jtlan

[MOC] Caltrain MP15DC with Power Functions

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Silicon Valley, California, is not particularly well-known for trains, nor public transit in general. Caltrain operates a commuter service along the peninsula. While most of its modern rolling stock is too large for regular track at my typical 1:48 scale, they also own and operate a pair of MP15DC switchers:

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EMD offered the MP15DC as a successor to the SW1500 series of switcher, the key difference being longer standard trucks and a higher top speed. Caltrain's two units (#503 and #504) were acquired from Union Pacific, which in turn acquired them from Southern Pacific. I believe the two are usually based in San Jose, though they can be seen up and down the peninsula running various maintenance-of-way jobs or "rescuing" stalled Caltrain commuter sets.

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This is the first "normal" diesel locomotive I've built in a long time, and the first time I've built something local. It's relatively straightforward mechanically: two 9V "mini-motors", one driving each truck, with the battery box in between them and the receiver in the cab. Pulling power is plentiful as the locomotive is reasonably heavy for its size. Pressing down on the single exposed stud on the hood powers the battery box on/off, and the power state can be checked via the small clear window on the hood.

I took advantage of many recently-introduced parts on this model, such as they grey Collectible Minifig base which I used to plate over the sides and hide the works. Grey 1 x 2 x 2 windows, truncated corner tiles, and 2 x 1 wedges are relatively recent parts that help capture the shape of this locomotive.

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One innovation is an improvement on the technique I used for the cab windows on the TP56 locomotive. In this model, each "half" window is held captive by rotated tiles, greatly simplifying construction (a technique that @Commander Wolf absolutely loathes).

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The full Brickshelf gallery is here, pending moderation. I also took a number of work-in-progress screenshots in LDD, which you might find useful.

Until next time, and may your commuter train never have to be rescued by one of these!

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Very nice model. Love how you did the handrail on the side without using flexhose.

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Posted (edited)

That cab is excellent. First-rate.

Can I trouble you for an end-on shot from the cab-side?

Edited by SteamSewnEmpire

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Great rendition of a fun locomotive. You've captured an amazing amount of the little details that really make the design. I can almost smell the diesel smoke and hear the chugging as it loads!

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