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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:22 am 

Joined: Mon Oct 11, 2004 8:42 am
Posts: 405
Location: Haslett, Michigan USA
Speaking of Model T tread dimensions, I recently learned that--

The tread width of a Model T in most of the country was around 4'8" and many states had laws before the 1920s mandating this standard tread width on all cars. Presumably this was so the ruts would line up.

However, model Ts delivered in the south had a tread of 5 feet. An interesting persistence of the pre-Civil War gauge disparity.

Aarne Frobom


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:50 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:18 am
Posts: 595
Location: Wall, NJ
The question of course is why is the railtruck 27" gauge. Via facebook, I was surprised to see how many 2'3" gauge lines there are in the UK to include the Talyllyn, Corris, Plynlimon, and Hafan in Wales and Campbelltown & Machrihanish in Scotland.

The railtruck seller provided the following to me back when it was sold:

"My uncle built this engine during the 1920's. He came from a railroad family in Brandywine, therefore probably had connections for parts. When I was a kid, he told me how the railroad company would buy ford trucks and put railroad wheels on them, in order to do maintenance on the railroad line. Most likely parts were used from one of those trucks to create this train engine. He had his own railroad line with a switch track, which ran less than a mile. He had other railroad cars which he pulled with this engine. It was not a business, it was just a hobby for him. He was a railroad buff!"

I would guess then that the rail truck was built to match the gauge of the "other railroad cars" that the builder had. If that is the case, then how did 2'3" gauge rolling stock get to Maryland? Being this odd gauge, perhaps the cars had been imported from the UK?

In doing a little research, Maryland was a major supplier of bog iron from the 1600s up past the Civil War, including the region where the railtruck came from. Could some 2'3" gauge ore cars have been imported to support the early days of the bog iron industry which then might have survived into the 1930s when the railtruck was built? That would tend to suggest that the ore cars may have predated the railtruck by many decades.

The rail truck has a hook coupler on the back. If it was built to haul US built cars, wouldn't it have been link and pin, not the hook that it has now which to me is more UK like?

Gotta love a good mystery


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:33 am 

Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 5:00 pm
Posts: 818
Location: NJ
I looked at what we have and what we would need to do to get the hood and radiator to match. We have a stainless '30-'31 shroud and a good '30-'31 hood. The '28-'29 radiator is clogged and might be shot, so we can buy a '28-'29 hood (which are very expansive at this time) and hope that the radiator can be brought back to life, or we can buy a '30-'31 radiator. So with a little searching, I found a local guy with the correct '30-'31 radiator which I am picking up today. So we will have a correct '30-'31 front end with a stainless shroud.

Later!
Mr. Ed


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 4:54 pm 

Joined: Fri Oct 01, 2004 1:33 pm
Posts: 443
Location: Oroville, CA
Gilding the Lilly, are we?? :)
I wasn't suggesting a NEW hood, but a scrounged one, more in keeping with the rest of the car--but you are diverting your attention from the real project!!
:)
(Something I NEVER do. . .uh, could I interest you in a bridge? It's a concrete asset. . . .)

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David Dewey
Hoping for the return to the American Rivers of the last overnight steamboat, Delta Queen!


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:26 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:18 am
Posts: 595
Location: Wall, NJ
Actually the shroud and hood we already had. We just needed a radiator that holds water and that fits the shroud we had that matches the hood that we had. Nothing "new" was bought here.


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:40 pm 

Joined: Fri Oct 01, 2004 1:33 pm
Posts: 443
Location: Oroville, CA
Hmm, now you're going to need a matching headlight or lights, and a nice looking pilot and. . . . :)
Gee, wasn't there a cabin car around here somewhere that was being restored????
:)
You guys have done very well with it, BTW.

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David Dewey
Hoping for the return to the American Rivers of the last overnight steamboat, Delta Queen!


