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Engineer-Joe posted:

Could you share how you did this? I run 2 rail and skipped this engine because it didn't look easy to convert.

It wasn't easy.  I originally had the stock MTH drive axles machined to accept NWSL 33" wheels. When I pressed the wheels on to the MTH axles, the insulator in the middle of the axle collapsed. I ordered 3/16" axle stock from NWSL  and had the machinist  make completely new axles.  The idler outboard axles and bearings were removed, The  bearings were replaced with NWSL 361-6 epoxied in place, and 8277-4 wheelsets. Approximately .220" was machined off of each sideframe mounting flange,  .120" was milled off of each sideframe, new holes were drilled and tapped to mount the sideframe on the truck block.

The pilots were a little easier, MTH provided a threaded blind hole in each corner (2.6mm). I just cut the center section out, drilled a hole and mounted them without a spacer as that made the steps line up per the prototype.


IMG_5355My first one...

Lionel GP30

still fiddling with it, but I've ground off enough material to get it running. 

Used mario's 3D printed stuff to fix the pilots, works pretty well, just wish the finish on the 3D prints was a bit smoother.  

Have to clean up and paint what I messed with, then lengthen the handrails.  I'll probably Penn Centralize it a little, it's too clean. 


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Sorry I haven't posted in awhile, been enjoying the nice weather and spending some much needed time on my other hobby. Anyway took the wife to York this weekend and scored this C&O 2-8-2 from Mr. Muffins. Great people. After a few test runs on the layout she received her Kadee's front and rear. I was also surprised by how very close it is to the prototype. This was a class of 10 former Pere Marquette engines on the C&O hence why they have none of the C&O traits. I like it, nice size, clean look, and pulls the entire Chessie Steam Special train without issue. 


Posed with the rest of the C&O fleet. 



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 Finally started work on my Legacy 0-8-0. It came delivered as a Wabash. Turning it into a Boston & Albany. The middle part of the original 4 digit Rd. No. is 52. A correct number for a B&A. In the past I just made a T bracket from brass stock and shimmed the hell out of it to get it at the correct height. There is a lot of clearance there for the stock coil coupler. On this one. I trimmed it out with brass square stock. The T bracket is soldered. The trim pieces are held in place with JB Weld. The square stock is glued to the tender shell. Allowing the chassis to separate. The T bracket is secured to the chassis using the tapped mounting holes that secure the speaker. A portion of the stock coupler mount was removed for clearance. I added a small piece of square stock and cleaned up a Atlas air hose for a press in snug fit. It's now off to the paint shop.





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Dave nice work on the tender.    Mario finishing his GP35 inspired me and finally finished my SP RS11 using Mario's spacer and kadee mounts. What a pain but at this point 99% complete. I thought I had finished it a week ago but didn't like the fit so I redid it Now just to do a little more sanding and touch up paint.  

Since I was planning to make this one a dummy I pulled the electronics Trimed of half inch on both sides of the frame and sanded down the tabs on the trucks to lower the engine


Next i trimed the pilot and installed the spacer and the kadeee mount using Loctite 60 universal glue. This is rated at 1800 lbs per square once once dried. Drilled out the holes and then mounted the draft box and screwed them in.  Next Using the Loctite glued them to the shell and then used 5 sec fix( same as Bondic) to fill in the gaps and then sanded to hide the seams .  DSCF6821


Reinstalled the shell onto the frame 


Final check not perfect but works



This is from the test run last week before final adjustments. 





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Great thread.  Unfortunately (or fortunately for me depending on your point of view) I gave up on 3 rail scale and simply run 3 rail for all my roads that aren't affiliated with my ever in the planning stages NY&LB.  I've gone completely 2 rail there.  No judgement on anyone here, I just find that 2 rail is really appealing for modeling, but my operating club layout is three rail and not to Kadee coupler standards when it comes to track alignment.

Finally got my 2 Chessie auxiliary tenders from MTH. Very nicely detailed but a bit pricey in my opinion. 


MTH includes stamped steel mounting plates and hardware for converting to Kadee's. 


However using these mounts the coupler too low. Simple solution was to use Kadee 747 underset shank couplers. Now they're spot on with no shimming. 


One of these days I'll get to modifying my spare 614 tender shell to accurately represent her extended coal bunker and change the lettering to Chessie System Railroads. 



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 The tender is pretty much complete and out of the paint shop.


 I'm on to the engine now. The stock coil coupler was removed. Not a bad job on this version. This engine what it lacks in Legacy performance is a much more friendly engine to work on. I just took a while to remember the procedure to remove the T bar to get the coupler out. You are left with a hole that a #10 32 screw slips right in. I  made up a mount for the Kadee with a tapped thread and JB Welded the appropriate washers in place to obtain the correct height.



 Seeing I bought an assortment of brass. I added some to the front pilot to box in the coupler a little better. This is getting to be like adding fixed pilots to diesels.



 Seeing I had an assortment of brass. I took the cab apart to see if I could add curtains. The B&A is a northeast road and winter is approaching. I read an article about using tea bags. I'm a tea drinker so if the first one came out bad it was just a matter of time till I made another cup. I think once the cab is together it will look okay. I'll try painting the tube antique white with some weathering added. You probably won't see it once on the layout.


 I have a few holes to plug as the top mounted headlight was changed out to a center mount per B&A practice. It will be off to the weathering shop. I usually paint the chassis and shell separately. The only other thing I'm considering. Is changing out the engineer and fireman. I looked on Lionel's site and the pretty much offer the same figures in a few paint schemes. I may just modify the seats and add Arttista's.


