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Messages - Ron Ginger

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Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: February 29, 2024, 09:35:53 AM »
We will be painting the end grain as well as the back, but thanks for the note.

The old siding was glued on, so it is coming off very hard. Its most likely use will be for locomotive kindling. It is a shame, but there is just no non-destructive  way to get it  off.

Work and Events / A set back
« on: February 28, 2024, 07:39:39 PM »
We have encountered a set back. The siding on the coach is a tongue and groove board with a small V on the face to make it look like two boards. A couple years ago we installed it without any thought to paint.

We now have 4 coats of primer and two coasts of color on it. We are in bay 4 which is heated in winter so a very dry condition. We have started to see cracks in the siding.

After hours of agonizing thought and discussion we have decided to take the hit now and replace the siding. Our next step would be the addition of gold and black decoration on the siding which is going to be quite expensive both for material and labor. We know the expansion and shrinking will continue over the life of the siding.

We made a couple mistakes here. First we should have applied primer to both sides of the boards before we installed them. This would have helped to reduce the swelling and shrinking of the siding. Our second mistake was to use a white primer under a very dark final color. If we had used a dark primer the shrinking would not have exposed a white line.

So we have ordered new siding and today began removing the old.

When we apply the new siding we will be cutting the boards to length and applying primer to both sides then at least one color coat before we hang the boards. This should give us a much better paint finish because we will be doing it on a flat bench.

The material is ordered and promised for three weeks delivery. We have many other jobs to work on in the mean time so  it wont be a big hit to finishing.

And in a minor improvement to historical accuracy, Harold counted the planks in the black and white photo of the original #3 and determined we should be using 4" wide planks. So we gain some accuracy.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: July 04, 2023, 05:47:37 PM »
More hardware. We could not find the correct, left hand, hinges for the salon so I made a set.  The end decoration on these matches that on the hinges in coach 3.

I might do a bit more polishing on these before I give them to Harold to install. I got tired of hand polishing after I made them, but now I have had some rest I will give it another hour or so. These are made from brass bar stock and silver brazed together.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: May 22, 2023, 10:26:31 AM »
I know I'm a bit late to the party, but I was doing some related research and came across this:

Manufactured for Wiscasset & Quebec Railroad. Interior view. Bracket for Hat Basket for Wiscassit & Quebec RR Cars #4188-89; 13"" x 13""

Wow, thats a great find. I have looked at the fittings in the Rangley car and figured Id have to measure them to make a pattern. I can extract that drawing and mill out a copy pretty easy now.

Volunteers / Re: May 2023 work reports
« on: May 18, 2023, 08:09:07 AM »
Coach 9 received its 7th and final coat of varnish on the interior.
We still have a lot to go, window sash, ceiling panels, ceiling decoration and more, but 7 coats is a major milestone.

We will examine the finish next Tuesday and may do some touch up if needed, as we try to achieve 'perfect enough'.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: April 22, 2023, 03:04:21 PM »
I hope we can make up a little glossy photograph booklet of progress shots explaining all the detail work that you and Eric (and others) have done.

-John M

Eric and I frequently talk about producing some kind of book about the entire construction. We have hundreds, maybe thousands of photos, but the organization of it all into a book would be a huge job. I would really like to do it. Maybe when the coach is done I will take on a book. When we finished the S.D. Warren locomotive restoration at Boothbay I did a small Google photos book. I think it may still be available to print.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: April 21, 2023, 08:01:20 PM »
I have continued to work on the coach hardware in my home shop. I received about 350 castings from the foundry based on my wax parts. We lost a few parts due to minor defects in the wax that the foundry caught. The parts are bead blasted as the final clean up in the foundry, so I have been polishing them to get a better shine. I have found the small scotchbrite wheels for the Dremel to work best, although it really eats up the wheels.

The window latch requires a small spring. I made a jig to bend the spring and have now made a few. Here are a couple latches assembled and ready to mount.

I've got about 6 latches finished, only 26 to go! I work on them a couple hours at a time and should have them all ready to mount when the varnish is done and the windows installed- maybe late summer.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: April 04, 2023, 09:16:07 PM »
Today the first coat of varnish was applied to the entire interior of the coach. This went much faster than we expected and looks great. The product we are using requires additional coats to be applied within a few days, so we are going to do the second coat tomorrow (our regular Wednesday work day) and then do additional coats Thursday and Friday. We planned 4 coats of this first product, kind of a primer for the varnish.

After this we must hand sand the entire coach before doing the final 2 coats.

I should mention our choice of finish products. Since Eric and I are both boat builders I contacted one of the major suppliers to the boat industry,  Epifanes. Their US sales manager has visited us several times to help with the selection of product and to help us understand their application. He also arranged for a generous discount on all the products we need. Their US headquarters is just up in Thomaston.