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 7:52 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:18 am
Posts: 595
Location: Wall, NJ
The motor work would have been done 18 months ago, but we kept our focus on the N6b, and that is our plan going forward. That is one reason we would like to find a new owner for it, but if one is not found soon, we will continue to tinker with it here and there. Next up is further front end work with an eye on the cooling system and body front wall repairs. If nothing else, the body makes a great storage location for the restored N6b windows and other components.
J.R. May


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:38 am 

Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 5:00 pm
Posts: 818
Location: NJ
OK David. You are missing the point here. So let me clear this up for you. The N6b is top priority. We schedule what we are going to do on a work day. After we accomplish that, we put a little time into the railbus/railtruck. When we took off the plywood hood and radiator board, we decided that it needed a real hood and shroud. JR and I are not Model A aficionados by any stretch of the imagination, so we did a little research on the internet and ascertained that we had a '28 - '31 motor so I looked on ebay and after some searching, found a nice shroud, hood and cowl trim for '30-'31. When it arrived we discovered that the shroud didn't fit the radiator. Now with dimensions in hand, we again searched out information and found that we had a '28-'29 radiator, and it is in terrible shape. JR had already located a '28-'29 shroud. So I looked on ebay again to see what I could find in the '28-'29 hood. Used hoods are running around 3-4 hundred bucks. So now we are faced with a dilemma. Spend money on a hood that matches the shroud and hope that the radiator is OK or buy the correct radiator that will fit the stainless shroud and hood that we already own. HMM. Let me think about this. I found a local old Ford guy who has the correct radiator for 100 bucks, so we can use our existing stuff. If we followed your suggestion, we would have to buy a '28-'29 hood and radiator. And we aren't planning on adding headlights or fenders at this time.

I hope this clears this up for you.

Later!
Mr. Ed


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2020 12:36 pm 

Joined: Fri Oct 01, 2004 1:33 pm
Posts: 443
Location: Oroville, CA
HI Ed,
Ed, you are taking my responses too seriously. I think you are doing a wonderful job, and making decisions based on resources available (something I do all the time, folks around here know I'm not just frugal, I am CHEAP!).
So, I am just joshing you when I keep mentioning the cabin car (Did other railroads call them cabin cars, I just know them as "cabooses"? I know I am easily distracted by something different. The effort you are going to on the front end is way beyond what the creator of it had done, and it's going to look wonderful.
Congrats on finding a reasonably priced radiator nearby. BTW, the 30-31 has more cooling capacity too.
As long as you guys are having fun, that's what matters! Wish I could help you ID those back wheels.

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David Dewey
Hoping for the return to the American Rivers of the last overnight steamboat, Delta Queen!


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:37 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 5:00 pm
Posts: 818
Location: NJ
I was. Sorry.

Later!
Mr. Ed


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:58 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:18 am
Posts: 595
Location: Wall, NJ
Thought an update might be of interest. Over the past few months we have focused on finishing up some motor work and body work. Some light rail has been set up for a short trial run in the coming weeks. It really shaped up nicely and we are quite happy with it. Once we are comfortable with its performance, we still plan to put it up for sale to help fund our PRR N6b cabin car project.


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Mon Sep 14, 2020 1:15 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 5:55 pm
Posts: 1182
Interesting. Would be a cheap way to build a backyard train ride, just pick up some light rail, and state highway departments are always looking to dispose of the wood posts that hold guardrails when the part in the ground goes bad.


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2020 4:37 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:18 am
Posts: 595
Location: Wall, NJ
The railbus has now been listed for sale on the RyPN Classifieds:

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=44875

We were running it back and forth yesterday on a very short test track:

https://youtu.be/70Yy6LBJ2qs

We want to keep our focus on our PRR N6b cabin car project so will let this go to someone who wants to take it to the next level.

It is a blast to run.

If interested, I can be reached at jrmay@monmouth.com or 732-330-1876.

Thanks,
J.R. May


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 Post subject: Re: Mystery Railtruck, 27" gauge
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:41 am 

Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 11:23 am
Posts: 343
Location: Sheboygan County, Wisconsin
Nice work!

It sorta spurs the idea of building a trailer and then setting rail on ties to that gauge.

Good fortune to you folks.


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