How much impact velocity can locomotive withstand?

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Smudge617

Well-Known Member
Well there, now we know!
That would be cool with some cars made out of aluminum foil or something that would crumple on impact.
I just got a new Rapido SW1200 with sound, I could try that.
Or maybe not.
Oh yeah, go on, I can hear your SW1200 now........"STOP, STOP, ARE YOU NUTS, I'M BRAND NEW,...........YOU MAKE ME CRASH, I'LL NEVER TALK TO YOU AGAIN!!!!!"
🤣 🤣🤣🤣
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
Well there, now we know!
That would be cool with some cars made out of aluminum foil or something that would crumple on impact.
I just got a new Rapido SW1200 with sound, I could try that.
Or maybe not.

It is actually funny that you say this because last year I was messing around a little bit with collision, with my O gauge stuff. I took tank cars and would wrap a 3 inch length of aluminum foil around the cylindrical body and then adhere it to the end of the tank. What this did was make it look like an extended tank.... And I would induce a collision, and the aluminum foil tanker would crumple. But it was not really that cool or convincing. The creation of some relatively inexpensive crumple-able cars would be in order, and people could put up layouts at their club or hobby store with long straight routes, and stage various collisions that cause exciting crushes. These temporary cars would have ultra-thin glass windows and things to shatter or crack or explode on impact, perhaps behind a plexiglass wall, and the visitors could gather on the weekend and enjay.
 

Smudge617

Well-Known Member
It is actually funny that you say this because last year I was messing around a little bit with collision, with my O gauge stuff. I took tank cars and would wrap a 3 inch length of aluminum foil around the cylindrical body and then adhere it to the end of the tank. What this did was make it look like an extended tank.... And I would induce a collision, and the aluminum foil tanker would crumple. But it was not really that cool or convincing. The creation of some relatively inexpensive crumple-able cars would be in order, and people could put up layouts at their club or hobby store with long straight routes, and stage various collisions that cause exciting crushes. These temporary cars would have ultra-thin glass windows and things to shatter or crack or explode on impact, perhaps behind a plexiglass wall, and the visitors could gather on the weekend and enjay.
Have you thought about scratch building a couple of cars yourself that would be able to do that
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
Have you thought about scratch building a couple of cars yourself that would be able to do that

Well the thing is I don't really have the precedence for building cars. I have heard there are definitely kits to build train things in general, and I guess I could probably source some relatively thin sheet metal or exceptionally brittle plastic. I mean, I once fastened a light bulb into the end of a piece of rolling stock and crashed an LRRC into it at 50 inches per second and it did explode. I shall be ashamed of myself for not wearing goggles.
 

Smudge617

Well-Known Member
Well the thing is I don't really have the precedence for building cars. I have heard there are definitely kits to build train things in general, and I guess I could probably source some relatively thin sheet metal or exceptionally brittle plastic. I mean, I once fastened a light bulb into the end of a piece of rolling stock and crashed an LRRC into it at 50 inches per second and it did explode. I shall be ashamed of myself for not wearing goggles.
All you would need is two trucks, thin pieces of wood, for the chassis and body supports, like lollipop sticks, or stirrers from a coffee shop, bit of thin or very brittle plastic, for the body itself, and some glue
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
All you would need is two trucks, thin pieces of wood, for the chassis and body supports, like lollipop sticks, or stirrers from a coffee shop, bit of thin or very brittle plastic, for the body itself, and some glue
Yes. You are right. At Wal mart they actually sell little baggies of wood sticks of various sizes, including "popsicle" sticks. They are really cheap around $1 for a bag of like 50 for the basic popsicle sticks, and they have other shapes for a little more money.

i would cut them in to 1 inch lengths. They have an elmers art paste that could be used but I learned it's $10 for 2oz. That is a shame cuz I would prefer to own a little cylinder of that and its consistency would be easier to work with. Cheap generic elmers glue should do and that is $1.25. It is sufficient for this application, enough to bond but weak enough to disintegrate with a major impact.

