Author Topic: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread  (Read 2918 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« on: February 21, 2020, 12:28:51 PM »
0
This is a new thread to discuss all things related to this interesting loco.



Some initial discussion began here.  https://www.therailwire.net/forum/index.php?topic=48959.0

In this thread we can delve more deeply into all issues.

I'm in the process of rebuilding one (or two) and adding sound.






« Last Edit: February 21, 2020, 12:39:29 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2020, 12:42:05 PM »
0
Here is the upper gearing of a version 2 Shay.

Worm, worm gear and transition gear all all brass.




Down below, the crankshaft gear is steel.   The worm gear appears to also be steel.




 
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2020, 12:44:58 PM »
0
For the sake of the cause.....

Anybody have a version 1 Shay?

You can tell by turning it over and looking at the truck under the cab.

If you see a worm and a giant gear on the wheel axle then it's a version 1 Shay.

I borrowed and enhanced this photo from Spookshow.



Anybody want to post a photo of what a version 1 Shay looks like with the shell off?   We would enjoy it and Spookshow needs a photo.
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

ChristianJDavis1

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 439
  • Gender: Male
  • I almost killed DKS.
  • Respect: +128
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2020, 01:36:18 PM »
0
For the sake of the cause.....

Anybody have a version 1 Shay?

You can tell by turning it over and looking at the truck under the cab.

If you see a worm and a giant gear on the wheel axle then it's a version 1 Shay.

I borrowed and enhanced this photo from Spookshow.



Anybody want to post a photo of what a version 1 Shay looks like with the shell off?   We would enjoy it and Spookshow needs a photo.

If nobody with actual photography skills chimes in, I have a first-run shay I could take apart.
- Christian J. Davis

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2020, 11:19:27 AM »
+1
So.... I know that the number of people who have one of these locomotives is small.... thus in that regard, this thread may not apply to many people.

But I have found there is very little information out on the web, so I envision this thread being a helpful permanent reference if someone DOES have one or acquires one.   Until now, Spookshow's review was the best info out there- and I provided a good deal of that to him.

So I hope this thread will fill in a lot more detail.

My (short) Story:

Overland released the brass Western Maryland Shay in late 1989-early 90.  List price as I recall was $600.    Their ad was the back cover of the first issues of the brand new N-Scale Magazine. 



But this loco had massive problems.  A recall was issued.

Around 1991, I encountered an old gentleman who had a large collection that he wanted to liquidate.  I was young and eager and glad to help.
Sold most of his stuff and sent him a lot of money (no fee for me).  He had an original (now called a 1st version) Shay that still needed to sell and a bunch of buildings.  He said- Ron, why don't you just keep the rest as my thank you for your efforts.  Wow!

So I became the proud owner of a 1st version Shay.  It ran fairly well and I loved it.   I was only just learning to tinker back then.
I do remember that because the main drive worm interfaced with the truck axle that the torque would pivot the rear truck in an unnatural way.
That was so long ago, and I was so green in N scale that I don't remember much more- other than I loved it.

I knew nothing of the recall that was going on about that time.  Overland took Shays back and the drive train was completely redesigned.   These were returned to the customer and are thus 2nd version Shays.

Sadly, I hit a really rough spot financially with hospital bills and I sold much of my collection- including that 1st version Shay.  I sold it to a dealer for $550.   And I always missed it.

Several years later, I saw one other 1st version Shay at a show at a private person's table.  Test ran it and it ran well- though way to fast.   I was VERY tempted to buy it at $250 or $300, but passed.  I thought about that for years.  Part of me regretted passing.

Fast forward to maybe 2008 or so.... and I saw Shay parts appearing on ebay.
That's when I learned that Keith Wiseman bought all the remaining stock of parts from Overland and he began building them and selling them.
Back then, he said that when he had one fully assembled, he would get about $1,000-$1,200 for one.   But the assembly was VERY tedious and he was done.  Selling out.

So on ebay, he was listing various Shays as kits- which were all 2nd version parts from the recall.   Those that were more nearing completion he sold for about $250 or $300.  Those that had a long was to go he sold for $200 or less.    I bought one that was near completion.

So a Wiseman Shay would be a 3rd version.  And note:  Wiseman Shay's obviously do not come in an OMI green box.

And I loved that locomotive- and still have it.   Through the years, I probably have put over 100 hours working on that Shay.  And I got it to run wonderfully.  And i bought an empty OMI green box from a guy in Germany!   8)

Then about 3 years ago, an old wealthy guy up north tried to commission me to build two Shays from Wiseman parts.  I had some serious doubts- but I figured I had my Shay to go by as a reference.  So I did not say yes, but instead a non-committal "send me what you have and I'll decide."

He sent me all his parts (roughly about 2-3 Shay kit parts)- and they were a disaster.  His brother had attempted assembling one and had no idea what he was doing.  Parts were destroyed.