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Really nice work, as usual, Dave...and thanks for continuing to share the details with all of us!  I really like the idea of using a tea bag to simulate a cab curtain.  I'm going to file that one away for future use the next time I'm trying to make a rolled-up tarp for one of my engines...will see how it turns out. 

It's tough to find a suitable material that is BOTH close to scale thickness AND strong enough to hold up over time.  I used a piece of a brown paper bag to make the tarp pictured below.  It was the best thing I could come up with at the time, but is just a little too thick when rolled up.  I think the tea bag material may fit the bill!



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Last edited by CNJ #1601

Thanks to everyone who has contributed to this thread and for keeping it going.  I hope you will continue to post examples of your work and/or your thoughts, comments and questions here moving forward...a lot of really nice work (and great ideas!) have been shared so far!  It would also be great to add some new contributors along the way...everyone is welcome here!

I haven't had time to work on any new 3RS (or any toy train-related) projects over the past couple months or so; however, I was looking through a photo disk recently and found a folder containing some pictures of the very first two freight cars that I added Kadee scale couplers to.  I suppose I can say that this is where I got started with "3-rail scale"...



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Last edited by CNJ #1601
Ben Snyder posted:

Just 2 short videos of 614 in her duties for Chessie. First on the Chessie Safety Express. 

And second on the 1985 ACE 3000 testing program hauling coal. 

Sure like that ScaleTrax -  the lower profile rail and center 'blade' certainly make the locomotive & rolling stock appear more massive...

 Finally back on the rails. Engine was a recent Legacy Wabash. Re lettered as a B&A. I've done a couple of re letter jobs on Lionel's. If the model is close detail wise to a B&A. I try if possible to find something I can use number wise. Really looking to at least get a correct headlight and back up light. The tender and cab are easily decaled. If you can't come up with right number. You pretty much have to paint over them. The 52 were the middle nos. on the Wabash. That at least gave me a correct Rd. No.  I just had to paint over the 2 end numbers. I did change out the headlight to a correct center mount using a new boiler front and light from Lionel.After adding Kadee's. Both couplers were framed with some square brass stock. Basically just to fill in the area that occupied the coil couplers. An air hose from an Atlas coupler was attached to the rear. I used some tea bags to make cab curtains an added Arttista figures. I think adding the figures was the most work. I painted the valves and gauges in the cab.













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Ok finally finished the lose ends on my Lionel SP RS-11 and finished My NP RS-11 this morning. 


Procees was the same for both. The NP RS-11 was done with lessons learned from the SP RS-11.

After removing the shell from the NP RS-11 I pulled out the dremel and trimmed the frame by about a half inch and at the same time cut the pilot 


Next did some additional trimming on the pilots the started assembly. Using epoxy that rated at 1800 lbs per square inch. 



Drilled out the holes and mounted the Kadeee 743s then applying copious amount of epoxy, mounted the pilots to the shell. trWhile the Epoxy was curing( recommended overnight) I pulled the trucks removed the claws and what was left of the pilot, then trimmed off the tabs to lower the engine. 


Reassembled the engine and let it sit over night. As you can see I am able to remove the shell without having to remove the pilot.


This morning I rounded out the pilots where the spacer was mounted, since the Lionel pilots are squared off and the RS-11 are not.



Then ran the NP RS-11 under a load to insure the pilot stayed secured to the shell.










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Thanks Mario. Not as smooth looking as yours but works. To be honest this was a pain in the ****.  Trimming the frame was the only way I could think of to get a seamless fit for the pilot, other then use a Weaver 2RS RS-3 frame as discussed on the P48 FB page. The epoxy I'm using is great. Haven't had a fail yet. Sorry about the quality of the video. Believe it  or not that was taken this morning at 10 am. It started raining real bad and kinda got dark for a while. 

Last edited by suzukovich

Did my first round of Kadee conversions and it's night and day compared to those god awful lobster claws! I would like to give a special thanks to LOS and Mario for their videos. I went ahead and bought a ton of Mario's spacers off shapeways and I am quite pleased with how well designed they are and how simple they make the conversions. Much more to come...



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BigJohn&theWork posted:

Did my first round of Kadee conversions and it's night and day compared to those god awful lobster claws! I would like to give a special thanks to LOS and Mario for their videos. I went ahead and bought a ton of Mario's spacers off shapeways and I am quite pleased with how well designed they are and how simple they make the conversions. Much more to come...


Welcome to the dark side.

BigJohn&theWork posted:

Did my first round of Kadee conversions and it's night and day compared to those god awful lobster claws! I would like to give a special thanks to LOS and Mario for their videos. I went ahead and bought a ton of Mario's spacers off shapeways and I am quite pleased with how well designed they are and how simple they make the conversions. Much more to come...IMG_8517

Nice job...and welcome to the world of 3RS!  Thanks for sharing your work with us here!

Until recently been out of the hobby since 2012.

What we called at the time a High Water Lionel Legacy E7 AA.

Lowered the body, actually I raised the trucks.   Fixes pilots and Kadee couplers.   Closed the gap between units.

Changed to scale wheels.  2 wheels each truck were groove for traction tires.

Finally the side frames were narrowed.  

End result a good runner and puller of the GGD train.  Big plus is that it has been trouble free and surprisingly stays on the rails.   My best, most reliable runner.

Only negative is without the legacy system the horn sounds week.  Maybe missing some other things.Lionel E7 truck mount104_4866102_3419Traction tired scale wheelsScale wheeled truckLionel E7A OS3RLionel E7A103_3919Lionel E7 front mods103_3926


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Lionel E7 2017

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