I put it all together, adhere to trucks so it can roll on straight lengths of track like a car. I could buy new ala carte trucks or even source them from some of my old, shitty rolling stock. Several of these cars will be coupled together using some sort of implements. I will paint them various colors with my collection of acrylic and enamel paints, including designs you see on box cars. I will use my supply of used batteries and empty testor's bottles to secure into the cars as well for weight. I already have a habit of using empty testors bottles and used batteries for weight and cargo in hoppers, gondolas and reefers anyway. Aluminum foil may or may not be a thing to include in the construction, it is a little too thin to be prototypical scale thickness of the metal used in train car construction but it sure does crumple on impact. It is important not to make the construction of the cars TOO sturdy however. Any aluminum would need to be used sparingly and in small, separate sheets to allow prototypical disintegration rather than a simple ball of crush. In real world crashes, things come apart in multiple places.

I will place the train 150 to 200 inches downtrack of an LRRC locomotive, attached to another locomotive at the front of it. I accelerate the locomotive to where it reaches a speed of 45 and 50 inches per second. Scheduled to take a turnout, the operator "forgets" to activate the switch, sending the train barreling toward "another parked train" up ahead. When it plows into the train, a massive crush ensues with a hideous sound, the wooden train lurches forward and pops off the track in a fashion that is natural in a train crash, being ripped from the locomotive it belongs to, with bits of "splintered" wood, twisted metal siding and detached wheel trucks flying everywhere. The collision devastates the wooden train on video, without posing much of a threat to the solid LRRC Century Celebration locomotive.

I shall attend Wal Mart at once.

The project commences in a few stages as the walls of wood need to dry before being erected into cars. It takes several hours to complete.

For the record, 45 inches per second is a speed of 123 scale miles per hour. With comparitively thin aluminum siding, and wood/paste construction, the end result will be a mess of twisted metal that approximates a real-world crash where the locomotive is virtually intact but what it hits is crushed. The first crash video I provided occurred at a speed of 40 inches per second and it was pretty cool so no doubt 45 would be sufficient for absolute madness.
 
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Smudge617

Well-Known Member
Yes. You are right. At Wal mart they actually sell little baggies of wood sticks of various sizes, including "popsicle" sticks. They are really cheap around $1 for a bag of like 50 for the basic popsicle sticks, and they have other shapes for a little more money.

i would cut them in to 1 inch lengths. They have an elmers art paste that could be used but I learned it's $10 for 2oz. That is a shame cuz I would prefer to own a little cylinder of that and its consistency would be easier to work with. Cheap generic elmers glue should do and that is $1.25. It is sufficient for this application, enough to bond but weak enough to disintegrate with a major impact.

I put it all together, adhere to trucks so it can roll on straight lengths of track like a car. I could buy new ala carte trucks or even source them from some of my old, shitty rolling stock. Several of these cars will be coupled together using some sort of implements. I will paint them various colors with my collection of acrylic and enamel paints, including designs you see on box cars. I will use my supply of used batteries and empty testor's bottles to secure into the cars as well for weight. I already have a habit of using empty testors bottles and used batteries for weight and cargo in hoppers, gondolas and reefers anyway. Aluminum foil may or may not be a thing to include in the construction, it is a little too thin to be prototypical scale thickness of the metal used in train car construction but it sure does crumple on impact. It is important not to make the construction of the cars TOO sturdy however. Any aluminum would need to be used sparingly and in small, separate sheets to allow prototypical disintegration rather than a simple ball of crush. In real world crashes, things come apart in multiple places.

I will place the train 150 to 200 inches downtrack of an LRRC locomotive, attached to another locomotive at the front of it. I accelerate the locomotive to where it reaches a speed of 45 and 50 inches per second. Scheduled to take a turnout, the operator "forgets" to activate the switch, sending the train barreling toward "another parked train" up ahead. When it plows into the train, a massive crush ensues with a hideous sound, the wooden train lurches forward and pops off the track in a fashion that is natural in a train crash, being ripped from the locomotive it belongs to, with bits of "splintered" wood, twisted metal siding and detached wheel trucks flying everywhere. The collision devastates the wooden train on video, without posing much of a threat to the solid LRRC Century Celebration locomotive.

