Commander Wolf

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About Commander Wolf

  • Birthday 01/06/1989

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    c0mmander w0lf
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  • Location
    Glorious California


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    United States

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  1. Commander Wolf

    [MOC] 1:350 Scale Imperial Japanese Navy Kongo

    Just wanted to share some pictures of the finished model. Was generally quite happy how it turned out: All the turrets and such can rotate: And as shown previously it can be displayed as a waterline model: Couple more pics in the Brickshelf folder once moderated. Cheers!
  2. Commander Wolf

    [MOC] Miscellaneous Train Projects

    ... and here's one of them: ACE 3000 PF Tender When I built my ACE 3000 model in 2013, I had very little experience with Power Functions and chose to power it the traditional way: pushing or pulling it with a 9v power car. Fast forward a few years and we are using 9v less and less and I thought it was time to do a PF conversion! I knew exactly what drivetrain I wanted to build too: between then and now I built a PF baggage car with XL motors, but due to various limitations, I was never really able to unleash the full power of the XL motors. Even with a mild up-gearing (2:1), it had way too much torque and not enough speed. I had been looking for an opportunity to better utilize the XL motors, and the huge size of the ACE tender made it the perfect application. That being said, it wasn't actually that easy to fit everything that I wanted into the conversion. Problem number one is that while the ACE tender does have a ton of space, a lot of it turns out to be not that useful due to the positioning of the bogies. There is literally no way to place the two motors anywhere but where they currently are, and thus any structural construction that went through those spaces before have to be rerouted. It's especially true in the front where there just aren't as many studs as I'd like holding the whole mess together, especially since the top needs to come off to change the batteries. Problem number two is the three-axle truck. There's been quite a few three-axle truck designs thrown around, but I was adamant about using the frames for structural integrity since there would be a lot of torque going through the trucks. In addition to using the frames and accomodating the sliding axle, the truck also needs to support a gearing-up stage because there isn't enough room to fit it in the body! The extra up-gearing is of course important to being able to tap more of the high power output of the XL motors, which is the whole point of this build. These trucks are admittedly not a very elegant construction and they actually extend pretty far into the body, but they are as strong as I'd have hoped and it's one way to use up all that space that I have! You'll notice that the center axle has two degrees of freedom: it can slide side to side and pivot (very very slightly) up and down due to the triangle only being pinned on one side. This very small amount of play combined with the fact that the center axle doesn't have a tire allows the bogies to not lose traction on the outer axles while going over uneven track. Here's a pic of the mechanical side of the thing. The frame here is designed such that the battery box pushes the motors down and the weight of the assembly rather than friction on an axle keeps the gears meshed. There is practically no change to the external appearance of the tender except for the trucks, which use my new favorite bogie-frame element, the 1x4 plate with two studs. The locomotive side has also been tweaked a little since 2013: at some point I cleaned up some of the strange construction in the chassis and some of the greebles attached to it. This was mainly a fix for reliability: the chassis needed to have some more play built-in such that it wouldn't derail over uneven track (there's a theme going on here), but hopefully it's a cleaner mechanical and aesthetic design as well. Everything together, and of course a video: 0:00 gears and such 0:24 low speed 1:00 top speed 1:24 NMRA train show
  3. Commander Wolf

    Life sized "LEGO" locomotive in Hungary

    Ha ha, not what I was expecting at all. Cute!
  4. Commander Wolf

    [MOCs] Various American Freight Cars II

    Finally had the chance to stitch together more clips of the cars... this time with the side-dump car as well Bonus video with clips from BayLUG's annual Christmas show (does have the older two cars again though!)
  5. Commander Wolf

    [MOC] La Couronne (1636)

