Garden City Railroad


The little plastic eyelets that hold USA Trains railings in place break easily (left). I bought these metal ones in a craft store (middle). Just nip  off the end................ .....drill out the old hole where the old broken part is, put them in place and glue if necessary. Then paint. 
A very cheap way to store rolling stock. I used old paneling for the base and lath strips rescued from a neighbor's remodeling project. I have 2 large plastic shelving units with 6 shelves each like this. Aristocraft flatcars need some extra weight. I took 5/16" threaded rod and cut it to fit along the fish belly sides where it can't be seen from outside. I painted it black and, using thin wire, secured it in place by anchoring the ends under convenient nearby screws. The wire lays in the threads for a more secure grip.
USA Trains 0-6-0 Tank engine with built in chuff Location of  sensor
The last 3 photos are of the USA Trains 0-6-0 Tank engine. It comes with built in sound. Unfortunately, some come a little messes up. Mine had a 'double chuff' with sounded horrible. Fortunately, it is easily corrected. Remove the shell and the circuit board. This exposes the round device that spins with the motor and operates a plunger that goes into the smoke unit which is just ahead of it. On the right side of the round device is the 'Hall Effect Sensor'. Gently pull this a little bit away from the device by slightly bending it's # prongs. Only do so by about a hair at a time, then test to see if chuff is now correct. If not, repeat.  It seems the tiny round magnets inside that wheel which trigger the sensor are too strong and by pulling the sensor back a little corrects the problem.
Hall Effect Sensor
Re-numbered this using what few #'s I had left over from the NW-2 project. Numbers didn't matter as PRR  didn't have anything like it. Removed the original USA Trains PRR keystones using the method described on page 4 of this section  Suprisingly, the method worked on this Aristocraft 0-4-0. Removed the big circular keystone and the non-authenic gold box around the road number. Road number stayed the same.
Clean figures with bleach. I leave figures out half a year. If they get too mouldy or whatever it is, I soak them in bleach for a few hours. Above, the color change is only in the photo process. It hasn't affected the paint. I do this with the rubberized and Bachmanns. Don't know about Aristo's, but should be ok. You can buy these wooden G-scale size barrels in craft stores and stain them
Make trash cans from the creamers in restaurants by painting them silver. or G-scale, you can use Q-tips and Tooth picks for painting some things and save money on paint brushes.
Stirups-  bottom left is made from an electrical staple, the other a staple pulled from a cardboard carton. Studier than palastic and will last longer Circus tent made from a wooden half-barrel with one of those $1 folding 'rain hats'.
Make a Dining Car Interior

A quick & easy dining car interior on a Bachmann passenger car was done with little effort. Using styrene for a new floor, I ran dowell rods up from the floor, secured with a screw under the floor. The tables were made from the gray film cannister caps, obtained free for the asking from any photo developing counter and screw onto the top of the dowel. Paint dowel silver. For the table cloth. I used ordinary cardstock printing paper. On this paper I placed copies obtained from the internet of Pennsy plates and silverware setting, which I spotted on it using Microsoft paint (or whatever photo program you use). 

See Page 4 of SPECIAL PROJECTS for better views of this

 In the, left to right:: caps from diabetic needles. Middle, tops cut off to make water glasses. Right, the blue covers for the needle tip. And 2 red top straight pins. tables made from film canister tops mounted on styrene, with the tops covered with table cloth and utensils. I searched the internet and found pictures of PRR Plates and silverware, and printed them on white cardstock. The pins made for a rose in the vase (needle cover).


DATE- DEC 2017


I recently (Dec 2017) mailed ordered a Bachmann TEXACO Tank car. Photos of it in their catalog and the seller's site both showed it to have the road number missing (i.e.: TCX - blank). Unusual, but I figured it would not be hard to add one. Once I had it, I discovered something to BEWARE of: the lettering on this car is very delicate! A slight fingernail scrape with take off the lettering, as I soon found out. Having damaged the end lettering this way, I now had a project on my hands. I scraped off the 'TCX' on the ends and sides, as I couldn't get a size match with decals (existing TCX to a new road number). I then sprayed the whole thing with clear gloss to save the rest of the lettering. The gloss crazed some the lettering on one end, so I had to tape off and spray the whole end (except the '10-20 pond release lettering) and sprayed it silver (silver matches easy), glossed it and made a matching set of decals. I also made a set of decals for the 'TCX' and new road number. Then sealed it all with Dullcote. So if you buy a Bachmann tank car as described above, be prepared for some work. I don't know how many this may apply to, but use caution until you can do a small, insignificant scratch test.


As received
Removed 'TCX' so new road number would match it in size Removed "TCX' lettering end
Duplicated the original lettering on end and added new road number This has been cut from a bird cage. Bird cage wire is a great size to use for handrails, etc. and can be bought cheap at yard sales

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