I shall attend Wal Mart at once.

The project commences in a few stages as the walls of wood need to dry before being erected into cars. It takes several hours to complete.

For the record, 45 inches per second is a speed of 123 scale miles per hour. With comparitively thin aluminum siding, and wood/paste construction, the end result will be a mess of twisted metal that approximates a real-world crash where the locomotive is virtually intact but what it hits is crushed. The first crash video I provided occurred at a speed of 40 inches per second and it was pretty cool so no doubt 45 would be sufficient for absolute madness.
The thing about travelling at 45" per second, is that there are few trains that can travel that fast, you would need a Eurostar,HST or one of the Japanese high speed trains to enact a crash of that speed. Having said that, this is your idea, your locomotive, and your crash, so as long as your having fun, enjoy.

Instead of going to Walmart, try McDonalds, or Starbucks for your sticks, (1 coffee and collect 10-15 stirrers) they are thinner than popsicle sticks, and longer so you could pack more collapsible material inside the body, thinking about it you could also use straws. For glue, try PVA or Wood Glue, and a small tube of superglue would suffice to attach the trucks and sticks together to form your chassis, wood-glue would do the rest.
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
The thing about travelling at 45" per second, is that there are few trains that can travel that fast, you would need a Eurostar,HST or one of the Japanese high speed trains to enact a crash of that speed. Having said that, this is your idea, your locomotive, and your crash, so as long as your having fun, enjoy.

Instead of going to Walmart, try McDonalds, or Starbucks for your sticks, (1 coffee and collect 10-15 stirrers) they are thinner than popsicle sticks, and longer so you could pack more collapsible material inside the body, thinking about it you could also use straws. For glue, try PVA or Wood Glue, and a small tube of superglue would suffice to attach the trucks and sticks together to form your chassis, wood-glue would do the rest.

I thought about these things with regards to collecting the sticks. Definitely more economical to just buy them rather than snatching a handful after paying $3 for a coffee someplace. The bag has 50 popsicle sticks for 97 cents at wal mart, in addition to needing glue.

I politely disagree about the speed capacity of trains being limited to the few you mentioned. I have a stop watch, and have spent a fair amount of time measuring the speed I can get out of my locomotives.

I have 4 locomotives. The simple 4 4 2 that came with my lionel, I can get that to maybe 35 inches per second.

I have a lionel 0 8 0 that I bought last year brand new, (And I was horrified that I flat-out ruined it by taking it apart to service it). First, I caused the electronic accessories to die somehow by adding a roll of pennies inside of it for weight. Then the mechanics went awry. In order to get my 0 8 0 back up running, I had to literally "gut" it of the mechanisms that synchronized the 8 wheels to run together because they began getting stuck, and I could not keep them un-stuck. Now it is only 2-wheel drive, but in any case, the most I have ever gotten this train to travel is about 30 inches per second, and it gets shaky at that speed.

I have a Lionel Conrail diesel, I think it is a GP30. The max speed seems to vary depending on the mood of the CW-80 in tandem with the remote, but I have gotten it to around 40 - 45 inches per second.

Then there is the Century Celebration LRRC. This thing is ridiculous. It comes from the year 2000, is a Lionel, it has no remote, and it cannot run at speeds of less than 15 inches per second! Like if I try to run it slowly, it becomes inconsistent and will stop. THIS locomotive... I think I have gotten it to somewhere near 50 inches per second but I cannot measure its top speed because it flies off the track at the curves, even the 054 curves. I cannot prove what the top speed is of this but my money is that it gets to 55 inches per second or more. In any case, I just measured it now at the top speed I can sustain without derailing at an 054. I clocked it at 49 inches per second. The LRRC has an unusual motor I have not seen in any newer Lionel locomotive I have. And I am sure you know this but I am in O gauge, not HO.
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
The thing about travelling at 45" per second, is that there are few trains that can travel that fast, you would need a Eurostar,HST or one of the Japanese high speed trains to enact a crash of that speed. Having said that, this is your idea, your locomotive, and your crash, so as long as your having fun, enjoy.

