Undecorated car source

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by McFortner, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. McFortner

    McFortner Member

    I am looking for a source of cheap, er, inexpensive undecorated cars for both HO and N gauge. I want to make some cars for the NSR, but my favorite LHS is owned by a jerk and the other one is more interested in paint ball and rc cars. I'd even settle for some cheap cars that I can repaint and decal.

    And as a followup, anybody have the decals from the latest MR that they don't want? I think it would be cool to have the TCR cars on my layout as well as a Gauge car or two.

  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    You might try contacting some of the mail order firms that advertise in M.R. and RMC like Trainworld. They don't advertise undecorated cars, but since they deal in volumn in order to hold down prices, they might be able to help you out. You might also contact Athearn, MDC, or Accurail to see if they would be interested in helping you out. One more thing, even if the "other guy" is into paintball and rc cars, he can still order from Athearn, MDC, or Accurail. Concor also deals directly with the public, but I don't know if they offer anything undec.
  3. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

    I like MDC and Athern when it comes to cheap HO rollin' stock:

    MDC Under $7

    MDC Under $5

    I've purchased the little ore cars (22 or 25ft?) and 30' flat cars and like them. They are a kit, with a metal chassis and require some filing (flash), cleaning (removes machine oils) and painting to look good and accept kadees. I work in 3's and can do three in an evening, even if repainting the body. With the metal chassis, these are nice and heavy, even short oens, even flat cars.

    Athern Under $8

    Athern under $6

    Athern Under $5

    All the atherns I have were acquired used, and seem to be pretty good quality. I replaced teh coupler clips (snaps over the draft gear box) on several and CA'd part of the chassis to solve the common saggy coupler syndrome. Not bad for having 20 or 30 of these that are pretty old.

    If you go for the Kadee 20 pair bulk pack (all you need to convert 20 standard MDC's or Atherns) count on an additional 90 cents per car. Sopmeone correct me if I'm wrong, but all I've ever needed for an athern or MDC is the coupler and centering spring, both of which come in the bulk pack. There is also a smaller 10 pair bulk pack if your appetite is not that big.

    If you use this:


    The wheels will spin smooth as silk.
  4. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I've found that the center post on Athearn coupler pockets is large enough to drill and tap for a 2-56 screw down the center of that post. I use the Kadee centering spring for a #5 and the coupler itself, and then assemble the Athearn metal clip to hold it all together. I then drill and tap the center post and install a screw with flat washer to hold it all together. I also drill and tap the floor of all closed cars (box cars, refers, etc.) and use that same screw to hold the coupler draft gear to the body.
  5. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    If you send me an SASE I will gladly send you the decals.

    Another thing we have in common is the slots. I'm not going with the TCR as they are not the correct scale. I have found that the JL T-Jet 500s are the correct scale, it just is hard to find models that aren't NASCAR or such. You might want to check out the thread, http://www.the-gauge.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=477

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