PRR Atlantic (converting from B&O markings)

I have decided to try to convert my legacy Atlantic from B&O markings to a PRR E6 Atlantic.  With the new Atlantics starting to show up, including I believe a PRR in 460 with keystone plate, and a 68, the topic is apropos!

I removed the decals (or is it paint?) using CRC Lectra-Motive to start and then buffing them away with a dremel buffing wheel.

I was surprised and kind of excited about how well it worked. It did not remove the black paint.  While there are faint shadows of the letters I think they won't be noticeable after the new lettering is applied and over coated.  

The other effect of the buffing is that the area is now shiny  but I think that is more conducive to application of the new decals.

Before (note cab and dome):

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After:

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Last pose with B&O graffiti (I kid I kid 😛😂):

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I ordered a new boiler front from Lionel parts. It's the Legacy 460 with the round number plate.  I wanted to use the round plate and also just do the simple Pennsylvania letters on the tender without the pinstripes.  However, from looking at photos of the prototype, I am guessing that the keystone boiler front number plate was added at the same time the tender pinstripes were dropped.

Question 1: did PRR 460 ever exist with round plate and no pinstripes on tender? 

Question 2: did any PRR E6 Atlantics exist with round plate and no pinstripes on tender?  I am not really concerned with staying true to the exact life of the 460.

Stupidly though I also ordered another Lionel Atlantic boiler front with the Keystone plate, with number 68 (the TMCC version)  so I might just use this one if it will fit.

I suppose the 460 keystone plate might become available in lionel parts soon when the newest legacy version arises seemingly soon. But I don't care about the specific number.

I also ordered microscale PRR steam decals.  Question 3 would be does anyone have any tips for applying these? I am pretty apprehensive about this. 

Question 4: are there any O scale PRR steam stencils available to paint the lettering with an airbrush etc?  I noticed that the Pennsylvania lettering is going to go right across the horizontal line of rivets on the tender which I am guessing could be trouble with decals. Again any tips greatly appreciated.

Long post, l know, with many questions.  I hope some of you enjoy this project with me!  I've never done this.  Wish me luck! 

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Original Post

2 pictures of #460 are available at: http://www.northeast.railfan.net/prr_steam3.html

Suggest instead of decals to use dry transfers from Clover House - set 7784-03-DT-O looks right.


A good deal of strategic planning is like a ritual rain dance.

It has no effect on the weather that follows, but those who engage in it think it does. 

Furthermore, much of the advice related to strategic planning is directed at improving the

dancing, not the weather.

 

 

mwb posted:

2 pictures of #460 are available at: http://www.northeast.railfan.net/uggest instead of decals to use dry transfers from Clover House - set 7784-03-DT-O looks right.

Agreed. Thank you. I ordered them. 

Will they mold around the rivets if done correctly?

Do I dull coat over them? 

"Will they mold around the rivets if done correctly?
Keep us posted on how that turns out.

As for the Micro-Scale decals, use their decal setting solutions only! Micro-Set first and Micro-Sol second (If needed). And by all means don't touch after applying the solution. The decal may seem to shrivel a bit but leave it alone until it dries, it will level out on its own.

Do I dull coat over them? 
Yes, or whatever clear coat that you prefer.

I received the boiler fronts from Lionel parts (very quickly I will add). 

20180929_120258

I decided to go with the round plate, #460.  I could not find any pictures of the 460 or any other Atlantic with the round plate and non-pinstriped tender. But I did find a few pictures of PRR passenger locomotives with such a combination:

20180929_18024820180929_180440

And an Atlas version of a PRR Atlantic with such a combination:

20180929_180320

Loose precedent, but it's good enough for me. 

I removed the B&O face and installed the PRR face.  While I had the locomotive opened I added weight to the front.  This engine really finely balanced on the rear drivers and the slightest bumps or draw bar strain causes the front end to bounce up and down very easily. If I put the slightest pressure on the cab roof with my finger the front end and front drivers lift.

I made a pack of a few of these weights:

20180929_172951

Wrapped in black masking tape and hot glued right on the back of the newly installed boiler front.  Couldn't get a great pic, but here's a shot:

20180929_173023

So here's where I am so far:

20180929_173908

I got the microscale decals, and they look great, and include a lot of decals, including the tender pinstriping pieces.  But I am not really wanting that style tender, and it would be quite a task to do all the striping.  But I am impressed with the product.  However I am going to try the dry transfers when they arrive. 

