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Posted (edited)

Grey Ridge 4-6-0 no. 26

Presented for your review: Grey Ridge 4-6-0 no. 26.

I got the thought in my head at some point in 2019 or 2020 that I needed to build a new freelance steam locomotive. All of the locomotives and cars I've been building recently have been legitimate models of something that existed at some point. Instead, I wanted to break from that for a while and build something realistic but fantasy.

My old ten wheeler model is pushing twelve or thirteen years at this point. Being one of the first locomotives I built that both worked well and that I was proud of, I decided that this new freelance locomotive should also be a ten wheeler. From there, I set some other goals:

- XL wheels. My old ten wheeler was lightning fast. I wanted this new engine to be quick, and well-suited for passenger service. An L motor driving XL wheels would work well.
-Tapered boiler. I was very proud of the boiler I designed for my old ten wheeler, even if it was still using just basic 45 degree slope bricks. A new tapered boiler was an absolute must on this model.
-Reliable operation. I never had a problem with the old engine. It's always worked well whenever I needed a locomotive to run. The S160 power train would check this box well.

On top of these things, I wanted to build this model as a way to highlight the progression of my skill as a modeler. Thirteen years is quite a long time. 

All of the components and goals were set. The design process was challenging, particularly the boiler. But I eventually had a locomotive designed.

Then came the Brick Train Awards earlier this year. This engine was designed and ready to order parts for, so I decided that I would build this locomotive in order to enter into BTA as a brand new locomotive. A photo of this was shared across a few of the BTA social outlets, but now I'm finally publishing this locomotive through my own channels.

Of course, I couldn't just slap a road name and number on this engine and call it a day. It wouldn't have been proper, being a freelance locomotive. Instead, I needed a freelance railroad to letter it for. 

I remembered the Grey Ridge. I had created the concept of a railroad called the Grey Ridge in late 2019 but not progressed with it much until this point. 

The Grey Ridge is a true mountain railroad. I've always been fond of the idea of railroads running through very mountainous terrain, under snow-capped mountains and up and down mile after mile of twisting, winding track with short trains. The new ten wheeler I had been building was now the first engine of the Grey Ridge to be modeled. A very fitting first , being well suited to handle both freight and passenger trains over the line effectively.

I'm quite pleased with this engine. It's appropriately fast and strong, and also looks great. I was aiming for the style of locomotives that were built in the earlier years of the 20th century, and I think I have a perfect mix of that and "old-timey shortline locomotive" mixed into one model here.

Under the hood: I'm using one Power Functions L motor geared 1:1 to XL size drivers from Big Ben Bricks. I'm using Ben's new XL wheels with traction tires which work perfectly in this application. The motor is driven from a Power Functions IR receiver and a 7.4v battery from Tenergy. 

Thanks to Cale for his help with the custom wiring, and of course, the decals. All of these decals were designed by him and me, and his feedback and creativity helped deliver a better finished product. Decals printed by Andy at OKBrickWorks; thank you Andy for your assistance as well.

Overall? I achieved my goals and exceeded my own expectations of this locomotive. I created something new and original out of my own imagination; modeling a unique locomotive while maintaining strong ties to reality and the inspirational sources which I drew from originally. By all of those metrics, I think it's safe to call this one successful and complete.

More photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/41032663@N08/albums/72157719608730348

Thank you for reading.

Edited by Glenn Holland

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Gorgeous locomotive you've built. Nicely scaled and full of details. Piping, air compressor, and an impressive backhead. Kudos.

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7 hours ago, Glenn Holland said:

I think it's safe to call this one successful and complete.

No.

It is not safe. It is absolutely - with any thinking required - complete. With regard to success: It is more than that. It is breathtaking success. 

Congratulations. The valve gear alone is one beautiful design. The white rims ... man. Yes. She is complete - as in perfect.

Best
Thorsten

 

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Amazing work, but nothing surprising about that. There are a lot of really clever building techniques here, and some nice touches beyond that, e.g., the white wall tires that help make the model pop.

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On 7/30/2021 at 10:51 AM, Feuer Zug said:

Gorgeous locomotive you've built. Nicely scaled and full of details. Piping, air compressor, and an impressive backhead. Kudos.

It's always those details that set things apart, even if it's a freelance model. Thank you so much!

