I could outline the problem, but you can see it in all its glory on the O-27 forum under GG1 zinc pest.

I am moving the discussion here for two reasons - one, we are discussing a scale model, and two, I need to be able to quickly find this thread for updates.

I have in my possession a pristine, uncorroded part.  Photos will be forthcoming.  The problem is twofold - one, a lot of these parts are falling apart, and two - Lionel says the mold has been modified and it is no longer possible to reproduce the part.

Dean Brasseur, of Lionel, has told me that it would be ok to reproduce this part.  The way that is done is by making "no-shrink" flexible molds out of something like RTV, then popping wax parts out of the molds, and finally "investing" these wax parts in plaster.  Then the wax is melted out and molten brass is poured in.

But there is another way - we can use the Wolfer/Duddy patterns with some changes in the tongue area, and have an equally scale part.  The only problem there is making the "tongue" masters, and I can do that easily.

Decision time - give me a month.  Cost?  Not sure - my time will be free, and I have committed a hundred bucks to the effort, which does not have to be reimbursed (and remember, I already have enough brass/bronze GG1s; this is just an intriguing project).

If we do go with pulling molds off the Lionel part, I would need to do it in four pieces.  Bob  C.  (I have his permission to use his forum name, but not sure what it is) has lent me a pristine part.  I cannot cut this one.  And I have an offer of another hundred bucks to get started.  So if the decision is to cut before making exact molds, I will need some further arrangements.

Tomorrow I will take some tripod photos so you can see what is what.  Then perhaps we can vote on which way to go.  The Wolfer/Duddy castings have separate journals and brake shoes, so more assembly will be required, driving up the cost for those not handy with such finicky assembly.

I think that is enough info to start.  Please, if you have time, count up how many of these we really need due to part failure.  Each "locomotive set" would be two Lionel castings, or four sideframes, two tongues, and a rear spacer.

Please tell me the screwed-on pilot/coupler part is not falling apart? Please?

Original Post

Here is a link to the original thread in O-27:

https://ogrforum.ogaugerr.com/...-sideframes-zinc-rot

I note that we are talking about JLC GG1s, not "Legacy" GG1s.  I will try to change the title.

Dean Brasseur says that the JLC mold was modified for the "Legacy" and that is why there will be no more castings.  That may put this problem in an entirely new light.  Suppose the Legacy casting actually fits?  I will ask.

Bob, assuming the end result isn't priced too high, I'd commit to two sets.

If the Legacy casting doesn't fit, it might be able to be made to fit, that would be a lot simpler.

When I got stuck with two $450 paperweights, I contacted Mike Reagan to see if he knew of any sources.  He confirmed that the castings were changed and he learned the hard way that the Legacy truck frames are not interchangeable with the TMCC ones.  I'm not sure how far off they might be, but I was able to locate a couple from a forum member and never looked into it any further.

While mine are currently in good shape thanks to the new parts, I'm not fully convinced that they won't fall apart at some point in the future also, so I'd be interested in this project if it makes its way to completion just to have some spares.  I don't like the idea of being stuck with two beautiful but useless locomotives should the trucks fall apart again.

We will figure this out.  Bob Stevenson has a preliminary guess at $270 per locomotive, based on new molds.  But the molds themselves will be expensive; it will take 1/2 gallon of liquid rubber,and that stuff is $230 per gallon!

I am trying to get my hands on a Legacy part.  I will know more on that early next week - or if you have a connection with Mike, see if he could send a casting?  If they modified it, perhaps we could modify it back?

Let me get a few photos posted - one idea is to use Wolfer truck sides and the Lionel tongue and bolster. For that, all I would need is a "bowed, but not crumbling" casting.

And photos.  Note the interface of castings on the Wolfer part.  Also note that the wheelbase and overall lengths are identical, although the Wolfer casting seems beefier.  The interior space is identical, which says to me that one can simply put Wolfer trucks under a JLC GG1 and be done with it.  The  reduced flexibility will be negligible, I think, but at least you would have a display model.

