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Thread: Shapeways London Underground/Tube build

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    Default Shapeways London Underground/Tube build

    So by way of introduction I have only been back in the hobby for ~6 months now. 20 years ago I was pretty heavy in HO but life happens etc.


    Anyway, I have a 2.5 year old that loves trains so that inspired me to get back into it. My first project is a g scale in his room.

    http://www.trainboard.com/highball/i...or-son.103672/

    But what I am really planning is a basement setup for n scale. I have the layout largely complete but will probably be summer before I get to building it. It will be a double track sort of dogbone. I like steam, streamliners, trams, and bullet trains so will run an eclectic collection and not model a particular place or era.

    I do have a small oval test track in the utility room for the basement where I have been playing a bit and testing. I have read tons. Played more then is normal with DCC. Bought a few trains (N&W 611, FVM Hiawatha, Kato Metra Set, new MRC 4-4-0, Kato Mikado)

    I travel for work to London at least monthly and have always loved their Underground Tube stock that was started in 1995 as it's colorful and the underground system itself is an amazing efficient people mover. I have looked for months in unfortunately there just isn't anything "pre made" out there in N.

    A few places have some other scales

    http://www.metromodels.net/3D_2009TS.htm

    http://radleymodels.com/tube-stock-kits.html

    There are however a couple options of kits. Radley above has some but this thread really inspired me:

    http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/ind...nd-1995-stock/

    Unfortunately the thread ended before completion and I have tried to contact the author to no avail.

    The shapeways models linked in that thread though are still available. At basically $30 a car they are certainly not cheap but I think will be awesome when done.

    I have a tomytec TM07 on order which should fit these. I also ordered the 5.1mm wheels and bearing cups. Neither of these have arrived yet.

    I make no excuses for the fact this will probably take me at least 6 months to complete given all the other stuff I have going on but I will try to document everything to hopefully help anyone else who wants to try it.

    I received my stuff from Shapeways yesterday. They are great looking little models for sure.











    Does anyone that has done a Shapeways model have any advice on painting both process and paint brand wise? All painting suggestions greatly appreciated!!!


    Here is the prototype info

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London...und_1995_Stock


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    No information to contribute but this is a fascinating project - will watch

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    Biggest thing on shapeways stuff is cleaning, use goo-gone (my weapon of choice) or bestine. Once the wax is gone it accepts just about anything if the application is done with skill, as an example this is shapeways FXD from cleaning to final product

    after goo-gone soak (overnight), wash with soapy water then rinse and dry (It won't look like this until they're 100% dry)



    Paint, Rustoleum oxide primer and cheap matte white for roof



    spray with gloss coat and begin decaling with water slide decals



    Decals are on



    Then the final dull coat and it's ready to go



    As you can see it becomes pretty normal once it's cleaned, just be patient and gentle with the material, understand it's not styrene and you should be fine. If It cracks use superglue and it'll look like new but if you notice warping contact shapeways as significant warping is considered a defect
    Last edited by Intermodalman; 11th Mar 2017 at 12:22 AM.
    Did someone say whitcomb?

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    Welcome to the edge of N Scale!

    Outside Japan, traction modeling is rather rare. To help you along the way you might be interested in joining some fellow electric train modelers at...
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/nscaletraction/info
    There is a group for Tomix as well...
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Tomix/info
    Here is a bunch of information on Tomix Fine Track and Powered Chassis...
    http://www.trainweb.org/tomix



    Prepping and painting Shapeways shells is nothing extraordinary.

    All it takes is an overnight soak in dish soap and water. Then just rinse with water.

    The bodies take to almost any paint. Priming with "Buck a can" gloss white will be fine. Three or more coats will be needed as the material is on the porous side. It will also help to smooth out the surface as well.

    Because the cars have so many black edges to the red and white areas and windows and the blue is a simple stripe, you might want to consider decals rather than masking and painting.

    Do do not use any dull coat. That is a freight car thing. Your final coats should be glossy.

    MicroClear is used to form the glass.


    For my trailing cars I use black BanDai B-Train Shorty trucks. They also make a gray version that has a shorter wheelbase. They are free rolling and can accept any sideframes as they are inside bearing. They are a good match for the trucks on the power chassis.

    Rather than a Rapido or Knuckle coupler I use a Kato 11-703, Sharfenburg style coupler. Commonly used on Rapid Transit equipment.
    They are a direct replacement for the factory coupler. The bars with air and electrical connections are easily trimmed off. Stick with the truck mounted couplers. They do much better on tight radius curves used by traction equipment.

    Good luck from a fellow third rail guy.
    Last edited by ChicagoNW; 12th Mar 2017 at 05:20 PM.
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    Thanks ChicagoNW and intermodalman. Both very helpful posts.

    I did get the chassis's in yesterday and they are OK. I will need to trim around 0.5mm from both sides to get the to fit right. I would also like to find one around 10mm longer but more on that later. I like the 07 longer wheel spacing for sure

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    Tomix has made chassis from 12 to 20 meters long. If the TM-07 is too short maybe another will be a better fit. If worse comes to worse. You can always stretch the chassis. For longer chassis look for GreenMax ones. They make chassis that fit Modemo and their own intercity cars which can be up to 85 feet long.

