Yet Another PDF Baldwin

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Old Man Aaron
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Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Old Man Aaron » Tue Jun 23, 2020 12:41 pm

I'd been "umm-ing & ahh-ing" over the PDF Models Baldwin kit for some years now. But a new loco is an exceedingly rare and expensive treat. Seeing Mitch Stack's Baldwin started my thinking about one again, and for once, I had the money to spare. In spite of this, I stayed disciplined after the kit arrived, leaving it in the cupboard - there's plenty of work left to do on the new workshops and existing projects. After a month however, I relented and unpacked the kit.

14/06/2020
The kit arrived complete and undamaged, which was very fortunate - the box hadn't been taped shut prior to dispatch! Quite understandable, what with the current workload that Peter and Leanne are facing. No harm done. I was particularly impressed with the wheels (Slaters?) - judging from photos until now, I thought they were Binnies. (Nothing wrong with Binnies of course, most of my stock rides upon them)
IMG_7346.JPG

The instructions state that the frames' axle holes are to be drilled out to 3.8mm. Well, I don't have oddly-sized drills, so I thought I'd just try a 4mm bit, and see how the bearings fit. Worst case, turning new bearings to fit oversized holes wouldn't take long.

As it turns out though, 4mm rendered an excellent press-fit to these bearings. A bit of retaining fluid was applied with a screwdriver, simply because I had some.
IMG_7348.JPG

The mini vice was quite handy for this.
IMG_7350.JPG

As this is the newer version of the kit, with rather nice laser-cut frames and rods, the frames' screw holes are no longer countersunk, and phillips-pan-head screws are provided. Preferring hidden screws, I countersunk the holes with the 4mm bit, and have ordered new screws to suit.
IMG_7351.JPG

Few kits I've assembled screw together, so it was a nice change to be able to easily run a dummy assembly to see how the completed loco will look. Unsure weather to paint it green or yellow, but either way, it'll look just right as an early I/C loco in the canefields. Given that a number of Hunslets, Baldwin tanks and Simplexes of the Great War were later sold to Queensland sugar mills, the prospect of a Baldwin tractor in the canefields is plausible.
IMG_7358.JPG

17/06/20
A coat of filler primer helped in smoothing the slightly rough laser-cutouts. The burrs left from countersinking were also filed away. The primer was cleaned from the bearings with cotton buds dipped in thinners.
IMG_7361.JPG

Some very minor bowing was straightened, in readiness for assembly.
IMG_7363.JPG

18/06/20
The gearboxes' irregular shape inevitably makes it a particularly tedious part to finish, but well worth the effort. Comparing with photos of the prototype and Wrightscale models, the PDF gearbox seems to be a representation, rather than replica. This doesn't bother me, but it's a good, prominent spot for some extra detailing. Dummy bolt heads were added roughly where I could see them on the prototype..
IMG_7368.JPG

I hadn't used these "MENG" bolt heads in years. Very nicely moulded, but a sh*t to apply. In hindsight, using tweezers and a fine-tipped glue applicator wasn't the right way to use these.
IMG_7364.JPG

This time, I thought I'd try solvent weld - and what a difference that made. A small drop was applied to the gearbox.
IMG_7365.JPG

Whilst the brush was still wet, it could be touched against a bolt head to pick it up, then placed into the puddle of solvent and dissolved filler-primer on the gearbox. The head then sticks into the puddle, and the brush can be withdrawn.
IMG_7366.JPG

Letting it dry for a minute, followed by a light re-application of solvent to where head and gearbox meet, helps them stay stuck together.
IMG_7367.JPG

19/06/20
The countersunk M2 screws arrived surprisingly quickly, allowing the chassis to go together. Emery boards were quite good for finishing the visible surfaces of the frame stretchers.
IMG_7370.JPG

Whilst the front axle was a nice, free-spinning fit in it's bearings, the rear was quite stiff. Checking the assembly revealed nothing untoward, so I opted to simply bed the axle into place. A little light oil applied with a flat blade screwdriver, and twenty minutes with a cordless drill, had the axle running as smoothly as it's counterpart. I'll have to remember to de-grease around the axle with cotton buds and alcohol, before painting..
IMG_7372.JPG

That's all so far.
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Jimmyb
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Jimmyb » Tue Jun 23, 2020 2:04 pm

Aaron, nice job so far :)

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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by ge_rik » Tue Jun 23, 2020 7:58 pm

Plenty of useful detail here, thanks. I'm enjoying the build so far

Rik
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Tom85 » Tue Jun 23, 2020 10:38 pm

Yep - this is looking really good, looking forward to seeing the finished article. It looks a lot more complicated than the Fowler Peldon kit I made recently though

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Mitch stack
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Mitch stack » Wed Jun 24, 2020 2:25 am

Looks Good mate! let me know how you go with quartering the cranks and getting the chassis running because ive had problems getting mine behaving .
Mtch

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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Garethh » Wed Jun 24, 2020 8:19 am

I’m toying with the idea of one of these, any chance you could measure the wheels and axles for me? I’m wondering if I could use ip’s adjustable wheelset to make it gauge adjustable...

