Friday, February 12, 2010

New Loco's but Not Much Else!

Not much to really report on for this update, but I thought I'd throw up a couple of shots of some new loco's I've just got back from a mate who has given them a bit of weathering.

4498 is a Trainorama 44 Class, the prototype of which I fondly remember from my school days. I used to travel by train from Allawah to Kogarah which is on the South Coast line, and sometimes found myself at Hurstville on a school sports day.

Anyone who knows Kogarah and Hurstville will know that both stations have the platforms covered by rather large shopping centres, so are to an extent mostly covered in. Kogarah is situated at the top of a rather long grade from the Rockdale end, and with the wind in the right direction I could hear the 44's coming all the way up the grade with a South Coast Express in tow, and they would blast through Kogarah station with their exhaust throbbing, and most normal people would instinctively cover their ears in pain.

Hurstville was a stopping station, so from a stand still the engine would rev up with the slowly increasing throb of the exhaust, then taper off as the train began to roll, and then as the driver notched up the exhaust would again throb as a dirty black mass would be ejected from the top of the loco. In the mid 80's the 44's were usually quite grubby, and so that's the way I wanted my 44 to look. Job done I think. Now I have to decide on a sound decoder that really captures that throbbing exhaust sound.

The 3531 and 3649 are both Austrains models, with the 35 being left reasonably clean, and the 36 has been given a more weather beaten western look, where they typically didn't get cleaned anywhere as much. I'm particularly fond of the look of the 36 weathering, and might at some point dirty up the 35 just a little bit more, once I get some weathering experience under my belt.

Both are factory fitted with DCC, the 35 sound equipped already which is a bonus, ans I particularly like the whistle as it has a really nice taper in and rich reverb giving a rather nice simulation of it echoing as you hear them in "real life". \

The 36 will need a sound decoder and probably have the tender pickup additions done to improve its running qualities, as shown on Marcus Ammann's web site

I've made a little progress in getting some track gauges made to assist in making my track and points. Hopefully within the next couple of weeks I'll have a sample to suit the code 55 rail and slightly different to NMRA spec gauge and flangeway spacings. These dimensions are totally compatible with RP25/110 and RP25/88 wheels which almost all RTR Australian stuff comes with these days. The slightly finer clearances suit the RP25/88 wheels a bit better then the normal NMRA dimensions. Details on these dimensions can be found on Terry Flynn's web site,

I'm hoping to be able to provide these gauges at a reasonable price to other interested people, and if there is some demand and all goes to plan I will try to get some made to suit different rail sizes, and maybe even a small batch for those interested in hand laying true Victorian or South Australian broad gauge track. More on that as I make some progress anyway.

Apart from that, there's not much to report of any real interest!

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