I am trying not to repeat myself - Bob's idea is to split the casting down the middle, cast the brass in two parts, and then solder and paint(!).  He would need to do one set to really nail down the price.  My thought is that the Wolfer sides could be mated to the Lionel ends - I think I am repeating myself - to reduce initial mold costs.

Herewith (and wow! to the programmers who set up the enhancement routines):DSC02769DSC02770DSC02771DSC02772DSC02773

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Bob, I know curiosity killed the cat, .....it looks like as you mentioned, the Wolfer castings could be used almost as is with a couple of brackets made from sheet metal to mount it to the power truck, then it’s just a matter of mounting the pilot truck to the Wolfer casting....and figuring out the  couplers .....being that the Wolfer casting already exists,  what might the cost be to just produce the Wolfer casting and just adapt to the Lionel .......thanks for looking into all of this! .....you’ve done a lot already!............Pat

The Water Level Route.......You Can Sleep

That would be best.

If you adapted the Wolfer truck in its entirety I suggest that you make the GG1 a display item.  I will get a price for that option.  Some assembly required.

The neat thing is, you may have a choice!

But let's wait and see if we can un- modify a Legacy truck.

bob2 posted:

That would be best.

If you adapted the Wolfer truck in its entirety I suggest that you make the GG1 a display item.  I will get a price for that option.  Some assembly required.

The neat thing is, you may have a choice!

But let's wait and see if we can un- modify a Legacy truck.

Very cool, thanks for looking into this!

The Water Level Route.......You Can Sleep

Heard from Dean Brasseur again.  I had asked to buy a Legacy part to see if it could be modified back.  Here is his response:

I am sorry, the Vision truck sides will not fit on these.

So, Lionel is not your solution.  They have in effect washed their hands of this, but have no heartburn with us copying the JLC part.

Next step: I need to get my mitts on one of these castings that can be cut.  One that is warping slightly but not crumbling would be best.  Bob Stevenson is ready to make molds and do a "proof of concept" cast.

bob2 posted:

Nobody volunteered a bowed casting for a trial run.  I will be returning Robert's perfect casting this week.  I still stand ready to help - I suppose Summer barbeque and boating have stolen our enthusiasm?

You know where I can be found.

I’ve tried to stir up one for you Bob.....I couldn’t get my hands on one...🙄......did you ever find out about the cost of the existing Wolfer/ Duddy castings ?........thanks ...................Pat

The Water Level Route.......You Can Sleep

I only have a perfect one, and both of the people that I know that we'd like to get them for have castings that are already in pieces, I figured that wasn't going to solve the problem.  I don't have any interest in taking apart my perfect one to have castings cut up for molding, so unless another one surfaces for me, I don't know how I can help.

gunrunnerjohn posted:

I only have a perfect one, and both of the people that I know that we'd like to get them for have castings that are already in pieces, I figured that wasn't going to solve the problem.  I don't have any interest in taking apart my perfect one to have castings cut up for molding, so unless another one surfaces for me, I don't know how I can help.

About 2 weeks ago I sent a pristine part for bob2 to use for a mold to make the new Power Truck Side Frame with Pilot but he decided that the part was too perfect to be cut up for a mold to be made.  I was willing to sacrifice a perfectly good part so that new parts could be made that would benefit a whole bunch of people.  Surely someone has a bowed but complete part that they can send to move this project forward.  Someone else needs to "step-up" as I did or there's gonna be more "shelf queens" in the future!

Chief Bob (Retired)  

I know this would be a silly question........ but in this day and age would a 3-D cad drawing not exist on Lionel's engineering Dept. Server....... If so they could easily create a STL file and upload it to a 3-D printing service like Shapeways and sell outdated parts in that manor, But what do I know I am only a tool & die designer by trade and have been working with 3-D cad software or almost 20 years.

Model Railroading is Fun
Mike Slater

Mike - you are way out of my league.  I only know lost wax, and even then only enough to get somebody else to do the investment and pour metal.  Cutting Bob's perfect casting was not even discussed - we agreed I would return it intact.  It would kill me to cut it, then find out that the entire process would be too expensive to be viable.  I have not yet packed it for shipment - I will wait until next week.

