Bachmann 0-6-0 switcher #4439

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Espeefan

Well-Known Member
Getting these little numbers properly positioned on that headlight bracket is just kickin' my butt! I have a nice lighted magnifier, and it's really helping, but this just ain't going too well!
There was 1 number on the sheet, 8444, of the correct size to fit the bracket. I managed to cut it wrong and ruin the "44" I was after! :mad:
Oh, well. There are several numbers for the 4000 class Big Boys. I carefully cut a "4" and applied it. Once I had it positioned, I let it dry thoroughly and tried to do the second "4". In the process, I messed them both up! :mad::mad:
By this time the bracket was showing some scratches, so I repainted it yesterday afternoon. After lunch today, I cut the "39" from the "3985" number and applied it. It stuck and seems to be holding. This is where it is staying! I'll let it dry overnight, then tomorrow after work, I'll give it very light spritzing of clear to seal it on. Then I'll apply the "4" to the left of the "39". I'll let it dry, spritz it with clear, and do the final "4".
This wasn't supposed to be such a pain! :(
View attachment 37510

I also need to add the "UP" above the tender number, and the decal set includes water capacity decals. This tender has a 7,000 gallon water capacity, and I do have the correct decal.
I will complete this project! ;)
You're over the hump! The little number board numbers are always a pain. I know a guy who does his on an ALPS printer so he doesn't have to piece numbers together.
 

Sirfoldalot

Curse You, Red Baron!
Staff member
I haven't done any decal work in a really long time -- however, seems to me that you should stick the decals to another easier to work with piece of paper (some type of medium) and then trim to size of the number board - then stick to the number board with CA?
I remember putting numbers on the "Frisco Coonskin" for a PFM 2-10-0. I took the smokebox off the loco so I could have it in a "workable" position. Doesn't look like you have that option?
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
That's an idea, Sherrel! Thanks for that! I can enlist Wally's help holding the shell upright. I wonder what I could stick the decals to? Maybe some of that real thin plastic like you see in the envelopes every month when the bills come? I could tape that over some black construction paper so the decals were more visible, then seal them in place and trim the plastic. Clear would allow the black background on the number board to show through.
I just now measured the depth of the number board. It's .012" deep. The thinnest clear styrene that Evergreen or Plastruct makes is .010, and I have some of that. I would like to preserve the look of depth on the number board if I can. (I know: picky, picky, picky! :D) I may try the envelope window plastic and see how that works.
Thanks for the idea, Sherrel! :)

Alan, the ALPS printer idea is good, too, but I don't have one. :(
 

Sirfoldalot

Curse You, Red Baron!
Staff member
OK .. This may be the answer -- a small piece of heavy duty aluminum foil painted black!
This could be easily trimmed to fit with a razor blade and straight edge?
Press fit it into a drop of CA with an awl type tool?
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
Alan, I did use a small paintbrush to position the numbers.
I used a piece of a bill envelope window to stick the numbers to. I put a small drop of Micro Set on the numbers. I will let these dry for at least 24 hours, then mist some clear acrylic over them to seal them. Then I will apply them to the number board using a drop of CA. I sure hope this works!
The number reads 44399. Using my lighted magnifier I found a decal number 4433, so I used everything but the last 3. I found another that was 599. I trimmed off the 5, but left the second 9 for now, to make it easier to handle and position. When I'm ready to install this, I'll trim off the second 9. Doing this over a piece of black construction paper did make it a lot easier to see!
002.JPG


It's not perfectly positioned, but it's as good as I'm going to get it.
'Don't Let the Perfect Be the Enemy of the Good' - Entrepreneur

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/249676
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
Don't obsess too much over the small stuff. You'll either never get done or never be satisfied. I've seen pics with crooked numbers and other issues on prototype locos!
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
Don't obsess too much over the small stuff. You'll either never get done or never be satisfied. I've seen pics with crooked numbers and other issues on prototype locos!
Yeah, I know the dangers of going for perfection instead of good enough.
You know the invasion stripes painted on Allied aircraft before the D-Day invasion? They weren't as neat and pretty as a lot of people think they were:
d-day-stripes-735617.jpg
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
At least I was close, Alan!

Greg
Very close considering how tight they were. McClelland’s gift of “Good enough modeling” to us was huge. Not modeling things you can’t see and a realistic approach to detail allowed me to finish many a project and be satisfied with it. If it was ok for a guy of his stature or was sure good enough for me!
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
After studying the info sheet that came with the decal set, I applied the U.P. above the tender number, and the 7,000 gallon water capacity decal to the rear of the tender. I shot some clear gloss everywhere I plan to add a decal.
003.JPG


While doing some research, I came across this photo on the internet:
UP 0_6_0 4439 c frbw.jpg


The credits for the pic are at the bottom of the photo. And, no, that is not me in the photo. Notice the data under the road number. Close inspection (with my lighted magnifier) revealed that that data set is included on the decal sheet! So of course, I had to apply it. I also applied the small UP decal in the corner which indicates corporate ownership.
004.JPG