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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Old Man Aaron » Thu Jun 25, 2020 3:41 am

Cheers, fellas. It's a very enjoyable kit. Very much looking forward to the day Peter releases the WDLR Hunslet 4-6-0T - apparently 32mm only, but that won't stop me from converting it.. ;)

I know there's plenty of ways to quarter a wheelset, but I don't plan on quartering enough locos to warrant building or buying a jig. I think I'll go for the simple method of using shims and a 3" engineers' square. Will get to that soon enough..

Checked the wheels an axles with digital verniers - axles are ⅛", wheels are 30mm dia. The wheels are a tight fit on the axles. But if one only rarely wanted to switch gauges, one might get away by just holding the axle with vice grips, and twisting the wheels along the axles to change their gauge. That said, the spoked centers are only plastic, so they might not hold up to repeated twisting. Just my thoughts anyway..

I realised that soon, I'm going to need all of the electrical components on hand, to work out where they'll fit, so I've ordered an Mtroniks soundcard from Chuffed2Bits. It sounds uncannily similar to the prototype, though I'm no fan of the card's horn, so that won't be used.

This morning, before proceeding with fitting the gearbox, I figured I'd best remove the motor, and make absolutely certain the front axle spins freely. It runs so nicely in fact, that it's shown me the rear axle still needs quite a bit more running in with the drill before proceeding..
IMG_7438.JPG
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Garethh » Thu Jun 25, 2020 9:25 am

Thanks for the info, builds looking great so far!

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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Old Man Aaron » Tue Jun 30, 2020 7:07 am

26/06/20
After another spin with the drill, I realised the gearbox cover's nut slots needed filling, before I impede access to them with the gearbox itself. Might as well fill the rest of the slots whilst I'm at it. I've been hearing a lot of good things about Squadron putty, so figured I'd give it a go. Very nice to use, though I never realised just how quickly it hardens. I suspect using it when our 40° Summers roll around, will be interesting..
IMG_7439.JPG

After sanding and filing the cranks, the splits in the front cranks were started with a razor saw, then opened out a little, with a triangular file. A razor blade is very good for removing the burrs left behind.
IMG_7440.JPG

Replicating the prototype's second crank clamping bolt is a good opportunity for extra detailing. I should've started the hole closer to the center-line of the crank, but didn't want to obstruct the grub-screw hole with the dummy clamping bolt's head. The hole was drilled about ¼ through the crank, to 1½mm dia. A spare M2 screw was then screwed into the hole.
IMG_7441.JPG

The crank was then flipped over, and the M2 screw could then be used as a guide, to align the hole on the other side of the crank. Why not just drill through in one go? Too much hassle to set up in my cheap, sloppy machine vice, which would likely have ended up holding the crank on an angle, making for a crooked hole. I'll get to cutting and fitting the dummy clamping bolts later.
IMG_7442.JPG

To make the the "stepped-out-bit" of the counterweight, a radius was carved into scraps of ½ millimeter styrene, which were then fitted with solvent.
IMG_7444.JPG

The excess material was then removed, and the slot cut as before.
IMG_7447.JPG

The rod spacers were then thrown in the drill and sanded.
IMG_7443.JPG

After sanding and filing the putty, the gearbox was finally fitted in place. I thought about using retaining fluid, but as this axle just flops around, I opted for superglue.
IMG_7449.JPG
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by GTB » Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:46 am

Old Man Aaron wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 7:07 am
I've been hearing a lot of good things about Squadron putty, so figured I'd give it a go. Very nice to use, though I never realised just how quickly it hardens. I suspect using it when our 40° Summers roll around, will be interesting..
The kit looks better engineered than some 3D kits I've seen. The designer is selecting materials based on fitness for purpose, rather than just blindly trying to print everything.

Where did you manage to find Squadron putty in Oz? It disappeared locally a while ago and my last tube has started drying out.

I've never noticed much difference in it's drying time in hot weather (we do get that here now and again 8)). If the filler layer is thin it can usually be sanded within an hour or so, even in the brass monkey weather we are having at present.

