Show your Park Gauge train

Discuss park gauge trains and large scale miniature railways having track gauges from 8" to 24" gauge and designed at scales of 2" to the foot or greater - whether modeled for personal use, or purpose built for amusement park operation or private railroading.

Moderators: Glenn Brooks, Harold_V

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Topics may include: antique park gauge train restoration, preservation, and history; building new grand scale equipment from scratch; large scale miniature railway construction, maintenance, and safe operation; fallen flags; track, gauge, and equipment standards; grand scale vendor offerings; and, compiling an on-line motive power roster.
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Glenn Brooks
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Show your Park Gauge train

Post by Glenn Brooks » Wed Mar 02, 2016 2:11 am

Testing the waters here on Chaiski.org to see if any Park Gauge (12" - 24" ga) train enthusiasts frequent the forum. If so, it would be great to see your equipment and maybe a short description of your Pike. Harold mentioned if there is sufficent interest in park gauge, it may be possible to open a sub forum focusing on the gauge.

I am posting this here, because all Park Guage equipment is certainly 'riding scale', even though much of the motive power is steam. One goal might be to create an anthology of surviving park gauge trains. For example I know there are a significant number of MTC loco's still in existence - maybe hundreds to a thousand or more G-10, G-12, and G-16's in private hands. Also a hundred or so Ottaway's, a fair number of Cagney's, a few Herschel Spillmans, a few Wagner's (all steam engines circa 1890-1960) and several more very nice one off builds. Altogether could be a magnificent collection of early day miniature locomotives and railroads.

Here is an opener... Couple of pics of my 1950 Ottaway and 1902 Campbell 4-4-0. Both are 12" gauge, coal fired locomotives. The Campbell is undergoing a slooow restoration. The Ottaway should be ready to steam up this summer, after I finish laying some track.
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'Cinder Ella' in her glory days, circa 1965
Campbell locomotive
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Thanks for your interest!
Glenn
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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FLSTEAM
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by FLSTEAM » Wed Mar 02, 2016 7:42 am

Here is the Mogul I built running at the Grand Scale Convention. It is now operating in China at a Park.

John B
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GSC86.jpg
http://www.ngshay.com/
Shay drawings and castings

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ALCOSTEAM
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by ALCOSTEAM » Wed Mar 02, 2016 8:14 pm

As a group we built a 12" gauge engine, kind of on the lines of the Rio Grande bumblebee. The drivers and the cylinders are from one of the 15" gauge house of david 4-6-0's. Boiler is 16" and the total weight of the engine and tender without water or coal is right at 3000 lbs. The tender is riding on a set of wagner trucks. One of these days we will get it back in the shop and finish it up.
This is a picture of one of the last times we ran the engine which has been several years ago down at the WF&P rr in Glencoe,MO.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9LyK58M8UsU
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JR May
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by JR May » Wed Mar 02, 2016 8:23 pm

Glenn:
From a steam stand point, I have a 1907 Herschell-Spillman 4-4-0 currently in the works. Waiting on a new boiler at this point and focusing on the chassis work. Have attached a post card of the engine.

I did also have an 18" gauge mogul for a short time. If I did not already have the 4-4-0 I'd still have the mogul. It was a big engine. Photo is attached as well.

J.R.
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3754a.jpg
Wall-20120707-00051.jpg

STRR
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by STRR » Thu Mar 03, 2016 8:47 pm

Hello All,

I hate to be the first one but here goes. We own a 1947 Carter-Morehart train. This train is thought to be the first MTC G-16 copy/knock-off. Very, very similar. This photo is of the train operating in Minot, N.D. The train consists of one loco, three riding cars (as above) and one observation car. Same as a G-16 train. 18" gauge.

