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I'm new in this forum and I wanted to exchange some experience with the experts among you on how to scratch-build metallic train models made of copper, brass, steel, aluminum, etc.

On the attached photos you see the bodyshell and underframe of a hi-nose hood diesel locomotive, which is one of my very first challenging experimental project without bending machine and without any other tooling machinery.

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  • dsc00689: rear view
  • dsc00679: front view
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Thanks for your prompt reply.
I have studied repeatedly the instruction of that website, really valuable technical instructions for tinplate scratch-modelers, simply explained even for dummies like myself. It is a great website for modelers who like vintage toy trains and handcrafted replicas.
 
I have a problem with holes in sheetmetal regardless of material (even with soft aluminum). I tried hopelessly a hole puncher meant for leather belts, but it didn't cut through thin sheetmetal. When drilling holes through thin sheetmetal I got unround holes with ugly edges due to vibrations, therefore I am looking for a handy punching tool cutting various hole diameters or a nibbling cutter or whatever useful tool for that purpose. 
 
 
Originally Posted by sawdust43:

I've made a few cars...but none lately...

 

http://www.littleglitterhouses...ingTinTrainCars.aspx

 

Howard...florida...USA...

 

I posted a scratch tinplate (well, brass) 0-6-0 on the 3-rail scale forum.  I have zero problems drilling .020 brass with decent, sharp drills.  A center-pop is essential.  For me, so is a magnifier lamp.  I use the inexpensive Harbor Freight small cast iron drill press - I own four of them installed in various places.

Originally Posted by BetaNuSigmaPhi:

I'm new in this forum and I wanted to exchange some experience with the experts among you on how to scratch-build metallic train models made of copper, brass, steel, aluminum, etc.

On the attached photos you see the bodyshell and underframe of a hi-nose hood diesel locomotive, which is one of my very first challenging experimental project without bending machine and without any other tooling machinery.

 

 Very cool  

 A year or so ago I mentioned why someone hasn't made a tinplate modern diesel....well I guess someone has !

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks guys for sharing here your experience on how to drill perfect holes through sheetmetal. I followed your instruction while experimentally drilling through extremely thin sheetmetal (aluminum and steel) and now I get much better precision results. I prefer to use cheap scrap material (aluminum and steel), because copper, brass and whitemetal would be more costly on long term.
 
Certainly this is NOT a LITTLE diesel 
It is an EMD export locomotive type G22U built in license by MACOSA.
JZ-644
I prepared a scratch-built pair of 6-wheel-trucks with hi-rail axles and fuel tanks separately.
Later I will update more photos, but I would like to see also your scratch-built tinplate models.
 
 
Originally Posted by Dennis Holler:

...

 

btw, that is a nice little diesel you are working on.  It would look great on a pair of Marx E unit diesel trucks!

 

Last edited by BetaNuSigmaPhi

on the subject of punching window openings in tinplate and aluminum...it can be done with simple tools...wood chisel, hardwood block (with end grain up) and hammer...(probably won't want to use you good woodworking chisel though)...a block of plumber's lead can be used in place of the hardwood...

 

howard...florida...USA...

 

 

punch tin with wood chisel on end grain hardwood block

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  • punch tin with wood chisel on end grain hardwood block

Old school way to punch slots. Practice on scrap tin first. The die is the jaws of vise.  The punch is the sharpened screwdriver tip. A hammer drives the punch. The trick is to line up the position of the slot location over the space between the jaws. I'm sure a jig to align the punch could be made. But I never made one. 

 

howard...florida...USA...

slot punch 1

slot cut 2

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Images (2)
  • slot punch 1
  • slot cut 2
Can you send the link of what you mentioned one year ago? Maybe, you convince me to stop punching and cutting scrap metal.
 
Originally Posted by mackb4:
Originally Posted by BetaNuSigmaPhi:
I'm new in this forum and I wanted to exchange some experience with the experts among you on how to scratch-build metallic train models made of copper, brass, steel, aluminum, etc.

Very cool
A year or so ago I mentioned why someone hasn't made a tinplate modern diesel....well I guess someone has !





Last edited by BetaNuSigmaPhi

You might want to check this out....

 

http://www.littleglitterhouses...ingTinTrainCars.aspx

 

This is a great site with a lot of information...it includes how to videos

 

 

http://tinplategirl.com/

 

Heres another building I never quite finished..the entrance to a Walgreen's store. The printing is paper and brick, windows etc are found at the "glitter house" site whose link I posted. The paper is coated with a semi-gloss sealer to give it that tin look.

 

Last edited by electroliner

Hi Beta NuSignma Phi

      I am a Lionel Layout but I do have one Lionel Tin Plate Engine from my Father-in-law, from the 1930's and two Tin Plate buildings, that I shared with my brothers, when we were kids. A.C. Gilbert American Flyer, Station & Yard Tower. They almost look brand new. I have been reading this thread, also looking for How Too Work with Tin Plate. You have a lot of skilled modelers on this thread.

Good Luck with this Project & Cheers from Michigan

Originally Posted by WindupGuy:

Compound curves in sheet metal are my nemesis.... 

A while back I saw an article about the craftsmen who make the nose cones for Japanese bullet trains...  since they're ordered in batches of 50 or less, it doesn't pay to try to build a die for each model, so they're made by hand instead, usually fit to a wooden form.  One craftsman was quoted as 'I learn something new about metal working with each one of these I make".

 

BTW, we need to talk, WindupGuy.  I own a Robinson steam tractor I think your dad had for a while (my apologies in advance for the minor thread hijack).

Recently I was studying MTH's Leipzig tinplate station, (external dimensions and what is included in the announced price). It is a replica of Märklin's historic original. It is just the main bulding and you need to build additionally several parallel 40"...80" long platforms. So, I made a 'paperplate' mock-up before I produce a tinplate platform...

Leipzig

The language and the text style inscriptions can be changed according to the station main building, because it can be the altered Leipzig station or the Canopy station or whatever tinplate station building (original or replica)...

platformThe platform consist of several queued modular pieces with various stone textures.

german

The German text is typed in Gothic or Fraktur font just to indicate a pre-WWII era...

pre-WWII era

The height of the platform fits nicely to the Lionel tinplate tracks...

tinplate

The length of the platform can be stretched or reduced depending on the available space of the layout and also depending on the length of the parked train. 

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