[MOC] Cheap Freight Cars

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As I'm sure many of you are aware, model railroading can be an expensive hobby and Lego is no different. So I set out to create a fleet of small, inexpensive, and sturdy freight cars that still had good detail. I mostly based these designs off of a certain television show I watched growing up. I'm sure you can guess which one by the first model.


You could take the layer of grey plates to make it take less parts, but I liked the rigidity it gave the sides. Overall, I was pretty happy with this one. 


This next one, I wasn't that crazy about. I ended up making a few variations of this style of car with different techniques, which you'll see later.


Here, I tried to miniaturize an American style hopper to fit on the freight car base I had established. It's not the most realistic thing, but I think it's kinda cute.


The obligatory tank car. Of course, I used the technique with the giant 6x8x2 hull top and bottoms. The center strip of bricks can also be colored to represent a fuel company or something.


I had to make a flat car, but as with most flat cars, it's pretty boring. Not much to say about it.


Another attempt at miniaturizing an American hopper, this time, a covered one. This one might be my least favorite of the bunch. I feel it's pretty ugly and isn't a great use of parts.


I was decently happy with this one and I liked how the profile bricks gave good wood (Or maybe corrugated steel) texture. The only thing I don't like is the mismatched doors. I wanted to make it in light grey initially, but those doors are expensive as they only came in the Maersk train. I then tried white, but the profile bricks were never made in white. I guess I could use the 1x2 grill brick as I did in the "Not a Troublesome Truck", but I really liked the look these bricks gave. 


This is the final model I made. Tried to mimic the "Ventilated Vans" used by the GWR with the cheese slopes on the ends. Also tried an overhanging 7-wide roof (Which is pretty unlike me). I was confident putting it together, but looking at it from afar, it looks like a big grey blob. I might end up revisiting this one later.


Anyway, that's all of them! As always, here is a link to the studio file (Note, they're all in the same file and each car is made into a submodel):

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Nice set of small sized cars. They've got this cute quality to them. For the tank car, I would suggest using curved slopes on top like you did with the sides. Maybe drop them down a plate first. And I agree with your sentiment about the covered hopper.

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