Gondola car in a day

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Harlock
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Gondola car in a day

Post by Harlock » Mon Feb 03, 2014 2:11 am

So I decided to do something a little nutty and challenged myself to build a 3" scale gondola in one day. Previously I had done a few 'one day' or 'one weekend projects' and so I thought, why not try it with a basic wood car.

I had drawn up plans for the car a few months ago. From those I made a bill of materials and on Saturday night I made a home depot run and bought all the materials I needed. One of the key things to getting it built quickly was to adjust the drawings a little bit to use more off the shelf sizes and less custom cut. I did do plenty of planing work on the fence posts and a few custom table-sawed pieces but otherwise a lot of it is factory cut lumber, a lot of 2 1/2" X 3/4 poplar and birch or pine. What's not shown in the photos is everything is attached to a base of 3/4" plywood that is completely hidden once the car is finished. Then a steel tube center spine with bolster bearing surfaces for the trucks. Same technique I used for the new flatcar for the Chloe's train.

So Sunday morning I started in and did not stop except for meal and rest breaks straight through to about 10pm, at which time I lifted it up and set it on trucks. There are a number of finishing details and there is a steel tube underframe that still needs some welding, but the basic car body structure is complete, including hardwood decking with notches for the stakes.

Next is some finishing details, paint and stain.
Attachments
gondola.jpg
IMG_20140202_122431211_HDR_resize_resize.jpg
IMG_20140202_170700974_HDR_resize_resize.jpg
IMG_20140202_192328471_HDR_resize.jpg
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Last edited by Harlock on Mon Feb 03, 2014 2:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
San Lorezo Flume & Lumber Co. #2 - "Felton"
Live Steam Photography and more - www.mikemassee.com
Product Development and E-Commerce, Allen Models of Nevada

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Harlock
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by Harlock » Mon Feb 03, 2014 2:13 am

And here's the car as of tonight. In general I don't think I'll try that again for the next car, 'one weekend' would be a better spread of time. I'm not getting any younger. But it was fun to do once.

I think the key elements are having a good drawing to start with, and following it, no guesswork, just cut wood and metal. Buy everything you need in advance and lay it out in a pile. Taking occasional breaks is good especially when doing strenuous or repetitive stuff, helps with fatigue.

This car will be out and about at Bitter Creek in a few weeks.
Attachments
IMG_4039_resize.JPG
IMG_4040_resize.JPG
San Lorezo Flume & Lumber Co. #2 - "Felton"
Live Steam Photography and more - www.mikemassee.com
Product Development and E-Commerce, Allen Models of Nevada

Kevin S
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by Kevin S » Mon Feb 03, 2014 7:55 am

Looks Great Mike!
-Kevin S.

sabin
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by sabin » Mon Feb 03, 2014 9:07 am

Nice looking car Mike. I look foreword to seeing it and you at Bitter Creek.

Jim

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FLSTEAM
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by FLSTEAM » Mon Feb 03, 2014 9:15 am

Boy that sure would look good behind my Shay :D

JB

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Harlock
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by Harlock » Mon Feb 03, 2014 11:33 am

FLSTEAM wrote:Boy that sure would look good behind my Shay :D

JB
LOL :) You have to come out west sometime so we can put my entire train behind your Shay :D
San Lorezo Flume & Lumber Co. #2 - "Felton"
Live Steam Photography and more - www.mikemassee.com
Product Development and E-Commerce, Allen Models of Nevada

Soot n' Cinders
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by Soot n' Cinders » Mon Feb 03, 2014 12:01 pm

Mike,
That is a good looking car! Where did you get those archbar trucks?
-Tristan

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-2.5" scale Class A 20 Ton Shay

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makinsmoke
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by makinsmoke » Mon Feb 03, 2014 12:17 pm

And that's how it's done!

The beauty is, now that you have the basic dimensions down, eliminate the side boards and stakes, and build up a box car or reefer using the same basic frame. Or throw a tank on it.

Very nice, and simple work Mike.

Brian

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Harlock
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by Harlock » Mon Feb 03, 2014 12:58 pm

Yep that basic design also makes a flatcar, etc. Underneath it's a similar dealio to this one: http://www.chaski.org/homemachinist/dow ... &mode=view

You can make anything that sits on that, except a hopper with a low center. :) I have another design for that.
San Lorezo Flume & Lumber Co. #2 - "Felton"
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DRS_RR
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by DRS_RR » Mon Feb 03, 2014 1:52 pm

Mike

As always, your work is just excellent.

By any chance will your drawings with dimensions and construction be available in any magazine or Ezines?

Dad and I were talking about doing just as you mention using some off the shelf lumber (poplar and birch) that would be close enough without having to rip lots of lumber and be strong, and put together a gondola on a pair of trucks we have sitting here, and wham you did it in a day. We're still sitting here trying to figure out what to do and you'll be running yours.

The proportions look great too.

Can't wait to see you train consist once the caboose is done too, it is going to be one classy train!

Dave

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Harlock
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by Harlock » Mon Feb 03, 2014 2:56 pm

Publishing the drawings might be an idea. I do have it fully detailed and just need to modify it to show it 'as built' with some of the changes made to make it easier to build.

I can send you some quickie drawings when I get back from my vacation that will give you the general idea.

-M
DRS_RR wrote:Mike

As always, your work is just excellent.

By any chance will your drawings with dimensions and construction be available in any magazine or Ezines?

Dad and I were talking about doing just as you mention using some off the shelf lumber (popular and birch)that would be close enough without having to rip lots of lumber and be strong, and put together a gondola on a pair of trucks we have sitting here, and wham you did it in a day. We're still sitting here trying to figure out what to do and you'll be running yours.

The proportions look great too.

Can't wait to see you train consist once the caboose is done too, it is going to be one classy train!

Dave
San Lorezo Flume & Lumber Co. #2 - "Felton"
Live Steam Photography and more - www.mikemassee.com
Product Development and E-Commerce, Allen Models of Nevada

chrfitt
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Re: Gondola car in a day

Post by chrfitt » Mon Feb 03, 2014 4:47 pm

Mike

Nice job - as usual. This now means that you should be able to turn out a flat car in half a day or less. :D

Chris
Modeling in 2.5 scale

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