Detailing Athearn Genesis SD70M's


New Member
After a run of detailing 3 Kato Locos, I am looking at any help on detailing Athearn/Genesis SD70M Locos (UP). They look to way more a pain in the rear than Katos. Advice or detailing info would be appreciated.. And is it true you have to Glue everything? What glue works the best?
Hi Mike, I'm not familiar with the Genesis locos so I can't help you there. When doing my own locos I use "Testors Plastic Cement" cementing plastic to plastic. Most other brands of Plastic cement should give the same results. These cements melt the plastic somewhat, kind of like welding the pieces together. For joining metal and plastic I use a cheap brand of CA, with success this gives a somewhat brittle bond that can break from a shock like glass. Contact cement can also be used, but you have to have the placement correct the first time. Most likely other members will post their methods which work for them.
Cheers Willis
Wow, it's been a long time since I applied details to any of these models, but IIRC, I had to apply truck details, sunshades, handrails, ditch lights and grabs to the models.

The truck details are pretty straightforward: use CA or MEK to apply them, but follow the directions carefully on placement! Also, use fingernail clippers or some small nippers to remove the parts from the sprue since many of them are extremely fragile and will gladly break in half for you.

The sunshades are pretty thick, so it's your call whether you want to toss them and replace them with A-line etched shades.

Grab irons are always a beating, but these aren't too bad. You'll probably need to open the holes up with a #80 or #78 drill bit. Try the #80 first and if the grab won't slip into the hole with some friction (but not to the point where it bends), go to the next larger size and repeat. Once the grabs are installed, I apply a drop of CA to each side of the grab on the inside of the shell. Once that glue is dry, I bend the grabs flat against the inside of the shell. Alternately, you can trim the ends when the glue is dry.

The handrails are the toughest. If you bought an early run model, the handrails may appear to be too short along the length of the model causing the stanchions to lean toward the middle. Athearn is aware of the problem with shrinkage on the early run and they corrected it. Contact them for a replacement (mine were free of charge, yours may be too). Also, watch the pins for the end handrails. They might fight you when trying to push them into the deck and they are susceptible to shearing. Make sure they fit with the same amount of friction as the grabs or you could break them.

The ditch lights are the easiest thing to deal with. Remove the bulbs from their package and save them for another project. Take the remaining ditch light castings and hurl them into the nearest trash can. Replace them with Details West parts.