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The annoying thing about MTH cars (and locos) for me as a Brit is knowing how accurate they are just from pics.  I got an early MTH version Airslide second-hand and the are very good, probably why Atlas chose(?) the newer improved version (more metal bits).  Maybe if we get enough feedback to Atlas, they will do something about 2-railing Premier models.  Anyway, buy one, check out NWSL.com for wheelsets or look at current MTH/Atlas 2-rail trucks availability.

Jason

MTH makes a variety of 2 rail trucks for all their rolling stock. (Passenger, freight, caboose, roller bearing, plan bearing, 70 ton, 100 ton)

https://mthtrains.com/prod-sea...lassification%3A7036

They screw right in to the existing bolster without any modifications, and they have the added advantage of lowering the car to the correct height. You may still be able to get these from a variety of sources

MTH makes a variety of 2 rail trucks for all their rolling stock. (Passenger, freight, caboose, roller bearing, plan bearing, 70 ton, 100 ton)

https://mthtrains.com/prod-sea...lassification%3A7036

They screw right in to the existing bolster without any modifications, and they have the added advantage of lowering the car to the correct height. You may still be able to get these from a variety of sources

No disrespect and I appreciate the information but MTH trucks don't look realistic or prototypical. That's why I chose Atlas.

@Curtis1983 posted:

No disrespect and I appreciate the information but MTH trucks don't look realistic or prototypical. That's why I chose Atlas.

No disrepect detected or taken.  To each his own.

But you just might want to look at a real truck again. Atlas trucks are too wide, their side frames are way too thick, and their journal boxes do not stick out very far compared to an actual box.  In the three rail world, Lionel, MTH, and Weaver produce far more realistic trucks.

But again, as I said to each his own!

The MTH trucks lower the newer cars to the correct height, but with some of the earlier ones, more drastic measures are required because they were from the "O-31 era" and ride high even with the MTH 2-rail trucks. The work-around for that is to insert a wooden dowel flush with the truck mount, drill a 1/16" hole and mount a Weaver roller bearing stuck (Intermountain Metal wheels) with a 2-56 screw. The other way is to remove the ends of the chassis and create new bolsters as in my first conversion below:

Original O-31 scale-length car (note the trucks at the ends rather than at the jack points.

2015-08-20 20.53.27

New bolsters created and properly located:

2015-09-20 21.28.03

Weaver trucks in place. Kadee height-check (needed to use a single shim)

Changed technique and used existing hole with the dowel and washers to better support the truck (you can't see it from the side of the cars)

2017-08-09 18.54.56

The later ones all had the Kadee mounting holes (2mx8mm) and come out to the right height with the MTH 2-rail trucks.

Also, the Intermountain 33" scale wheels will fit into the MTH trucks pretty well.

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  • 2015-09-20 21.28.03
  • 2015-09-22 22.33.05
  • 2017-08-09 18.54.56

No disrepect detected or taken.  To each his own.

But you just might want to look at a real truck again. Atlas trucks are too wide, their side frames are way too thick, and their journal boxes do not stick out very far compared to an actual box.  In the three rail world, Lionel, MTH, and Weaver produce far more realistic trucks.

But again, as I said to each his own!

Atlas updated their trucks some time ago because of criticisms as mentioned by John

It's a shame Weaver was, at one time, the only source of good plastic truck design: regular, prototype, flat, truck bolsters with separate spacers for 3-rail, rather than toy train design.  Luckily I picked up some USHobbies r/b trucks years ago with SPINNING ROLLER BEARINGS.  Had to put that in capitals in case the tool-designers hadn't seen the real thing, not just still photos.  I'll stop now and not ramble on about 3-rail loco truck design being based on solid sideframes, totally separate from wheelsets, so no spinning r/bs.

Jason

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Atlas updated their trucks some time ago because of criticisms as mentioned by John



Glad to hear they changed the design!  Thanks Jason

In my opinion, the best two rail Bettendorf Trucks are by Intermountain.  They have the right dimensions everywhere, their brakes shoes line up with the wheel treads, they have a nice semblance of brake rigging, and they have molded plastic springs that have the prototypical coil thickness.  They are equalized, so they track very well. With Intermountain steel wheelsets they roll easier than any truck I have ever tested, be it brass, diecast, or plastic.   One push and I can get a truck to do a lap and a half of my 31' x 21' layout. 

They are my go-to truck for any 2 rail conversion

Last edited by John Sethian

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