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20180929_174454
pennsy484 posted:
mwb posted:

2 pictures of #460 are available at: http://www.northeast.railfan.net/uggest instead of decals to use dry transfers from Clover House - set 7784-03-DT-O looks right.

Agreed. Thank you. I ordered them. 

Will they mold around the rivets if done correctly?

With care, yes. A good embossing tool makes this more possible.

Do I dull coat over them? 

Dull coat can react with these sometimes; I use Rustoleum Clear Matte.

This reefer was done with Clover House dry transfers sealing between layers and finally with Rustoleum Clear Matte.


A good deal of strategic planning is like a ritual rain dance.

It has no effect on the weather that follows, but those who engage in it think it does. 

Furthermore, much of the advice related to strategic planning is directed at improving the

dancing, not the weather.

 

 

pennsy484 posted:

I received the boiler fronts from Lionel parts (very quickly I will add). 

20180929_120258

I decided to go with the round plate, #460.  

So here's where I am so far:

20180929_173908

 

I got the microscale defals, and they look great, and include a lot of decals, including the tender pinstriping pieces.  But I am not really wanting that style tender, and it would be quite a task to do all the striping.  But I am impressed with the product.  However I am going to try the dry transfers when they arrive. 

That WAS quick!

I prefer the round plate; so far your engine looks great.

Mark in Oregon

Originally posted by Big Jim

Will they mold around the rivets if done correctly?
Keep us posted on how that turns out.

As for the Micro-Scale decals, use their decal setting solutions only! Micro-Set first and Micro-Sol second (If needed).
And by all means don't touch after applying the solution.

 

Wait a Minute... Doesn't one use Micro SOL First? That's the stuff that Softens the liquid... Then Micro SET... which is the setting solution.

http://cs.trains.com/mrr/f/11/t/184452.aspx

For me Micro Set never worked. I went with Pledge with Future Floor Shine as a setting solution. Works great and in a lot less time than micro set!  http://www.finescale.com/how-t...gloss-has-a-new-name

member:Golden Spike Club Charter Member

I received the dry transfers from Clover House today, which was quick, along with with a nice thank you note.  

Sure enough, as MWB mentioned above, there is apparently a potential issue with using Testors Dullcoat over the transfers.  They mentioned specific examples of clear coats they tested and I ended up using the Krylon Matte Finish, which I had on hand. 

Here's the note they sent with the dry transfers:

20181004_001403

I sprayed the surfaces (whole tender, and just the part below the cab window) with the matte finish, let it cure for around a half hour (I can be impatient), applied the transfers using end of a small paint brush and a small spatula as burnishing tools, and overcoated with the matte finish.

The can side numbers are a bit small but I was surprised by the small size of the numbers on the prototype, so it's not too far off actually.

I painted the front truck wheels and the rims of the drivers black (flat rattle can on truck wheels, and Collector Color 675 semigloss black on drivers).  For the drivers I hooked leads to the locomotive held it in my hand and ran the drivers at a slowish rate while applying the paint with a small brush just to the rims. 

I also made an air compressor steam exhaust pipe from 14 gage solid copper wire with straps made from thinner wire, painted and expoxied in place (Gorilla clear epoxy).  It's strange that it's absent on the model to begin with.  The 14 gage is a bit thick, but it matches well with the molded in steam line running into the air compressor  16 probably would have been perfect but this is what I had on hand and I think it looks fine. 

The pilot is pretty spartan so I have ordered air brake hoses and coupler cut bar assembly parts from Precision Scale which I will add at some point when I get them, and perhaps remover the superfluous classification lights from the pilot per the prototype.

Pictures:

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And the transition sequence 🙂:

Screenshot_20181002-174649_GalleryScreenshot_20181002-174720_Gallery20181004_001043

This was an easy and highly enjoyable and rewarding project.

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Great project and fantastic result.  Congrats on a nice engine!

As for the lights on the tender, I believe they are marker lights as opposed to classification lights.  On the front of your engine you have marker lights on the pilot beam (red and yellow lenses) and classification lights on the smokebox (green and white lenses). This was standard pre-war Pennsy practice.  Eventually the Pennsy stopped using classification lights altogether  (I'm not sure of the transition date, but I believe it was prior to WW2).  After that point the front end marker lights could either be mounted on the pilot beam or the smokebox.  As for the tender markers, I believe the Pennsy always used them, but in later years they moved them from the tender deck to platforms on the rear of the tender.  I believe that is why you don't see them in the prototype photo.  But your tender markers in their current location are appropriate for the time period of your engine based on the front end marker/class light configuration.  Recommend you do some web searches to verify this information.  There are plenty of Pennsy experts on the forum who could chime in on this too

Regardless, you did wonderful job on your engine.  She's a beauty.  Thanks for sharing your project!

