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  • NMRA AP Cars Certificate "Support" Thread

    This thread is one of a series of threads intended to help RR-L Forum members who are also members of the NMRA and are working within the NMRA’s Achievement Program. This is not a thread to debate the pros and cons of either the NMRA or the Achievement Program. For a full explanation of the purpose of these threads, members should refer to this thread on the forum: http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/t...TOPIC_ID=24676

    The Master Builder – Cars category requires the modeler to turn his/her attention to rolling stock. To earn the certificate, the modeler must build eight pieces of highly detailed rolling stock. This rolling stock must be able to ‘operate’ on the rails. The eight cars must represent four different ‘types’ of cars, at least one of which must be a passenger car. Of the eight, four of the cars must be scratchbuilt, and four must earn at least 87.5 points when evaluated against specific NMRA standards.

    More information on the Master Builder – Cars category can be found at this link: http://www.nmra.org/education/achievement/ap_cars.html

    This is an area in which I haven’t done much work yet. However, I want to turn my attention to this one next. I know that Don (AVRR-PA) is also about to begin work in this area. Anyone else wanting to try their hands at this category, perhaps we can ‘work together’ through the forum.
    Bruce

  • #2
    When he saw that I planned on working on the 'Cars" certificate, forum member Pete Magoun (orionvp17) sent me an e-mail suggesting the title of a book: "Easy to Build Model Railroad Freight Cars" by Kalmbach. That book is out of print, but I was able to find a copy at a reasonable price. If you can't find one in the $10-$20 range, try the inter-library loan program in your town. This book contains twenty-four 'Dollar Car Projects' from the pages of Model Railroader.

    I was also able to pick up a copy of a book I had never heard of: "Slim Gauge Cars" by Carstens. This book contains pictures and plans of an assortment of narrow gauge rolling stock. http://works-k.cocolog-nifty.com/pho..._title_13.html

    Finally, there are loads of rolling stock plans in old copies of the modeling press and on-going in the Gazette.

    I've been looking through 'all of the above' to select a 'first project'. I hope to start soon.
    Bruce

    Comment


    • #3
      Bruce,

      I think I have the Kalmbach book. I'll have to look.

      I think another great source is the series of articles in RMC by Ted Culotta.

      Chuck

      Comment


      • #4
        quote:


        Originally posted by Dutchman


        When he saw that I planned on working on the 'Cars" certificate, forum member Pete Magoun (orionvp17) sent me an e-mail suggesting the title of a book: "Easy to Build Model Railroad Freight Cars" by Kalmbach. That book is out of print, but I was able to find a copy at a reasonable price. If you can't find one in the $10-$20 range, try the inter-library loan program in your town. This book contains twenty-four 'Dollar Car Projects' from the pages of Model Railroader.


        This book has a number of really nice projects in it, but they're built with fifty-year old techniques and materials to fifty year-old standards. They can be upgraded using current materials (styrene or resins, for instance) and built to current standards, which tend to be much more precise. This process can be a great deal of fun, and some of those old techniques are still very valid!

        Be sure to research underbody detail and include it on your car— many of the drawings in this book don't have it, and you'll need it to compete in today's environment. Also note that some of the drawings are somewhat compressed; a forty-footer as drawn may scale out to 37 feet, for instance. That won't cut it for a contest model....

        And as always, the more prototype documentation you can come up with, the better your chances of earning a Merit Award.

        Pete

        in Michigan

        Comment


        • #5
          This was the 1st of the AP certificates that I completed. Almost of my MoW cars in the MoW cars thread received merit awards so while being true a specific prototype is important, one can also free-lance and just be "prototypical". The scratchbuilding requirement appears to have changed since I completed this category as well; one used to have to score 13 of 15 points in the scratchbuilding judging category...

          For those fearing the chore of scratchbuilding the required passenger car, fear not since while a passenger car is required, it does not have to be a merit award winning scratchbuilt car; just a "super-detailed" car.....
          In a time like ours seemings and portents signify. Ours is a generation when dogs howl and the skin crawls on the skull with its beast's foreboding.

          Comment


          • #6
            quote:


            Originally posted by mwbpequod


            The scratchbuilding requirement appears to have changed since I completed this category as well; one used to have to score 13 of 15 points in the scratchbuilding judging category...

            For those fearing the chore of scratchbuilding the required passenger car, fear not since while a passenger car is required, it does not have to be a merit award winning scratchbuilt car; just a "super-detailed" car.....


            Good points. The scoring system was revised several years ago, and the NMRA continues to look at it to keep it current. Check frequently!

            As to "the dreaded passenger car," while it does not have to be scratchbuilt, why not do it anyway? There are any number of highly competent structure builders on these Forums, most of whom are more than willing to share their techniques. Learn from them! After all, a passenger car is nothing more than a structure with a complete interior, but mounted on a rolling foundation. They're no more difficult than any "interesting" building....

