USATC S-160 Consolidation

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Dick_Morris
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USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Mon Apr 14, 2014 5:29 am

This is a project that I started about 15 years ago and then put onto the back burner after working on it for about a year. When I started, all I had for prototype information was a park display locomotive that I spent several days crawling on and under to measure and take photos. Later I found erection and section prints. After getting involved in restoring a full-sized locomotive of this design a couple of years ago I have located many original drawings and have renewed my interest in building the model. It's also proving very helpful to be able to look at the removed parts that are on shelves and pallets around the shop.

The prototype is a relatively small Consolidation, weighing about 160,000 pounds with 57" drivers and 19" X 26" cylinders. Designed for use in Europe, they were also very compact with the maximum width just under 9 feet. An advantage of modeling this design is that the prototype relied heavily on fabricated components instead of forgings or castings, so there is no need to make or simulate a lot of castings. Most of the locomotive of the class had frames flame cut from 4-1/2" plate and plate was also used extensively for the suspension parts, crossheads, and frame spreaders.

Before I put the model aside for I had machined the drive wheels, cut out frames and done most of the frame machining, made some of the side rods, welded up and partially machined the front deck and footplate, and made most of the suspension parts. The smoke box had been faced to length and the all the boiler parts cut out. None of the commercial cylinder castings were anywhere close to what was needed so the cylinder block had been welded together and partially machined.

Except for the jewelry (valves, injector, bell, etc.), it's likely that the only castings I will use are the drive and lead truck wheels and the journal boxes.

Below is the side elevation and a photo of my work for the weekend, machining the smoke box radius in the saddle.
Attachments
S-160 Side Elevation - small.jpg
Machining Saddle.jpg

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Benjamin Maggi
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Benjamin Maggi » Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:08 pm

I remember someone built one and it was featured in Live Steam in the past decade or so. The Italian builder bought a real one in Italy, took it apart and drew up the plans for it piece by piece (he couldn't get the plans from the Army), scaled them, and built the model. An interesting project to be sure.
"One cannot learn to swim without getting his feet wet." - Benjamin Maggi
- Building: 7.25" gauge "Sweet Pea" named "Catherine"

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Dick_Morris
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Tue Apr 15, 2014 4:01 pm

I have disk of photos and videos showing the construction and final product. They are remarkable locomotives. I contacted the builder to see if he had a source of drawings that I hadn't found yet. He didn't have access to any drawings. He built two of them - http://www.lner.info/locos/O/s160.shtml

Here is an article on the builder - http://thisitalianlife.blogspot.com/201 ... ffair.html

hudson
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by hudson » Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:50 pm

Another article on the S160 (in Italian) with a lot of pictures is:

http://www.marklinfan.com/f/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1316

A drawing is available at:

http://s25.photobucket.com/user/bengts/ ... 2.jpg.html

Happy viewing.

hudson

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Dick_Morris
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:26 am

Thanks for the Italian site. An interesting group of photos, some that I've seen, some that I haven't.

The photo of the locomotives being loaded/unloaded from a ship shows the special spreader bar that was made to lift them. The rear was bolted to the steam dome in place of the dome cover. The front is being lifted by the eye shown in the plans which was welded to the top of the smoke box at manufacture. When shipped, the locomotives were accompanied by a set of drawings and tools, (including a broom), coal in the tender, and their initial supply of lubricants. There was also a schedule of the number of spare parts that were to be delivered with every X number of locomotives. Spares included tubes, flues, drive wheels, and even cylinder blocks.

The two photos with what appears to be an endless line of cold S-160s were taken in Wales. The locomotives were stockpiled and waiting for D-Day and their shipment to Europe.

The one with the number that looks like "W 1" is probably a 5' gauge version headed to the USSR, that's why it's loaded on a flat car. I have a builder's photo with the number "W 175" which is identified as being built for the USSR. In fact, W 175 is pictured in another photo on this web page. From the information I've found, it was typical of the standard gauge S-160s built by Baldwin to have knuckle type couplers temporarily installed at the factory so they could be moved on their own wheels to the nearby BLW dock.

On the model, I finished flycutting the saddle and have started boring on the first cylinder bore. My quill feed is just barely long enough to complete the cut. I had a bit of a scare after I started machining it - I couldn't remember if I had increased the spacing between the cylinders to compensate for the difference between the gauge correctly scaled from the prototype and the 7-1/2" gauge that I'm building to. After doing some checking I found that all was well. Whew.

I also got several more of the prototype drawings yesterday including the cylinder block and frame drilling. The measurements that I made 15 years ago are holding up remarkably well when compared with the drawings.

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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Ghettofab75 » Sun Apr 20, 2014 10:55 pm

Funny, I was just looking in my Lima locomotive factory book and noticed they had several pics of these locomotives, and now I run across this.

Its a neat locomotive thats for sure!

I wonder if the italian guy just scrapped his loco piece by piece till he had all the drawings made? Seems like a waste of a good loco. He could have just restored the full size one instead of making a model.

Kevo

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Dick_Morris
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Mon Apr 21, 2014 12:40 am

A web page I came across a couple of days ago said that the locomotive is now in a museum in Milan.

On the model I've finished the rough bores for the steam and valve cylinders. The quill travel on my mill is long enough to bore the steam cylinders, but I have to crank the table up to machine the last half inch of the valve cylinders. I had some concerns whether that would give me a good bore, but it seems to work OK.

I bought a cheap 4" boring head with this project in mind. I made a boring bar from 1" stock and with an HSS tool bit it's plenty rigid. The last cut must be made at a very slow speed to get a good finish. I've only used the power down feed on the mill a couple of times in the past, but it's been worth its weight in gold for this project, as has the DRO.