I gave all the recent decals a few drops of Micro Sol. I'll let that dry for 24 hours, and give everything a light coat of flat clear tomorrow evening. The number board decal will go on this weekend.
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
FINALLY!!!
I managed to get the road number onto the number board without messing it up! It only took me 479,295,321,418 tries, but I done dood it!:)
It's not perfect, but considering that it's sealed under two coats of flat clear, that's where it's staying!
001.JPG


The next step is to give the loco and tender some weathering. I'm probably going to use some pastel chalk powders for that. If I make a mistake, I can just wash them off. The decals are sealed, so they won't come off with water. My goal is to have this steamer looking like it did during it's days in LA, not like it looks now at the museum.
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
Hey, no numbers in the side number boards (each side of the headlight)? What's up with that? ;)
As Wendy Bagwell would say "Cause they ain't none!"
UP #4439.jpg


I don't plan to put the road number on the side of the front sand dome, either!
And the whistle will NOT be pink! Reality has it's limits!
I gave the locomotive and tender a dusting of gray, gave all the footplates a dusting of red oxide, and dusted some white down the boiler under the steam dome. I then misted some Krylon matte acrylic spray over them. They're drying right now. The gray really toned down the black paint and the white lettering. I'll probably give them another dusting of gray. I think for the water scale stains I'll use some acrylic white, drybrushing it very lightly.
002.JPG


For the steam cylinders on the locomotive I'll probably do those with a brush. This may take a while, but it's not a race!
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
Looked like you had side number boards on that head on shot. The SP and UP had lots of things in common both being Harriman roads. The whistle looks silver to me. Many were aluminum. The pink is probably very faded red. The green on the pop valves is probably very tarnished brass.
 

flyboy2610

Loveably weird
I finished installing the decoder, and wired up the front headlight. The headlight dish got a coat of Testors Metallic Silver enamel. I installed the light bulb as far forward as I thought prudent, them marked the wires inside the shell with a red Sharpie. I put a small piece of 1/16" heat shrink tubing on the wires at the mark, and a piece of 3/32" heat shrink tubing over that, ensuring that the light bulb will not come out any farther. I used a piece of electrical tape to hold the wires to the shell. This is a 1.5V bulb, so a resistor was used on the blue wire from the decoder.
Before doing all of that, though, I used some gray and white chalks to dirty up the locomotive. After an application of chalk, I gave the model a light coat of flat clear. Naturally, this reduced the effect, so I repeated the process until I got the look I wanted. I think it came out pretty well. I used some acrylic paint to give it some rust spots and water scale stains.
I use Testors Model Master Flat Earth for the dirt effects. It's not perfect, but I'm pretty satisfied with it, especially considering this is the first time I have ever tried to weather a steam locomotive. Yepper, this is my first time, so be gentle with me!
The right (engineers) side:
001.JPG


The front:
002.JPG


The left (fireman's) side:
003.JPG

I had a little trouble with this side. When I tried to reassemble this after getting all the wiring finished, the gray wire from the motor broke at the motor!:mad:
So I pulled the shell off and began to explore how to get the motor out of the frame. This locomotive is constructed like a lot of N-scale locomotives are: a split frame with the motor sandwiched between the halves. So I had to pull the frame sides apart. The frame is held together by three screws, two of which are easily accessible. The third, however, is located behind the left side steam chest, so the steam chest had to come off. The plastic piece, of which the steam chest is part, actually comprises the plastic portion of the valve gear as well. That goes back to between the first and second drivers, where a plastic rod connects to the frame. Bachmann obviously never intended that piece to be removed. While trying to remove it, I broke the plastic rod off the frame, and the steam chest off the front of the frame. The piece is held onto the frame by two small plastic nubs that go into holes in the frame. They broke off flush with the frame! :mad::mad::mad:
I went ahead and fixed the wire at the motor, then thought about "How am I going to fix THIS?" In the end, what I did was to use a .030" drill bit in a pin vise and drill a hole in the center of the plastic nub, and also through the center of the plastic rod on the valve gear piece. You don't think THAT was fun! I also did the same with the steam chest. I then CA'd a piece of steel wire into the plastic nubs, and test fit the valve gear in place. The steam chest wouldn't line up right. Turns out I had drilled the hole in the wrong spot! I re-drilled it in the right location, and everything lined up correctly. I then CA'd the plastic rod and the steam chest into place. I need to find my flush cutting nippers, and clip off the end of the wire. I need to seal up the other hole as well. I'll probably drill it out to 1/16" and use a bit of styrene rod to plug it up. So that's why it looks like that.

The rear:
004.JPG


I need to fix the handrails on top of the tender, and eventually the foot-plate and front step. The whistle and bell were installed after everything else was done, so that's why they look shiny. I tried to find info on whether the bell was rung by the engineer or the fireman. It seems it depended on the railroad. I figured the engineer had enough to do, so I gave the job to the fireman.
There are a few little things left to do, but basically this one's done!
I don't have a camera I can use for videos, but it runs very nicely forward and backwards. I set CV2 to 040, and it runs nice and slow on speed step one. The headlight functions correctly, also. I did not install the rear light. I try not to let the micro-connector come undone, because it a PIA to reattach it!
All in all, I'm happy with it!
 
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