MotorCar - JBRR

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A while back, Bachmann came out with a rail truck modeled after a DRG&W prototype.  A nice model, it featured opening doors, interior, LED headlights & taillight, and an opening hood with a detailed engine, including an operating fan.
It had possibilities, but as usual, I wanted something a bit different for my own railroad.   

Looking around, I was inspired by the East Broad Top’s motorcar, M-3.     I gathered a number of pictures from the Internet and started thinking about how I might build something similar.
The Bachmann model was quite a bit longer and wider, so it would have to be cut down.   The hood would have to be shorter and I’d have to replace the front truck.   I wouldn’t create an exact model, but it would be pretty close.


Using my trusty Dremel (and many cut-off wheels), I started cutting away pieces from the existing frame.  It took quite some time, as the model is make of 1/8” aluminum.

I created a cardboard mockup of the body to see how my design might work.

I planned to operate it with battery and remote control.  I also wanted sound.   This required the installation of a speaker, which took up quite a bit of the available room.
I also extended the floorboards near the front of the vehicle.  I designed everything to be removable in case I ever need to access any of the moving parts.  In this case, the added floorboards are attached to the front section that is held in place by a couple of screws.

I added an Airwire receiver and a Phoenix P5 sound card, all powered by a 14.8 volt Li-Ion battery pack.   An on-off switch is located underneath, as is a remote jack for programming the P5 sound card.
Here you can see that the hood support has been shortened.   The body will press against this support and hold the operating hood pieces in place.

I had a set of pilot trucks from a Bachmann 10-wheeler, all I needed to do was support them.   I bent some brass strip to shape and drilled holes for the axles.   I tapped the frame and used a large screw to mount it in place.
I also used some small brass strips to hold the pilot itself in place, utilizing some existing screw holes.

I didn’t want to charge the Li-Ion battery in place, so I made it easily removable.   Access is provided by the back door, which is held in place with a couple of magnets.
The body is made from .060” styrene, covered with some .125” x .020” strips for detail.  Clear styrene was used for the windows.
The roof was built with .100” thick strips glued together and then covered with a fabric material.
I tapped the frame and use some small bolts to hold the body in place.
I cut down the reflector from a Mag-Lite and used that for the headlight.   The taillight was created from an LED panel molding.

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