Instead of going to Walmart, try McDonalds, or Starbucks for your sticks, (1 coffee and collect 10-15 stirrers) they are thinner than popsicle sticks, and longer so you could pack more collapsible material inside the body, thinking about it you could also use straws. For glue, try PVA or Wood Glue, and a small tube of superglue would suffice to attach the trucks and sticks together to form your chassis, wood-glue would do the rest.
 

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Smudge617

Well-Known Member
I thought about these things with regards to collecting the sticks. Definitely more economical to just buy them rather than snatching a handful after paying $3 for a coffee someplace. The bag has 50 popsicle sticks for 97 cents at wal mart, in addition to needing glue.

I politely disagree about the speed capacity of trains being limited to the few you mentioned. I have a stop watch, and have spent a fair amount of time measuring the speed I can get out of my locomotives.

I have 4 locomotives. The simple 4 4 2 that came with my lionel, I can get that to maybe 35 inches per second.

I have a lionel 0 8 0 that I bought last year brand new, (And I was horrified that I flat-out ruined it by taking it apart to service it). First, I caused the electronic accessories to die somehow by adding a roll of pennies inside of it for weight. Then the mechanics went awry. In order to get my 0 8 0 back up running, I had to literally "gut" it of the mechanisms that synchronized the 8 wheels to run together because they began getting stuck, and I could not keep them un-stuck. Now it is only 2-wheel drive, but in any case, the most I have ever gotten this train to travel is about 30 inches per second, and it gets shaky at that speed.

I have a Lionel Conrail diesel, I think it is a GP30. The max speed seems to vary depending on the mood of the CW-80 in tandem with the remote, but I have gotten it to around 40 - 45 inches per second.

Then there is the Century Celebration LRRC. This thing is ridiculous. It comes from the year 2000, is a Lionel, it has no remote, and it cannot run at speeds of less than 15 inches per second! Like if I try to run it slowly, it becomes inconsistent and will stop. THIS locomotive... I think I have gotten it to somewhere near 50 inches per second but I cannot measure its top speed because it flies off the track at the curves, even the 054 curves. I cannot prove what the top speed is of this but my money is that it gets to 55 inches per second or more. In any case, I just measured it now at the top speed I can sustain without derailing at an 054. I clocked it at 49 inches per second. The LRRC has an unusual motor I have not seen in any newer Lionel locomotive I have. And I am sure you know this but I am in O gauge, not HO.
Sorry, didn't make myself clear, the locomotives I was referring to are 1:1 scale.
And I model in OO and HO scale, which is kinda fun having a UK 4-6-2 steam (OO) running a alongside a SD50 (HO) diesel, but I can't afford to crash mine. 🤣
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
Sorry, didn't make myself clear, the locomotives I was referring to are 1:1 scale.
And I model in OO and HO scale, which is kinda fun having a UK 4-6-2 steam (OO) running a alongside a SD50 (HO) diesel, but I can't afford to crash mine. 🤣

I hope that the basic white elmer's glue is not too strong for this. It seems to take a long time to dry, but it also seems fairly strong too.

I had generally thought of Elmer's white school glue as being silly and cheap. I have now read somewhere it was reformulated.

The cars weigh about 3 pounds each. The wood is a little stronger than balsa wood, but the wood I used for most of the panels is thinner than popsicle stick wood. The floors are made of actual store-bought popsicle sticks. All of the wood splinters readily.

I used those tiny empty Testor's enamel jars at each corner inside the cars that serve as a joint post for all the panels, as well as to add significant weight to the cars. Further weight was added to each car by taping several used AA and AAA batteries inside the cars. These heavy bits serve to add centrifugal force to the equation when the collision occurs. Because it is heavy, small and dense bits that will out-weigh and out-strength the materials used to construct the cars, and will thereby serve to disintegrate the cars when jolting force is applied.

Just to ensure the design works well for the incident, I decided to make an extra car that I will test separately. If it underperforms in its disintegration excitement, I may either add weight to the others to increase centrifugal force, or if the cars prove WAY too tough in the test I will use my mom's dremel with grinding disks to etch in a bunch of invisible perforations throughout the cars to ensure a fantastic disintegration.
 