No word on the cost of the complete Wolfer truck cost.  I don't want to become a pest.  Bob Stevenson is ready to make molds and cast the first set of the Lionel part.  We have not finished our discussion on two piece vs. four piece.  He is the expert, but I foresee problems with the two piece approach.

But hey - if the state of the art is such that a 3D printer can duplicate this casting in wax, that is a non-destructive approach, and we can surely cast that in one piece in brass or bronze, with very little shrinkage.  If Mike can stick a good casting in the bowels of such a printer and deliver a wax or plastic copy for, say, $50 each, we are still in the ballpark.

The 3D printing option that Mike is stating is very interesting.  BOB2, since you have had direct contact with Dean Brasseur, could you ask him about Lionel sharing the CAD drawing of the truck?  Even flat black, replacement plastic trucks from more than a few feet away may look and work just fine.

Tony D.

Bob, I'd love to see you succeed in this process. I've looked for a truck, but no luck.

Two things,

1. Why can't ya'll make a casting of the entire piece with out cutting ?

2. Order the vision line truck and cut and modify it to work.

Good Luck,

Ron Howard

bob2 posted:

Mike - you are way out of my league.  I only know lost wax, and even then only enough to get somebody else to do the investment and pour metal.  Cutting Bob's perfect casting was not even discussed - we agreed I would return it intact.  It would kill me to cut it, then find out that the entire process would be too expensive to be viable.  I have not yet packed it for shipment - I will wait until next week.

No word on the cost of the complete Wolfer truck cost.  I don't want to become a pest.  Bob Stevenson is ready to make molds and cast the first set of the Lionel part.  We have not finished our discussion on two piece vs. four piece.  He is the expert, but I foresee problems with the two piece approach.

But hey - if the state of the art is such that a 3D printer can duplicate this casting in wax, that is a non-destructive approach, and we can surely cast that in one piece in brass or bronze, with very little shrinkage.  If Mike can stick a good casting in the bowels of such a printer and deliver a wax or plastic copy for, say, $50 each, we are still in the ballpark.

If you can get someone to make a 3D scan of your good truck, then there's no reason why you cant get it 3D printed. 

I have bought brass parts from the Ways of Shape. They print it in wax then cast it in brass. The natural finish is quite good, without any printing lines/waves.

The big step is going to be getting the high quality scan of the part into a computer. 

 

"Of course we know its O-gauge or no gauge." -- Sheldon Cooper

Again, I am not an expert in lost wax.  I have limited pleasant experience getting such things done.  True experts have told me it is better to do this in pieces.

I have zero expertise in 3D printing.  If you go that way, I simply cannot help.

As far as Mr. Brasseur is concerned, I have had two contacts with him.  One, he gave me implicit permission to duplicate this casting, and two, he unequivocally indicated that Lionel does not want the Legacy part evaluated for modification.  I have no working relationship with him - he seems like a nice guy, so if and when you decide to go the 3D printer route, have someone who knows the topic contact him.  If you do print a one-piece wax, I am sure I can help get it cast in brass or bronze.  Have the printer increase the size by one half of one percent, to account for metal shrinkage upon cooling.

So, question?  Assuming someone can get this thing coded in some machine language for printing in a 3D printer, what is a good guess for cost each part in wax?

Foundry was just asking about you guys.  He is ready to do the first set at his expense!  All he needs is that cuttable casting - the one that is slightly bowed, but not crumbling?

I told him your ardor may have cooled a bit.  I was ready to invest, as was one other of your fellow forumites.  This makes it a no risk deal!  He of course would recover his initial cost on the subsequent sales.

Still no price on the Wolfer casting sets.  That would be your fallback if all else fails.

I wonder why we have not heard from a hobbyist with a JLC and a Legacy model?  Could it possibly be that one could just completely replace the mechanism?  Or is Lionel not interested in that either?

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