Atlas HO GE U30Bs, Frisco

Discussion in 'General Electric (GE)' started by meteor910, Jul 2, 2011.

  1. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    With the concession to Atlas that the new U30b will have a dual gyralight rather than the correct single gyralight (Bob mentioned this in the Athearn GP15-1 thread), I'm interested in the group's opinion as to the best fix for this problem. The obvious answer was to use the Sunrise Enterprises GE U-boat single gyralite part, but they are no longer in business and the part is out of stock.

  2. Iantha_Branch

    Iantha_Branch Member

    Ken, I've never actually done this, but I have a theory. Do the same thing required for the B30-7 that atlas put out. In that case it was just a plain GE style bracket but no gyro light detail. In this case it's already got the double light. Well take out your light bulbs, drill out the original part, and replace it with this: And then add a light bulb back into it and it should fix it. Now this is just a theory, and will need 2 be put to the test. Any one have an idea? Please share.

  3. renapper (Richard Napper RIP 3/8/2013)

    renapper (Richard Napper RIP 3/8/2013) Passed away March 8, 2013

    I would probably do as Ethan has propossed above.
  4. FriscoFriend (Bob Hoover RIP 4/12/2018)

    FriscoFriend (Bob Hoover RIP 4/12/2018) Passed Away April 12, 2018 Supporter


    You are good at theorizing as that is exactly the fix that we came up with when making the decision on the nose casting. For historical reference, when working with Atlas I was told right up front that it was not cost feasible for them to produce a new nose casting for one locomotive for one road. They gave me a choice of what they offered, that being the more common dual-lens casting or the blank one similar to the B30-7. This came right after a similar discussion had occurred with Bowser about the handrail being wrong on their revamped U25b and their refusal to spend what they estimated to be $15.00 added to the retail of the model. To me the difference was the Bowser decision affected the accuracy of the entire production of the models in all roadnames where the Atlas one only effected one.

    I may have mentioned this previously, but when decisions like this come up, I usually choose to consult other forum members as to what they feel would be the best solution. In this instance I consulted both Rick McClellan and Nick Molo and we all agreed that choosing the dual headlight version was the way to go. This was partially based on the fact that we felt that it would be a very easy fix by just carefully sanding down the molded on one and replacing it with the Utah Pacific casting. Hopefully no filling will be required. Also, as Ethan has also pointed out, we are going to get a pre-wired light to boot.

    Bottom line is that I have learned that when working with Manufacturers that sometimes concessions have to be made. In the case of the
    Atlas U30b I could tell right up front that the nose casting was a non-negotiable issue so I focused my attention on getting the "XR" version #846 which was my #1 priority all along.
  5. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    Ethan's suggestion is a good one. Thanks!

    I assume the Walthers part he suggests is the same as the old brass Utah Pacific #70? I have a few of those. It seems to me to stick out a bit too far vs the Frisco pics I have, so a slight touch to the back of it with a file might be required. There also is Details Associates #1001 to consider. It's plastic and might be easier to work with.

    I have one pack of the Sunrise lights, fortunately they came two to a pack, and I have two U30b's ordered (but I have yet to fix my B30-7 OR my old Athearn U30b, SLSF 835).

    SLSF 835 will require surgery as it carried no nose light. Amazingly, I won first place in two model contests with it long ago (the weathering and added details really turned out well) even though it still carries the Athearn dual nose light fixture, one red, one white! It was my first prize winner ever, and to this day I have not had the heart to go chopping on it. It still has the Blue Box motor, and thus does not run worth a hoot, so it spends its time on display above my desk. I look up at it now and then and go into a chug-chug-chugga-chug chant! Love U-boats!

  6. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    Ken, your #835 can be given a new heart!
    There are some sellers on ebay that sell the newer RTR motors which will drop right into the old frames. I replaced one in an old Athearn blue box GP7/9 for ayerox (Jay Cox). I had to transfer the linkages from the old motor to the new one, but it was a simple swap. That lowered the current draw so I could install a Soundtraxx Tsunami AT-1000 EMD 567 decoder with speaker. I ran quite well after the conversion and sounded great to boot!
    Ayerox likes this.
  7. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    Keith -


    I have had a NWSL repowering kit for my Athearn BB SLSF 835 for ten years - just never got around to doing the job.

