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31  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Spectrum HO Steam for the NC&StL and L&N - Is my list complete, please? on: May 19, 2016, 02:06:41 PM
Hi Trainman, in my area 50 degrees is a typical summer day! And my cellar was designed to hold coal and has a river running through it in wet weather. That is why I like to think of nice warm climes!!

To be fair to Bachmann re the South they also did the SAL Decapod, Baldwin "Modern" 4-4-0 with and without sound, and Richmond 4-4-0, all of which I have, and the SAL USRA Light 2-10-2 with and without sound, which I missed, not realising it would be here and gone again in a flash, so that is ebay if at all. But curiously they never did the Baldwin 2-8-0 for the SAL in HO, though they did it twice in N.

They have also recently added the ALCo 2-6-0 for the Southern, and that is on my list as I don't have any of those Bachmann ALCo 2-6-0s yet, and the USRA 2-10-2 with and without sound, which is another ebay maybe.

Best Regards,
32  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Spectrum HO Steam for the NC&StL and L&N - Is my list complete, please? on: May 08, 2016, 10:58:21 AM
The only smoker is a BLI PRR H10s, and I keep the smoke turned off to avoid an accidental burnout / meltdown.

Seriously though, I was expecting to hear that there were more Baldwin 2-8-0s for the L&N or NC&StL in the Spectrum back-catalog than the lone example I found (Spectrum 11425, NC&StL #390). The 2-8-0 has been in the range the longest, and not a single L&N example? or DCC or Sound example?

Best Regards,
33  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Which RRs used the Medium Vanderbilt tender as modelled by Bachmann Spectrum? on: May 04, 2016, 02:24:10 AM
Hi Rich, good idea. The Florida state archives certainly provided some photos of minor lines, and not always categorized under railroads.

34  Discussion Boards / HO / Spectrum HO Steam for the NC&StL and L&N - Is my list complete, please? on: May 03, 2016, 11:37:01 AM
Hi, I am wondering if anyone can fill out my list of Spectrum steamers for the Dixie Line. I have:

Baldwin USRA “Light Mountain” 4-8-2:

- NC&StL #553, DCC Ready. Spectrum 81604

- L&N #408, DCC Ready. Spectrum 81608

Baldwin 2-10-0 “Russian Decapod”:

- NC&StL #953, DCC Ready. Spectrum 81708

- NC&StL #952, w/DCC & Tsunami Sound. Spectrum 84305

Baldwin 2-8-0:

- NC&StL #390, DCC Ready. Spectrum 11425

Baldwin Modern 4-4-0:

- L&N #7, DCC on board. Spectrum 80102

- L&N #144, w/DCC & Tsunami Sound. Spectrum 80127

I am also aware of the P2K USRA 0-8-0 for the L&N

I am busy upgrading them all to DCC + Sound whilst the relevant Spectrum parts can still be easily found in the spares shop or on ebay, replacing the tender chassis where necessary with the sound-ready versions. I might as well catch any that have escaped my net at the same time.

I would be grateful to know of any omissions,

35  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Which RRs used the Medium Vanderbilt tender as modelled by Bachmann Spectrum? on: May 03, 2016, 11:22:00 AM
Hi, thanks for your replies. The Lousiana and Arkansas is perfect. I even have an old Bev-Bel L&A Boxcar! The L&A ran over T&P metals for part of its route, and I have just ordered the T&P 4-6-0 as I saw that Kleins were down to their last one and $149.99 was too good to miss!  If anyone knows of a photo of an L&A 4-6-0 with Vandy tender I would be grateful for the reference, as all the L&A locos I have found so far have box tenders.

