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Rich,

I saw them on Alan Evens' table and too a LONG, hard look at them but decided I don't need another project!  I'm 99% sure they're American Hirail, but I didn't take them out of the boxes to make sure.  They're usually marked inside the shells.    I'm glad they found a good home, though.  As to the running gear, if you can't find any good used AM Baldwin units, just call them.  I have bought complete drive trains from them and have never regretted it.  Four of my projects use their products, including my latest, an AA set of DL-109s, also from American Hirail.

Keep us all in the loop, OK?

Jerry,

Looked inside both shells and there is no manufacturer identification. They did come with a modified AM chassis and a bag of brass detail parts, horns, wipers, etc. Your suggestion about contacting AM sounds like a good idea. Guess I was lucky you didn't need any more projects! In addition to the Shark project I still need to complete my Smokey Mountain Models 44 tonner in hi-rail. I also got a great deal on these at York.....

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I'd been searching for a set of the AM smoothside passenger cars for a project and that was my original reason for attending the Spree as it is just under a 4hr drive each way for me but I figured that show would have a better chance of them appearing. Finding 2 sets at York for a great price was a surprise, as they usually don't appear there. I plan on painting a set in C&NW colors and the other is still up in the air. Waiting for parts to arrive to build lighting boards as per instructions by GunRunner John. Guess I'll be busy for awhile.

Rich

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I purchased a set of those PRR lightweight 80' passenger cars about 6 months ago. Since I was not planning to add a detailed interior I just used new LED light strips from American Models. They look good on the layout and supposedly operate on 27"R curves. I have 30"R minimum curves but they look much better on the 36"R curves. I pulled them together by shortening the coupler arms and added diaphragms from the AM Budd cars.



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Last edited by AmFlyer

I purchased a set of those PRR lightweight 80' passenger cars about 6 months ago. Since I was not planning to add a detailed interior I just used new LED light strips from American Models. They look good on the layout and supposedly operate on 27"R curves. I have 30"R minimum curves but they look much better on the 36"R curves. I pulled them together by shortening the coupler arms and added diaphragms from the AM Budd cars.



4023EE34-E82E-41AF-950D-12B18DBFD0CF

Tom

Looks good!

Rich

Thanks for the comments. I am looking forward to seeing these in C&NW livery.

Here are two more pictures. One is three of the cars behind an AM PA/PA set on a 34”R curve. The other is the tail after addition of a red lens, PRR Drumhead and a scale coupler. They would look better with interiors but that was a much bigger project than I was willing to take on.



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@AmFlyer posted:

I purchased a set of those PRR lightweight 80' passenger cars about 6 months ago. Since I was not planning to add a detailed interior I just used new LED light strips from American Models. They look good on the layout and supposedly operate on 27"R curves. I have 30"R minimum curves but they look much better on the 36"R curves. I pulled them together by shortening the coupler arms and added diaphragms from the AM Budd cars.



4023EE34-E82E-41AF-950D-12B18DBFD0CF

Hi Tom,

Curious about your coupler shortening and min radius.  I have the same cars and I use body mounted Kadee #5s.  The cars will track my 33” radius, but they don’t like it  -- meaning sometimes they don’t.  I haven’t really explored what is happening and the last time I ran them was before my turnout business… like 2004, so I don’t remember any of the details.  I’m guessing you shortened the talgo (truck mounted) couplers.  With the Budd diaphragms in place, I am surprised they don’t cause a problem on your smaller radii.  Looks really great and is something I might do some day.

Tom Stoltz

in Maine

Hi Tom. When I got the scale length lightweights they looked terrible on the track with the large gaps. On those early AM cars a separate coupler arm is just glued to a blind arm that is part of the truck. It was easy to break the glue joint. Testing how much I could shorten the gap it looked like somewhere between 3/16" and 1/4" for each coupler would work. I proceeded to modify the cars and all worked on my 30" minimum radius curves but they still lacked something. After comparing the ends of the Budd cars and the lightweights I ordered the diaphragms from AM. The mounting tabs and pins were ground off, then painted and glued the diaphragms to the car ends. They were a perfect fit.

To keep them working on 30" curves I still use the truck mounted knuckle couplers but on the much shorter arms. The bulky coupler is now hidden under the car ends and is not visible when the train is running. below is a downward looking picture showing how little of the KC projects past the car end.

This mod worked out so well I did similar modifications to all my AM heavyweights as well, not including the diaphragms.

I played around briefly with using scale couplers on the AM 80' heavyweights coupled to the standard 70' heavyweights. The cars would couple on a 30"R curve but would not go through the straight to curve transition. If I carefully formed a 20" long easement with flex track they would work. I am staying with the KC's.



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