The online magazine on the history and operation of vintage scale model trains in American OO gauge

Sunday, June 28, 2009

More on North Yard Trucks

Following up on the post where I mentioned North Yard Sn3 trucks would build up into great OO trucks, I recently obtained parts for a number of pair of these trucks and extra wheelsets from Phil R. I already had one pair he built up and they are beautiful trucks.

The two types I have are the arch bar and also a type of truck similar to a Bettendorf caboose truck as used in North America. The wheelbase is just a hair under 5’ 6” feet in OO (4’ 7 1/2” in S scale) which is perfect for OO. Both types are seen in this photo. In the back we have upside down and right side up views of the arch bar and in front three views of the Bettendorf sideframe. The one in the middle has been drilled out and tapped, and the one on the right shows the parts as they come. They build up with the little bearing insert that you see. The tolerances for this work are fairly tight. Phil R. had also worked up a great jig for making and bending the bolsters to the exact size needed for OO.

So I got organized and tried to build a pair up from parts. It is when I got to trying to do that drilling and tapping that I got cold feet! I contacted Phil R. and indeed he used a drill press and that would I think really be a must to build these trucks up. He suggested to “Be careful when tapping the side frames. Be sure to use lubrication liberally on the taps.” He suggested Crisco as a lubricant and to back the tap out “every half turn or so to break the chip in the hole.”

The resulting truck he made is great but in terms of me these trucks will remain a project for another summer at some future point when I have a drill press.

UPDATE: I did build up more of the trucks, which took a drill press to do. More here.

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