Jim O'Connor

Realistic Caboose Door Knob on the Cheap

Article by Don Pearson While I am not always adverse to buying detail parts, sometimes I get a little bit OCD about a project being home-built in its entirety. I started a caboose project and the door knobs were simply not available, at least not with the appearance I wanted them to have, so I decided to try making my own. I purchased a box of ¼”-20 machine screws ¾” long. I

Hopper Car Build

Article by Ray Grosser The kit for this magnificent 1934 AAR offset side hopper car designated as HM is being offered by Kevin Sprayberry Models of Canton GA   (as of this date, Kevin is still working on a web site). These cars were owned by a number of railroads. We have some photos of the cars we are interested in building from various books. The L&N Color Guide for the Louisville & Nashville by

Weed Garden Sprayer

My wife and I bought a weed garden sprayer several years ago to try to get ahead of the weeds that invariably grow up in the Right of Way (ROW) of our railroad. I have not seen anyone else’s sprayer in action so building one would have to be done one piece at a time. I have been told that necessity is the mother of invention, but my ability to think

Constructing a Diamond Junction

Written by Laurence Johnson “In U.S. railroad practice, a level junction (or in the United Kingdom a flat crossing) is a railway junction that has a track configuration in which merging or crossing railroad lines provide track connections with each other that require trains to cross over in front of opposing traffic at grade (i.e. on the level). The cross-over structure is sometimes called a diamond junction or diamond crossing in

A Riveting Article

(or how to set rivets without going crazy) Written by Adam C. Madlinger One of the more common techniques required when building models of the steam and early diesel era is riveting, or “setting” rivets. The railroads loved rivets, and for good reason: rivets are stronger than bolts in applications where high shear forces exist; that is, forces perpendicular to the shaft that tend to cut, or shear, the fastener in

What we need is a BIG Diesel

Written by Martyn Redfearn and Brian Biggs It all started when we ran the first Santa Special at Brighouse and Halifax Model Engineers. It was my idea to run the Santa Specials and I did all the planning, which included a 10 minute timetable. No problem, the two largest locos should easily cope, but what would happen if we lost a loco? “What we need is a big diesel!” We started

Building the Precision Steel Car Boxcar Kit

Written by Jim O’Connor This PSC (Precision Steel Car) boxcar kit may not be for everyone, but it might be perfect for you.  It’s more involved than a simple “bolt-together” model.  Two things make this model a more advanced build and they both involve joining metal.  The first is welding.  You will need access to a wire welder.  Unlike “stick” welders, wire welders can be turned down enough to allow you

Crossing The Border

Written by Richard Glueck This August, I had the great good fortune to once more head over to Canada, for the Quebec Society of Model Railroaders large scale open house. Among the attendees were only three U.S. citizens. “No matter how hard I try to attract Americans”, said my friend Ron Pelletier, “they always tell me the border is a hassle, and they don’t want to go through it.” And you

Using a "Screed" to Help Prepare a Roadbed

Written by Don Pearson I would like to start out by saying that I am not a lazy person, but I am just lazy enough to want to do something as easy as possible, while doing it only once. I have been trying to figure out how to make roadbed without the pesky crawling around on my hands and knees (I am not a young man anymore). I need to “profile”