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May 2005 - Page 37

windshields. I did this by cutting a mask from masking tape and applying it to the windshield before spraying it with Dullcote. Once the mask is removed it leaves a clean spot that gives the appearance of the pattern created by the wiper blades. After the finish had hardened I installed all the other glass inserts, windshield wipers, and MV lenses. Since these units are only going to be used with one another I did not install Kadee couplers on the rear of each unit. Instead, I had some non-working, close-coupling dummy couplers that Life-Like used to include with their diesels. With these installed I can separate them for travel and still get prototypical spacing between the units. As an alternative you could also use Kadee 450 close-coupling adapters or make a drawbar from styrene.

DCC Control
I hardwired a standard HO-rated DCC decoder in both the FA2 and F3A although you could install one of the boards specially designed for the Stewart units. In

both cases this is a pretty straightforward installation since both motors are already isolated from the frame. However, getting these two models to operate together at something approximating the same speed took a couple adjustments to the DCC decoder settings. The FA2 and F3A both run at about the same speeds once they are cruising, however the FA2 is much slower to accelerate and stops much faster than the F3A. Normally you could develop your own speed tables to correct for this difference in performance, but the two decoders I used only support speed tables in 28 speed step mode, and I like the smoother performance of 128 speed steps. Consequently, instead of using my own speed tables I just increased the acceleration rate of the F3A and the deceleration rate of the FA2 to about 200. This slowed the F3A down during acceleration and stretched out the deceleration of the FA2 just enough to allow them to catch up with one another. The finished units are now hard at work making daily runs between the V&O yard in Afton, VA, and my Piedmont Southern yard near Lynchburg, Virginia.

B i l l of M a t e r i a l s
Manufacturer Part No. Description A-Line 29201 Windshield wiper American Limited 9910 Stewart F-unit diaphragms Cal-Scale 325 375 460 461 462 Caboose marker Caboose marker Turbo exhaust stack Dynamic brake (plastic) Dynamic brake (brass)

Custom Finishing 215 Air horn Detail Associates 1102 Nose lift rings 1106 Alco lift rings 2202 Drop grabs 2206 Lift rings 2225 Straight grabs 2505 .015 brass wire Details West 162 Backup light 267 Train line air hose 295 MU cluster 316 Coupler cut lever Evergreen 291 .060 styrene angles Kadee 5 450 Coupler Stewart close-coupling adapter

T he completed caboose truly is an eye-catching addition to any model railroad.

MV Products 22 Marker light lens 25 Backup light lens Roundhouse 2961 Red Jewels 2692 Green Jewels 2963 Amber Jewels Tichy 3052 Caboose trucks

MODELflex 1 Engine Black 8 Caboose Red 29 Conrail Blue 45 Milwaukee Brown 84 L&N Gray 155 Wabash Blue Microscale 87-48 87-793 MC-4056 TF-O Diesel Loco Data Sheet E&F Diesel Data EMD Builder Plates Clear decal sheet

MAY 2005


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