Labelle Craftsman kit build (boxcar)

I've started on a build of an old time craftsman kit, the labelle soo line boxcar,  and I thought it would be neat to share my progress.

This my first Labelle kit, so it's been interesting. 

As you can see in the pictures, I've weighted the car to NMRA spec, and have added underside detail (brakes and levers) using the parts supplied with the kit. 

The trucks are Archbar style brass trucks from protocraft. I will be having a go at painting them. Any painting tips would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Adam

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Member of the O Scale Southern New England Model Railroad Club

 

Check us out at our October Train Show and Open House!

 

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Very nice Adam.  Love building things in wood though it's been years for me.

Martin B will soon be along to offer tips for 21st century assembly since he's a wood car era modeler and has "been there done that". 

For me it was always the problem of getting glue to last... but this was back in the Testor's tube cellulose glue and Walthers Goo days. 

Rob M. ARHS # 3846 PRRT&HS # 8141 EPTC "Life Is Like A Mountain Railway, With An Engineer That's Brave..."

I've got an update on the build. 

I've completed the assembly of the boxcar. It's now ready for painting.

overall I'm mostly happy with how it came out. I do need to work on my spacing and drilling holes. Especially for the grab irons. It's tougher than it looks, and mine came out crooked.

Up next is painting, then the decals, couplers and trucks.

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Member of the O Scale Southern New England Model Railroad Club

 

Check us out at our October Train Show and Open House!

 

www.snemrr.org

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A carefully made brass jig will cure your grab iron drilling problems.  And when you find a permanent adhesive, let me know.  I think Walthers Goo and Weldwood contact cement used to be better than they are now.

Nice work.  What kind of trucks are those?

I used titebond wood glue for all the wood gluing, and for all the detail parts I used Alene's Thick and tacky glue. It's a really great white glue. Way stronger than elmers.

The trucks are Archbars from Protocraft.

Member of the O Scale Southern New England Model Railroad Club

 

Check us out at our October Train Show and Open House!

 

www.snemrr.org

A beautiful model!  I suggest drilling ONE hole  for each  hand grab OVERSIZED. That will allow for some  vertical adjustment.  And of course you will need to cement them in with some gap filling glue.  I always use calipers to get the holes close.  Now I am developing an itch to build a Labelle kit.  I have not built one yet.

You can STILL redrill, and adjust those grabs.  -Salty Rails-

Good to see someone here actually building something again!

Not sure where this seal the wood thing came from - never bothered with that although very carefully gluing is critical to getting that scribed siding in place and gluing the edges is really important to limiting later opening up of the sides.  I usually wire brush the sides and ends (where possible) with a sift brass wire brush to get everything clean and the scribed valleys clear of debris.

Aligning grabs is annoying and tedious; a jig works if it's the right one for the car; I just get a mm ruler and after setting the spacing, measure over the distance for the grab - hemostats are lovely tools for holding and inserting grab irons into their mounting holes.

Was there no brake stirrup to mount the end of the brake shaft into then?

I'm still using Goo to mount the metal parts to my cars although I'll add a wee bit of medium viscosity CA on the metal part for the final mounting.  Very hard to re-position or remove after that unless you cut it off.

Wish there was a good source of those corner braces on the ends!


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

CBQer posted:

I have been working on the CBQ Drovers caboose. Interesting build.

I am a bit concerned about making the of the roof. Suggestions?

Dick

Pictures would be helpful - what kind of roof?  What's the concern?


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

MOW 1MOW 2

The sliding door in the end of the car may have been used to allow interior car length lumber to be loaded.  At the side doors put a piece of lumber through the hole until the other end will clear the loading door.  Then push the last end in towards the other end of the car.  When the lumber is inside the car, the end which went through the small door in the end will drop.  Clever these loaders.     John in Lansing, ILL

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mwb posted:

Good to see someone here actually building something again!

Not sure where this seal the wood thing came from - never bothered with that although very carefully gluing is critical to getting that scribed siding in place and gluing the edges is really important to limiting later opening up of the sides.  I usually wire brush the sides and ends (where possible) with a sift brass wire brush to get everything clean and the scribed valleys clear of debris.

Aligning grabs is annoying and tedious; a jig works if it's the right one for the car; I just get a mm ruler and after setting the spacing, measure over the distance for the grab - hemostats are lovely tools for holding and inserting grab irons into their mounting holes.

Was there no brake stirrup to mount the end of the brake shaft into then?

I'm still using Goo to mount the metal parts to my cars although I'll add a wee bit of medium viscosity CA on the metal part for the final mounting.  Very hard to re-position or remove after that unless you cut it off.

Wish there was a good source of those corner braces on the ends!