Enjoy,
Terry Miller
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1950__hr_All-American-Streamlin.jpg
Last edited by STRR on Fri Mar 04, 2016 10:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Glenn Brooks
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by Glenn Brooks » Thu Mar 03, 2016 11:29 pm

Hi Terry, Good looking train set! Thanks for posting. I was hoping someone would offer up a G16 or similar. Sure like to know more about your layout and details of the loco and rolling stock. I had no idea there are other makes of equipment similar to G 16 out there... Do you have any idea how many other Carter - Morehart's still survive? Also how much track do you run on, and can you describe your power train etc??

Cheers,
Glenn
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

STRR
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Location: Westminster, CO

Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by STRR » Fri Mar 04, 2016 9:30 pm

Hello Glen,

I have been researching for a long time and it seems like I am running out of "crumbs" to follow.

Carter-Morehart incorporated in 1947. Mr. Carter appears to have been an amusement ride builder of some sort. Mr. Morehart was a land developer and tended to specialize in amusements of different types, in his early years. The C-M train was built in Los Angeles just a year or so after the first MTC G-16 was installed in Griffith Park, Los Angeles, 1945/46. Motive power is/was a 4 cyl. Wisconsin engine, same as the MTC. A similar torque converter was used but the transmission and drive train were much different being less expensive and more easily fabricated.

One of the most outstanding features of the C-M trains are the castings. The trucks and couplers are extremely well done castings. The construction is very simple but extremely rugged. It appears these castings may have been sold separately as I have found them on different manufacturers trains and in different gauges; 18" (as C-M) and 15". George Reddington used them on the Oakland Acorn, the Melody Ranch special, and a third train; the Snortin' Pacific. Seymour Johnson had a train with these same castings. I still haven't figured out how all these are related.

Documentation suggests there were very few C-M trains built. Two at Ocean View Park later to be Hoppyland. The company was sold to All American Company about 1951. The All American Company built a few trains in the same manner using C-M parts, patterns, and tooling from the buy out. The first maybe running in Griffith Park where the original MTC G-16 once ran. There is one running in Opportunity Village in Las Vegas. Some where/time, the passenger car construction was altered from the original 6 seats to 5 seats. MTC trains had 6 seats. I believe this change happened when All American bought them out but I have no documentation to prove that. I have found a video of a C-M running with both 5 and 6 seat cars. I have found photos from a movie short, advertising Hoppyland opening, showing one of the C-M trains that ran there. Too bad I have not been able to secure a copy of the film. All American sold out in 1952. The trail ends there.

I know of only two C-M trains in existence today. Mine and one in California. The locos are different but the cars and castings are identical. As for mine, it ran when I purchased it. It has been stored ever since. We had the opportunity to purchase it without having the land to build on. Thus, I can't answer any questions about how it runs. I do have about 4,000 feet of 8, 10, and 12 lb. rail. The observation car appears to have been dropped/fell off of something. The castings were broken, no wheels/axles, the obs end was torn off, and all the seats have the same cant to them. We have had 3D CAD drawings made of the needed replacement parts. Looking for a foundry that will make large investment castings in iron. Not in any hurry since we don't have a place to run.

The C-M trains are 3" taller and 3" wider than a G-16 and are 18" gauge. The windows are larger and fewer than the G-16. The first train at Opportunity Village was an All American named the City of Henderson. The second train was a G-16 regauged to 18" named the City of Las Vegas. A third train was commissioned and built by Don Guill. C-M advertised all their trains as an A-B unit with varying numbers of cars. I can not confirm they ever sold one in this configuration. BUT there is a complete set of trucks that would have made an A-B + 4 car train. Oddly, these trucks are in Pennsylvania currently and are NOT exact match castings. While the castings are definitely the same, and bear many of the same casting numbers, the patterns were altered with "Side Frame" printing, upside down at the top. Thus far, we have no explanation as to where these came from or how they got to the East coast.

As for the photo, Lucy's Amusement park purchased our train in Atascadero, CA supposedly in pieces, and moved it to Minot, N.D. They had most of it sand blasted and painted as seen in the photo. They only ran the loco and one car due to the small patronage. A second car is painted and could be used. The third being one step past blasting; bondo filling.

