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July 7, 2015 Fourth SP ¾ Dome Lounge Project

I've Kitbashed three 85' Bachmann Full Dome passenger cars into Southern Pacific Daylight ¾ Dome Lounge passenger cars.  They all turned out very good and very close to prototype.  I have a problem with the length of Bachmann cars, they look out of place along side my 72' Athearn cars.

I'm going to attempt to Kitbash a 72' Athearn Diner into a 72' SP ¾ Dome Lounge car.  This post will follow the construction of my Kitbash project.

The first picture is my third Bachmann Kitbash, finished and ready to be replaced by a 72' Athearn Kitbash.

The picture below is a 72' Athearn Diner that is going to become my ¾ Dome Lounge car.

I scratch built the interior and added 4 oz. of #8 bird shot for extra weight.

I glued .020" sheet styrene over the unwanted windows.

I used Testors Liquid Cement to glue the Styrene in place.

Next I filled the windows with JB Kwik Weld Epoxy.

These pictures show the epoxy sanded flush with the Athearn shell.

These two pictures show the shell primed with Rust-Oleum Automotive Primer and sanded.

I bought a used Bachmann Full Dome car off eBay to cut up for making the dome windows for this car.

After I attach the modified Bachmann dome roof I will continue sanding to remove any sign of the filled in side windows then prime the entire car with Tru-Color Primer TCP-07.

This is the Bachmann Full Dome that has been up for dome/roof parts.

Cutting off the dome took two #11 blades, one for each side.  I clamped a steel ruler to the side of the shell for a straight edge.

In the picture above I have removed three windows from the dome and cut the Acrylic window glass to fit the shortened dome.

I have glued the Acrylic and it fits the shortened dome perfectly.

Here I have set the dome on top of the Athearn Diner to mark the roof cuts.

Again cutting out the roof section took two #11 blades.  The Athearn shell is much thicker than Bachmann but easier to cut.  I have glued in some Styrene brackets to support the dome.

The dome fits very good.  It will require some Styrene filler strips to fill the .020" gap between the Athearn sides and the Bachmann dome for a perfect fit.

My Athearn ¾ Dome Lounge car is ready roof detailingI added some detail to the roof over the kitchen.

The large open tube is the vent for the short order cook stove and the square hatch is for maintaining the air system for the small kitchen.

The sanding went very good, everything fitting together perfectly really helped.  I used a dozen or so thin coats of Rust-Oleum Automotive Primer between each sanding.  

I shot the complete shell with TCP-07 Primer using my airbrush.

I'll knock the fuzzys  off with a paint rag.

I'm going to let it dry over night and do my thing with my airbrush tomorrow.  I'm going to paint it SP Daylight colors.

The Daylight colors went on very good.

With the paint glossy it looks toy like, Testors Dull Coat will take care of that after I apply my decals.

The Squadron White Putty works great with the Rust-Oleum Automotive Primer.  I rough sanded the putty/Styrene with 80 grit wet and dry sand paper and finished up with 150 grit.

Because the window glass is clear I'm going to build up a new interior complete with passengers and install full lighting.

I'm going to kitbash the Bachmann interior to be as close to the SP Dome cars as I can, this is what I have to work with.

I cut it up the top section to use as much as I can then did a real cut and paste using Testors Liquid Cement.  I used .020" & .040" thick Evergreen Styrene sheet stock for fillers and walls.

I cut out some chairs for walkways and moved some to conform to the SP interiors.

I dropped the walkway and added Tichy stairs on both ends of the walkway, very close the SP prototype.

The top dome area is ready for paint.

I finished the lounge area interior and it's ready for paint.  The seats in the lounge area have enough depth to the floor for passengers without cutting off their feet. 

The picture above shows the interior before assembly.  The top deck slips into the shell first then the bottom frame slides into the shell.  It is held together with a lip on the right end of the shell and a single screw on the left end.  The two weight assemblies consist of 2½ ounces of #8 bird shot for added weight.

The following pictures show the finished interior.

The figures sitting on the upper deck are 1:100 scale to fit the Bachmann chairs.  The figures in the lounge are 1:87 scale, I hand painted the 1:87 figures and did some touch up to the 1:100 figures.

Next is adding the lighting. 

I finished the lighting module, it has three 1.5 volt 20ma. bulbs and two 1.5 volt 100ma. bulbs.  The brighter bulbs are over the lounge area, the dim bulbs are over the dome seating.  I installed the Southern Pacific decals so after a final check out it's ready for service.

It's finally finished!  I applied the decals, gave the shell two coats of Testors Dull Coat and installed all the window glass.

The picture above is without the interior lightning on.  The next two pictures are with minimum ambient lighting and the interior lighting on.

This was a rather easy project, it was a first for me . . . . Murphy didn't show up and nothing went wrong.  I completed this project by working a few hours each day over a 10 day period.

I'm very pleased with the way it turned out.  I now have a 72' SP ¾ Dome/Lounge car that fits in nicely with my other Athearn Streamlined 72' passenger cars.

1 comment:

Christopher Howell said...

Wow this train looks really amazing and it's definitely worthy for more people to see it. I think that having a model train would be something super fun and it's something I could do with my son. I'll have to invest into some trains then, thanks for sharing something you are obviously a professional at! http://www.annshobby.com