Yeah, there was no brake stirrup that I could find. So I improvised.

Doesn't Labelle sell the corner braces directly? I was going to order some spares and some queenposts as well. I killed several of them and had to raid another labelle kit to finish this one.

Member of the O Scale Southern New England Model Railroad Club

 

Check us out at our October Train Show and Open House!

 

www.snemrr.org

I've moved on from common adhesives and use a gel CA in all assemblies other than soldering.  Seems to work equally well on wood, without the fear of warping from water or solvent based glues.  The almost instantaneous set up lets me move on to the next stage without delay.  Excess CA tends to remain on the wood surface where it can easily be scraped away, allowing stains to coat evenly.  It might sound trivial, but one adhesive on the workbench sure cuts down on clutter.

Some carefully cut sheet brass, rivet embossed and bent to shape would probably make better looking corner brackets.  The cast ones look 3 times too thick.  Much like the side door hinges found in All Nation wood reefer kits....way too thick and oversized.

Bruce

adferraro posted:

Yeah, there was no brake stirrup that I could find. So I improvised.

Used to be a nice casting from Berkshire Valley. Alas, the new owners did away with the freight car detail parts of that business.   PSC makes some....

Doesn't Labelle sell the corner braces directly? I was going to order some spares and some queenposts as well. I killed several of them and had to raid another labelle kit to finish this one.

No idea; probably improvise if/when I need such.  Queen posts are easy --> Grandt Line makes several sizes and I use those a lot!    Tichy makes some as well but there's no mounting post / sprue with their casting.....


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

mwb posted:
CBQer posted:

I have been working on the CBQ Drovers caboose. Interesting build.

I am a bit concerned about making the of the roof. Suggestions?

Dick

Pictures would be helpful - what kind of roof?  What's the concern?

It has an old style passenger curve end only on one end.

Dick

Dick Donaway

VietNam Veteran

CBQer posted:
mwb posted:
CBQer posted:

I have been working on the CBQ Drovers caboose. Interesting build.

I am a bit concerned about making the of the roof. Suggestions?

Dick

Pictures would be helpful - what kind of roof?  What's the concern?

It has an old style passenger curve end only on one end.

Dick

Clerestory roof?

Ok, should be some templates included in the kit - make copies and glue them up to some cardstock so you can cut them out and handle them. 

Taking your time the 5-8 times you do this is probably reasonable; I'll suggest a 4-in-hand rasp to to do a rough shaping and moderately fine work then as well.  After that, sanding blocks from 60 t0 220 grit to get really close.  Then much finer sanding to get to a near polished surface while all the time checking against those templates and also against the car body.  If you're going to just paint it, then sanding sealer and steel wool 1st until smooth; if you're going to cover it with "canvas" and paint that you don't have to go quite as far as the perfect surface.

I get impatient now and again with such stuff and just nail it with the upright belt sander


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

Got another build update.

I have painted the boxcar and trucks, and installed Kadee style 743 couplers. The couplers are gauged using a Kadee height gauge. 

The car couples and uncouples smoothly, and rolls quite freely. Final weight is 13.70 ounces.

Some more quick lessons learned:

I forgot the turnbuckles before painting.

The Bolsters are a little off. They should have been a little more toward the end. The trucks are sitting a bit to far in for my taste.

 

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The paint is Scalecoat 1, Boxcar red #3 from a spray can. 

All that's left is to apply the decals, and then hit it with Dullcote. I should have final pictures later this week.

Member of the O Scale Southern New England Model Railroad Club

 

Check us out at our October Train Show and Open House!

 

www.snemrr.org

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adferraro posted:

I forgot the turnbuckles before painting.

The Bolsters are a little off. They should have been a little more toward the end.

Strangely enough, and no questions about how I know this, but one can add turnbuckles after the fact if you are using the ones from Tichy.  You can actually split them with a scalpel and re-assemble them back on the "trussrods".

Only way I know to fix the bolsters is to break them free with the channel locks, clear the space with the scalpel, and put in new.  Yup, been there, too.....


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

I've built one of those LaBelle kits myself.

616

Along with MWB's post above, you can also order a roof rounding kit from LaBelle, which Makes rounding the end much easier. They also have a great tutorial on their website. Use power tools, they're your friend on an o-scale kit. I use a DA sander myself.  Lastly this thread may help:https://ogrforum.ogaugerr.com/topic/la-belle-woodworking-o-scale-passenger-kit-a-true-craftsman-kit?

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mwb posted:
CBQer posted:
mwb posted:
CBQer posted:

I have been working on the CBQ Drovers caboose. Interesting build.

I am a bit concerned about making the of the roof. Suggestions?

