Thursday 30 July 2015

MEC Athearn Caboose - Upgraded

MEC #661 is seen in service this summer on the WRD. Some minor changes have made it appear more like the prototype. The caboose came over to the MEC from the Western Maryland Ry.
I was comparing my MEC Athearn caboose made specifically for the Danbury Railroad Museum to photos of the prototype the other day and found a few discrepancies that I thought could be an easy fix. One the smoke stack is on the wrong side and the second is the running boards did not have end platforms. The stack can be cut off and a new one added. The wood running boards are removed and the platforms cut off. With a touch up of paint and weathering it looks more like the prototype...George Dutka

Parts added are Trackside Parts #193 smoke jacket (straight), Tichy corner grabs, roof #3028 and Tichy straight grabs #3021.
End grabs and cupola corner grabs are seen added. A new smoke stack is also in place. The conductor is ready for his next run if the shop staff get their act in gear.

The smoke stack is a Trackside Parts straight offering. I added a small piece of scrap styrene to complete the look. One can see the end grabs in place of the roof walk platform. I decided to add Tichy cupola corner grabs as found on the prototype which is an easy chore. The grabs and any paint removed from the roofing is painted a mix of Floquil coach green mixed with a dab of brunswick green.

In service the conductor appears happy with the overall look of his caboose. He does complain  a bit about the molded on  curved handrails on the sides. It appears he is having a problem getting a hold of them when the caboose is on the move. I considered scraping them off and adding wire handholds, but it would make a mess of the nice paint they are staying as is.

Both sides of the caboose have been weathered differently. This side although still pretty clean is a bit dirtier than the other side. The weathering at the moment is all Bragdon powder but when I get to airbrushing again, an overcoat of grimy black will be dusted on the roof.

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