On 7/30/2021 at 3:58 PM, LEGO Train 12 Volts said:

Amazing work ...I would like to see  a video of this beauty in action! :wub:

I uploaded a video with some clips running here: 

 

On 7/30/2021 at 5:33 PM, Toastie said:

No.

It is not safe. It is absolutely - with any thinking required - complete. With regard to success: It is more than that. It is breathtaking success. 

Congratulations. The valve gear alone is one beautiful design. The white rims ... man. Yes. She is complete - as in perfect.

Best
Thorsten

 

What a compliment.. thank you so much. A true passion project for me, but I'm so glad that other people can understand the ideas that went into it and the finished result.

On 7/31/2021 at 10:54 AM, zephyr1934 said:

Amazing work, but nothing surprising about that. There are a lot of really clever building techniques here, and some nice touches beyond that, e.g., the white wall tires that help make the model pop.

Thank you very much Benn!

For what it's worth (probably not very much), but the tires are silver-walled instead of white :) I imagine the Grey Ridge being a fan of silver leaf lettering on their equipment. The decals are an imitation silver leaf, and the tires are painted to match.

On 7/31/2021 at 2:22 PM, High_Admiral said:

That looks fantastic!

 

6 hours ago, Shiva said:

Thumbs up to nice build :)

Thank you both very much!

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Spectacular work here. Every detail seems to be on par with scale modelling. I had to double take at first that I wasn't looking at an LGB G Scale model or similar. The amount of detail is breath taking and the level of detail in the video is something else.

Well done. You win the Internet today.

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On 8/2/2021 at 3:27 PM, LEGO Train 12 Volts said:

Very smooth movement ...and fantastic flatbed wagon! :wub::wub:

Great work compared with your old model! :pir-huzzah2:

Thank you! Even with that short rigid wheel base it does run pretty smooth. I think the flat car is so simple but something about it just works!

On 8/3/2021 at 5:51 AM, Toxic43 said:

Spectacular work here. Every detail seems to be on par with scale modelling. I had to double take at first that I wasn't looking at an LGB G Scale model or similar. The amount of detail is breath taking and the level of detail in the video is something else.

Well done. You win the Internet today.

Thank you very much!

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Posted (edited)

That is the best 4-6-0 I've ever seen----but my question is actually about the track!  I love those "black-based display sections" of track you have.  Could you show those (mainly the ends) in a bit more detail?  I have Tony Sava's Daylight instructions, and plan to "display" it rather than run it (no room for a loop, sadly), so having something a bit more substantial than 'raw rails on the shelf' would be nice---and your tracks look very nice, exactly what I'd like to have.   Are they basically just large piles of 45-degree 2x2's?    Is the very bottom layer 8x16's?   (and a quick check of black 8x16 prices on Bricklink makes me think maybe not, or those are quite expensive display bases!)  

Edited by steele

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On 8/6/2021 at 7:23 PM, steele said:

That is the best 4-6-0 I've ever seen----but my question is actually about the track!  I love those "black-based display sections" of track you have.  Could you show those (mainly the ends) in a bit more detail?  I have Tony Sava's Daylight instructions, and plan to "display" it rather than run it (no room for a loop, sadly), so having something a bit more substantial than 'raw rails on the shelf' would be nice---and your tracks look very nice, exactly what I'd like to have.   Are they basically just large piles of 45-degree 2x2's?    Is the very bottom layer 8x16's?   (and a quick check of black 8x16 prices on Bricklink makes me think maybe not, or those are quite expensive display bases!)  

Display tracks can easily be built to suit your taste. I like the look of simple displays with the track elevated slightly and a clean black outline around lightly ballasted track pieces. It frames the model very well.

I used 45 degree slope parts around all four sides and tiles to cover the studs on those. There's really no trick to it. Build whatever you think looks nice.

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I know this is a bit out of context, but how wide is the Reading T1 you and Cale built a while back? Boiler, cab, and tender? I am trying to build a steam locomotive and I would like a few ideas. Also, how do you build lead trucks on your steam locomotives to where they have no conflict with the cylinders?

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20 hours ago, Craig Strader said:

I know this is a bit out of context, but how wide is the Reading T1 you and Cale built a while back? Boiler, cab, and tender? I am trying to build a steam locomotive and I would like a few ideas. Also, how do you build lead trucks on your steam locomotives to where they have no conflict with the cylinders?

I've tried attaching one of the axels from the leading truck to the driving wheels and making them on set on shorter locomotive wheelbases to avoid them from conflicting with the cylinders.

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