Great project, Magicland! Thanks for posting...I’ll be following this thread closely. Being a huge CNJ fan, I’ve been patiently waiting for one of the manufacturers/importers to offer an accurate CNJ Heavy Mike. I remember being happy to hear that Lionel was going to offer one, only to see later that it wasn’t an accurate representation of the CNJ’s Heavy Mikes. 3rd Rail would probably be the most likely candidate to produce an accurate version, but that’s probably a long shot.
These locomotives worked hard for many years dragging heavy freights up and down the mountain grades of northeastern PA where I grew up, so I’d love to own one or two. I know my modeling limitations and probably won’t tackle a project of this magnitude; but I certainly will watch and appreciate yours!