I wrote the guy back and said that I could MAYBE get one working Shay out of all the parts he sent me- and even that was uncertain since I still needed a motor and possibly other missing parts. 

He insisted on 2 Shays.  Said he would have someone cast the parts if needed.  Ball was in his court.

A year went by.  His health sadly declined, and he gave up on the project.  He finally said- Ron, just keep the parts.  I was shocked, but said OK.

And all those parts sat in a box for 2 years.

Recently, in the long cold winter nights, I mixed and matched parts and assembled one working Shay from what I had.
It ran terribly.  But over time I painstakingly tracked down all the problems and it runs wonderfully now- even better than my other Shay.



I now have more understanding about these complex locomotives and thus more confidence.

Thus the birth of this thread.

I can now see that Wiseman not only built the Shays, but actually made several modifications which I can now identify and will try to document.


« Last Edit: March 06, 2020, 08:06:55 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2020, 11:22:50 AM »
0
So others could add to this thread.

My 2 Shays would be Wiseman/Bearden Shays.

But if anyone out there has an unmodified 2nd version Shay and you could post a photo of the motor/worm area, that would add to the discussion and record.

For example, I'll show that Wiseman held the motor on with clear caulking.  But is that how OMI did it?
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2020, 03:27:40 PM »
0
When shopping for a Shay, one of the first things I look at is the generator.
On top of the boiler between the cab and the steam dome.

Made of one piece cast brass, the steam pipe is VERY very fragile.
You rarely see a Shay that does not have this pipe broken off.
In fact, look at the ad again,   It was broken off of the sample model too!

Here, I soldered a guitar string (about 10 mill or .010").  I thought this would be more resilient than a brass wire which would also be bent easily.  It's not perfect and looks really ugly in this shot, but the 2 or 3 foot rule applies here.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2020, 04:32:46 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2020, 03:52:19 PM »
0
Removing the shell.

As designed, the boiler section is held on by two screws.

But if you are going to do work on yours, then you may wish to remove the tender first.

The rear is tapped top and bottom with something like a M1.2 or 1.0 screw.   I usually don't remove it.  Just unscrew and pull gently on the tender.  When the screw gets high enough (while still engaged at the top), the drawbar will slip out.



The two screw locations are shown below (blue).  These are M1.4 screws.


The one under the cab looks easy to get to with no trucks.....

but it's not!   Very hard to get to.   I usually have to use the screwdriver at an angle to move that screw.  And be VERY careful not to cross-thread when re-inserting.



Now, in the photo of the entire underside above, the purple indicates a 3rd screw location.   This is the first mod that Wiseman made since he must have noticed that shells and frames did not always go together evenly.  And when they don't, the most noticeable spot that shows is the cab not sitting on the frame.

So what Wiseman did was drill a hole in the base plate/corner at the purple arrow.
He then soldered some shims and a piece of tapped brass tubing.   You don't need a M1.2 tap.  Small K&S tubing (1/32"?) is perfect.   And if you run a steel M1.2 screw into it, it will tap the soft brass.  The shims are to get the tube in the correct spot.



Here is the external view.


The shell now easily comes up and off.



 



« Last Edit: February 22, 2020, 03:56:05 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2020, 04:13:40 PM »
0
Here is the chassis of my 1st Wiseman Shay.

Has a Faulhaber motor, rubber tubing as the interface, two bearings and the worm.
You might already surmise that the left rail wire going to the front truck is a hazard so close to the worm.  More on that later.

Also, in the photo below, ignore the wire coming out the rear- that's a Bearden mod.


The right rail is hot to the frame.  So one motor lead is soldered to the frame.
Notice the motor is held in place by clear silicone caulking.



What is missing on this Shay is a motor mounting plate.

Here is an unassembled extra shell I have.   This is the main base plate.  Screw are tapped into those holes.


The most recent Wiseman Shay I'm building has a motor mount soldered on top of the main base plate.  See it sticking up on the right.


The reason why this is important is because it changes the height of the worm and worm gear.
Notice in the shot above, that the worm gear is interfacing perfectly with the transition gear in the back sort of hidden in the cylinder casting.   

By the way, this shot shows that I re-routed that pesky front truck wire and ran it through the firebox UNDER the worm and base plate.  I used a motor tool to make openings a little bigger.  Much safer now.



« Last Edit: February 22, 2020, 04:44:33 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2020, 04:31:53 PM »
0
So let's look at the gearing of the revised Shay (remember, the 1st version had a perpendicular motor shaft that drove one axle).

Here is the base plate.
Built into it is a bearing for what I call the transition gear.


The transition gear assembly is composed of three pieces.
A steel shaft onto which is pressed a steel worm.
Up top is the brass transition gear.


The worm shaft is slipped up into the bearings from below.....



 and then the transition gear is soldered in place to the shaft.