Regards,
Graeme

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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Old Man Aaron » Sat Jul 18, 2020 11:55 am

Apologies for the slow reply. As you'll read below, I got a bit fed-up with the kit. I then became very busy finishing the caravan, and promptly forgot about the forum's very existence..

Regarding the 'Squadron, mine came from Yankeeland via Evilbay. I'll support local or interstate retailers when I can, but it's getting increasingly difficult to find much of anything useful, without having to go overseas anymore.
It is indeed a well-designed and made kit. As for those that try to print everything, I know the type - though whom, I can't remember off the top of my head.

26/06/20
The crankpins were reinforced with superglue - I'd have preferred threadlock, but I don't believe that works with plastic threads. We'll see how it holds up..
IMG_7450.JPG

Be gentle when screwing the crankpins home; the thread in the crank is easy to strip. The crank was then temporarily fitted to a spare ⅛" axle, to check by eye, weather the crankpin was parallel to the axle. None of mine needed adjustments.
IMG_7451.JPG

27/06/20
The rods all needed some straightening. Again, gentle is the key.
IMG_7452.JPG

Minor burrs left on the rods were removed with needle files. I don't remember if I had to enlarge the holes to fit the bushes.
IMG_7453.JPG

As the bushes are longer than the rods' width, an M4 nut was blu-tacked over the bush hole as a spacer, prior to applying retainer and pressing home.
IMG_7455.JPG

28/06/20
The connecting rod was fouling on the front wheelset's crankpins, so a pair of M2 washers were fitted to the jackshaft crankpins, as spacers. I couldn't even fit the rods without drilling out all of their bushes to 2.2mm - that's a fair chunk of slop, in my book. Wasn't my first choice, but I couldn't find any issue with the assembly thus far.
IMG_7456.JPG

With the motor still disconnected, the quartering was done. The "set square and shims" method was a farce, so I ended up using the "twist, tighten, check for binds, twist, tighten, check for binds, etc." trial-and-error method. Predictably, this took some hours over several sessions. The coupling rods were done first, and once they were no longer binding, the connecting rods were then fitted, and the jackshaft cranks quartered.
IMG_7458.JPG

01/07/20
The chassis can be pushed freely by hand in both directions, with no binding. After roughly seven hours over three days, I don't want to have to do this again and I don't trust a single grub screw to hold the quartering. To reinforce, a drop of superglue was applied to each axle end, allowed to run into the joint, and the excess quickly wiped away. It'll be trickier to paint now, but all it really means is some extra masking.
IMG_7459.JPG

After allowing to sit overnight, the motor was refitted, and temporarily wired up with a Deltang receiver to re-check the motion. The difference in running by motor rather than hand, was day-and-night - absolutely awful, terrible binding. I don't believe the quartering has been disturbed, so I'll have to try and make some sort of homemade quartering jig to make certain each axle is identical.

I for one, would be content to pay a little extra for a printed quartering jig to be included in each kit - or even as a separate item. Feeling a bit gutted over all the wasted time and energy spent quartering, I put the kit away and resolved to finish the new workshop before returning to the Baldwin.

Reards,
Aaron
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by GTB » Mon Jul 20, 2020 4:38 am

Old Man Aaron wrote:
Sat Jul 18, 2020 11:55 am

I for one, would be content to pay a little extra for a printed quartering jig to be included in each kit - or even as a separate item. Feeling a bit gutted over all the wasted time and energy spent quartering, I put the kit away and resolved to finish the new workshop before returning to the Baldwin.
I thought you'd say the putty came from the US. The ones I looked at wanted more more for postage than the tube of putty. I'll probably go back to using Tamiya putty, if I can ever visit a hobby shop again.


Hmmm, can't say I'm impressed with the kit supplied crankpins, as a thread makes a lousy bearing surface. I'd be replacing them with shouldered screws if it were mine. I think you said you had a lathe........


FWIW, the photo shows one of my quartering jigs, based very loosely on the old NWSL HO scale one, which was mostly plastic.

This one is for inside frame wheel sets and I later made a wider one for outside frames. It was knocked up 10 years ago when I was rebuilding my Argyle Philadelphia, which had led a hard life before I got it.

I centre drill all my axles for aesthetic reasons, but that also means they can be supported in the jig by the large plated screws, which have a 60 deg point turned on them. I made special long shouldered crankpins for use when quartering, but the ones I needed for the photo have gone AWOL. The screws in the wheels give the general idea on using it though.

