Tag Archives: upgrading plastic

Workbench Wednesday

M-K-T boxcar conversion, pt 3

Bill Welch, the Xxtreme Modeler, continues sharing his M-K-T boxcar project. Here are Bill’s latest notes.

Close examination of the M-K-T prototype photos reveal diagonal brace members extending just beyond the bottom sill and are squared off. Since I plan to paint this car in Sloan Yellow scheme this detail will be visible. What to do?!

First, I cut 0.030 x 0.030-inch strip styrene into short sections. The ends were cut at a slight angle as the diagonals on the model were angled to match the bottom of the car. The extra length you see makes the sections easier to handle. I glued the section to the angles with Testors styrene cement. Next, I cut up 0.020 x 0.020-inch strip styrene and glued these behind the 0.030 x 0.030 parts to provide extra strength when cutting. After the Testors had set up overnight the joints were reinforced with CA.

I used my close cutting sprue tweezers to cut the 0.030 x 0.030 pieces at a 90-degree angle. Even with the reinforcement two of the joints failed so I repeated what I had done previously

Here is how the diagonals look from the back of the car side.

Here’s the link to Bill’s previous post on this M-K-T boxcar project. He promises to share more soon.

What’s on your workbench?

Building boxcar roofs

AC&F image from Westerfield Collection

Resin Car Works blog manager Eric Hansmann has been working on replacement boxcar roofs. Here are his notes.

I model the mid-1920s and have benefited from recent Accurail models of the Fowler boxcar and the 36-foot double-sheathed boxcars. Several have been added to my fleet with detail upgrades but some of the Fowler models need a metal roof to reflect the prototypes. I thought I’d build a few Murphy XLA roofs for the models.

Continue reading Building boxcar roofs

Workbench Wednesday

M-K-T boxcar conversion, pt 2

Bill Welch, the Xxtreme Modeler, shared more images of his M-K-T boxcar project. Here’s Bill with a few notes.

Better door rollers were created by harvesting these small pieces from a Tichy Youngstown door set, part #3055. The locking levers were made from 0.015-inch diameter wire that was heated and flattened.

Small details can add to the look of a model. Grain clips were made from small rectangles of thin styrene and glued into place. A defect card holder and towing loops were also installed. Rivets were harvested from an old Athearn boxcar kit and installed where the bolster and cross bearers connect to the side sill. Gussets and diagonal braces on the original car body have been carved off.


Placard boards need to be installed on the car ends and doors. These are easy to build with some styrene and replace kit parts that are often too thick with exaggerated space between boards.


Here’s a view of the right side of the car. The new prototype appropriate details are easy to spot and have improved the model appearance.

Here’s the link to Bill’s previous post on this M-K-T boxcar project. He promises to share more soon.

What’s on your workbench?