The most interesting car is the obs body. It appears to have the entire history in paint, still on it. The first layer is clearly silver with Santa Fe lettering. The second coat is a dark green (maybe a Pullman green) with yellow lettering; DENVER. The third coat is a nasty pea green. Very odd/coincidental that the train was lettered DENVER somewhere long ago and actually ended up here in Denver, CO.

And that is the short version of War and Peace. Sorry for this being this long. Thank you for reading all of this if you made down to here. There are many more details that fill out the story but would make this way too long and most of you would have been asleep by now.

Thanks and Good Luck,
Terry Miller

STRR
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by STRR » Fri Mar 04, 2016 9:35 pm

Let me know what you think.

Thanks,
Terry
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Obs Lettering.JPG

Glenn Brooks
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by Glenn Brooks » Sat Mar 05, 2016 1:58 am

Hi Terry, great to hear from you and wonderful background and history on your train. It is certainly hard to track these things down sometimes. But,persistence does pay off, as you have demonstrated.

One thing that jumps out at me is that the body of your car looks like a similar kind of 'monocoque' style construction as my 12" gauge Ottaway ridng car - in that the topsides of the car is rolled into an arch at the top - to add strength without necessarily having an interior frame to hold the skin. A big difference with the Ottaway riding car is that they do not have a cut away door on the side for people to step into. Passengers must step over the top of the body to take a seat. Either rolling the sides was a common park gauge construction technique in the 1950's, or maybe the same company built bodies for several manufacturers.

There are some very knowledgable train historians on the forum, maybe someone will comment.

Also, any chance you can post a photo of the truck cast go you describe above. It would be very interesting to see how they were made. The Ottaway trucks are quite basic, not at all detailed, or particularly comfortable riding- but they are durable and sturdy...

Regards
Glenn
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

STRR
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Location: Westminster, CO

Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by STRR » Sat Mar 05, 2016 9:40 am

Hi Glenn,

This photo is of the drive truck on the loco. The trucks are all exactly alike. The power truck has an added gear box, 2 sprockets, and a chain. The gearbox drives one axle, directly connected. The axles are connected to each other via the sprockets and chain, thus, both axles, per truck, are drive axles.
Loco Rear Truck.JPG
The bolster slides through the side frame, then up to lock in, and is held in place by 4 springs. The journal boxes have a front and rear bolt on covers. There is a dust seal in the rear cover. There are two taper roller bearings/races on each end of each axle. These are opposed to each other allowing for flex/travel between the axle and side frame. Bearings/races are held in position with shoulders machined on both covers. The axle is retained in the journal via a thick flat washer and a bolt threaded into the end of the axle. The journals are held in the side frame by the cover faces being larger than the hole they sit in. Likewise for the bolster. There is room for the journal boxes and bolster to move, adding to the equalization.

The brakes are/were vacuum actuated as was the horn. The vacuum being generated by the Wisconsin engine, just the same as the MTC G-16s. While MTC used cylinders on each axle, C-M used one large actuator per car and linkage much the same as full size RR brakes. There is a "brake tower" on the top of the side frame, on the left, that mounts the rigging to the side frame. The "horns" on the ends of the side frame, are where the brake shoes mount and pivot. The linkage connects to one shoe per side and the mating shoe is engaged via the linkage, you can see, in front of the wheels. Not prototypical but works well, still suffering vacuum problems, as did the MTCs.

Carter Morehart is visible in the lower portion of the side frame while the casting number; T-101 is visible at the top. All the castings have a "T-xxx" number in them. The couplers, oddly, have a "Cxxx" casting number.
Coupler Top.JPG
Coupler Bottom.JPG
These couplers have been found on C-M, All American, Reddington, Johnson, and Arrow Development trains. All the same castings but with different names cast on the top. The first four train companies are believed to have been about the same time period. The Arrow Development trains were after the first four. This leads me to believe Arrow might have purchased some/all of All American. The Arrow bodies have some features reminiscent of the C-M bodies, but the Arrow trucks are completely different.

