04 August 2011

Container locks and painting

For nearly the last post in the conversion guide, the container locks and paint are the focus. The locks used on these wagons are not the same style as those on the VQCX wagons, so the locks provided in the kit can be stored for later use on another wagon.

What you'll need to do is get some small nails (or track pins, N scale ones work fine) and drill small holes to fit the pins though the deck of the wagon. Alternatively, you could use thin styrene rod, but that is not as hardy as the pins.

The containers I used to determine pin spacings are of the Ozfreight brand, as I've found these have the smallest distance in between the ridges that form the bottom sill on the containers, though any container you want to use will suffice. Make sure that your pins will sit just inside this ridge so the container won't move about on a moving wagon. You can either set the wagon up for one 40' and one 20' container, a 40'+ container, or three 20' containers. Then, once satisfied with the fit of the containers on the pins locations, you can drill the holes for the pins to come through. Superglue the pins in place once inserted and spacing is checked. Checking the spacings is probably the most important part of the process.

After the glue has dried, trim the pins down so they extend to 2mm above the wagon deck and test fit the containers again to check they don't move around. You can trim the pins a bit further if desired.

After the locks are finished and glued in, you can then paint the wagon in either SAR grey, ANR brown, AN green or the later NRC/PN liveries, with the code (when applied) altered to suit.

31 July 2011

Brake Gear Part 2

This part in the brake rigging is optional, but it makes the finished wagon more visually appealing, even if the wire does only go from side to side. All you need is some thin wire (I use left over stuff that comes with BGB kits), a pin vice, a steel ruler, small wirecutters and a drill bit small enough to drill a hole that the wire won't wobble around too much in.

First off, you have to straighten the wire sufficiently by rolling it backwards and forwards under the ruler, then drill two holes through the centre sill so the wire goes all the way through. Next, you thread the wire through to get the appropriate length of it, and cut it.

 After that, you can glue the controls in their respective places. PLEASE NOTE that on an AQCY, the handbrake is of a wheel style and is located where one of the chain lockers is on a VQCX. You can see where the locker was cut out in the next photo. For these wagons, either Miner type handbrakes or Model Etch's ME6 handbrakes can be used (the ME6's were the ones prototypically used in the photos I can find of these wagons, but I use the Miner handbrakes because I can't get any ME6's).
 This method can also be used for other controls found on the wagon too. As you can probably tell in the photo below, one of the controls is mis-aligned. That is why it's important to line up the holes first, because I didn't there and it shows.

26 July 2011

Brake Gear

Following on in the guide, the next thing to complete is the brake gear. This is pretty much the same as the VQCX from the original kit, so again, the steps can be followed there. There are two deviations though. The AQCY's did not have the frame around the brake rigging controls, and the handbrake is in a different location. See AQCY 47 (in green) in the pictures for details of these differences.

24 July 2011

Chain lockers

After you complete the sides and ends and they're glued onto the wagon, the chain lockers are next, the same as the regular kit. The instructions on completing these can therefore be taken from the instructions for the original kit. The only difference is that instead of four chain lockers, there are only two on the AN style wagon.

15 July 2011


The next thing to do is to complete the sides. To do this, you'll have to cut the sides from the sprue, then clean them of the flash and knobs on the backs of them, then remove the steps and other bits as shown in the photo. The top side is completed in this regard, whereas the bottom one is freshly cut from the sprue. The arrows show what has to be removed from the sides. You'll have to file wherever you've cut things down too, as when the paint is applied, any rough patches will show up like a flare.

Getting Started

Hi all, I've started on a couple of Steam Era FQX flat wagon kits, but am converting one of them to an AQCY Australian National high speed superfreighter flat. Therefore, I'll be taking pictures along the way to help any of you who might want to make one of these wagons.

First off, you'll need to cut the body section from the sprue, neaten it up by removing flash and then remove both chain boxes from one end, as shown here. In front is the VQCX, then the underway AQCY and in the back is "one I've previously prepared" AKA AQCY 47.