another reason to change them!

Thank you, Pete. I do have a few Lionel and MTH cabooses with the correct truck spacing. They have better detail and decent trucks. Doing the work on this MTH caboose was kind of a “see if I can do it” project.

I like the separate handrails on your example. That is often in my criteria for selecting cabooses.

I plan on adding the NYC logo to my caboose too.

Tom
 

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Tom, That particular caboose is an MTH Railking diecast. It was part of MTH's version of Lionels 1990 set of the pre war semi scale cars. The correct trucks for the 19000 caboose are T section Bettendorfs. Lionel used them on their plastic caboose and MTH has used it some of theirs.

Pete
 

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Good project.

Looks a lot better with the rather small (compared to the size of the caboose) addition of the toobox. I know in the real world a took box was most likely painted black, but I would be very tempted to paint it tuscan red or burgandy - whatever the body of the caboose is, or weather it with rust (almost the same thing) to make it stand out. I think it would look better even if not
necessarily realistic.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks Lee. They came with a coat of primer. I was going to paint the one I install black along with the rest of the under frame. I need to research pics of Central cabooses and see how they were painted.

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks Lee. The tool boxes came already painted with primer. They are cast metal and pretty heavy. I may paint them but I want to do a little research.

Pete, I will look around for the correct trucks. The Atlas trucks were a definite improvement over the MTH trucks though...

Tom
 
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