            Even if you model "now," and your road provides no passenger service, modeling the car will stretch your horizons. And that's not bad....

            Pete

            in Michigan

            Comment


            • #7
              I found plans in an old Gazette for a crew car used by a lumber company to transport workers. It was built on a log car frame, and looked interesting. Right now, I can't find the issue, so I think I might have left it at my son's house in Virginia. Anyway, that type of car would qualify as a 'passenger' car, right?
              Bruce

              Comment


              • #8
                I would think so, Bruce. But, to be sure, you might want to check with the division's Achievement Program Chairman.

                Another car that would qualify as a passenger is a drover's caboose.

                Chuck

                Comment


                • #9
                  quote:


                  Originally posted by Orionvp17


                  As to "the dreaded passenger car," while it does not have to be scratchbuilt, why not do it anyway?



                  Actually, you have to have 1 of your 8 cars be a passenger car, so you have to face that fear down anyway, If you can build a La Belle kit, add a full interior, all of the exterior details, you're good to go on that front!

                  quote:


                  There are any number of highly competent structure builders on these Forums, most of whom are more than willing to share their techniques. Learn from them! After all, a passenger car is nothing more than a structure with a complete interior, but mounted on a rolling foundation. They're no more difficult than any "interesting" building....


                  Even if you model "now," and your road provides no passenger service, modeling the car will stretch your horizons. And that's not bad....

                  Pete

                  in Michigan


                  Completely agree!!!

                  For some reason there's some misplaced perception that building a passenger car is something beyond those that can build other rolling stock. Just like you state, it's just a house on wheels,

                  As for what qualifies, best to check in with your Divisionl or Regional AP rep to be sure.
                  In a time like ours seemings and portents signify. Ours is a generation when dogs howl and the skin crawls on the skull with its beast's foreboding.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yep, building a passenger car really isn't that bad. Northeastern still sells the roofing and the sides with a belt. They also sell the moldings you might need, such as window sash, thresholds, half and quarter rounds. If you are really squeamish and don't know where to start, pick up an Ambroid or LaBelle kit and build one of those first. Then, build the second one from scratch. I am working on a B&M coach and combine off of Ambroid plans currently. I am sort of stalled at the moment, because I am at the point where I need to decided if I want an interior or not. I am ready to paint the interior and sides prior to gluing up the sides. I did not make the roofs removable as that would have been a biggger job than I wanted to tackle. I am currently working on the Cars AP and have one down. My next submission will be a 36 ft. Swift Reefer. All done and ready for judging.

                    Regards, Vic Bitleris

                    quote:


                    Originally posted by mwbpequod


                    quote:


                    Originally posted by Orionvp17


                    As to "the dreaded passenger car," while it does not have to be scratchbuilt, why not do it anyway?



                    Actually, you have to have 1 of your 8 cars be a passenger car, so you have to face that fear down anyway, If you can build a La Belle kit, add a full interior, all of the exterior details, you're good to go on that front!

                    quote:


                    There are any number of highly competent structure builders on these Forums, most of whom are more than willing to share their techniques. Learn from them! After all, a passenger car is nothing more than a structure with a complete interior, but mounted on a rolling foundation. They're no more difficult than any "interesting" building....


                    Even if you model "now," and your road provides no passenger service, modeling the car will stretch your horizons. And that's not bad....

                    Pete

                    in Michigan


                    Completely agree!!!

                    For some reason there's some misplaced perception that building a passenger car is something beyond those that can build other rolling stock. Just like you state, it's just a house on wheels,

                    As for what qualifies, best to check in with your Divisionl or Regional AP rep to be sure.


                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Good luck with the reefer, Vic! Any pictures of it?

                      Chuck

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Looking forward to seeing that reefer myself, Vic!
                        In a time like ours seemings and portents signify. Ours is a generation when dogs howl and the skin crawls on the skull with its beast's foreboding.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I made the roof on my Northeastern/Ambroid B&M coach removable by epoxying two 4-40 nuts on the underside of the roof at opposite corners behind window posts (I chose which corners based on the pre-existing warp in the roof). Then I ran a long 4-40 screw up through the floor into the nut to hold the roof down.

                          I thought about entering this car in the Detroit national contest, as there were only a couple of passenger car entries. But since I hadn't added seats, I decided not to...
                          James

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Not yet, I still need to dullcoat it. I will try to get some photos this weekend and post to the scratchbuilding forum.

                            Regards, Vic Bitleris

                            quote:


                            Originally posted by wvrr


                            Good luck with the reefer, Vic! Any pictures of it?

                            Chuck


                            Comment


                            • #15
                              For those of you still trembling over the "dreaded passenger car" requirement for the Cars certificate, Bob Walker's scratchbuilding column in the March issue of Railroad Model Craftsman runs through some of the issues and solutions, complete with color photos.

                              Pete

                              in Michigan

                              Comment

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