Best Regards,
36  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Which RRs used the Medium Vanderbilt tender as modelled by Bachmann Spectrum? on: April 29, 2016, 05:43:24 PM
Hi, thanks for your replies, and the info about the IC 900 class. I should have said more at the outset. I know from Wiki that the following major RRs used Vandy tenders in significant numbers:

Baltimore & Ohio
Canadian National
Grand Trunk Western
Great Northern
Southern Pacific
Union Pacific

Most of these are not quite in the right areas. I am looking for RRs whose locos might have rubbed shoulders with my existing collections, and preferable for a 4-6-0. GN from the list above might have shared tracks with the RI around the Twin Cities, and the SP and RI met at Tucumcari, but Spectrum also did this tender in SP lettering and I have one. IC suggested by Jeff would have co-existed with the L&N around New Orleans. But I would be grateful for any more suggestions, especially for smaller lines. One of the grainer roads around the Twin Cities or a smaller RR in southern Appalachia or Florida would be ideal.

Thanks again,

37  Discussion Boards / HO / Which RRs used the Medium Vanderbilt tender as modelled by Bachmann Spectrum? on: April 29, 2016, 02:20:32 PM
I have always liked this tender and have an undec one (coal). I am wondering which RRs used them, ideally one of the many lines that ran into Minneapolis- St Paul, or that operated around Florida / the Gulf Coast. I know the SP used them or similar, but they were oil in all the photos I have seen. I am thinking of mating one with a Spectrum undec 4-6-0 high boiler or 2-8-0, which could then rub shoulders with my Spectrum Rock Island 2-8-0s and C.St.P.M.&O 4-6-0s (Twin Cities); or my SAL 4-4-0s and Decapods (Florida); or another area would be southern Appalachia, as I have a bunch of Spectrum L&N + N.C.&St.L. steamers. I have tried looking on Railroad Picture Archive, but it is like searching for something from the wrong end.

Grateful for any thoughts,
38  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: T&P 4-6-0 - Oil Bunker for Tender, Mr B? on: April 18, 2016, 01:53:23 AM
Hi Rich, thanks for your comments. I have had a good look through the spare parts catalog and can find no equivalent to the original oil bunker for the small Baldwin tender. That is unfortunate, as I suspect that the ATSF 4-6-0 would also more likely have an oil bunker than coal, and many of the Seaboard 4-4-0s on their Florida branch lines were converted to oil to reduce the risk of fires caused by flying sparks. (Apparently a SAL loco actually burnt down a station in the 1920s, and the SAL was subject to frequent law suits from farmers whose crops they burned, according to the Prince book). In which context the wood bunker load for the Richmond 4-4-0 also no longer seems to be available in the Bachmann spares catalog.

On low boiler locos for standard gauge, I am sure you will know that the Bachmann 4-6-0 is actually based on Maryland & Pennsylvania #27 + 28, which it closely represents. This pair were bought off-the-shelf-from Baldwin, so Baldwin must have supplied more or less identical locos to other RRs, though I don't know how many they actually built. However, they did supply more or less identical locos to several small Florida RRs which the SAL eventually absorbed, as can bee seen in photos on the various Tap Lines web pages. These include four with 54" drivers built 1907-10 for the Charlotte Harbor and Northern as CH&N #26-29, one of which (#28) survived to become SAL #689 and lasted until 1934, and several to the Georgia, Florida & Alabama, including a pair with 50" drivers supplied by Baldwin in 1901-2 as GF&A #s 5+6, later re-numbered #s 122+123, and finally SAL #s 684+685, where they lasted until 1930. I think some of these were also converted to oil in later years. Apparently these light 4-6-0s were ideal for the lightly laid Florida branch lines running over soft ground, along with light, small driver Baldwin 2-8-0s (again also supplied to the M&PA as #s 23-26, built Baldwin 1902-12 and contemporary with and very similar to the small Baldwin 4-6-0s. Also, ultimately, several decapods for Florida, including six built 1924-6 by Baldwin for the GF&A as #s 400-405, all inherited by the SAL as #s 523-528 and survived until 1951-3.

I had hoped that one day Bachmann might produce the M&PA small Baldwin 2-8-0s to complete their M&PA suite, but the move away from Spectrum standards makes this unlikely, though fortunately I do have M&PA 2-8-0 #26 by Aristocraft, got at a reasonable price on ebay some years ago. But a Spectrum undec w/sound model would have been very nice. The closest RTR equivalent is probably the venerable Roundhouse 2-8-0, which has appeared for various RRs but never the M&PA, so far as I know. I don't have one, but I do have the Roundhouse 2-6-0, which in model terms is a close stablemate and sounds like a coffee grinder.