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Smudge617

Well-Known Member
I hope that the basic white elmer's glue is not too strong for this. It seems to take a long time to dry, but it also seems fairly strong too.

I had generally thought of Elmer's white school glue as being silly and cheap. I have now read somewhere it was reformulated.

The cars weigh about 3 pounds each. The wood is a little stronger than balsa wood, but the wood I used for most of the panels is thinner than popsicle stick wood. The floors are made of actual store-bought popsicle sticks. All of the wood splinters readily.

I used those tiny empty Testor's enamel jars at each corner inside the cars that serve as a joint post for all the panels, as well as to add significant weight to the cars. Further weight was added to each car by taping several used AA and AAA batteries inside the cars. These heavy bits serve to add centrifugal force to the equation when the collision occurs. Because it is heavy, small and dense bits that will out-weigh and out-strength the materials used to construct the cars, and will thereby serve to disintegrate the cars when jolting force is applied.

Just to ensure the design works well for the incident, I decided to make an extra car that I will test separately. If it underperforms in its disintegration excitement, I may either add weight to the others to increase centrifugal force, or if the cars prove WAY too tough in the test I will use my mom's dremel with grinding disks to etch in a bunch of invisible perforations throughout the cars to ensure a fantastic disintegration.
You might want to include those type of cars in the train your using for the collision in the middle or rear, as momentum plays a important part in the destruction.
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
You might want to include those type of cars in the train your using for the collision in the middle or rear, as momentum plays a important part in the destruction.

Oh yes, all of the home-made cars designed for the crash will be in the rear of the train that is stationary, in other words, the train that is not at fault. They will be attached to their own locomotive that sits at the front, I am using my run-down 0 8 0 for that as it is fairly heavy and will help limit forward movement of the train receiving the impact. Since I have amassed a lot of used cheap reefers, I sourced good trucks from them that will be fastened to the home-built cars. Though they can't go around curves that much, they will still roll on straight sections of track and since the couplers are on the trucks, and the cars will be painted, be coupled together, and this home-built train will really actually look adequately convincing versus store-bought rolling stock. The only difference is that the cars will disintegrate in the collision.

The train that is at fault, or the one that is in motion, is going to be a 4 6 4 that weights around 10 pounds, is made of steel, and has a hot-rod of a motor in it. This train will be made up of regular model cars as I don't have any more home-built ones to use. It would be more work than I am up for to make any more than the 4 cars I am making. BUT, the cars that do make up this train have their own weight as it is, because I always have some weight added to my trains in general because of the stability it adds. All in all, the train that does the crashing will weigh a total of about 15 pounds and will be about 5 cars long.

This will be around 15 pounds of solid steel steam train crashing into 15 pounds of brittle wood train at a speed of 45 inches per second.
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
What is different about this event than regular crashes involving standard rolling stock is that you only get one crash. Like, I have to make sure the camera is working, and before the event I have to ensure I have to do a couple of test runs of the 4 6 4 leading up to it. Sometimes the interaction between the locomotives and the CW-80 transformer is not consistent. The 4 6 4 does not have a remote because it is from 2000. There are some times where the locomotive accellerates to 50 + inches per second on full throttle, and other times I will command an accelleration and it will seem to top out at 30 inches per second. I think it has to do maybe with whether I start the train by hitting the GO button on the CW-80, or if I already have it in DRIVE and start the engine by cranking up the output lever. In any case, I will need to try different ways of setting the train in motion before I let the collision happen. I can always stop the train if it's in motion if I dont like the output happening but if a collision of any kind takes place there's a good chance the train will be totaled the first time.

