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I see the point of plastic stanchions that is without question and I don't doubt the need for replacements. I removed the hand rails from the grand kids Polar Express locos to get the plastic stanchions. The kids don't miss them and likely it makes the loco safer for kids.  However on several of my TMCC conversions which have metal stanchions I used the hand rails for antennas.  All I did was to drop down a couple thousands on the handrail wire diameter.  I then gave the wire two coats of polyurethane either clear or black and allowed a couple of days for it to fully cure then very carefully slip it into the stanchions.  I then confirm the handrail is insulated from the boiler with a VOM.  This does rule out using the claw from the sky method of lifting locomotives as you don't want to press the handrails hard against the holes in the stanchions.   When possible I spin a dull slightly oversize drill bit to chamfer the edges of the hole in the stanchions and insure they don't scrape the paint off.  If you don't have a dull bit spin a sharp one backwards. A small conical diamond grinder point will also work.           j

I wanted to share what I received in the mail today from @AlanRail.'s the Vandy tender hand rail stanchions!  I am very grateful for Alan's kindness, craftsmanship and extraordinary attention to detail. Well done Sir!

From the handcrafted box to the perfectly designed stanchions (the measurements taken from my last two unbroken ones) I can now fix this tender that has been on my shelf for twenty years! Talk about bucket list..   I still have painting and placement to do. 





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i could not believe my eyes when I saw the postings on Alan's stanchions for the Vanderbilt tender.  I have a Lionel 18056 TMCC NYC locomotive and tender that needs the two different size stanchions.  The original Lionel plastic stanchions were terrible about breaking off and the replacement stanchions were worse than the originals.  Are any of the new resin stanchions available from Alan?

Just received the stanchions for my UP tender, I can finally fix it!   The packaging is a hoot, even the text is laser printed!  There there's the custom holder for the individual stanchions, very professional!


I do have a question.  I was thinking about the best way to paint these black, and I wondered if maybe a dunk in India Ink would be a good way to do a permanent coloring without adding bulk.


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John, I just used a tiny brush and a bottle of Floquil steam black I had laying around. A light touch did the trick. No bulk or globs that I can see. Look at my post above to see the stanchions installed.. it's easy  and I was satisfied with the result. I did not paint the base tabs. By the box!


Last edited by John Meyncke

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