Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

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PRR5406
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Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by PRR5406 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 5:05 pm

I've been working on measurements all winter, using black line diagrams from the ALCO manuals and some other drawings sent to me by modelers, then diving into a sea of pictures of this class of locomotive from my own collection and some online. Coinciding with a welding class, I've started the frame and heavier metal work. Today I gave it a coat of primer to keep spot rust from forming. It weighs about 80 pounds and dragging it from home to class in y little pickup truck is getting old - quickly!
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The two high-hood Century noses have been cast and are sitting on the garage floor, but I didn't think to photograph them this time out. The original face I cast was too blemished for my purposes so it went to another purpose.
Yesterday, I took the wooden truck forms I've been making in the wood shop at home over to Odd Duck Foundry in Orrington, Maine. The owner, Peter, spent the day with me, and we got almost all the parts finished. I'm making these trucks as close to the way ALCO put them together, although Peter doesn't yet have a flask large enough to cast the frame as single piece. Anyway, here are a few of the pieces, as yet only filed and un-milled.
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I'll post again when I get things further assembled. Later this week, I hope to get the decking on the chassis.

Dick
"Always stopping my train, and risking my ankles, with American made, New Balance sneakers."

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Adirondack
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by Adirondack » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:00 pm

For when it's time to paint...
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C420li1.gif
Adirondack Car & Foundry
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makinsmoke
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by makinsmoke » Tue Apr 10, 2012 6:34 am

Nice looking frame and those truck castings are fine!

Always have a place down deep for high hood diesels.

Remind me of Don Nottingham bowling through defenders with a pigskin under his arm!

Brian

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PRR5406
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by PRR5406 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:37 am

Adirondack- Yup, that's the paint scheme. These big locomotives were the backbone of the commuter fleet throughout my teen years, succeeding the big FM units. I remember them bobbing up and down along the main at Nassau Tower (Mineola), at 70mph, with a string of twelve heavyweight parlors in tow. They were equally tough climbing Cold Spring Hill with rush hour commuter trains dragging the weary back from New York.

Brian, I am learning an incredible amount during this building process, so while I am a steam guy at heart, the experience is helping me build confidence for an eventual steam project. I think it's fair to say, for every step backwards, I am making three forward! Believe it or not, my wife asked me to build something that she could run at meets, and thus...

I appreciate the positive feedback. Thank you.
"Always stopping my train, and risking my ankles, with American made, New Balance sneakers."

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makinsmoke
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by makinsmoke » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:20 pm

Staying in the "Board's" good graces is paramount in any hobby, but critical in this one, given the time factor away from family life, and the higher that usual expenses.

Keeping the CFO happy is most important of all, or as has been referred to here from time to time..
SWMBO!

My response to the CFO's request for a piece of rolling stock for her prize livestock:
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Ok, so not livestock, but she does have her own car, and the CFO happily agreed the expense for a NEW PROJECT!

Brian

steve tune
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by steve tune » Tue Apr 10, 2012 1:33 pm

that looks good so far, your frame looks very professional , good job, steve tune tunetrains.com

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PRR5406
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by PRR5406 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:39 pm

Is the passenger an eager or reluctant rider?
"Always stopping my train, and risking my ankles, with American made, New Balance sneakers."

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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by OddDuck » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:11 pm

This is a good learning experience for me as well, and I can't wait to see those trucks all put together. The only two issues against doing them as a one-piece main frame on the trucks was crucible capacity and the fact that that would have been a rather large flask (about 26"x20"x8"). Perhaps after I rebuild my furnace (to allow about a B30 sized crucible) we'll give the one piece a try.
"If you took the bones out they wouldn't be crunchy!" -Monty Python's Flying Circus

BobbyT
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by BobbyT » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:50 pm

Looking good so far. What power plant are you planning on using? Gas/Hydraulic or electric?

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PRR5406
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by PRR5406 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:15 pm

I had thought about a Briggs & Stratton, belted to an alternator, charging batteries from which power would be drawn to electric motors, after all, she is an ALCO. Other operators have had good experiences simply drawing power to electric motors from a pair of deep-cycle wet cells. I think that's the way I'm going with this. It's quieter and cleaner and certainly less hassle mechanically. Both truck sets will be motorized, so they'll be significant drawn on the batteries, but these are 24 volt motors, which will help extend the life of the batteries. She won't be as powerful as gasoline/hydraulic units, but I'm staying within the limits of my knowledge this time out. At least I hope so!

Tomorrow evening at class, she gets decking and ready for mounting the trucks. It'll take a week or so to assemble the trucks (without elec. motors), then I need to retrofit the motor packs. After that, I need to scratch up money to buy the sheet metal to fabricate the cab and hood. My goal is to have her running by our September meet, if not before.

Incidentally, I have given the patterns to Odd Duck Foundry, so if the trucks assemble well, Peter can "tune up" the patterns and cast them for persons wanting to try other ALCO builds.
"Always stopping my train, and risking my ankles, with American made, New Balance sneakers."

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makinsmoke
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by makinsmoke » Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:37 am

Oh, No, it is simply referred to now as Chloe's car!

Absolutely loves to ride!

Brian

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PRR5406
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Re: Long Island ALCO Century 420 in construction.

Post by PRR5406 » Thu Apr 12, 2012 6:28 pm

Just a quick update with pictures. This is where I am today with the ALCO project. There is 16g decking, I have attached a pilot board, but still need to add foot boards, the ladders are attached, as is the side edging. I primed the raw steel to prevent further oxidation. The ALCO Century faces are identical castings, held in place with magnets for right now.
THe ALCO truck is not assembled, but has been rough filed. It requires some machining to allow pieces to come together correctly, or at least as projected. I added these so you guys can vicariously experience what I'm planning out as it comes together. We'll cast the second truck in the next week or so. I need to pull together some bucks to purchase sheet metal for the hood and cab. I expect that will follow the construction and attachment of truck and motors, so it will be awhile before I post more pictures.
A work in progress. I must remind myself not to die before it's finished. :-)

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"Always stopping my train, and risking my ankles, with American made, New Balance sneakers."

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