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 ACL O-17 Ventilation Box Car - "Watermelon Car"
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Author Previous Topic: BTS Kit Constructions and Conversions Topic Next Topic: NMRA AP Cars Certificate Support Thread
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wlyders
New Hire

Posted - 05/15/2020 :  4:50:19 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I am trying to scratch build the ACL Watermelon Car starting with an Ambroid Kit from the 50s [One of my Cars for my NMRA AP Cars certificate]. This kit has all the wood pieces but no car details like the brakes, wheels, etc., nor are they described in the brief kit instructions

From my research, I have some pictures and have an idea of which details I need. But I don’t have specific types or sizes of the following:
• Side Grab irons: 18”, 21”, or 22” or another size
• Door Grab Irons: size
• Ladders on the end: 7 rungs, 8 rungs. I assume metal ladders, not wood
• Brake System – Brake gear, Cylinder, reduction valve, etc.
• Brake handle on end above the roof
• Door handles, rollers, etc.
• Connectors for brake lines underneath and up the size
• Underbody parts layout and detail [the kit shows some but not all detail parts]
I need pictures or drawings or parts lists showing these items in order to scratchbuild or purchase these parts. I found the ACL/SAL Historical Society and the NC Transportation Museum web sites devoid of rolling stock details.

Does anybody have any links or information that I can use?

Thank you in advance,

Bill Lyders

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George D
Moderator

Premium Member


Posted - 05/15/2020 :  8:28:50 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bill, I used the framework from a ventilated boxcar kit and built a regular double sheathed boxcar. I documented the build in our 2020 Group Challenge, http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=52348&whichpage=39

The drawings with the kit's instructions were accurate and should give you the dimensions you want. I used Tichy brakes



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Frank Palmer
Fireman



Posted - 05/16/2020 :  09:11:19 AM  Show Profile  Visit Frank Palmer's Homepage  Reply with Quote

Seaboard cars being loaded with melons in Pasco County, FL.





Frank

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wlyders
New Hire

Posted - 05/16/2020 :  10:09:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by George D

Bill, I used the framework from a ventilated boxcar kit and built a regular double sheathed boxcar. I documented the build in our 2020 Group Challenge, http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=52348&whichpage=39

The drawings with the kit's instructions were accurate and should give you the dimensions you want. I used Tichy brakes



George,
I followed the challenge to see all your feedback. That box car looks great. I will have to look more closely at the instructions in my Ambroid kit. I do have another kit from Northeastern [that I noticed you used] that has dimensions for the car details.
Thanks for getting back to me.
Bill



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Pennman
Fireman

Premium Member


Posted - 05/16/2020 :  10:16:45 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bill,

I have a complete kit from Ambroid for the ACL Watermelon Car. The kit has everything to make a complete model, and all necessary parts are present, including a full-sized parts plan.
If you have a kit, show some pictures of what you have, and I will compare yours with mine to see what you need.

Rich



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George D
Moderator

Premium Member


Posted - 05/16/2020 :  12:46:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bill, the Ambroid and Northeastern kits are identical, to include the plans. Don't ask me to explain why.

George



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wlyders
New Hire

Posted - 05/16/2020 :  4:56:03 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My Bad!!! I looked in my other Northeastern kit [different model] and saw a small manila envelope. So I went to my Watermelon Car from Amroid and under the packing material was a small manila envelope. I opened it and wala, there were the detail parts I was searching to identify.

So Thank you for straightening me out. Bill L



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bitlerisvj
Fireman

Posted - 05/19/2020 :  1:47:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Check the "Sticky" NMRA thread in this section, page 1. There are photos of the one I scratch built and got a merit award at the Detroit National Convention. I used the Ambroid kit as an instructional model and while I built the Ambroid kit, I scratched my own. The most difficult part was building the doors, it was tedious, but I got em exactly as I wanted them. I was fortunate that I had acquired proper decals. I did fiddle with paint to get the correct color as nothing was available.
Good luck, Vic B.