 

Scott R posted:

Great project and fantastic result.  Congrats on a nice engine!

Eventually the Pennsy stopped using classification lights altogether  (I'm not sure of the transition date, but I believe it was prior to WW2).  After that point the front end marker lights could either be mounted on the pilot beam or the smokebox.  

 

Thank you!

I didn't know about the classification lights being discontinued. This explains the red marker lights on some models rather than green. 

Very nice job.     A comment about the weight you added.    The best balance for the loco should be between the drivers.    In other words set the loco on a 1/2 inch diameter dowel or pipe crossways between the drivers.    The perfect situation would be a balance but that is also almost impossible to achieve.    but you can get close and get a feel for whether it is nose heavy or tail heavy.   

I have a 4-4-0 that was very nose heavy when I got it.    It was so bad,  you could slide a piece of paper between the rear drivers and the rail.    I had to take weight out of the nose and find places to  put it in the cab.

A loco that is close to balanced on the drivers will pull the best it can.

pennsynut posted:

Very nice work Jeff.  What brand passenger cars are in your video?  They have a nice color and finish?  I run 18 inch K-Line versions that are OK but not as nicely finished.  

Thank you!

The cars are the old MTH Premier 18 inch heavy weights, which don't have passengers.  You used to be to get them pretty cheap at York.  I am in the process of replacing the lights with LED tape strip lights since some of the bulbs are out and/or light fixtures are broken.  It's very easy to do on these cars.  Also doing a little painting in the interiors and adding people.

20181010_19121520181010_230137

After (left)  before (right) :

20181010_231104

I got the warm white leds but still a bit too white but I think I will leave them as is without using any yellow nail polish or whatever.  Or they might just look too white in comparison with the dimmer old half lit car. 

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Jeff, there’s a booth in Orange Hall the sells only paints. They could set you up with the exact shade. Don’t know their name, but they’re on the end of their aisle, left of center, on the center crossing aisle. 

Jim B&O, Ma & Pa., Canton, and WM

TCA '04, WB&A '05, MDOG '11

"Be happy. You never know how much time you have left"

pennsy484 posted:
pennsynut posted:

Very nice work Jeff.  What brand passenger cars are in your video?  They have a nice color and finish?  I run 18 inch K-Line versions that are OK but not as nicely finished.  

Thank you!

The cars are the old MTH Premier 18 inch heavy weights, which don't have passengers.  You used to be to get them pretty cheap at York.  I am in the process of replacing the lights with LED tape strip lights since some of the bulbs are out and/or light fixtures are broken.  It's very easy to do on these cars.  Also doing a little painting in the interiors and adding people.

After (left)  before (right) :

20181010_231104

I got the warm white leds but still a bit too white but I think I will leave them as is without using any yellow nail polish or whatever.  Or they might just look too white in comparison with the dimmer old half lit car. 

Gee, I think the one on the right looks better...sorry! 

Let us (me) know what you think of the "Apex" book, please...

Mark in Oregon

Strummer posted:

Let us (me) know what you think of the "Apex" book, please...

Mark in Oregon

You also mentioned liking the right pic above. The current lights are just a bit too dim, and probably look better in a photo than real life.  But I do get where you are coming from. I will reassess once they are all done and determine if I should yellow coat the LEDs.

I am right in the middle of reading the Apex book.  I love this kind of thing. It's great for me because I have read several PRR books and am starting to amass a collection of these old books.  I have read some about the E6, like it combining essentially an E6 frame and H8 boiler, so this Apex books is well timed for me because it goes into more detail of the overall story and mechanics, of it all. Fascinating to me for some reason!

I really should be working but ... 😂

In the Atlantic Color Off thread, PRRJIM posted this:

Screenshot_20181011-163256_Chrome

Maybe the above isn't clear, but my point here is that freight car color and black in various ratios is the red on the PRR locomotives (as a general statement here).

I then found this: http://www.pennsyrr.com/index.php/general/172-paints

Screenshot_20181012-151305_Chrome

Which basically says freight car color can be estimated with zinc chromate Primer (and with SAL orange depending on time frame).

And struck pay dirt in the paint drawer:

20181012_145309

So I guess I can take a stab at this. 

Any and all suggestions more than welcome! 

Maybe should leave well enough alone, but I can't help myself. 😂

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I ended up deciding to make up a 460 keystone plate.  I removed the 68 keystone from the other smoke box front I got, painted it, and cobbled together numbers 4, 6, and 0 (used the 9 from the dry transfer leftovers for the 6, and the 4 from the "1347" included with the transfers).  The size and shape of the Keystone isn't exact right I think, it's a tad short, and the numbers are a different font and size than on the prototype but I am relieved and satisfied.

I noticed that since the new Lionel legacy PRR 460 E6s has arrived, the smokebox front is now technically available on Lionel parts, but it says to call Lionel to order.  I imagine they need to preserve those they have for actual repairs for people who bought that engine.

20181012_204907

20181012_205123

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Jeff, thanks for this post. The detailed step by step gave me the courage, motivations, and supplier sources to take on one that I've wanted to do for a few years. 

 

Jim B&O, Ma & Pa., Canton, and WM

TCA '04, WB&A '05, MDOG '11

"Be happy. You never know how much time you have left"

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pennsy484 posted:
Scott R posted:

Great project and fantastic result.  Congrats on a nice engine!

Eventually the Pennsy stopped using classification lights altogether  (I'm not sure of the transition date, but I believe it was prior to WW2).  After that point the front end marker lights could either be mounted on the pilot beam or the smokebox.  

 

Thank you!

I didn't know about the classification lights being discontinued. This explains the red marker lights on some models rather than green. 

Ed Rappe (Keystoned Ed) did a post a few years ago that I copied that discussed the history of PRR classification lights:

An authoritative article on PRR marker and classification light practices from 1922-1957 by Elmer Steurernagel  was  published in PRRT&HS’s The Keystone Vol 35, Number 1, Sping 2002.  I've found the information  helpful in harmonizing PRR locomotive details with the era I'm modelling.. For those that do not have that that issue of The Keystone below is an overview of the changing standards. 

  • 1922 - PRR adopts a cast 2 piece (claw foot/rotating 4 lens helmet head) fixture for class and marker lights on steam  locomotives 
  • 2 pair of marker light fixtures - 1 red lens, 3 amber lens
    • 1 pair mounted on the pilot beam
    • 1 pair on the tender deck corners
  • 1 pair of classification light fixtures mounted  on the smokebox - 2 green lenses, 2 white lenses
  • 1929 – shops ordered to remove classification lights from locomotives assigned to yard  and freight service (except M1/M1a's and other freight locomotives regularly assigned to passenger service
  • 1935 - shops ordered to replace inside and rear facing amber marker light lenses on engines and tenter  with blank discs - leaving 1 red and 1 outside facing amber lens
  • Dec. 1939 - shops ordered to relocate tender marker lights on K4s and I1s Kiesel tenders to rear shelf platforms - effected classes include 110P75, 110P75a, 130P75, 130F82a
  • June 1940 - PRR ceases to use the train classification rule  (extra, second section following) - shops ordered to remove classification light fixtures from locomotive smokeboxes
  • June 1942 - PRR adopts smaller oblong (tombstone) marker light fixture for application to smokeboxes in lieu of pilot beam mounted marker lights.  In their housing are two lenses yellow above, red below,  Not all locomotives were re-equipped with the new markers
  • Aug 1946 - PRR adopts a a smaller single red lens round "bulls eye" marker light fixture for use on smokeboxes.  This is the most common marker light fixture seen on postwar PRR steam locomotives – however many with tombstone markers retained them until dropped from the roster

Ron

 

TCA, TTOS, NCT, LCCA, PRRT&HS

 

Volunteers don't get paid, not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless!  Author Sherry Anderson

Ok so my eyes are bugging trying to discern differences in colors.  Red, brown, orange, they are all colliding in my mind. I decided there is just so far I am going to go, and that's that, pull the trigger.

As posted above, the tops are not red per se, and were actually freight car color on the tender deck and fcc with some black on cab roof. 

I got some Scalecoat I  "PRR freight car red" and some black.  Did roof and deck with a 3:1 fcc/black and then put an additional coat of fcc on the tender deck.

It's more brownish than Lionel and MTH, but whose to say what is better for this.

I like it how it turned out, and it's a bit different than the Lionel versions.

Top left Lionel Legacy K4, top right  MTH Premier Atlantic, bottom test piece with brushed on samples. 