Dick

Pictures would be helpful - what kind of roof?  What's the concern?

It has an old style passenger curve end only on one end.

Dick

Clerestory roof?

Ok, should be some templates included in the kit - make copies and glue them up to some cardstock so you can cut them out and handle them. 

Taking your time the 5-8 times you do this is probably reasonable; I'll suggest a 4-in-hand rasp to to do a rough shaping and moderately fine work then as well.  After that, sanding blocks from 60 t0 220 grit to get really close.  Then much finer sanding to get to a near polished surface while all the time checking against those templates and also against the car body.  If you're going to just paint it, then sanding sealer and steel wool 1st until smooth; if you're going to cover it with "canvas" and paint that you don't have to go quite as far as the perfect surface.

I get impatient now and again with such stuff and just nail it with the upright belt sander

Yes, celestory. Wish me luck as I have a belt sander too.

 

Dick Donaway

VietNam Veteran

rattler21 posted:

MOW 1MOW 2

The sliding door in the end of the car may have been used to allow interior car length lumber to be loaded.  At the side doors put a piece of lumber through the hole until the other end will clear the loading door.  Then push the last end in towards the other end of the car.  When the lumber is inside the car, the end which went through the small door in the end will drop.  Clever these loaders.     John in Lansing, ILL

Love the individual boards weathering. Nice project for some one.

Dick

Dick Donaway

VietNam Veteran

Mike Flauding posted:

Thanks, they really look nice when you get the gas piping on the roof and painted and scholl work on her sides! I'll post pictures when she's finished

Mike,

I am working on the Drover Caboose and am at the point where I have to round off the roof. I am having a devil of a time trying to understand the written instructions. Have you any tips on how to make the roof curve? I have drawn a blank other than diving into it with both sanding blocks. Help would be appreciated. THANKS.

Dick

Dick Donaway

VietNam Veteran

FYI labelle will do the ends for 20.00. I found this is the way to go as it saves a lot of cussing. I did the ends on mine but its a lot of work. Had several people say having to form the ends was the reason they didn't build the cars. With labelle doing the forming the ends for ya, there's no reason not to build them! If you having trouble and need help, I would give Rick at labell a call. He's good people and will get ya thru it. 

My final post on this build. The decals were bad (this was an old kit) so I ordered some dry transfers from Cloverhouse. 

I goofed a little on putting them on. I killed the car data on one set, so one side of the car has no data, and I botched a couple letters on the side, more lessons learned for next time. After I was done, I hit it with Dullcote, and then gave it a light weathering with Bragdons weathering powder (soot).

so that's pretty much it. My next build is going to be a labelle 50 foot boxcar. I hope to take everything I learned from this build and apply it to my next one.

adam

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Member of the O Scale Southern New England Model Railroad Club

 

Check us out at our October Train Show and Open House!

 

www.snemrr.org

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Good job and let's see what you do with the next one.

Dry transfers take some practice and the smaller lettering can be difficult on the wood siding.


A Pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An Optimist sees light at the end of the tunnel

A Realist sees a freight train

The Train engineer sees 3 idiots standing on the rails

 

adferraro posted:

My final post on this build. The decals were bad (this was an old kit) so I ordered some dry transfers from Cloverhouse. 

I goofed a little on putting them on. I killed the car data on one set, so one side of the car has no data, and I botched a couple letters on the side, more lessons learned for next time. After I was done, I hit it with Dullcote, and then gave it a light weathering with Bragdons weathering powder (soot).

so that's pretty much it. My next build is going to be a labelle 50 foot boxcar. I hope to take everything I learned from this build and apply it to my next one.

adam

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I take it this is a boxcar from the late 1890s or the early 1900s.Any way good job on this.I used to put together arthern h.o. boxcars.Are you gonna weather it?

I have had satisfactory results using a plain  old #2 pencil to burnish  dry transfers.  When the pencil is freshly sharpened I use it gently on small lettering and as the point dulls, I work my way up to larger lettering and by the time the tip is dull and rounded I am bearing down on the heralds.  

Another great advantage of the pencil----You can readily SEE the areas you have burnished, and how heavily you have done so.  For spoiled dry transfer sets, or left overs----practice with them on unwanted material.

For removing mistakes, a short strip of scotch tape does the job quite well without altering or disturbing the surface but minimally. With a little practice and some patience-----you will be turning out lettering far superior to any decals, in MY opinion.        -Salty Rails-

CBQer posted:

Mike,

Thank you. I will do that.

Dick

Sent an email but no answer yet, holiday and all. So I took matters in hand I did it myself. I haven't looked at it for a couple days since but I was somewhat pleased. I'll see what the finished roof resembles.

 

Dick Donaway

VietNam Veteran

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