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Murdoch17 posted a topic in LEGO Train TechIt is the early 1930's. The dark days of late 1929 has worsened into a economic depression of truly epic proportions. Worse, the drought starting in summer 1930 (lasting until above average rains stopped it in 1941) caused the dreaded Dust Bowl and the mass migration of (most) of an entire generation of farmers and their families westward. This time frame also led to the rise of hobos, wandering, jobless people trying to use the one mass transportation still running across the dusty, windswept nation: The freight trains. The backstory on this train is as such: The engine, number 6519, runs daily from Lawrence, Kansas yard to where it finally services the Rust-eze factory in Moberly, Missouri. The line branches off and curves to the left in Columbia Missouri, while the main goes straight on to St. Louis. The rest of the regular freight is worked at the Columbia yard, expect for the acid tanker and the two marked generic boxcars. That tanker goes to the factory too, as it's a chemical component for Rust-eze. Rumor has it that the Rust-eze plant will be moving closer to St. Louis, or even shutting down soon, maybe by early 1934. The engine used to be a heavy-hauler out on the main, but has been relegated to branch line work, as it's 1898-vintage pistons are wearing a bit thin and she is overdue for a overhaul. Unfortunately, with the current depression, she has been reassigned to light branch work with a limit on her speed. Hopefully, they will scrape up the money to get her in the shop soon. This early 1900's-era engine model was first designed as a 2-8-2 Mikado before having the front pony truck removed and a 4 wheel bogie from set 10194 (Emerald Night) added instead, turning it into a 4-8-0 Mastodon - type. The rear pony truck was removed as well, with the 79111-style boiler shortened and cab re-arranged. Then, as of late September of this year, I completely rebuilt her from the wheels up to use the Disney engine boiler you see here. The running gear was originally a Scotnick invention from his 9F, but now comes from my MOD of the Constitution Train Chase set. So, basically, the only thing original left is the tender. Together, these several different engines from four different eras and five separate builders come together to create this one steam engine, which I have numbered 6519. The coal tender was inspired by Anthony Sava's Pacific 4-6-2 model's oil tender with the letters "BRS" added in the middle of the tender using printed 1 x 1 tiles. I was inspired by this photo by JB Lego to build this boxcar as seen here. They are made to haul pallets of cargo, specifically Rust-eze chrome restorer in 55-gallon drum containers for commercial packaging at this facility into smaller containers. Inspired by the green tractor trailer from CITY set 4204 (The Mine), this bathtub gondola is carrying boulders from the mine destined for the gold refinery where they will be opened up and the metal extracted to make coins and ingots. This drop side flat car was first part of set 2126 (Train Cars), but it didn't really have a purpose. It was hauling uprooted evergreen trees in the set, but that didn't look very good, so I changed it to generic freight. (My layout's resident hobo and his trusty guitar usually catch a ride on this piece of rolling stock.) The hobo is trying to get home to his family, which lives in Glenncoe, Missouri. Sadly, he picked the wrong train, as this only get's him halfway there. He's going to have to ride the blind of a steam engine tender on a passenger run to get home. (that's the area between the first car and tender, it's very dangerous because you're balancing on the coupler!) This dangerous liquid tanker was modeled after a real tanker car you can walk through in the Museum of Transportation's collection in St. Louis, Missouri. The real deal hauled hydrochloric acid for Monsanto starting in 1940 up into the late 1960's. I'm backdating the car ten years to fit into my mid-'30's freight train. I have adapted this UK inspired model of a brake van by Fireglo450 (see it here) to once again be a more American-inspired caboose. The caboose has no interior, and the red marker light can go on either end of the model to represent the end of whatever train it is being hauled behind. Here you can find other topics of interest mentioned in the text, or that are similar enough to be placed alongside time frame-wise I have this passenger train, that goes along with the freight train in this time period. (No, the hobo does not ride this one home.) and this branch-line station that is from the same late-1890's era, and on the main line from the San Francisco to New York (via St. Louis, of course!) Here we see the (100% fictional) Moberly, Missouri, Ruste-eze Factory. It seems to have made it to better times, with this picture taking place in the early 1950's. Any thoughts, comments, or complaints?