Best Regards,
39  Discussion Boards / HO / T&P 4-6-0 - Oil Bunker for Tender, Mr B? on: April 09, 2016, 07:23:50 AM
The T&P 4-6-0 was on my list, but I paused after finding the new 4-6-0 models had been down-detailed. But I just saw a large-size photo of the ATSF version showing the opposite side to all the Bachmann stock photos, and the left side looks distinctly better as there is more separately applied detail. This caused me to re-visit the T&P model.

I am not sure what Bachmann are intending here, but I have assumed it is to model the loco as preserved and running on the Texas State Railroad. There are some great vids of this online - search for "Texas State Railroad - Rebirth of T&P #316". There are a couple of points about the model:

Use of Bachmann's small Baldwin tender is correct, but the real #316 has an oil bunker, not coal. This is an easy fix as Bachmann have produced an oil bunker for this tender, as used on the Great Northern 4-4-0 and in the undec Baldwin 4-4-0 as a spare. Unfortunately the spare parts store does not list the oil bunker separately, but only with the GN tender shell, which is sold out. Maybe the Bachmann could make the bunker available again, and maybe add it in with the model in future?

The loco itself is more of an issue. In Bachmann terms the original is "high boiler", i.e. it has high footboards above groups of pipes and air cylinders on both sides. However, there are aspects of the old Spectrum high-boiler 4-6-0 model which don't look right for #316, notably the four levels of footboard on the left side and the vacuum brake cylinders below the highest of these. So all-in-all the low-boiler model may be the best compromise in terms of appearance.

Finally, you will see from the vids that the real loco and tender are painted in high-gloss. Again this can be fixed - by the brave!

Just some thoughts,
40  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Bachmann 4-6-0's re-released, why are they no longer Spectrum models? on: April 02, 2016, 05:28:12 PM
It looks like the boiler now has molded on detail. 

Thanks for the heads-up about the molded-on detail. I have looked more closely at the photos and see you are right. What a pointless retrograde step, especially as the DCC ready ones are priced at $299, which is hardly cheap. And presumably the old molds are now irretrievably altered, so there is no chance of seeing the high-grade variant again. I was about to buy the B&O and T&P models, but now can save myself the money. Fortunately like you I have 3x low boiler + 2x high boiler of the old DCC ready unlettered variety. Those old low-boiler models also come with an optional wood cab.

I was also contemplating the UP version. Bachmann's original UP pair, UP#1584 and UP#1585 (respectively Spectrum 82303 (DCC Ready) + 84903 (DCC + Sound) were acceptably close to a small class built by Baldwin in 1907-10 which the UP inherited in 1936 from the Pacific & Idaho Northern Railway and included in its Oregon Short Line subsidiary / division, and which lasted until 1946-47. They were numbered 1584-7 and three were coal burners with 56" driving wheels. The exception was 1585 which had 61" drivers and was an oil burner, but Bachmann make an oil bunker for the small Baldwin tender, which can be found as an optional part in the undec Baldwin Modern 4-4-0 model, if you have one.

I have not tracked down UP 1429, which is Bachmann's new 4-6-0 offering. It may be a loco built by Rhode Island in 1890 for the UP, which was re-numbered to 1225 in 1915 and retired 1926. This was one of a class of 12 (class T-57), built with 62" drivers and re-built with 57" drivers some time after 1911.

Anyway, the point is that the Spectrum UP low-boiler 4-6-0 was a respectable representation of a real class of UP 4-6-0s that operated on their Pacific North-West branch lines until the mid-1940s - mountains and pine trees!

End of Ramble,
Happy Railroading,
41  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Undecorated models - Steam on: December 21, 2015, 07:25:04 PM
I have never understood the argument that unlettered steam locos cannot be justified on cost grounds. They are simply fully painted models that do not go through the final lettering process, and their box is just a standard box with a stick-on label saying "unlettered". In view of the number of steam decal sheets available from the likes of MicroScale there must be some demand. It would do Bachmann no harm to produce a couple of dozen in every production run and park them at a major retailer.