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wlyders
New Hire

Posted - 05/19/2020 :  2:28:21 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Vic,
I really appreciated your feedback, especially the NMRA acceptance, as I plan on using the Ambroid Kit as an information reference to scratch build the car. I plan on building the car body and some of the other details with polystyrene. Are the wire dimensions in the kit for grab irons, brake lines, ladders, etc. prototypical or is there a different size I should get to make them.
Thanks,
Bill



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bitlerisvj
Fireman

Posted - 05/20/2020 :  2:01:11 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
So, I made the grab parts the same size as Ambroid parts, but that resulted in fewer points. I would use .015, .016, or .017 depending on what is available, .020 is too big for grabs. The other part I got dinged on was the thickness of the brake wheel. Thin it down. I do agree that the Ambroid bars on the door are correct, so I used that size wire. For the train line, I would use .025 wire instead of .032 and .015 for the other brake pipes and rods. I did use styrene for the metal parts and some other items.
I think it is a good build o go for. The hard part is getting correct decals these days, maybe eBay?
Regards, Vic B.



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SAFN SAAP
Engine Wiper

Premium Member


Posted - 05/20/2020 :  5:50:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
[i] The hard part is getting correct decals these days, maybe eBay?
Regards, Vic B.



Vic,

Check out K4 Decals. www.k4decals.com. He has the ACL Watermelon Cars and takes the lettering straight off the pictures. 100% accurate. Tell him Levi referred you.

Also of note, I am producing laser cut ventilated box car doors. The ACL version is soon to be released. They include both doors, and end door sets.

Levi



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wlyders
New Hire

Posted - 05/21/2020 :  09:10:30 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Vic/Levi,
Excellent feedback. I was just starting to make up an order to get the wire. The kit has a set of decals but from the pictures I have seen, they are probably correct but I will check out the site that Levi suggested for a "newer" set that may not be fragile.

Vic,
All the pictures of the prototypes I have seen are in black/white. The kit mentions Floquil Box Car Red [of course Floquil is not around any more]. In my searches, I found a vendor selling O-scale Watermelon cars and the pics were in color.

What color and vendor did you paint your car with?

Thanks, Bill



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SAFN SAAP
Engine Wiper

Premium Member


Posted - 05/21/2020 :  09:21:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by wlyders

Vic/Levi,
Excellent feedback. I was just starting to make up an order to get the wire. The kit has a set of decals but from the pictures I have seen, they are probably correct but I will check out the site that Levi suggested for a "newer" set that may not be fragile.

Vic,
All the pictures of the prototypes I have seen are in black/white. The kit mentions Floquil Box Car Red [of course Floquil is not around any more]. In my searches, I found a vendor selling O-scale Watermelon cars and the pics were in color.

What color and vendor did you paint your car with?

Thanks, Bill




ACL Watermelon Cars in the early years where yellow, with oxide red roofs. It wasn't until the 1930's I believe that they went to all oxide red.

Levi



Country: USA | Posts: 436 Go to Top of Page

bitlerisvj
Fireman

Posted - 05/21/2020 :  1:27:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Levi, the decals are perfect. Someone posted this site to me a few weeks ago and I kind browsed it a bit. I definitely will be ordering some decals from him.
Regarding the paint. I did see some color photos of the prototype and while they were sort of oxide red, they were darker than any oxide red paint I have seen. The oxide red available is a bit too orangey for the car. The Ambroid pre-painted ad pre-lettered car was actually correct to prototype, but did not say what color or brand was used. I mixed up some oxide red and boxcar red/tuscan to get the color I wanted. I used Polyscale and I think I ended up using 3 parts oxide red to 1 part boxcar red. I remember it took some experimenting and testing and allowing it to dry before I made my decision. By the way, I needed to do that to match the Ambroid pre-painted stuff.
Regards, Vic B.





Edited by - bitlerisvj on 05/21/2020 1:28:30 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 1442 Go to Top of Page

mwbpequod
Fireman



Posted - 05/21/2020 :  6:33:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:

ACL Watermelon Cars in the early years where yellow, with oxide red roofs.


Clover House has dry transfers for this era of ACL ventilated car. They also have sets for several other road names - ventilated produce cars were not exclusive to ACL.

One of my scratchbuild cars is lettered with a dry transfer set for an early B&O car. Another is lettered for GM&O.

As for details and accuracy, if you can find someone with one of Yoder's brass imports of the ACL car to take pictures, you'll have far more information than you might want,


Language is a cracked kettle on which we beat out tunes for bears to dance to,
while all the time we long to move the stars to pity.

Country: USA | Posts: 2133 Go to Top of Page

wlyders
New Hire

Posted - 05/23/2020 :  1:54:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Vic,
I have been doing some searching for wire. Where is the best place to order the wire sizes you mentioned?
Bill



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