Hello and sorry for such a long absence. I have since moved twice and now settled back down in Georgia and hopefully I'll be staying put for a while. And I do have some good news to share with you all, I have FINALLY started construction on my On20 Shay!! This has been a project I've been planning for a long, long time and it feels great to actually be working on it and seeing it come to fruition. As part of the project I managed to locate and acquire the MDC Shay Handbook by Jeff Johnston. It has been an immeasurable help in the building process.
As mentioned in previous posts and hinted above I'm using a MDC Roundhouse Shay locomotive kit in HOn3. Unfortunately it is for a 3 truck locomotive rather than a 2 truck shay, however this allows me to lengthen the engine to a certain extent. First I started with the gear box. I already had the NWSL upgrades for both the gearbox and the axles. However, annoyingly, the gear box was in two pieces... but two of the same part. So regretably I had to scavenge the part from my HO standard gauge shay... which I'm still a little irritated with. But I'm sure I'll come across a junked shay at some point and be able to replace the gearbox for my HO model. Here's a current pic of the gearbox.
It still needs some fine tuning, but seems turn fairly freely. And after working on the gearbox I then turned my attention onto the trucks. After cleaning and deburring the worm gears I tested them by attaching the end of the worm gear shaft in a pin vice and turned by hand. I felt now resistance and the wheels seemed to turn freely. I wont be able to tell for certain until I can hook up the motor, gearbox and drive shafts and give it a test run.
I worked on the side frames next, following the instruction of the MDC Shay Handbook. The side frame and drive line for the rear truck turn just fine! However the one for the lead truck seems to be binding so it still needs some fiddling. I think the gear that meshes with the toothed drive wheel is binding against part of the frame, or at least that's my theory.
Well with the frame and trucks worked on a bit and using parts from a Wiseman Model Services Sn3 conversion kit I've been slowly piecing together the model. Here's a photo of how it currently looks.
The boiler, deck, cylinders, and end beams are all from the WMS kit. The domes are from Precision Scale Co. and the stack was made by Andrew Kernchen. He was a dealer at a train show in Atlanta, GA and the stack was intended to replace the one supplied with the Bachmann On30 Porter. Although a bit different from my concept drawing, it seems to fit rather will for my little shay. All the other parts not mentioned are from the stock MDC kit. And speaking of proportions, here's an idea of just how small this locomotive is.
Here is my model with a cheap plastic figure that is roughly O scale in size. The locomotive measures 6 scale feet in width, length has still yet to be determined. As can also be seen, I have yet to work on the dome bases to match them to the boiler diameter(s). I'll be using a Grandt Line Porter bell when the time comes to detail.
So far so good for this project, but there's still a long way to go before it's done. A long, LONG, way to go unfortunately. Aside from splicing the frame together the next biggest challenge is to scratch build a cab. Although I'm sure installing a new motor, DCC and what now will have it's own challenges as well. But I'll cross that bridge when I get there.
Now although this doesn't have anything to do with the current shay project I was recently inspired to model another locomotive for my 20" gauge tramway. I've developed a recent fondness for locomotives built by the Glover Machine Works of Merietta, GA. This interest most likely stemmed from the "Porter" like characteristics of their locomotives as well as the local history of Georgia. There was an image of one of their products that I fell in love with. it is a small 0-6-0 with a 2 axle tender and a steel cab. Sadly I don't have an exact image of the locomotive mentioned, but I can show one that is similar.
About the only differences are the two axle tender and a strait stack. Anyway, I'm contemplating making a model of this locomotive in On20, but as an outside frame 0-6-0. I'm still considering that, but the shay is still my primary project of interest. Thanks for staying tuned in and check back for more updates!