Author Topic: The three new Bachmann cars  (Read 1304 times)

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bbussey

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The three new Bachmann cars
« on: December 29, 2011, 12:58:52 PM »
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I received my one-of-each package from MBK a few minutes ago.  Rather than add to the existing two threads (which excludes the boxcar), I figured I'd consolidate my findings here.
  • The caboose wheels definitely are 36", but the wheels on the boxcar and tankcar are 33".
  • The manufacturing lot number is visible on the bottom of the tank body and has to be removed or painted over.
  • The boxcar end lower sill is even with the bottom of the coupler box and extended straight across between the pole pockets, something that should be done with flatcars but not with boxcars.  Removing the extra sill will improve the look immensely.
  • The boxcar stirrups are separate parts that copy the original current MTL design, and are molded out of a flexible delrin-type plastic in the body paint color (as are the ladders and brakewheel).
  • The boxcar brakewheel is of the 1970s toy-like N scale design and needs to be replaced.
  • The boxcar roofwalk also is a copy of the original KD/MTL 20000-series design.  Ironically, I believe all of the prototype AAR 1937 boxcars had wood roofwalks.
  • The sliding door mechanism is based on the KD/MTL design.
  • The underbody hardware on the boxcar is free-standing.
  • The steel slabs used to weight the boxcar are stacked over the trucks, out of view when the doors are open.
  • The tankcar brakewheel is based on the MTL version but is not as delicate.
  • The hazard placards are present on the ends of the tankcar, but not on the sides.  They are delicate too - I broke one of mine in reassembling the car and will have to replace it with the MTL version.
  • The tankcar design copies the MTL 65000-series model except that it is a smaller capacity, has integrated coupler pockets, and has all the end detail.
The caboose is incredibly well-done.  The only misstep is the wheel diameter.

The tankcar matches up well with the MTL model, both in tooling and paint/print detail.  In fact, the Simonin scheme is more intricate than any MTL scheme ever released.

The boxcar I'm not ready to give up on just yet.  I want to confirm the end corrugations are or are not accurate.  It seems odd that Bachmann would go through the trouble of replicating the prototype correctly in the other major areas and screw up the ends, especially when this new design doesn't match anything they've done in the past in either scale.  It may simply be a matter of removing the extended sill between the poll pockets to make it correct.

A very strong effort from the folks in Philadelphia.  The boxcar anomalies don't deter from the fine work done on the caboose and tankcar.  At worst, the boxcar model provides additional kitbashing options.  If these models become the new standard for entry-level models, that is a good thing.


« Last Edit: December 29, 2011, 02:59:19 PM by bbussey »
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Puddington

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2011, 01:25:39 PM »
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I concur that Bachmann has upped their game and has offered up three new models that have many good features. Perfect; no; but what is. We can fixate on the "little stuff" until the cows come home or we can accept their product (or not; that's our choice) and make it better by bashing/modifting or altering it.... that's "modeling" after all....

Nothing wrong with mentioning the weak points and/or errors, this is how things tend to be made better, but let's not expect fine scale products from each and every mfg. everytome out of the gate.... it ain't goin to happen.

I really like the tank car and have some plans for CPR MOW Fire Cars a brewin.....
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MichaelWinicki

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2011, 02:44:43 PM »
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Thank you for the reviews Bryan!

Nice to get even-handed reviews of these products without the hint of "Bachmann bashing for the sake of Bachmann bashing".

chuck geiger

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2011, 03:18:48 PM »
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I've seen these in The Walthers flyer, is there a website?
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Chris333

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2011, 03:26:57 PM »
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I ordered 2 tankcars.

chuck geiger

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2011, 03:52:53 PM »
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saw them on their 1995 web site
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bbussey

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2011, 04:36:23 PM »
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N Scale Supply has large photos on their site.

FVM #3302 wheelsets work in the trucks.  I swapped in the FVM wheelsets on the tankcar and gave it a spin around the test layout.  The car looks good in a consist.

I also compared the boxcar ends to the IMRC model, and there is a difference.  I'll have to pull out my New Haven photo references to see if there is any resemblance at all.  But one thing about the model - the ride height is outstanding, and I see that I'll have to lower my IMRC cars a little more than I already have.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2011, 04:38:21 PM by bbussey »
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daniel_leavitt2000

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2011, 05:53:51 PM »
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Could the Bachmann car be based on a rebuild? That would explain the modernized roofwalk and different end detail.

I am really looking forward to painting some of those vans in Conrail.
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jmlaboda

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2011, 07:22:36 PM »
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"Ironically, I believe all of the prototype AAR 1937 boxcars had wood roofwalks."

While many if not all were built with wood roofwalks they were banned from being used on new cars in 1945... although there is one website that says that they were banned there are several reports of cars having them into the 60s and even 70s (some cars lasted long enough to be retired and scrapped by Conrail with wood roofwalks) but they were difficult to maintain and were more often replaced with steel grid roofwalks.

I have not been able to find a good shot of the Bachmann AAR boxcar as of yet (nothing on the N-scale Supply site that I can find) but from what I am seeing the models have an unusual end that I have never seen on a car before.  Definitely not a Dreadnaught end...

sirenwerks

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2011, 08:23:54 PM »
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If you can make something real out of the boxcar, I am all ears. Personally, I saw it in person and returned it on the spot. Like you I just don't get why all that work on some of the model's features and a few choice screw-ups that leave the car, IMO, useless except as background material.
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Mark5

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #10 on: December 30, 2011, 04:04:09 AM »
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I picked up one of the tank cars. Overall, I'm impressed.

I am kind of disappointed in the apparent mold lines that are visible on the tank - the arrows in the following pic illustrate them (less visible on the right side of the car in this angle).



I'm assuming those are not proto features (I'm not a tank expert at all).

Still, given the price point - I'm happy with it. I'll slap some Accumates on it (those couplers really are huge) and be done with it for now.

Mark

Chris333

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #11 on: December 30, 2011, 05:37:39 AM »
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Bachmann will never get it ALL correct, but they add variety.

wm3798

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #12 on: December 30, 2011, 10:11:48 AM »
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I need to add some tanks to the fleet to bring nasty chemicals to the paper mill, and now to the PPG plant in Cumberland.  These seem a bit antiquated for service in the early 70's... am I right?

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jmlaboda

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2011, 10:52:21 AM »
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"I am kind of disappointed in the apparent mold lines that are visible on the tank - the arrows in the following pic illustrate them (less visible on the right side of the car in this angle)."



Hmm... I thought that was to help a modeler to line up the Archer rivet surface transfers... after all, most of these early tanks were of riveted construction... LOL.

Still, the tank looks pretty good.  I can live with the mold lines (worse comes to worse I can polish the mold lines with some very fine emery cloth) but what I have started looking at is cutting the tank car down a couple of feet to represent an 8000 gal. car.

bbussey

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Re: The three new Bachmann cars
« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2011, 12:06:34 PM »
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I need to add some tanks to the fleet to bring nasty chemicals to the paper mill, and now to the PPG plant in Cumberland.  These seem a bit antiquated for service in the early 70's... am I right?

Yes, a little old for your era although some probably were still roaming the rails in the `70s.  Go with the Atlas 11k gallon chemical tanks instead.
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