Looking for help superdetailing N Models

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by LeksServices, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. LeksServices

    LeksServices New Member

    Well, okay, they're N scale toys. :eek:

    I can't really afford to lump out a lot of money for a locomotive all at once, and I refuse to buy them on loans. Subsequently, I end up getting what is oft given to children.

    Which is fine, I guess, but they don't look nearly as nice as I'd like, even if they look much better than expected. :thumb:

    I was wondering if someone here would love to work on them, one piece at a time, to make them in to "fine models." This would mostly involve adding details, but there would be some body mods necessary to them as well because some details, like the lines around the battery boxes, are raised instead of indented.

    I do kinda' know what's out there, so I guess I can be finicky in what I ask for. But the good news is that I plan to build a model of a fictitious railroad, so you won't have to worry about messing up the paint! Wahoo! sign1

    These toys have die cast metal shells on them. It makes them very heavy for N-Scale equipment, but somehow, I feel it may be better that way. What I have right now are two N-Scale F59PHI's {I may buy more} and four bilevel coaches of unknown designation {although they're all identical}.

    My main focus has always been on modern locomotives, and I think the F59PHI is just totally sexy, a unit that makes me feel giddy all over whenever I see one.

    These units, with their metal shells, would at the very least need to be repowered. If someone feels this would be a fun, worthwhile project, I'd be willing to send them to you one at a time for work, and I'd happily pay you for the parts and perhaps a little money for your labor as well. In advance of buying the parts for each stage of the modification, if that helps. :oops:

    The last sentence of the above paragraph, of course, will mean we will end up discussing what parts to buy as you feel the need for them. :oops:

    Of course, these are very cheap locomotives. If you happen to want one or two to superdetail for your own layout, let me know, and I will happily buy additional sets and let you have them. :thumb:

    If all this leads you to wonder why I don't just buy good locomotives in the first place, well, in answer I can only say that I can buy three of these F59PHI's, with two beautiful bilevel coaches each, for the least expensive price I've found on just one Athearn F59PHI. I can get four sets of these for Athearn's MSRP.

    Besides, computer parts are expensive, and PC parts have a higher priority than model trains. Also, Athearn runs models for limited periods, and I suspect these toys will be available for much longer. :oops:

    Does anyone here accept PayPal? :mrgreen:

    Lynn Erika Kilroy
  2. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    Welcome to the Gauge.
    Do you have the name of the manufacturer?
    I'd like to see a pic of the loco also if I could. Though my working in N scale days are over(misguided, as one ex member used to call us), maybe posting a pic will give someone an idea of what you need to taking a less expensive "Toy", and make it a fine running, highly detailed model.
  3. engineshop

    engineshop Member

    If you paid about $20 for the entire set, those are toys that just share the size of N-scale.
    Re-motoring and detailing them would cost you more than pay for the real deal. You have to count on 4 - 5 hours if it even is possible with around $15 per hour charges.
    Check out on e-bay for some good deals on Athearn F59PhI if you don't care about the paint scheme.
  4. scubadude

    scubadude Member

    :agree1:.....seems cheaper in the long run to try and save a few $$$$ and get on Ebay to find something closer to what you want....
  5. LeksServices

    LeksServices New Member

    Actually, I've changed my mind about the body work just yet.

    The manufacturer is New Ray. It really is a toy, even if it is a nice one.

    I belive it would be easier to repower it, first. It has a plastic frame to which the trucks attach. If memory serves, typical N-Scale trucks mount differently, but this toy can be modified pretty easily to make the new trucks fit.

    What would be nice is a "Repowering Order List" of parts to repower this unit.

    I do not think that using a typical "N" chassis is a good idea. The two metal halves would run in to the metal shell, and short the unit. But I can make the unit work with wires {like an HO unit}.

    A list of parts to order would be nice, and where to get them. I need the trucks, obviously, decent sideframes would be nice, a decent motor, and some materials for making a mount for the motor as this unit has none atm.

    I will also need to know where I can find weights to add to the locomotive.

    Do N scale units ever use flywheels? The Bachmann I had from ages ago did not, as far as I can remember.

    I will leave the body as it is. It's all metal - including the windows! - and so there will be no need to "hide" anything in the locomotive.

    Oh ... and I looked on e-bay. An F59PHI costs US$60.00 and more on e-bay. That's not really cheap.

    If I modified this unit, it would make it more closely resemble a fictitious locomotive, now. This would mean removing some parts of it, since i was never fond of those features on the F59PHI. One such feature would be the open platform on the back of the unit. Open platforms on Passenger Units always struck me as a little off. Perhaps I see them as more a freight feature than a passenger one.

    My fictitious road would use F59PHI style locomotives modeled after E units. Or perhaps even modelled off an SD90MAC! sign1 I like bigger power, and I just always thought it looked better in front of passenger trains than the shorter ones. :twisted:

    Which reminds me ... If I tried to build such things, where could I get just the parts, and how would I know which parts I needed? :p I've always been interested in scratch building. :p Mebbe I should look for models of the BL20-2, huh? :p

  6. nscaler711

    nscaler711 Member

    personally i think you should try Walthers, aka Life Like, they have good running locos that will last forever! lol the proto series is expensive but again its a life like so its all good!, but if you want a good model go with Kato, not new ray, hell dont mess with New ray the stuff is a crap shoot
    you want a large loco pulling your passenger ey? well LL has an E8, or E7 (cant remember) but they pull really well....and jeeze where did i get this knowledge so fast....oh right, the fine people here at The Gauge! lol ;)

    well good luck with your hunt, also talk to Fifer, he and his wife own Fifer Hobbies, and see if he has any Athrean F59PH's

  7. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

    Are you planning to do the work yourself? Do you have the skills and equipment to do major surgery on the models? I hate to agree with everyone else, but, the end cost will be as much as buying real N scale equipment. There is the old story about the 20,000 dollar cord of wood. Cost of chain saw, cost of axe, cost of pickup, cost to repair neighbors house etc, etc. Sometimes simple ideas just don't work out that way.

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