4416 build advice

Discussion in '4-8-2 Mountain' started by dpeterson3, Dec 2, 2015.

  1. dpeterson3

    dpeterson3 Member

    I picked up a Bachmann spectrum heavy mountain off of ebay for a decent price a couple of weeks ago with the intention of changing from an ICRR engine to Frisco 4416. So far, I've removed the smoke box cover and most of the running board and plumbing details. Next will be the sand dome. I have a few questions, though. Where might I find an appropriate smoke box cover? I've looked at precision scale's catalog, and I don't see one that's quite right there. For reference, here's a close up look.

    If I can't find one, how would I go about making one? I'm still new to scratch building, and I'm not sure how to get the curve where the cover sticks out.

    Second, what are the large boxes with hoses attached on the pilot? I'm not sure what to search for to get those right.

  2. Karl

    Karl 2008 Engineer of the Year Frisco.org Supporter

    Those are sheet metal shields that protect the air compressors. Those "hoses" are steel pipes.
  3. yardmaster

    yardmaster Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    Daniel -
    Very good question; I've seen various articles over the years on fashioning smokebox fronts/doors to better represent a particular prototype. To wit:
    • There was a Model Railroader article years ago on the New England, Berkshire & Western club making molds/castings to use on some of their locomotives.
    • Saw another article years ago (can't remember which publication) where someone laminated smaller layers of circular styrene to each other to where it rather looked like a ziggurat, ran a screw through the middle, plopped it in a power drill or motor tool or mini-lathe and shaped it to taste.
    You could also try to find some old, el cheapo plastic locomotives at swap meets and try to kitbash a good enough smokebox front from several different varieties.

    Putting a modern twist on things, it seems that 3D printing is a possibility for just about any detail that a prototype modeler could want. Perhaps others will add their dime's worth to this; I really don't know much about it, other than the fact that it looks very interesting.

    Regarding the shields protecting the compressors, I'd think that some brass sheet cut and bent to correct dimensions would be good enough.

    Good luck with the project; it sounds like a fun one. Stick with it, and let us know how it goes.

    Best Regards,
  4. WindsorSpring

    WindsorSpring Member

    There is a fellow ("Casey") on "The Reading Modeler" who does excellent work with polystyrene to make steam locomotive appliances on kit-bash projects. His general procedure for polystyrene boiler fabrication is at:


    If you go to that website (http://www.readingmodeler.com/), go to the subforum "Follow the Build" and look for any steam scratchbuild, chances are it is something he has done. He has photos and text describing his techniques.
  5. dpeterson3

    dpeterson3 Member

    Thanks. I've seen the readingmodeler website before, but I forgot about it. I did find a few posts where he builds smokebox covers using layered styrene. I've thought about doing it this way too, but I haven't figured out how to sand it so that I get an even chamfer all around. Has anyone done this before? Also not sure how to make the bolt heads and hinges.

    The 3D printing idea is interesting, and I thought about doing it. I have 3D printers I can use at school. I want to learn to scratch build, though, which is why I decided against it. I hoping one day I can get to the point I can put up a website about this so its a little easier to learn. That's a long way off, though.
  6. WindsorSpring

    WindsorSpring Member

    If I recall, Casey does have some photos showing stages of sanding a chamfer on a layered styrene. This may have been for a smokebox front or a dome. I guess the best technical advice would be "...slowly and carefully...! " :)
  7. yardmaster

    yardmaster Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    Had another thought - I've never used one, but I've seen "dapping blocks" which can be used to press dome-like or similar shapes that might be useful for fashioning one's own domes, etc. I'd presume that George's advice to proceed "slowly and carefully" would also apply in those instances.

    Best Regards,

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