My partner, in this investigation, owns the set of trucks that are the same castings with different lettering cast in them. We have come to the conclusion, there may have been a casting supplier selling castings to anyone. This supplier would have been able to modify the patterns with any buyer's name, as requested/ordered. I haven't found any proof of this. Also, the coupler casting seems to be of a larger scale than the rest of the train, appearing more beefy than would have been necessary for the weight being pulled. C-M trains being approx. 4" scale with a 5" scale coupler. No explanation for this yet. The couplers are manually operated having a pin/bolt to lock them closed. Again, a very nice design. The only BIG problem: short, bolt on shanks. Poor design. Darryl Klompmaker from the Whiskey River RR in Marshal, WI, acquired the Oakland Acorn and the Melody Ranch Special locomotives. With that purchase, he received all the trucks from the Acorn train and a bunch of patterns. Most of these patterns were lost in a fire at his facility. Prior to the loss, Darryl modified the coupler pattern with a longer shank. This is a very nice addition and he sells these couplers today.

Hope you Enjoy the photos and description,
Terry

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James A
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Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by James A » Mon Mar 14, 2016 12:43 pm

Glenn Brooks wrote:Testing the waters here on Chaiski.org to see if any Park Gauge (12" - 24" ga) train enthusiasts frequent the forum. If so, it would be great to see your equipment and maybe a short description of your Pike. Harold mentioned if there is sufficent interest in park gauge, it may be possible to open a sub forum focusing on the gauge.

I am posting this here, because all Park Guage equipment is certainly 'riding scale', even though much of the motive power is steam. One goal might be to create an anthology of surviving park gauge trains. For example I know there are a significant number of MTC loco's still in existence - maybe hundreds to a thousand or more G-10, G-12, and G-16's in private hands. Also a hundred or so Ottaway's, a fair number of Cagney's, a few Herschel Spillmans, a few Wagner's (all steam engines circa 1890-1960) and several more very nice one off builds. Altogether could be a magnificent collection of early day miniature locomotives and railroads.

Here is an opener... Couple of pics of my 1950 Ottaway and 1902 Campbell 4-4-0. Both are 12" gauge, coal fired locomotives. The Campbell is undergoing a slooow restoration. The Ottaway should be ready to steam up this summer, after I finish laying some track.
Wow, just Wow. That is Lawrence Griffin or as we would call him, Mr. Griffin. I grew up 1/2 block from this. This photo is looking to his back fence, on the other side is the Little League field and Madison elementary School. I lived just behind him. He was an Engineer for the Milwaukee. Saturday mornings the whistle would blow which meant come ride.....and we did, a lot. He had a Vertical Boiler loco, trolley with overhead wire and a railbike. I have often wondered what happened to Cinderella.

Glenn Brooks
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Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 1:39 pm
Location: Woodinville, Washington

Re: Show your Park Gauge train

Post by Glenn Brooks » Mon Mar 14, 2016 1:43 pm

Hey James, wonderful to read about your early experiences. I have his electric trolley, complete with the overhead cable bar hookup - or whatever it is called . Also the rail bike and Mr. Griffen's powered SW 1500 switcher. Alas the electric trolley is missing its motor and the bike is in an advanced state of rust, indeed all three locos suffer from deep, long term neglect. The prior owner stored them under a tarp 25 years ago and never did any maintenance. Griffey sold his RR to a mini golf place in Bellingham, where it stayed for 20 years or so, then was sold to a retired gentleman in Port Orchard, on the Kitsap Peninsula, where it resided for another 25 years, till I bought everything last summer.

I have high hopes about restoring the locos to service, starting first with the electric - as a battery powered steeple cab perhaps.

I renamed the rail bike the 'Mosquito', due to its uncanny resemblance to those tiny winged dive bombers that used to attack me in Alaska.

Perhaps later I can post a photo or two of the rail bike for you to look at.
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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