This might perhaps be linked to the fact that Bachmann seem unable to sell anything at list price. The list price for the Baldwin Modern 4-4-0 with DCC is $359 and with sound $499, but the big retailers sell them for $109.99 and $199.99 respectively. I often wonder what price Bachmann sell them for to MB Klein and Trainworld.

On the basis that there must be modellers of far more railroads than the half dozen Bachmann choose for any particular model in their range the market must be there. I am speaking of steam - there are diesels for almost everyone. But are there not steam age modellers for, e.g. the Central of Georgia, for whom Microscale make a steam decal sheet? Or 4-4-0s and 4-6-0s for the Rock Island (another MS sheet). And they are just two of the hundreds of US steam age railroads.

It baffles me!
42  Discussion Boards / HO / Hey Mr B - Question about the new DCC ready 52" Driver 4-6-0s on: December 21, 2015, 07:00:55 PM
Hi Mr B, I see that these new 4-6-0s are due end December (or so say Trainworld). I am planning to buy two DCC ready models, Bachmann #52202, Baldwin 4-6-0 (Low Boiler, 52” Drivers) B&O #1357 and Bachmann #52205, Baldwin 4-6-0 (Low Boiler, 52” Drivers) Texas & Pacific #316. I have two spare Spectrum tenders with Tsunami sound from the Baldwin Modern 4-4-0 and I am wondering, can I just swap the tender tops and plug them in or will they blow the light bulbs? I ask because Life-Like always stress the need to replace the bulbs when adding a decoder, but Bachmann instructions are always silent on this matter. I know that some decoders have built-in protection to allow the old 12v DC bulbs to be left in place, which is why I mention which decoder I will be using. I have plugged Spectrum Tsunami tenders into DCC ready Spectrums before, but only for short tests, and I notice that the lights glow a whole lot brighter than they do on DC.

I would be grateful for your advice.

43  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: New Bachman Baldman L&N 4-4-0 Steam loco DCC-Sound on: December 14, 2015, 05:43:12 PM
Hi, it is dual mode, so try it on DC if you can just to see if it runs.

Best Regards,
44  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Question about H.O. Scale 4-4-0 on: December 08, 2015, 11:43:57 AM
nothing except for the light flickering. 

Sounds more like a bad electrical contact to me. Check for fluff or dirt where it shouldn't be. A loose wire is another possibility.

Best Regards,
45  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Hey Mr B - re Spectrum L&N 4-4-0 suggestion. on: December 07, 2015, 08:35:23 PM
Hi, thanks for your replies.

Trainman: Indeed, I have now found an L&N Diagram of #7 (D-0), undated but showing the bunker, noted that it carried 11 1/2 tons of coal and 5,000 gal of water. There is also a diagram of #143 (D-21) without bunker (in contrast to the photo of #143 with bunker), saying it carried 10 tons of coal and 5,000 gal of water, which suggests the bunkers added 15% to capacity, and hence endurance. That diag is also noted "new boiler 1927", which suggests that #143 got her bunker later than that, and so by inference her sister #144. BTW both #143 and #144 were converted, maybe circa 1908, from Baldwin 4-6-0s of 1889 vintage, which gave them a rangy look, unlike #7 which was built by Baldwin in 1916 and looked a much sturdier beast (and closer to the model) than #143 + #144. BTW Mr Prince says that the L&N used wood-burning 4-4-0s on Florida and Alabama branch lines until 1916.

Doctorwayne: You are right, I am being lazy and should build my own bunkers, and that would also allow greater individualism. But I have reached a time of life when projects progress but slowly, if at all, and Mr. B is much more likely than me to have access to an accurate diagram. I like your treatment of Grand Valley #25 in particular.

Urbi et Orbi: Wouldn't you know it, I paid a Cockeysville, MD emporium $179.99 for #144 in October and that Brooklyn emporium have just remaindered it from $199.99 to $119.99. I give up.

Best Regards,
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