The jig is completely open in the middle, as the loco this jig was initially built for had valve gear eccentrics on one axle, preventing the axle from being located in a v-block. Using the centres also means it works on any dia. of axle.

I have an allergy to complex jigs and don't use them unless absolutely necessary. This one is simple and took maybe 1/2 hr to make from scraps of ply and wood in the workshop and an overnight wait for the glue to dry. Routing out a trench for the ply sides makes the whole thing much more rigid than just glueing them to the surface of the base block.

Not a flash toolmakers job, but it works fine and has now successfully quartered three scratchbuilt steamers with inside frames and will be doing a fourth before the end of the year. The outside frame version has done two locos so far.

Regards,
Graeme
Quartering Jig.jpg

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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Old Man Aaron » Tue Jul 21, 2020 2:20 am

Had the same thought regarding screws as crankpins. I could turn new ones (though I'd have to buy material and learn to get a decent finish turning steel) but the cranks' rear faces being countersunk leaves very little thread into which proper replacement crankpins could screw. I don't think filling the countersinks, drilling and tapping would work, and I'm not really up to making all new metal cranks. If the supplied screw crankpins chew out the rod bushes in five years, and I have to buy replacement bushes for what, $25(?) or machine them myself, that's relatively painless. Mildly annoying, sure. But relatively painless. Maybe even make better cranks and pins at the same time - depends on the state in which I'll be by then.

I don't own a router, (though the examples of having one being helpful just continue to pile up) but I quite like that jig you've made. Might just have to copy it when I get back onto this loco.. Cheers for sharing that!
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Old Man Aaron » Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:17 am

04/10/2020

Having completed the workshop some months ago, (minus a bookshelf I keep forgetting to build) and the test tramway mostly built, I found myself delayed in upgrading an existing part of the fleet, for want of an ultrasonic cleaner. Whilst that's in the post, I decided to (at least) get a quartering jig made, for the Baldwin tractor.

Graeme got me thinking about removing the axles, facing and center-drilling them in the lathe, but I couldn't be bothered removing the gear from the front axle. Writing this though, I've just remembered I have a NWSL gear puller which would've made that job much less painful. Ah well, weathering hides all!
I digress..
Ideally, I'd have made this jig from 6mm ply, clamping the pieces together and cutting the "V" with a bandsaw, using a fence to keep the cuts straight. No space for such a tool though, so hand-cutting some 2mm styrene had to do. The 3mm foamboard offcut was used as a fence to keep the axle supports in line. Very crude, but it worked.
IMG_7922.JPG

As the batteries I'd previously used for testing the chassis under power were now installed in the track-sweeper wagon, I had to individually charge the 18650 Li-Ion cells I'd bought for this loco, and work out where everything would be fitted in the bonnet. This would determine the layout of the batteries, and allow me to assemble them into a pack. Then I could check the newly-quartered chassis under power. Not shown here is the Deltang receiver, which will likely also be mounted in the ample bonnet.
IMG_7925.JPG

With the temporary wiring re-connected, the loco now runs quite smoothly - for two or three revolutions, as the crankpin nuts tighten themselves and clamp the rods solid on one side of the loco, whilst the other side self-loosens. I've double-nutted the crankpins but none too well, as I don't have a 1mm thick spanner to properly hold the nut closest to the rod. Seems okay now, running along 3ft of workbench.. I'll loctite a single nut on each crankpin and test again tomorrow.
IMG_7926.JPG

Another bench test over morning coffee was successful. But one thing needs attention before a track test - The motor, sitting in it's hole through the frame stretcher, has a little wiggle room, and lightly rattles against the stretcher when running in reverse. Some thin foam rubber was found in the pertinent scrap box in the garage, then two small shims cut and inserted above and below the motor, to take up the space. A tiny drop of superglue on the stretcher ensures the shims don't work loose.
IMG_7927.JPG

A very brief track test (as all bearings besides the pre-lubricated gearbox are dry, and will remain so until painting/weathering are done) showed that the loco runs smoothly and quietly. No doubt this will improve as it runs in, but that's a ways off.

Writing this now, I've just decided to have the loco running for the up-coming open day in just under a fortnight, at the AMRA club's track in Brisbane. Should pass the time waiting for the ultrasonic cleaner for my Fowler, anyway..
IMG_7928.JPG
Regards,
Aaron
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Re: Yet Another PDF Baldwin

Post by Mitch stack » Wed Oct 07, 2020 12:49 pm

Good Work mate!! your doing much better then me lol., im planning to get mine going very soon,. watch this space is all ill say.........

Mitch

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