Pennsylvania Railroad Passenger Car Models

Pullman 242 Type Truck - From AHM Trucks

Building models of specific cars requires the correct type of truck. I was building a model of the QUEEN MARY (a 26 Chair 1 Drawing Room parlor car with an open observation platform) from an AHM 12-1 pullman, which requires 242(A) type trucks. I determined that a reasonable 242 type truck could be built using the AHM truck as a starting point. The AHM truck will roll and track very well when new metal wheel sets are applied (Kaydee, Intermountain, J-Bee, etc.), and the standard AHM mounting can be used. The major difference between the 242 and 242A is the 242 has 4" wide leaf springs and the 242A has 4.5" wide leaf springs.

The basic process is to modify the 6 wheel truck by removing the equalizer bars and coil springs. Then adding the "U" shackles around the leaf spring and adding additional brake detail from an AHM 4 wheel truck.

Supplies and Materials

AHM/Rivarossi 6 wheel truck, AHM/Rivarossi 4 wheel truck, 1 x 3" (or .011 x .033) and 2 x 3" (or .022 x .033) styrine strips, and plastic glue. Hobby saw, such as a Zona Saw, hobby knife, and various files.

Step by Step Instructions

1)   Remove the bottom equalizers between the journal boxes and remove the coil springs. From the bottom of the truck, start by cutting between the equalizers and the brake shoes for the center wheel with the hobby saw. Fig 1. The brake shoes and the leaf springs are required on the finished truck; so take care with this cut. Cut the equalizer beam with the saw, this will allow for easier removal of the beam and coil spring. Fig 1a. I use diagonal cutters to remove most material and finish with a hobby knife and files. Look at the pictures for reference. Your truck will not have the shackles around the leaf springs nor the inside brake shoes for the end wheels at this point. See Fig 1 & 1a.
PT242CF1.jpg MissingPT242CF1a.jpg Missing

2)   Cut 4 pieces of the 2x3" strip styrine 3/16" long and glue them to bottom of the leaf springs. The strips are to be trimmed flush with the sides of the leaf springs and filed to an elliptical shape accross the bottom after the glue has dried. I use Plastic-Weld and coat the truck area and wait about 15 to 30 seconds before recoating the truck and applying the styrine piece. The plastic in the AHM truck seems to require additional time to absorb the glue and additional time to dry. See Fig. 2.
PT242CF2.jpg Missing

3)   Cut 4 pieces of the 1x3" strip styrine 11/32 long and glue them to the side of the leaf spring in alignment with the elliptically formed piece of 2x3. Allow this to dry thoroughly before proceeding. See Fig. 3.
PT242CF3.jpg Missing

4)   Now comes the tricky part; bending the 1x3 over the ellipse and down the other side of the leaf spring. Apply a liberal amount of the plastic glue to the area of the 1x3 strip that will bend over the ellipse. Wait 20 to 40 seconds for the glue to soften the strip and carefully bend the strip over the ellipse and glue to the other side of the leaf spring. When I do this 1 out of 3 or 4 strips will break, if this happens stop and put the truck frame aside and let all the glue dry. Then go back; remove the broken material and start over. Luckily the material cost is minor so only time is lost. See Fig. 4.
PT242CF4.jpg Missing

5)   Now Glue a strip of the 1x3 material on the out side edge of the truck frame. This will increase the truck frame height and block some of the open space between the truck and the underframe. See Fig. 5.
PT242CF5.jpg Missing

6)   Optional. At this time I remove some material from the truck frame where the old coupler mounting supports were located. When I mount the trucks on the cars I usually reverse the trucks from the original positions. The truck mounting pad points to the interior of the car, providing view block material or simulating the generator drive on some cars. Other cars have the outboard coupler mounting pad completely removed. See Figs 5 & 6.
PT242CF6.jpg Missing

7)   Your truck frame should now look similar to Fig. 5. You now will add the inboard brakeshoes and their hangers for the end wheels. Start by wrapping a strip of masking tape twice around one wheel from a wheel set. This will be used as a spacer and support for the brakeshoes and hangers.
PT242CF7.jpg Missing

8)   Now take the 4 wheel AMH passenger truck and remove the brakeshoe and hanger piece from the truck frame. Cut the brakeshoe hanger flush with the 4 wheel truck frame (max length of brakeshoe hanger). No picture.

9)   Now using the wheel set with the masking tape as a space glue the addition brakeshoe and hanger piece on the truck frame using the triangular shaped material behind the leaf spring as a guide. See Figs 7 & 9.
PT242CF9.jpg Missing

10)   Add your favorite wheel sets and you are ready to mount the truck and test run the car. Paint the truck with your favorite types of paint and you are ready to go. Fig. 10 is an unpainted truck.
PT242CF10.jpg Missing

I am working on a modification to these instructions using Precision Scale brakeshoes as the source for the needed breakshoes. Many people are happy with the trucks without adding the extra brakeshoes, but I like the added mass to the trucks.


Valid HTML 4.0! Document Last Modified on Oct.12, 2002 09:55
Copyright 2001 D. Garrett Spear all rights reserved.