The brass worm gear is hollowed out.  The screw has a solid shank and is the same screw as the truck retaining screws.


Sadly, my 1st Wiseman Shay did NOT come with the proper screw for the worm gear.  Mine is bigger and has no un-threaded portion up top.   This made retaining the worm gear properly a nightmare since the spinning gear will either make the screw get tighter or come out!    My solution was to insert some folded cardstock inside the firebox.  My screw now hit that cardstock and "stops".   Not a perfect solution, but it works.

« Last Edit: March 06, 2020, 08:12:28 PM by u18b »
Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2020, 04:42:58 PM »
0
Here are the worms bearings and retainers.
This is a problem spot.
The plastic can break not only at the bearing (as in here) bit also where the screws go in.


In my first Wiseman Shay, notice that he raised the worm with washers (shot below).  To be honest, I found that did not work as well on the Shay I am now building.  In fact, this raised the worm too high and the interface between the worm and worm gear is not optimal.




Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2020, 06:25:04 PM »
0
While we are at the worm, also notice that there are washers used as spacers to reduce rattling.  (ignore the u-joint- that's my mod.)



Looking back at this photo, I realize-- oh my gosh!   That worm looks terrible.  It's damaged or ground down on the right side.   And there are not enough washers to take up the slack. And the washers are too big- flopping round a bit.   This is not good and will require some attention.


Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2020, 06:43:29 PM »
0
Now let's move down to another critical area- the cylinders and the crankshaft slot.
The base plate is an L-shaped piece soldered up top.
The cylinder assembly then is soldered to that plate (blue arrow).
The crankshaft slot is at yellow arrow.




The crankshaft assembly is dropped into that slot.
The crankshaft assembly is then retained by a u-shaped brass piece soldered in place.


In this photo, you can just barely see the chrankshaft retainers (red arrows).


So if you ever need to drop the crankshaft assembly, those plates are what have to come loose.

But here is where there is some variation and problems.
The cylinder assembly is not always soldered the same- at the same angle.
And that angle effects the interface between the worm and the crankshaft gear.

Look back at this photo.    Look just to the right of the blue arrow.  Note the gap since the spot is angled.   


If that solder spot to the right of the blue arrow is soldered tight, then that will pivot the assembly.  It will move OUT at the bottom and IN at the top.

In fact, look back at the ad from 1989.  Note how the cylinders hide up UNDER the walkway above it.  That shows me the cylinders were not soldered properly in that sample.   OR!..... because of rough handling of this sample, the solder joints have popped loose.


And that is EXACTLY a problem with these locos.   It is natural to pick them up by the cylinder assembly.
But look at this photo again and note the 3 solder joints (green).
Notice that the right joint has broken loose and needs repair!
And repairing it is not an easy task.



Notice in this newest Shay that the cylinder assembly is not perfectly straight.   :|
The front is lower and sticks out.  The rear is higher and pressed in.



The cylinder assembly of this Shay looks better.



Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 22499
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +2626
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2020, 07:22:19 PM »
0
Fascinating thread, however I would like to see photos of all the mechanical parts without all the grease slathered over everything.  If the parts were clean that would show all the details much better.  And if any parts are to be painted, then degreasing it mandatory.

When I work on model locos I first degrease the mechanism, then one everything is reassembled, I sparingly grease things again.  Are you planning on degreaseing this model?
--- Peteski de Snarkski

-"Look at me, I'm satirical!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm anal retentive!!!"
-"Look at me, I have the most posts evahhhh!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm snarky!!!!"
-"Look at me, I have OCD!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm a curmudgeon!!!!"
-"Look at me, I'm not negative, just blunt and honest!!!"

u18b

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2693
  • Respect: +610
    • My website
Re: The Overland/Wiseman brass Western Maryland Shay thread
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2020, 07:40:45 PM »
0
Fascinating thread, however I would like to see photos of all the mechanical parts without all the grease slathered over everything.  If the parts were clean that would show all the details much better.  And if any parts are to be painted, then degreasing it mandatory.

When I work on model locos I first degrease the mechanism, then one everything is reassembled, I sparingly grease things again.  Are you planning on degreaseing this model?

Not until I need to.

That would be:

1.  Painting.
2.  Some change that requires it.    For example, when I repaired those solder joints on the cylinder assembly, I had to de-grease or the solder would not have held.

As another example, I will eventually need to install some (what I think) are valve lifters on the new Shay.   There is a pair that stick out from the cylinders.   You can see then in a couple of shots above.    When I need to solder on the cylinders, then I will de-grease then.

I have toyed with removing the crankshaft assembly and rebuilding it.   I'll be talking about that in a future post.
But right now, I just want to see if I can get a sound decoder in there.




Ron Bearden
CSX N scale Archivist
http://u18b.com

"All get what they want-- not all like what they get."  Aslan the Lion in the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis.