Hello OGRR Forum!

 

It was so nice to meet some of you at the Strasburg Show. I learned a lot! I was wondering about an item I picked up there. 

 

I was fortunate enough to find a Westside Model Co. B&O Q-4b. There is no serial number on the locomotive, but there is an "87" written on the side of the box that has faded out over time. It is factory painted and weathered with water bottle. No other documentation came with the engine in the box. Is there anywhere to find more info on the locomotive? What dates were these models made, and where can I get parts for it if I need to?

 

Thanks guys, and I look forward to your responses!

Original Post

I did not know that it is a Westside when we talked about it; check the wheel gauge! I had a Westside EM-1 that the gauge on all of the axles was tight, maybe it was made to what are now called Proto-48 specs. I say that as the box/literature proudly stated "Made from real railroad blueprints" or words to that effect. I can see the Korean manufacturer reading the 4'8½" dimension and building to that instead of 5'.

Later Gator,

  Dave

 

Here comes a Yankee with a blackened soul,
Heading to Gatow with a load of coal.
......Anonymous U. S. pilot during the Berlin Airlift

I own 6 of those. I bought my first one in 1978 which was when they were advertised. The wheels are fine scale. That is OW5 but with a smaller treads. If you have track issues they will find them. They are good runners.  4482, 117 and 114 ate all Q4b,s.Q4b

Regards,

Dan

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Hi, congratulations.  When I bought my first one in 1981, alot of people told me about wheels being out of gauge.  I remember a couple of the tender wheels were out of gauge but the drivers were and are dead on.  As the post above me says, if you have a wide spot in your curves, it will find it .  But it is the track, not the engine. 

 I also own two of the Westside Pacifics, which also had the narrow treads. My second Q4b and both pacifics were dead on gauge wise. 

With that said, I have replaced the pilot trucks and tender trucks on some of these engines with slightly wider, more common treads.  I should know the width but it is the NMRA standard.  It helped with backing up over turnouts or a turn out that might have not snapped completely closed.  It isn't a must do but is a fallback if you have problem.   The pacifics were more of an issue than the mikes.  This was all done when they were running on my previous layout, that had been modified many times and had some iffy trackage.

I also had trouble with the pilot wheels on one hitting the underside of the frame or cylinders on the insulated side and shorting for a split second.  I put a delrin wheel set on that one but that was on my old layout that had some tight "iffy" curves.  Also, on tight curves backing up on less than perfectly level  trackage, you might find the tender front contacts the underside or edge of the cab roof.  You can either use the rear hole on the drawbar, insulate the underside of the cap roof or take some other measure. 

I DCCed all of my stuff in 2013.  Can motor is very low draw and I have a small sound decoder in it....but it has ran flawlessly.  I did add an LED headlight.  I have ran the heck out of my original and love it.  I would pick up another in a minute if I "needed" another mike but I have a total of 6 counting other makes. 

As for parts,  I can't imagine ever needing a gear box or motor, but there are non westside parts available.  There are after marked sources  for detail parts too if you wanted to change something.  None of my westsides were painted and I had all of them striped down to nothing for painting so am pretty familiar with them .  

Adam

Precision scale would be a source for detail parts.   Mechanical parts would be more of a problem.

I had for time a Westside PRR H6sb that also had the narrow tires.    They were about 1/3 narrower than all my other stuff.    At the time I had a layout in my basement with handlaid track.   As with most basement layouts, the changes in the weather caused the wood to shift some - in the fall and in the spring.

I also had a USHobbies Mikado.    When I got the H6, I had to narrow the gauge on all my curves to keep it on the track.   then the mikado would not go around the curves!    I finally spent a summer regauging and fiddling so I had both engines staying on the track.    But as soon as the weather changed that fall, the H6 started derailing again.   

I finally traded it for an old Max Grey PRR 4-4-0 that the owner said would not pull anything.    We were both happy with the change.    I told him about the narrow tires too.

Thank you all for the information! Tackling in order...

 

The gauge of the wheels is perfect! It sits on Atlas code 148 very well. I was thinking of hand-laid code 125 for my layout.

 

It seems these models were made from '78-80? Not that it's important, but I'm always curious about the technical aspects of these brass models.

 

I seem to be missing a few parts. In particular, the eBay posting has 2 rubber air hose extensions that I don't have. Also, there are small bags with that model and a screwdriver I don't have. Is there a way to get a hold of these parts?

oscaletrains posted:
railroad-guy posted:

I own 6 of those. I bought my first one in 1978 which was when they were advertised. The wheels are fine scale. That is OW5 but with a smaller treads. If you have track issues they will find them. They are good runners.  4482, 117 and 114 ate all Q4b,s.Q4b

You need another one...

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/O-Sca...nal-box/283445691958

 

I have three I want to sell ;-)

 

Regards,

Dan

astarr posted:

Hi, congratulations.  When I bought my first one in 1981, alot of people told me about wheels being out of gauge.  I remember a couple of the tender wheels were out of gauge but the drivers were and are dead on. ...snip... .Adam

Every axle on my EM-1 was narrow-gauged and the drivers were not easily fixable so it got traded off for a scratch-built C&O turbine with a CLW drive.

Later Gator,

  Dave

 

Here comes a Yankee with a blackened soul,
Heading to Gatow with a load of coal.
......Anonymous U. S. pilot during the Berlin Airlift

While this isn't a question about 2 rail scale, it is a question about this model. Does anyone know anything about the prototype? The more people I talk to about this model, the more references to a very specific story I get about how Westside chose this locomotive to model for its unusual operating conditions with the "water bottle." 

railroad-guy posted:

Don't know about that but there was a two or three page pamphlet that Westside out out with the engine specs...  I can copy and Email is you want one.

That would be fantastic and much appreciated! Let me know if you need my email!

Nick B. posted:

While this isn't a question about 2 rail scale, it is a question about this model. Does anyone know anything about the prototype? The more people I talk to about this model, the more references to a very specific story I get about how Westside chose this locomotive to model for its unusual operating conditions with the "water bottle." 

What do you want to know? I saw a lot of Q-4b's and a few with water bottles running through Baltimore in the 1940's- '50's. They were pulled by electrics through Mt Royal headed northbound.

rheil posted:
Nick B. posted:

While this isn't a question about 2 rail scale, it is a question about this model. Does anyone know anything about the prototype? The more people I talk to about this model, the more references to a very specific story I get about how Westside chose this locomotive to model for its unusual operating conditions with the "water bottle." 

What do you want to know? I saw a lot of Q-4b's and a few with water bottles running through Baltimore in the 1940's- '50's. They were pulled by electrics through Mt Royal headed northbound.

The biggest thing I need to know is 4625's specific territory. I found pictures of it on Northeast Railfan having both the appearance of a Q4b (1950) in Baltimore with the ladder and B&O herald and as the appearance as a Q7 (1940) in Philly with the single step to the boiler walkway (the way it's modeled by Westside). Was there a specific operating condition I can model that made the "water bottle" necessary?

As I recall there were very few water bottle tenders used behind Q-4b's. For every 100 Q-4's I saw maybe 2 of them had water bottles.

My unfounded opinion is that Dick Trusdale (Westside) made the aux tender to make additional money on his Q-4 model. The locomotive he modeled did have a water bottle at one time.

Nick B. posted:
railroad-guy posted:

Don't know about that but there was a two or three page pamphlet that Westside out out with the engine specs...  I can copy and Email is you want one.

That would be fantastic and much appreciated! Let me know if you need my email!

Here you go...  The price is for the HO version ;-)

 

Regards,

Dan

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 So the westside Q4b is more or less just a generic Q4b model and any Q4b may have had or not had the extended tender or pulled along the water bottle at some point in time?  I have seen pictures of Ts with a water bottle,  even a Q3 in B&O power with the water bottle.

Dan, thanks for posting the info.  

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