Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I kitbashed this from an MDC old-time reefer, shortening the ends and sides and narrowing the ends. I scratch-built the floor/frame and roof and added Grandt ladders and HOn30 trucks.

The decals are from Highball Graphics (

I know it's not prototypical, but it was fun.

Old Photos

Here's an old picture of a Chivers Forney that I built, but is now disassembled because I added electrical pick up to the trailing truck, but it never worked properly.
The chassis was the Bachmann docksider with a flywheel added. It ran fairly well until I "improved" it.

Here's the same body ready to be added to a Kato 2-6-4 chassis that has been modified to a 0-4-4. The trailing truck already had electrical pick up. This picture is also an old one.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Kiso Baldwin Conversion

These pictures show a conversion of a Baldwin Kiso to a configuration that more closely resembles a Maine narrow gauge locomotive. This link will take you to images of the prototype:

This loco was used in Japan for logging but was built by the Baldwin locomotive works, the same company that built many of the Maine 2 foot engines. This means that many of the features already match Maine narrow gauge prototypes.

I changed these features:

1. Tailing truck from 2 wheels to 4.

Removing the existing trailing truck requires removing a screw. I then fashioned a new arm to fit a Micro Trains N scale archbar truck and attached with the screw for the existing trailing truck.

2. Large balloon stack.

The existing balloon stack is a large one by US standards. It does resemble the size of the stack on the SW Sargeant as delivered to the Franlinn & Megantic (See Moody page 69). I wanted to swap it for a straight
stack but drop in weight negatively affected the performance. To see what I mean just twist the existing stack while gently lifting up and it will come off. Then run the locomotive. So as a compromise I replaced it with a smaller white metal balloon stack from the Chivers Forney kit. It seems to run as it did before with this stack.

3. Oil bunker to wood burning/coal burning

The original oil bunker reached to teh cab roof, much too high for a Maine narrow gauge engine. I cut the upper portion and filled the gap with a flat piece of brass. I soldered the filler from the oil bunker to it to simulate the water hatch.

I am considering the following modifications:

Power pick up on the trailing truck.
Running boards on each side of the boiler.
Bell on top of the sand dome.
Wooden or boiler tube pilot.