Screenshot_20181026-160134_Gallery

Real 460's roof in its current beautiful restored state at Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania (I took the photo last week).  This goes to what I said above about red, orange brown, etc.  Also lighting and angle plays a big role too:

Screenshot_20181026-155857_Gallery

Another roof at museum:

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My locomotive:

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Also, since PRR freight car color apparently got less and less red over the decades through the 50s I suppose the color of the tops would have become less red over the decades.  So anyway, with all the variables, I actually feel less constrained.  

I am excited since this is my first paint job! 

 

 

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I added brake lines, a bracket therefor and glad hands.  The brake line valves/lever handles will go behind and left of the equipment box (eventually), with piping connecting up to the exiting piping under the walk.

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Also, I changed the roof color and tender deck color to a more reddish color (scalecoat II oxide red): 20181205_105058

 

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Strummer posted:

Yes, you did a really good job on that; she's a beauty.

Makes me want to take out and re-read my copy of "Apex of the Atlantics"... 

Mark in Oregon

I finished reading "Apex of the Atlantics"  Very informative and enjoyable  Thank you again Mark for recommending! 

You are most welcome; glad you enjoyed it.

You did a great job on your example; very nice. 

Question: my E6 is an earlier model (from 1999), and is a real race horse. Just a bit above 5 volts and she really wants to take off (like the prototype, I suppose).  Is your newer model as quick?

Mark in Oregon

Strummer posted:

You are most welcome; glad you enjoyed it.

You did a great job on your example; very nice. 

Question: my E6 is an earlier model (from 1999), and is a real race horse. Just a bit above 5 volts and she really wants to take off (like the prototype, I suppose).  Is your newer model as quick?

Mark in Oregon

I use Legacy.  I run my passenger locomotives very fast, at least at the "normal" preset speed, or at highball or between the two, which would be prototypical.  Also, adding the weight in the front end really inproved pulling power.  It can now pull 5 mth premier heavyweights at speed, and it could not make the grade (4%) with that load before.

20181205_120649

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pennsy484 posted:

I received the dry transfers from Clover House today, which was quick, along with with a nice thank you note.  

Sure enough, as MWB mentioned above, there is apparently a potential issue with using Testors Dullcoat over the transfers.  They mentioned specific examples of clear coats they tested and I ended up using the Krylon Matte Finish, which I had on hand. 

Here's the note they sent with the dry transfers:

20181004_001403

Just a note on the suggested Krylon Matte Finish. Have a friend that's into model Military Diorama both for personal display and made to order. He said he was lucky when he ran out of his go to Matte rattle cans Rust Oleum and Testors, and found a can of Krylon Matte. After spraying the Krylon on a 145.00 1/18 scale Tank and drying he notice a whitish Mate finish. He then went to his odd and end box and used the Krylon Matte on them and the results were the same, a whitish like finish when dried. I won't use Krylon  after this but would suggest spraying a test piece first to make sure the Krylon is compatible with the finish.

josef posted:
pennsy484 posted:

I received the dry transfers from Clover House today, which was quick, along with with a nice thank you note.  

Sure enough, as MWB mentioned above, there is apparently a potential issue with using Testors Dullcoat over the transfers.  They mentioned specific examples of clear coats they tested and I ended up using the Krylon Matte Finish, which I had on hand. 

Here's the note they sent with the dry transfers:

20181004_001403

Just a note on the suggested Krylon Matte Finish. Have a friend that's into model Military Diorama both for personal display and made to order. He said he was lucky when he ran out of his go to Matte rattle cans Rust Oleum and Testors, and found a can of Krylon Matte. After spraying the Krylon on a 145.00 1/18 scale Tank and drying he notice a whitish Mate finish. He then went to his odd and end box and used the Krylon Matte on them and the results were the same, a whitish like finish when dried. I won't use Krylon  after this but would suggest spraying a test piece first to make sure the Krylon is compatible with the finish.

I am not sure what causes the white reaction between certain combinations or clear coats and underlying paints and/or decals/dry-transfer, and I have seen that before during some of my noodling over the years, but as said by Clover House, the Krylon Matte Finish did not react negatively with the dry transfers, or the dried enamel on my locomotive.

Point being, I don't think avoiding Krylon would accomplish anything since some other combinations, or if the underlying paint isn't fully cured, could still cause a reaction with testirs or rustoleum etc.  In fact the whole reason this issue came up in this thread was that the testors Dullcoat was reported as being problematic with the Clover House dry transfers.

Another side note on the Krylon is that it is not as flat as Dullcoat which is what I wanted here for this unweathered look, but testors dullcote is terrific for freight cars, before and after weathering. 

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