My layout is the shape of an oval, the straight sections of it are only 50 or 60 inches long. I am thinking I might actually take that down and set up a really long straight-away that is 200 inches or more long, but have a 31 inch right hand turn at the end of it going off camera. Pinned down, this will provide a setup for the train that is hit to attempt to turn as it lurches forward, probably flipping off the track. My experience is that you don't need a fully connected loop to get juice to the track, and a really long straight away will reduce potential complications and might even allow the train to reach speeds in the 50s, which is not something I can do in my oval loop layout. I think I will also install the track on my PVS trestle system, so it is a couple inches up off the floor, adding the effect of the height. I was happy being settled on 45 inches per second, but that was mostly because I knew the limitations of these 054 curves and taking into account the many joints throughout the cars that are bonded by Elmer's and the energy in speed increases exponentially, a 55 inch per second impact instead of 45 just might be really handy.

The event should take place at nighttime but with sufficient lighting, as this kind of collision should produce LOTS of sparks especially if I find a way to make sure that the impact winds up dragging metal cross-circuit.

An impact velocity in the 50's does have me thinking about the risk of damage to the 4 6 4 steam engine... But this thing is solid steel. It is a literal tank. Any risk to it would be related to abrupt deceleration affecting the internal organs of the electronics in it but you have to bear in mind the design of the train that it is ramming into: It is a melange of super-light and brittle wood with strategically-placed Testor's enamel bottles. This totally creates a wonderful crumple zone, so the 4 6 4 is going to not see instantaneous deceleration. It WILL however make it to the 031 turn ahead, and will have enough velocity to fly off the track there so I will install a foam foreground to receive the locomotive when it flips.
 
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Smudge617

Well-Known Member
What is different about this event than regular crashes involving standard rolling stock is that you only get one crash. Like, I have to make sure the camera is working, and before the event I have to ensure I have to do a couple of test runs of the 4 6 4 leading up to it. Sometimes the interaction between the locomotives and the CW-80 transformer is not consistent. The 4 6 4 does not have a remote because it is from 2000. There are some times where the locomotive accellerates to 50 + inches per second on full throttle, and other times I will command an accelleration and it will seem to top out at 30 inches per second. I think it has to do maybe with whether I start the train by hitting the GO button on the CW-80, or if I already have it in DRIVE and start the engine by cranking up the output lever. In any case, I will need to try different ways of setting the train in motion before I let the collision happen. I can always stop the train if it's in motion if I dont like the output happening but if a collision of any kind takes place there's a good chance the train will be totaled the first time.

My layout is the shape of an oval, the straight sections of it are only 50 or 60 inches long. I am thinking I might actually take that down and set up a really long straight-away that is 200 inches or more long, but have a 31 inch right hand turn at the end of it going off camera. Pinned down, this will provide a setup for the train that is hit to attempt to turn as it lurches forward, probably flipping off the track. My experience is that you don't need a fully connected loop to get juice to the track, and a really long straight away will reduce potential complications and might even allow the train to reach speeds in the 50s, which is not something I can do in my oval loop layout. I think I will also install the track on my PVS trestle system, so it is a couple inches up off the floor, adding the effect of the height. I was happy being settled on 45 inches per second, but that was mostly because I knew the limitations of these 054 curves and taking into account the many joints throughout the cars that are bonded by Elmer's and the energy in speed increases exponentially, a 55 inch per second impact instead of 45 just might be really handy.

The event should take place at nighttime but with sufficient lighting, as this kind of collision should produce LOTS of sparks especially if I find a way to make sure that the impact winds up dragging metal cross-circuit.

An impact velocity in the 50's does have me thinking about the risk of damage to the 4 6 4 steam engine... But this thing is solid steel. It is a literal tank. Any risk to it would be related to abrupt deceleration affecting the internal organs of the electronics in it but you have to bear in mind the design of the train that it is ramming into: It is a melange of super-light and brittle wood with strategically-placed Testor's enamel bottles. This totally creates a wonderful crumple zone, so the 4 6 4 is going to not see instantaneous deceleration. It WILL however make it to the 031 turn ahead, and will have enough velocity to fly off the track there so I will install a foam foreground to receive the locomotive when it flips.
A longer straight will allow for greater speed, but honestly you are eventually going to ruin your 4-6-4, regardless of what it's made of, either the motor or drive gears will give out, they were never designed to be repeatedly and deliberately crashed.
As for sparks, I doubt you'll get any, there is insufficient material in it to allow for that, I'm glad your allowing a crash mat, as I think you will have use for it.
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
A longer straight will allow for greater speed, but honestly you are eventually going to ruin your 4-6-4, regardless of what it's made of, either the motor or drive gears will give out, they were never designed to be repeatedly and deliberately crashed.
As for sparks, I doubt you'll get any, there is insufficient material in it to allow for that, I'm glad your allowing a crash mat, as I think you will have use for it.
It would be hard for me to argue that I am not ultimately putting my trains at risk by crashing them. A spring and spring post abruptly went missing from my GP30 after it left the railway at a turn a few times this week, I demonstrated to myself that if the trucks pivot too violently it can pull the post out of position.