    Hello from the WoWS forums!
  6. Commander Wolf

    [MOCs] Various American Freight Cars II

    When I first built it, I also thought the caboose looked very short, but looking at the model versus the drawing, I'm fairly convinced that it's the angles at which we typically look at the model versus the angles at which we look at the prototypes. I'll admit it's still a little odd. That being said, the caboose is fairly short in general, with a roof height of 12' versus 15' for many locomotives. Yeah, I'm gonna try to shoot a little bit more video with all the cars together. Soon(TM).
  7. Similar to my thread of a year ago, wanted to share a couple more freight cars I've been building on the side: Conrail N6A I've shown this Conrail transfer caboose in a couple of my threads, but never formally, so here it is. The prototype is one of several classes of transfer caboose Conrail inherited from the Penn Central. The model was designed almost two years ago, and I got around to putting it together last year. The "skirt" that covers the tops of the wheels is typically the toughest thing to model on American freight cars: if you run on R40 track, the bogies usually need to pivot enough such that the wheels will scrape... this isn't a problem on the N6A because it's quite short; no fancy engineering is required to compensate! The geometry of the skirt and such are still similar to that of my earlier flatcar. And with stickers Brickshelf Gallery PRR G43 Like the caboose, this gondola might have shown up a few times, but never formally. The G43 is a 52' gondola built during the last decade of the PRR. Most of them went to PC and then Conrail. This model was designed and built last year. The dimensions are very similar to the aforementioned flatcar, and it's basically built the same way: the structural component (the sides) is studs-out, and the floor and trucks are studs-up. Once again, much of the work done to make the skirts work on the flatcar are applicable here. Thus, the hardest thing here was figuring out what to do about the shallow trapezoidal part in the middle - eventually I went with wing plates. Finally, this probably should have been dark red or reddish brown, but all three colors seemed to somewhat off, so I ended up going with the most common. I also looked at weathered designs, but its a little bit too difficult when there are a lot of large, exposed parts like the wings. Brickshelf Gallery Alaska Railroad 15800 Series This is a side-dump car, typically used for MoW work. Technically Wikipedia thinks its a type of gondola. As you can see, the specialized feature of this type of car is that it empties sideways: unfortunately the model does not have this feature! This car has actually never been posted: I only recently completed the design and model: Doing the textures on the sides was a little big challenging, especially trying to "blend" it with the ends. On the prototype there are a ton of funny angles that are hard to model in LEGO. Construction is otherwise typical: studs-out for the body, studs-up for the chassis. Those droid-body things are really good for the big pneumatic pistons. Brickshelf gallery Finally, this is a repost, but here is the gondola and caboose running with my EMD Model 40:
  8. Commander Wolf

    TBRR with full BrickTracks loops

    Nice! I hope someday our LUG will be able to have a wide-radius layout like this
  9. Commander Wolf

    Fixing ME Models Curved Metal Rails with LEGO

    We were able to roll the rest of our track over the weekend, and I'm quite happy with the result. Visually there isn't actually too much of a difference: since we didn't do anything about rolling the ends, you can still see a slight angle between sections of Code 100... but the mechanically the track is much easier to assemble and feels much less finicky. One more thing we did to facilitate assembly/disassembly is slightly loosen the Code 100 connector on the side that's supposed to detach such that it stays on the side it came on when you pull track apart. Less force is also required to push the rails together, and lowers the chance of shifting the rails in the holders. @cptkent nice to see you've made your own bender! Hope it works out well!
  10. Commander Wolf

    Brick Tracks free sample review

    Someone in my LUG brought a full loop of BT R104 to a meeting last weekend, and it does seem to be pretty quality stuff. Track-to-track connection seems quite good, don't have a good feel on stud-to-stud connections though.
  11. Commander Wolf

