Monday, 11 November 2013

New Locomotives hit the rails

FVM Santa Fe GP60M and B units

    For too many years I have yearned for some manufacturer to deliver to us Santa Fe modelers the GP60 M and B units that hit the Santa Fe in 1990. Many years ago I purchased a GP60 M and B unit in brass at I must admit too much money. When they first were put to work on the SFRSD they would not run across the new M E turnouts and in fact they had difficulty running at all. I said to myself, self this is dumb why keep these if you are not going to have the pleasure of seeing them operate. So in 2003 they were sold to a very happy customer and I started waiting.
     Suffice to say I was a very happy man when I heard that FVM were going to release them in the not too distant future.
     This still caused me some dilemma as my RR is set in 1986 four years before they were introduced to the Santa Fe in the Corwith Yard in Chicago. I thought well I will be firm and stick to my era.
     Time passed and still no GP60 M's from FVM until the past month when they hit the LHS, well the USA ones anyway. Boy did they look ok, the forums were raving about just how good they looked and ran. It didn't take long for the emails to be sent from yours truly to one of my favorite on line stores to place an order for one GP60 M and one GP60 B. When some of my friends and I were talking they said how are you going to turn the lead loco. Ok I had to order the second GP60 M oh and also two ESU plug in decoders along with one Loksound Micro sound decoder to get this lash-up humming.
     The first order of business was to mask up the bodies and paint out the grills with a diluted flat black with just a touch of rust added for good measure. I then gave them a very light spray along the top just to show that these puppies were meant to be working from the get go.    
      Once all three were painted the next job was to install the two plug-in decoders. They went in like a snap once my friend John worked out what I had done incorrectly and now run like a dream.
     The last job to tackle is the installation of the sound decoder. John has done one of his with a lot of machining of the frame and a good amount of filing of the inside of the body to give clearance for the decoder as they are just a tad too wide to fit.
     So armed with this my GP60 M is now stripped, the frame has gone to Vic for milling not only for the decoder but also for the two 13 mm speakers that will be inserted into the fuel tank portion of the frame. As I write this I heard back from Vic that the top milling went very well but have not heard from him since. Should I be concerned. I will let you know in the next post.
     Meanwhile here is a few images of the insides of the loco.



You can just see a small portion of the painted grills along with the top.
So that's about as far as we can go at the moment. More to follow when further progress is made.
Thanks for dropping by.
Rod.

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