    Attachment 88105 Has all kinds of pieces to help build your cars. If the Underground uses covered third rail GreenMax makes a dummy version that is easy to add.

    You shouldn't complain about the $30 per shell cost. The L cars on the back track cost $250 for the pair, I had to find my own parts and pieces to get them rolling under their own power. Shapeways wasn't even an idea when I built those.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChicagoNW View Post
    Outside Japan, traction modeling is rather rare. To help you along the way you might be interested in joining some fellow electric train modelers at...
    If by "traction modeling" you mean electric trains, then it is only rare in the U.S. You are right about Japan, but Europe does extensive modelling of electric trains, since most of their trains these days are electric powered. Europeans have been using electric trains (in addition to steam and diesel) since the late 19th century. Models of early electric traction are readily available. These days most trains in Europe are electric, though freight haulers are often diesel due to the danger that 15kV close overhead poses to intermodal handling.

    Not to say, of course, that Europeans don't love their steam or diesel engines; just saying that electric traction is not rare, except in the U.S.

    Of course, the OP is talking about London - not Europe.
    Cheers!
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    Ok I looked at dimensions and think the TM 13 is the one. I ordered two in case I screw one up converting to DCC. I also ordered a pair of the Kato 11 099 trucks to try out. I think the floor of the cars will need some serious modification aka hacking a hole in it so truck/coupler can fit while keeping the shell riding low enough to not look goofy. Worst case scenario I add some styrene and it rides high. I'll post a pic of what I mean tomorrow. What's clear to me is the designer while making a very accurate model had no thought as to how to couple these together which not a small oversight. Oh well. What fun is plug and play ��

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    Question - How big would a platform gap be in N scale? You obviously would have to mind it.

    Metro Red Ln (Metro Red Line)
    Under the streets of Los Angeles

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    Quote Originally Posted by el Gato Gordo View Post
    If by "traction modeling" you mean electric trains, then it is only rare in the U.S. You are right about Japan, but Europe does extensive modelling of electric trains, since most of their trains these days are electric powered. Europeans have been using electric trains (in addition to steam and diesel) since the late 19th century. Models of early electric traction are readily available. These days most trains in Europe are electric, though freight haulers are often diesel due to the danger that 15kV close overhead poses to intermodal handling.

    Not to say, of course, that Europeans don't love their steam or diesel engines; just saying that electric traction is not rare, except in the U.S.

    On Of course, the OP is talking about London - not Europe.
    Actually, I typed the wrong words. I was thinking RAPID TRANSIT which is part of the traction family. I've seen plenty of European handcrafted streetcars, LRVs and a handful of tiny trolleys, and some commercial ones too. Yes, plenty of heavy trains too.

    But nothing like the London Underground, Paris Metro or any of the other rapid transit systems.

    After all my first N scale purchase was a Bachmann TGV. So, yeah there is European N scale traction.


    @KWLEDBETTER
    I think you will be disappointed with the trucks from Kato. http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10030555
    They are very short when compared to the trucks on the Tomix chassis. I want to say the wheels are smaller too.

    These from BanDai are a better match for the longer trucks
    http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10274511
    While there is a B-Train Shorty chassis now included, the trucks can be removed. If needed, the chassis could be chopped up to use its bolsters in the Shapeways body. Here is a direct comparison


    These are a match for the shorter trucks but still longer than the Kato trucks
    http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10201451

    Both trucks have an enormous advantage over the Kato trucks. They do not have sideframes. You can easily add your own. Or in the case of many rapid transit cars, have none at all. The sideframes on the Kato trucks actually hold the axles in place. Removing too much of the relief can mess them up. The trucks are excellent runners, they just don't match the trucks on the Tomix power chassis.
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    Thanks makes total sense. I will order a set of the Bandai's and a set of tomix so I have all 3 to play with. I really wish they still made those Bandai's with the pickups like shown. Could add lights really easily, not that it would be that difficult but those would make it super simple. You can see in this picture a bit of what I'm going to have to deal with.

    bottom.jpg
    I believe the solution will be slotting a hole where the chassis bottom comes down and sliding the coupler through there and then also slotting the front of the shell so the coupler can come out and have room to swing. I'm hoping that it's not to much of an issue but I'll have to get some of the parts and start playing a bit before I'm sure. cutting slots that small is always a challenge.

    My other option of course is body mounting the couple which may end up being the best route. Given that the minimum raduis on my layout is large (15" and mostly 19+) then body mounted will probably work fine.
    Last edited by KWLEDBETTER; 17th Mar 2017 at 11:43 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MetroRedLn View Post
    http://www.austinburkhart.com/wp-con...nd-The-Gap.jpg

    Question - How big would a platform gap be in N scale? You obviously would have to mind it.