Does anyone have a copy of the drawing for the LE O-4-0/0-6-0 valve spool and valve cage that they could scan and share? I had been using the LE design for inspiration for the valve cylinder, but I've misplaced my copy.

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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by marshall5 » Mon Apr 21, 2014 4:06 am

Dick_Morris wrote:A web page I came across a couple of days ago said that the locomotive is now in a museum in Milan.
I've always had a soft spot for S160's so would love to know more about that Dick. Steamlocomotive.info (which I've found pretty reliable) only lists 2 S160's in Milan, FS736.205 "derelict" at Milan Greco freight yards and 736.208 "dumped" at Milan Smistamento loco depot. Some 20 odd years ago a buddy of mine inspected the latter and decided it was too far gone to restore to working order and purchased USATC 5197 from China instead. He also inspected FS 736.113 (USATC 3323) at Naples Smistamento which was very rough but IIRC still had its con. rods. There is a cosmetically restored S160 in Pietrarsa museum just south of Naples.
I found the article about the Italian guy's model most interesting. A truly beautiful model and a great achievement but even allowing for 'journalistic licence' and mis-translation I'm 'not buying' the bit about dismantling the loco until there was nothing left by 2002. My hunch is that he measured up 736.205 for his model and the loco still still exists albeit derelict. Just my 2c worth.
Thanks for all the updates on your projects, full-size and model, keep 'em coming.
Regards,
Ray.

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Dick_Morris
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Thu Apr 24, 2014 2:53 am

The locomotive uses two styles of spring clips at the ends of the springs. Size is about 1/2" X 5/8". I can carve them out of solid or cast them. I need 8 of each style. Could they be cast in polyurethane (Aluminite or similar)? I've used it a few times in the past and found it to be tough and it appears like it would withstand the load. Has anyone ever seen it used in a similar application?

One concern is that the ones close to ash fire pan might get too hot (it's going to be an oil burner). Aluminite is rated for up to 250 degrees. Springs will be alternating layers of spring steel and Delrin, which is only good to 180 degrees, so the springs would fail first.
Attachments
temp spring clip.jpg
temp spring 1.jpg
temp spring 2.jpg

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Dick_Morris
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Wed Jun 11, 2014 11:38 pm

Thanks to Trainman for giving me the inspiration to finish off one of my "round-tuits.". His last batch of pattern videos prompted me to finish a foundry that uses a retired 20 pound propane tank for a shell. I did the first firing to calcine the refractory this evening and I'm very happy with it. It doesn't show in the photo, but the inside is bright orange, there is about 6" of faint flame coming out of the top, and it is giving off an mild roar.

After seeing how badly the cost of brass bar stock has increased I decided to cast my own cylinder heads instead of machining them from bar stock.

The cylinder block is progressing. All four bores and the saddle radius are done. I found a Tapmatic 30 TC/DC on Ebay that I got for a good price. Its first job is threading the 112 holes for the 3-48 and 4-40 steam and piston cylinder head studs. After learning how easy it is to break a 4-40 tap in a blind hole in my test piece, I regrouped and got some thread forming taps. The tests have been much more successful and I'll be threading the stud holes in the cylinder block in the next few days.
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Propane Tank Foundry.jpg

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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Harold_V » Thu Jun 12, 2014 1:32 am

That furnace is looking pretty good, Dick. What size crucible will it accommodate?

I've built a few small furnaces through the years, always using a castable refractory. Was that your choice, or was yours rammed? I'm facing the building of another in the not too distant future, and would enjoy hearing how yours went.

I certainly agree with your logic. I started hoarding scrap copper and copper alloys years ago, and am now pleased to have a few hundred pounds at my disposal. I shudder to think of the cost of buying materials these days, and I expect it's going to get worse, not better.

Thread forming taps were introduced to the market at least 50 years ago. I have one that was acquired while I was employed at Sperry, where I was trained. They offer some very attractive advantages, especially for blind holes, as you discovered. I've used them very little, but recently completed a large project for my house, making switch plates for the lighting system. I used an 8-32 thread forming tap in the face plates, to facilitate the mounting of the electronics to the rear of the face plate. The holes were blind, and shallow. A tough job for a conventional tap, but a piece of cake for the forming tap. I see more of them in my future. I expect that the resulting threads have greater strength than machined threads, as a bonus.

A comment about Trainman. His willingness to share his processes, providing careful guidance and cautioning of potential pitfalls has been well received by the readers of this board. Thanks for your generosity, Dave.

Harold
Wise people talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something.

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Dick_Morris
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Re: USATC S-160 Consolidation

Post by Dick_Morris » Thu Jun 12, 2014 4:23 am

Harold,

For the furnace I followed Mike Porter's book fairly closely - http://www.amazon.com/Gas-Burners-Forge ... 1879535203. The main deviation I made was to use 1-1/4" square tubing (I collected a bunch from old fiber optic cable reels) for legs instead of the recommended all-thread for more stability

I also used his recommendation for refractory. My recollection is that it was a castable, but it was actually fairly stiff and took some tamping. I came really close to using a ceramic blanket on the walls. In fact, I still have it on the shelf, but in the end I followed the book.

I started to build one of the burners in his book as they are well thought of on the casting email groups, but I ended up buying a "side arm" burner from Larry Zoller.

I think the crucible I have is a B6. It measures about 6-1/2" high and 5-1/2" diameter and should hold about 19 pounds of brass, 6 of aluminum. I just looked at prices, they have really increased since I got it.

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