    Fixing ME Models Curved Metal Rails with LEGO

    Yes! This is actually the "correct" way to do it if you want to go all out. You should bend new Code 100 rail to the correct radius and then cut the appropriate length segments out of that larger curve piece. As mentioned, this will ensure that you have the right curvature even through the ends of individual sections. We were, admittedly, not hardcore enough to go the entire way
  12. Myself, @jtlan, and @codefox421 bought a full loop of ME Models R56 metal curves way back when we still expected to get an all-metal rail design. As we all now know, the all-metal rail design proved a fantasy, and ME Models delivered Code 100 rail set in plastic holders. This track has proven extremely finicky when we've used it mainly because the Code 100 rail is not pre-bent before it is inserted into the plastic holder. This means that the "curved" track is constantly trying to straighten itself back out and subsequently alters the geometry of the plastic holder such that all the curves are too wide for the nominal radius of the curves. The then incorrect geometry makes assembling the curve very difficult as you have to force the parts into the proper curvature and they are very keen to come apart. The most visible symptom of this issue is the relatively sharp angle between the non-contiguous sections of Code 100. This wasn't too bad when the curves were new, but it has gotten worse over time. A circle of metal R56 when new The same parts almost a year later Straight metal track when removed from the holder So today, myself and jtlan decided to try to rectify the issue by doing exactly what ME Models failed to do: pre-bend the rails such that they aren't messing with the geometry of the plastic holders (or at least not as much). What we ended up doing after some trial and error was building a LEGO roll bender through which you can run the Code 100 rail. It's hard to show the rail in the rollers as someone needs to be pressing down on the assembly for it to not come apart while rolling, but this picture gives you a general idea of what's happening. You feed the rail through two of the rollers (the sides of the 3x3 disks fit somewhat nicely into the side of the Code 100 rail - do note that this will damage the disks if you roll enough track), and then it will deflect upward when it hits the third roller. This causes the rail to deform into a tighter radius than required, but it will spring back a bit due to physics. The way we determined how to space the rollers was simple trial and error. The final spacing we used is shown below. Here is a piece of rolled track next to the plastic holder. You can see that the roller spacing we chose actually makes the curves slightly too small, but we wanted to compensate a little for the fact that we can't bend the ends that well with this method. Either way the the forces distorting the plastic holders are much smaller than before, and it should make the track easier to assemble and less prone to blowing up. Here you can see that the connection between two pieces of rail is much smoother than before: We haven't rolled our whole batch of R56 yet, so there might be more to this saga, but so far this looks promising. Anyone else experienced similar issues with the ME Models metal track and/or have tried to fix it?
  13. Commander Wolf

    TTX Articulated Intermodal Spine Car

    The twenty-foot containers are 6x16 (except for the RailBricks ones with the doors - those are nonstandard at 6x17) and the forty-foot containers are 6x32. The nice thing about 6x16/32 is that they will work with some official sets, ie the old Maersk train. For the truck, there is nothing special: on the prototype those stands can fold up and collapse, but on the model, everything is static: The blue thing (which is a window on the actual model) connects to the trailer and gravity does everything else! I'll admit, these aren't the sturdiest things in the world, even though they're way better than my first attempt with the well cars. As far as I can tell, the trick is just to use as long of plates as possible! Even though that makes the cars sturdy enough to not fall apart while running, if you press down hard enough (ie even trying to attach the containers), the connections holding the lower parts of the spine will separate from the top parts. The best thing to do is put the containers on the cars first and then put them on the track.
  14. Commander Wolf

    [MOC] 1:350 Scale Imperial Japanese Navy Kongo

    An update! Finally finished a first pass on the lower hull after much struggle: From the top and sides I think the lines generated by this form are pretty close to what they should be: From the bottom I think the front curve (blue) needs to have slightly more of an S shape and then back curve (green) needs to have slightly less of an S shape... but despite all the model kits out there I haven't been able to find a good hull underside picture for what this part is supposed to look like:
  15. Commander Wolf

    TTX Articulated Intermodal Spine Car

    If you're building it entirely from scratch, my guess is maybe $20 to $25 from Bricklink for each of the five sections. Every 40-foot container's worth of container is probably another $10 to $15. There's definitely ways to do the containers cheaper though if you either reduce the detail or increase the weight. For example if you made the large containers from basic bricks and small plates, they'd cost next to nothing, but would probably weigh twice as much as the ones I've built from large panels and large plates. EDIT: I explicitly haven't used any super rare or super new parts though, so at the very least all of the parts should be very readily available.