But I definitely will get sparks. You are modeling mostly in HO or OO... And with those you almost never get sparks. But O gauge is another animal. It is 3-rail, and there is a LOT more juice. More amps and more voltage, I get sparks merely from running long trains at fast speeds, usually it happens at any rough joints between track segments. I have repeatedly gotten sparks in collisions as gentle as 15 inches per second. In other words mere bumper cars tends to cause sparks in O gauge. IF a truck derails and pivots at just a 20 degree angle, it will kick up a shower of sparks as it travels down the track because it's a piece of metal linking the 3rd rail with outer rails.
 

Rico

BN Modeller
You need some of those heavy cars with an ultra light tin foil car in between!
(Not my photo, your mileage may vary, no caterpillars were harmed in the posting of this photo)

33CC4A08-35CC-46C1-845E-2EB44EBD227F.jpeg
 

ChinaHaun19

Active Member
You need some of those heavy cars with an ultra light tin foil car in between!
(Not my photo, your mileage may vary, no caterpillars were harmed in the posting of this photo)

View attachment 144719

That is a good suggestion.

In the few days I have been planning this, I have considered the proposition of using aluminum foil in the construction of the cars. Ultimately, I am at a point where I am probably not going to use much aluminum foil simply because the cars are being painted... I am thinking that a limited application of aluminum foil, such as 1 inch-wide strips on all the corners of the box car, might clash with the wood that they're made of to give away an appearance of fakeness. When thinking of aluminum foil wrapped on the whole car, that seemed like a bad idea because it adds too much strength to the cars, and would prevent the fantastic explosion that is expected with the brittle wood construction. But maybe really thin aluminum corner strips that are 1/3 inch wide could wrap around these holey corners and that would give a real impression like you see on box cars.

I don't know. I have been doing this slowly, just working on them an hour or two per day, and evolving the crash plan. I could still choose to use aluminum foil perhaps, and I will decide by Sunday, when the crash is planned. Right now, here is a picture of what the cars are like right at this point. I am still sanding and buffering them before their paint job.

Other changes I have made in my plan for this crash is that now instead of relying on my oval layout and its 45 inch per second speed limit, I am going to assemble a 25 foot-long straight shot of railway. Then, I can get the 4 6 4 that is going to crash... up to speeds of 55 to 60 inches per second! This locomotive has an insanely fast motor and it will not even run at speeds under 15 to 20 inches per second (40 to 55 scale miles per hour). The difference between 45 and 55 inches per second is about a 40 per cent increase in kinetic energy in the crash because speed increases the energy exponentially. This is also actually why they say going 10 miles per hour above the speed limit in real life is actually a really bad idea, and can mean the difference between moderate injury and death in a crash.

My mom pointed out it is a shame that I made these just to destroy them. It did give me an idea of making wooden box cars and perhaps selling them? I have schizoeffective disorder and it causes a symptom called Avolition that makes working more than 15 or 20 hours per week impossible as the experience causes my mental health to worsen, and then I wind up just not being able to go in the end. I have not been able to complete college for basically the same reason I am pretty poor. As such, while I get ready for Disability benefits, I am considering possible future ideas where I could do my own work, my own business, and thrive that way because if it is something that I am savant about like this, I could probably work more than I can at low skill, shitty, awful jobs which are all I have had access to. So maybe I would want to make more cars to NOT destroy, put craftsmanship into them, and sell them.

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