    I'm going to keep it on the shelf - being a widebody Athearn BB, it won't look up to par when compared to the new Frisco Atlas U30b's, and my Frisco Atlas B30-7, Frisco Stewart U25b's, and my Atlas PC U23b, all of which will be on the front lines.

    Anyway - some of the bits of putty work I did on 835 is starting to fail, plus the nose is wrong. I did this model in 1980(time flies!) before I knew much about the details of Frisco diesels - but it won in a NMRA meet here in the fall of 1980 and took first place at the Springfield OMRA meet in March, 1981. I'm going to keep it as it is - it still looks great when viewed on its own, and I'm still very proud of it. This was the first detailed model I ever did and - somehow - I way outdid myself. I've not been able to weather a locomotive as well since!

  8. Sirfoldalot

    Sirfoldalot Supporter Supporter

    Hey, Maestro, when you have time - I wouldn't mind seeing a photo of 835 in your album - Then we can be proud with you!
  9. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    Sherrel - Here's a quick shot of filthy SLSF 835 sitting up on its perch.


    I had it on display at Tinkertown for a while and was criticized by one viewer who said "the Frisco never let their locomotives get that dirty". Wrong!

  10. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    Bob - What's the latest read now on when the new Atlas HO U30b's will poke their nose out of the erecting shop?

  11. FriscoFriend (Bob Hoover RIP 4/12/2018)

    FriscoFriend (Bob Hoover RIP 4/12/2018) Passed Away April 12, 2018 Supporter

    Ken and All:

    As I reported in another thread, the status of this and several other announced future releases has been recently changed to TBD (To Be Determined). I feel no reason to contact them at this time simply because I feel that I would be told they don't know. If any of you would like to see what I do go to:

    If you want me to guess I would say they are at least 6-9 months out minimum.
  12. Sirfoldalot

    Sirfoldalot Supporter Supporter

    Very nice work, Ken. I wouldn't let the light bother me too much. I love the weathering - looks the way a loco should.
    I am proud with you - and congratulations on the awards!
  13. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    Thanks. The 835 was done long ago (1980) - a different time, a different me, and a less sophisticated hobby.

  14. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    I just got word from wholesale trains that my U30B's are on the way.
  15. HWB

    HWB Supporter

    That notification was for a different order. My bad. Hope I didn't get anyone too excited
  16. Rick McClellan

    Rick McClellan 2009 Engineer of the Year

    Only me. Customer Service at Wholesale Trains said that my U30s should be shipped by August 5. Guess that's not too long.
  17. friscomike

    friscomike Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    - It gave me a heart attack; I had used the U30B money for GP15-1s... ~mike
  18. Sirfoldalot

    Sirfoldalot Supporter Supporter

    AHH, Mike, Never rob Peter to pay Paul. lol :)
  19. friscomike

    friscomike Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    Too late! I better start mowing lawns and taking in laundry, real quick! ~mike
  20. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Supporter

    FYI, as a member of the Atlas "Golden Spike Club", today I received a copy of the Atlas Summer 2012 Catalog. In the HO section, as the first items (page 3) shown, is the listing of the recent re-announcement of the Atlas Atlas U30b Phase II locomotices, including two very nice renderings of two of the Frisco U30b's - SLSF 846 (the "XR" marked unit), and SLSF 853. Estimated arrival time is noted as 1st Quarter, 2013.

    I hope they are finally going to deliver these. The U-boats are my favorite Frisco 2nd Gen road units (barely edging out the SD45's!). Coincidently, 846 and 853 are the two units I have on order.

    Past Atlas Frisco o/w models have about the best shade of red/orange. Look forward to finally seeing these - more "chug chug a-chug chug" locomotives!


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