    Well I've stepped over that gap hundreds of times and it's probably 3 inches on average so divide by 160 around 0.5mm! I definitely want to find some mind the gap decals (I could always probably make a large sale letter board decal work as they are white letters). I also want to find some underground logo decals. Some stuff exists in HO but I haven't seen anything in n scale.

    I am also exploring ways with an arduino pro mini and a mini player hidden beneath a platform to trigger a "Mind the Gap" audio file. To much fun and not enough time in the day!

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    Tomix doesn't sell trucks that match their chassis. I pulled those from a chassis that had a motor failure. For my CTA L cars, I need to move the copper pickup behind the wheels so the extra set of trucks can be handy.

    If you feel daring, and cannot find a good matching chassis, the modular nature of the Tomix TM series can convert the "factory" chassis to a powered one. A keyhole slot for the trucks and the Motor mounting cradle can convert the static chassis to a running one. It would take some basement engineering, but with time and effort, it could happen.

    If you can get a MP3 of the announcement, ITTP can create a custom sound board and he has multiple ways to trigger it manually and automatically. http://www.ittproducts.com/ The new version of his soundboard is a big leap over the previous version. For one it can do two separate sounds from two separate speakers. You could easily have the ubiquitous warning AND a station announcement. Or have a warning whistle before the train enters the station and then the announcement.

    About those couplers, forget about using truck mounted ones. There is no sane way to do it. Body mounting would work with such unrealistic curves. A little bit of twist provided by a loose coupler box will assist on much tighter turns. The one used on MicroTrains passenger car trucks is excellent for this. It has a much longer box than the standard ones. You might want to see if you can get a hold of some swing arm couplers that are used on some TOFC and auto racks. Kato and Tomix make couplers exactly for this situation, but they are rather bulky and the box is almost the full width of a car. They are made to snap into specific cars. So, you would need to finagle them.

    Much simpler than messing with couplers is to go with draw bars. Depending on the design they could permanently hook a train together or allow the cars to separate. For my TomyTec Portrams, I converted one of the static dummies to a rolling car. For power I added a simple hook and a hole was drilled into the power chassis of another car. To run them together the power car is just placed over the hook and off we go. You can't see the connection so it not looking real is not a distraction. More realistic couplers would require major surgery.
    image.jpg
    Besides, most of the time, the couplers are hidden under a shroud as the cars run singly. They MU only during Rush Hours.

    Archer Details sells 3D decals that are the texture found at the edge of a platform. Rather than decals, if you print the platform surface on white cardstock, you wouldn't have to decals or painting. The edge stripe and lettering would be done in one swoop. You could include a large London Underground logo to dress up the drab floor. Besides the floor you could also print up the walls as well. Incorporating such details as the wall tiles, signs and other interesting bits. Maybe even some graffiti!
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    Thanks once again ChicagoNW. I am still used to modeling "normal" trains where you hook and unhook a bunch but given these guys will remain together pretty much 100% of the time so something simple like the simple hook probably works fine and simple!

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    Just glad to help!

    You get the assistance, I didn't have.
    Use what you know about the world to model…
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    Sitting on the prototype as I type. Now I'm super motivated. Will definitely play with them some this weekend when I get back if only a spray coat.

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    Ok some progress.

    The 13R is definitely the best fit. I did a little trimming with a dremel on the inside of the shell and if fits over very well. It might well sit ~2mm above the non-powered cars but honestly I'm OK with that as anything different would require major sheel or chassis modification.

    I put a coat of white on the parts. Hopefully this weekend I can make some more progress painting, etc. I'll try to get some pics over next couple days.

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    It can surprising just how little you might need to remove from a chassis to get a body to sit correctly on it.

    Here is a Bachmann PCC and one with the body lowered...

    Note how the factory PCC imitates a monster truck. (They had the same height error in HO too!) The lowered body is very true to the real thing.

    Just by removing the factory body tabs, filing the top of the chassis and most importantly, rounding the top corners, that dramatic body drop occurred. Now here are a side by side of the modded chassis next to the stock one...

    The chassis on the left has the modifications. Notice the black area above the painted "windows" it is just a little thinner. Rounding the corners and removing the tabs did the most good. Adding a small styrene tab on the bottom of the chassis, replaces the one removed so the body stays on.

    You might just have to remove a little extra plastic off the top of the chassis to get the body to sit right. Use a hand file, it goes slower than a Dremmel, which can remove too much and cause damage.
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    Ok. So after 9 months of neglect made some progress on this one over the last week. I did some serious trimming of the shell and the chassis and got it to look pretty good.

    I also dcc'd the 13R. Was actually relatively easy. Needed more kapton tape then I was expecting but once you do that the soldering etc of it is extremely straight forward. I fully documented that part of it and had the first shot of it unpainted running around my DCC test loop.

    I'll post more pics tomorrow. Now I need to get on with painting, etc.

    I'll post pics etc over the weekend. Major goal this weekend is to clean up workbench area. It's a disaster 😆

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    Yeah!!!!!!!!!
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