As for the brass chandeliers Eric found we could buy most of the components from a number of lamp suppliers. I have agreed to take on doing the lamps, right after I get the interior hardware done. I now have all the casting back and have polished a bit more than half of them. I expect I will have all the hardware ready to mount when the varnish is done and the surfaces ready for hardware.

Eric and I are both very happy with the look of the coach inside. Sorry that we are keeping the door locked, but the finish will look much nicer with less dust in it. As soon as we get the varnish on we will be allowing limited visitor access.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: March 08, 2023, 08:35:33 PM »
Today was a milestone day- Eric applied the first stain to the inside oak. After months of discussion, many test patches of stain, analysis by a professional paint company selections have been made and today we stained the lower part of  one side.

This starts a whole new phase of work. The woodwork is essentially done, from here on its stain, varnish, paint and untold hours of  hand sanding. Dust control will become our biggest problem. We will be blocking the door between Bay 3 and Bay 4 and restricting entry to Bay 4 as we get into the varnish phase. We know everyone will want to see the coach as it gets its finish, but we really want the best job we can get and dust particles in the varnish will not make for a good job.

We will allow access as much as we can but for a couple days after each coat is applied we must lock it off. Please understand what we are trying to do, we will all like the final result.

Volunteers / Re: January 2023 Work Reports
« on: January 09, 2023, 07:28:02 PM »
There will not be any coach 9 work this week. Eric and I are off on a road trip. The main event is the Cabin Fever model engineering expo in Lebanon, PA, but since we are going in that direction we have rented a U-Haul truck and will be hauling to Cat tail foundry some patterns for the Engine 11 project, and bringing back some finished castings, among them parts for the vacuum brakes.

Nothing better than a road trip that involves a foundry tour and a show with model engines, boats and trains.

We will be back to coach 9 and starting the paint and varnish prep. Cleaning bay 4 to a level to support the paint and varnish finish we intend to apply is going to be fun.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: November 06, 2022, 05:29:29 PM »
The latches are now complete. Again, since I only needed two I decided to make them from brass bar stock instead of making castings. It takes a lot of time to cut and mill all the features of the parts, but I guess its the  only way. Here is a photo of the two new parts, with the old part removed from coach 3.

There area couple features I could not reproduce, at least in any reasonable time, but since no one will ever again see these parts side by side I dont think it will be noticed.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: October 25, 2022, 05:48:23 PM »
I need to figure out how to re-size my photos- I am posting them direct from my Google photos folder.

The transom doors only need 4 hinges, so I decided to carve them out of solid brass instead of making castings. We got one of them mounted today, Eric may have actually finished hanging the door- I had to leave early for a dentist visit.

The top one is an original from coach 3, the bottom 4 are my carved parts. I am about half way through the latch.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: October 24, 2022, 04:24:01 PM »
Not at Cattail. They do sand cast iron, these parts are investment cast brass. Investment cast is more of a jewelry process, leading to much finer detail in the parts.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: October 24, 2022, 12:29:57 PM »
Coach 9 will need a lot of hardware that is no longer available, so  I have been working on making the needed parts. They will be made by  the investment casting, also called lost wax, process. I have made the wax parts in my home shop, but I will be taking the wax to a professional foundry to be cast.

First I removed one of each item we need from coach 3. This includes a handle to lift the window, a latch to hold the window, a finger pull to open the clerestory screens. I took the parts to my home shop and cleaned them up of the old varnish and crud.

I then made silicone rubber molds of each item.

Then the rubber molds are injected with molten wax from a small pressurized wax pot. We need about 32 of each item, but I am making enough to also restore coach 3, and some spares. Altogether I made about 50 waxes of each part.

I will be taking these to the foundry later this week. When I get them back I will have to do the finish machining on each part.

Work and Events / Re: Coach 9 - Official Work Thread
« on: August 14, 2022, 09:59:27 AM »
Eric and I have talked about the ceiling a bit and have a basic plan. We will remove the white painted masonite from coach 3 and see whats under there. We suspect the old decoration is there, based on some peeking Eric did a couple years ago. If its there we will probably do good photos, import that into some CAD program and try to reconstruct the image. From that we will likely create cut files and cut mylar masks on my CNC router (or use Alans if the images are to big for mine). We should then be able to stencil the layouts onto the oak veneer we will use for the ceiling panels.

Like all the tricky parts of this project Eric and I start to discuss them as we approach that work. By the time we get to it we seem to always get a plan ready and are able to move on. That is what has made this project so much fun, at least for me.

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